Apart from preparing myself for the expedition, I planned my transportation requisite such as booking of plane tickets, getting car rental in Kuala Lumpur and other travel arrangements. However, I was concerned about the lodging or hotel facilities but it turned out to be really simple as there were several guesthouses along with home stays available near Gunung Mulu National Park for tourists. I booked my plane ticket in advance and bought required items from the market. It proved highly convenient for me to book a dormitory bed at one of the lodges.
GUNING MULU NATIONAL PARK
Gunung Mulu National Park is situated at Miri, Sarawak. It is often referred as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The national park mainly encompasses caves and other rainforests. As an adventurer, I always wanted to discover unknown destinations in caves and rainforests.
It seemed that Gunung Mulu National Park was the ultimate destination for adventure. I had no experience in caves and enclosed places, so I decided that I should pack my luggage accordingly with necessary equipments. I planned to prepared myself with emergency equipments such as batteries, ropes, helmet etc. But, later I realized that most of the equipments are provided at the site on rental basis.
As planned, I boarded one of the standard airways with operational services at one of the airport near Gunung Mulu National Park. I felt quite tense in the beginning but slowly I started to adapt my surrounding environment. Upon landing at the small airport near Gunung Mulu National Park, I boarded a taxi to reach my booked lodge. As expected, the lodge was quite close to the airport. It proved worthwhile to hire a taxi as it would have been strenuous to walk all the way towards my lodge.
GREETED NICELY BY MANAGER
The lodge manager greeted me warmly and assisted to check in to one of his dormitory bedroom. The space was quite small but it was clean. I managed to get all my queries answered from him. He guided me efficiently towards adventure caving at Gunung Mulu National Park. I planned by day ahead of time.
REACHING MY LODGE
Since, I reached my lodge near the park in the evening, so I decided that I would start with adventure caving in the morning. The morning was great as the lodge caretaker offered me a hearty meal which filled my stomach full. Prior departure, I checked my necessary equipments and went straight towards Gunung Mulu National Park Headquarter Office. The charges to enter the adventure cave and other facilities in the park were quite nominal.
ENTER FEE TO THE PARK
The entry fee or permit for the park was around RM 30 while the travel guide charges were around RM 20-25. As planned, I went straight ahead for the adventure caves. In order to facilitate my cave experience, I had to complete an intermediate course for caving. Upon successful completion, I moved to advance level.
ENTERING THE CAVE
The cave proved to be challenging as it was quite dark insie with no visible sun rays or any other form of light. As planned, I switched on my head lamp and moved ahead with others keeping up with the pace. The most threatening features of the caves were its creatures. These creatures were rapid snakes and giant spiders. I was shivering with fear as I often stay away from spiders. It was quite challenging to move through all corners of the cave as there were hundreds of bats sleeping with feet clung to rocks in the cave ceiling. I feel quite lucky as I manage to avoid these creatures and overcame my fear. The feeling of coming out of cave and seeing the sunlight was incredible.