Ancient Civilisation – Niah Caves

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day tour

Tour Level: High Level

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: Morning

tour highlights

  • Visit the beautiful prehistoric Niah Caves
  • Explore the site of the oldest human remains in Asia
  • Discover the Niah Museum to learn more about the caves
  • See inside Traders Cave & Niah Great Cave
  • View the unique paintings in the Painted Cave

tour details

Comprised of lowland forest & limestone hills, Niah National Park is home to the prehistoric Niah Caves. You’ll learn that the caves are known for being one of the birthplaces of civilisation in Asia. The oldest human remains in Asia & of Borneo’s prehistoric animals were found here, making the Niah Caves one of the most important archaeological sites in the world. You’ll visit the Niah Museum to find out more about their archaeological importance, then take a plank-walk to Traders Cave. Continue on to Niah Great Cave, with the famous excavation sites, where a 40,000 year old human skull was found. You’ll head deeper inside to see evidence of the ongoing collection of edible birds’ nests before walking in a pitch-black tunnel to get to the Painted Cave with its hematite cave paintings.

tour description

109 km or respectively 2 hours' drive from Miri town, comprising of 3,140 hectares of lowland forest and limestone hills, lies the Niah National Park with the prehistoric Niah Caves, famed for their role as one of the birthplaces of civilisation in Asia. The oldest human remains in Asia as well as remains of Borneo's prehistoric animals were found here, making the Niah Caves one of the most important archaeological sites in the world.
After registration at the park's headquarters a boat will bring you to the other side of Niah river, where you will visit the Niah Museum to learn about the archaeological importance of the Niah Caves. From here a 3 km plank-walk will lead you to the Traders Cave, which used to be a thriving market some 60-70 years ago, where edible birds' nests which had been collected in the caves were barter-traded for food and other goods. Nowadays the collecting of the highly sought-after swiftlet nests continues, but is a government-controlled activity. Having passed through Traders Cave you will reach the Niah Great Cave with the famous excavation sites, where a 40.000 year old human skull was found. Deeper inside this cave you will see evidence of the on-going collecting of edible birds' nests as well as collecting of bats guano for fertilizer. If you wish you can exit the Great Cave through the east entrance, climbing up several stairs and through a pitch-black tunnel to get to the Painted Cave with its hematite cave paintings.
Return to the headquarters the same way. The tour will take about 3-4 hours. After the tour, lunch will be served in a local restaurant nearby Niah National Park, before returning to Miri.

includes

  • Transfer from/to Hotel Included: Yes
  • Meals: Lunch Included

notes

  • Please bring shoes with good grip and a torch light for this tour.
  • The Niah Museum is closed on Mondays and public holidays.
  • Please note that the cave paintings in the Painted Cave are protected behind a tall fence and can only be seen from a distance.
  • It is advisable to bring some snacks for this tour, as lunch tends to be late.
Tour code: MYYDSNIA
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