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3 weeks in Borneo: Mulu National Park, day 2

Started the day with yummy breakfast at our homestay: bananas and pancakes! Plus eggs! Such a nice surprise after so many free breakfasts of just toast and tea.

I’d been concerned about sleeping okay in our room since there’s no air conditioning, but we had two fans going at high speed the whole night and it actually felt okay. However, I know we were lucky because our host keeps the generator going all night— other places shut their generators off during the night!

After breakfast, we headed into the park a little before 8:00am. It’s best to get going as early as you can, as the temperatures are lower before noon and it’s less crowded on the trails.

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Morning hike

We did an easy hike along the Botanical Heritage trail, which focuses on plants and trees (and the animals/insects that live in them). It’s an unguided tour but there’s plenty of info placards places throughout. Total walking distance was about 3km on a well-maintained wooden walkway.

We actually passed some staff cleaning the wooden walkways on one of our hikes. Staff use electric bikes (with big padded wheels) to get down the trails faster than walking speed– there’s no golf carts or trucks out in the rainforest. They use a pressure washer to blast off the moss and plants that start growing on the planks. There’s pipes and power lines running underneath the walkways and they bring a portable machine out on the trail.

Over to the Marriott

After the Botanical Heritage trail, Helene split off to do an adventure cave tour while I walked over to the Marriott resort to leech off their Wi-Fi.

There’s no internet connection in our homestay or Mulu NP, and our cell phone coverage with Celcom was very spotty. I needed to buy our plane tickets out of Mulu and book a hotel at our next stop in Miri, so I had to hike over to the only place I knew of that had a solid wifi connection: the Marriott resort.

From the park it’s about a 30 minute walk— each way— along a paved road. It’s an easy walk but VERY hot, and the public parts of the Marriott resort don’t have air con. However, once I got there I was able to hook into their wifi and book our tickets for a flight a few days later. Huzzah!

The Marriott is the most expensive hotel in Mulu (at ~$150 USD/night) and it’s definitely a resort. The design has heavy jungle lodge vibes, which is fun, and there’s a pool, massage/spa thing, huge sitting areas, etc.

Unfortunately, it was so hot walking there and back that I ended up getting a blister. In retrospect, I probably could’ve gotten a ride on the hotel shuttle back to the park.

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Mulu National Park, day 1

Asia 2023 Travel Diaries

Journal date: July 27, 2023

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Anastasia is a former librarian turned digital nomad. She's been traveling the world full time for two years and has visited 18 countries so far! Just Gone Wandering is a travel resource for solo female travelers on a backpacker's budget-- or slightly more-- and highlights amazing places to visit as well as providing tips and tricks for traveling smart and frugal. Read more...

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