“The Gomantong Caves are disgusting, yes, but they’re also magnificent.”
Read more: HERE
After spending our morning at the Puu Jih Shih temple we grabbed our lunch at Restoran Kak Jue. If you look up for it on the internet you would find it on the tripAdvisor site. The food was so good. Highly recommended if you’re looking for a place to eat in Sandakan. Then, we headed to Gomantong caves. Gomantong is located in Sukau. It is somewhere between Sandakan and Kinabatangan. Correct me if I’m geographically wrong. At first, I thought it was somewhere in Kinabatangan. But then we saw the “Welcome to Sukau” signboard.
We arrived at noon time. There aren’t many people at that time. Then we changed into proper clothing and wore our shoes. Bought our tickets which costed us 5MYR per person (for Malaysian). From the registration center we followed the boardwalk lead up to Simud Hitam. The Gomantong cave has two main caves which open for visitation. First is the Simud Hitam which is accessible to anyone. And the other one is the Simud Putih, the less accessible. This is where the valuable white bird’s nest is harvested and you need a guide to get there as there’s no boardwalk provided.
On our way to the cave we saw one red leaf monkey. I was really surprised because it came out of nowhere. It jumped onto the walkway’s handrails and slowly moving towards us. It as if it wanted to attack us. Thank goodness nothing happened. Maybe the monkey just wanted to play around with us. Beside, you don’t always get the opportunity to see the red leaf monkey.
“Red leaf monkeys are highly territorial and will challenge any intruders within their home range. Males emit a loud call to demarcate their territory and warn rivals away.
This species is under some pressure from hunting and habitat loss, but is quite common throughout its range. Nevertheless, they are protected by law throughout Malaysian Borneo.”
It took around 10 minutes of walking to get to the entrance of the cave. From the outside you could smell a “very unpleasant” smell and if you don’t have strong stomach you might want to consider taking a face mask with you. And cockroaches are literally everywhere. There’s no escaping from the little monster. Met one foreigner and she said that once is enough for her. So if you’re afraid of cockroach you better be prepared mentally. And also there’s poops everywhere. Bear in mind to not touch anything especially the boardwalk’s handrails. I was so cautious the whole time I was in there because while browsing the internet I read that you could see snake inside the cave and I have massive fear of snake. But it’s really interesting to explore the cave. And it’s impressive to think that bird nest collectors climb up to the ceiling of the cave to collect the nest. It’s pretty high and could endangered their lives.
On our way going back to the registration center we saw one wild Orang Utan with its baby. At first, we thought that it was just another monkey. Turned out, it was an Orang Utan. Because we were told that the Orang Utan is six times stronger than human we were very cautios. It was a surreal experience to actually saw the Orang Utan. If you read on the internet, there are other people who came to Gomantong and saw an Orang Utan around the area. Probably because it’s a protected area and the Orang Utan feels more safe there.
It was a great experience to be able to see the cave with my own eyes and checked it off from my places I want to see list.
Because it looks like I’m somewhere extraterrestrial I might as well act like an alien 🙂
Hope y’all have a good day.