Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Gua Wang Burma-My First Caving Experience

Malaysia has some of the biggest and longest caves in the world. Some are archaeological sites, others are simply beautiful with stalagmites and stalactites, and maybe some underground rivers. Some caves are home to a wide variety of cave fauna such as bats, swiftlets, toads, snakes, and invertebrates such as insects, spiders, beetles, cockroaches, centipedes and millipedes.

Amongst the most famous caves in the world are the caves in Gunung Mulu National Park, Sarawak, which was recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 2001. More than 345 km of cave passages have been mapped in Mulu.
In Peninsular Malaysia, caves can be found in all the northern and eastern states of the peninsular. The tropical karst towers occur as steep isolated hills rising from the valley floors. 

Perlis, the northernmost state in Peninsular Malaysia, has some interesting river caves, some of which have been mined for tin, such as Gua Kelam 1 and Gua Kelam 2. The latter is one of the Peninsula's longest caves and accessible to adventure cavers, just like Gua Wang Burma. Many foreign spelaeologists come to Malaysia to document the caves and study the fauna, the physical properties, as well as the history.
Our group being briefed by Aziz, the forest ranger, who is our guide for the day.

The most popular cave in Perlis is Gua Wang Burma, a cave system that has become the main attraction of the Wang Kelian State Park within the Perlis State Park. Recently, I was invited to join a group of 30 Tourism Malaysia frontline officers and some media friends for a 5 day Nature Trail of Kedah, Perlis and Langkawi, an opportunity I wouldn’t want to miss out, especially when I saw the Gua Wang Burma exploration in the itinerary.

The Twin Stalagtites, one of the main attractions in Gua Wang Burma Satu

The journey starts with an uphill jungle trekking guided by an experienced Forest Ranger known as Aziz. We were shown and briefed of the various medicinal and poisonous plants and trees along the way. After about 40 minute of enjoying the beauty and bounty of the natural untouched rainforest, we finally reached the entrance of the cave.  Known for its streams and exotic species of insects and fungi, the cave system is divided into two main caves: The less challenging and more scenic one is Wang Burma Satu, with its unique rock formations comprising of stalagtites, stalagmites and columns, and Wang Burma Dua, which is physically and mentally challenging with its dark hooks and turns, of narrow passages and muddy tunnels – you will need to crawl or squeeze your way through to reach the amazing water-worn rock formations in the inner part of the cave.

Another interesting multiple stalagtite formations

Caving in Malaysia is still relatively new, but I strongly believe that, with a more cohesive effort by The Forestry Department and Tourism Malaysia, the activity can be promoted to become a popular recreational tourism.

I have to conclude that, after the three and a half hour caving adventure of Gua Wang Burma, I really look forward to my next caving experience. Mulu Caves, here I come!

For more information on Gua Wang Burma, please contact the followings:

Perlis Forestry Department
Km 2, Jalan Kaki Bukit
01000 Kangar
Tel : +604-9765066
Fax : +604-9767901

Tourism Malaysia Perlis
No 19, Ground Floor
Jalan Pengkalan Indah
Taman Pengkalan Indah
Pengkalan Asam
01000 Kangar
Tel : +604-9781213
Fax : +604-9781143

* All images courtesy of Hafiz Othman.


  1. Can you assist if I want to go to those places?

    1. Sure thing. Pls dont hesitate to contact me at for my assistance.


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