Niah National Park


Niah’s caves have provided ground-breaking insights into human life on Borneo way back when the island was still connected to mainland Southeast Asia. In 1958 archaeologists led by Tom Harrisson discovered the 40,000-year-old skull of an anatomically modern human, while rock paintings and several small canoe-like coffins (‘death ships’) indicate that the site was used as a burial ground much more recently. The caves also accommodate a staggering number of bats and are an important nesting site for swiftlets.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Sarawak attractions

1. Niah Archaeology Museum

0.07 MILES

Across the river from park HQ, this museum has displays on Niah’s geology, ecology and prehistoric archaeology, including an original burial canoe that’s…

2. Great Cave

1.58 MILES

A raised boardwalk leads 3.1km (3½ to four hours return) through swampy old-growth rainforest to the mouth of the Great Cave, a vast cavern approximately…

3. Painted Cave

1.75 MILES

After passing through the part of the Great Cave known as Gan Kira, you emerge into the forest and a section of boardwalk before arriving at the Painted…