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February 01, 2013

Ask no birthday!

Just a short blog post. It was my birthday yesterday and I requested for no celebration (as usual). Anyhow, I got myself these as a gift :)

Happy birthday to me, myself and I!

Man, I will be saying the same thing over again, I feel very old LOL! And owh, I love those chocolates very much! If anyone of you can present me every year, I will be glad :P

Alright, I'm signing off! See you around~

January 22, 2013

Day Trip to Gua Niah (Niah Cave, Niah National Park)

Throughout my 5 years of studying in Miri, I've always wanted to explore Gua Niah, known as Niah Caves (gua means caves) in English, also known as Niah National Park (I will just use the word Gua Niah). Finally, after I've completed my course, I had the opportunity to explore Gua Niah!

I shall skip the introduction or historic details of Gua Niah, as you can Google the information easily, at  HERE (1), HERE (2) or HERE (3).

If you plan to go there, do prepare the following items, which are extremely essential!
1. Camera!
2. Shoes - I think no matter what shoes you put on, it will still be slippery, shoes are for protection.
3. Torchlight - bring the brightest torch you have! If not bring more!
4. Water - you will definitely need this as you enter the caves... Bring more!
5. Energy booster - sweets, chocolates, whatever snacks or any tit-bits.
6. Optional - towel, cap, extra clothes...

My sisters, cousin and my mum.

Ok, basically Gua Niah is approximately 1 hour 30 minutes away from Miri city. It's the best to arrange your own transportation to get there. Entrance fee is RM10 per adult and plus RM1 per head for a short boat ride (very very very short distance) to cross the river (compulsory). Everything in this trip is on your own, unless you arrange a tour guide, which I personally think it's unnecessary to get a tour guide.

After getting tickets from the counter and the very short boat ride, the long walking journey starts here. To get to the cave, you gotta walk and follow the wooden plank and concrete stilts for 3 km.

The long walking journey will take approximately 1 hour, and of course determined by your walking speed. At the mean time, do enjoy the nature! By the way, the floors are quite slippery, so do be very careful!

Nonetheless, never forget to capture the flora and fauna with you!

Best to take photos while you are walking in... Get the logic?

By the time you get out, it is most likely that you will be sweating badly, exhausted and gasping for air. So, remember to take photos while you can!

How to know that you are approaching the caves? Do observe the wooden plank for distant walked. Approaching 3km, you will reach a Y-junction, and there will be stalls, which are set up by the natives there (it was closed on the day I went there). To go to the cave, enter the right lane, which you may notice there is a grill. If you turn left, you may reach the natives' long houses.

Trader's Cave.

Generally, Gua Niah is divided into several divisions. I don't really know the names but at the mouth of the cave, you will reach the Trader's Cave.

Look at these limestones!

Just follow the pathway, you won't get lost. Then, the next cave (the Great Cave, I think), you will be welcomed by an archeology site.

And a pitstop... You may want to take a break before the real venture begins... Can you see the hanging woods?

Observe the following photo closely. Those hanging woods are used by the locals to harvest the bird nest. There are more than half a million of swiftlets live in the cave though! Of course, bats as well.

And again, just follow the pathway, this time, you may need to follow the wooden stairs. Be prepared to turn on your torchlight!

Until certain stages, the cave will be in complete out of light, total pitch black! So watch out for your steps!

The above photo was edited massively, because it was very dark, although there was some sun light. The ending will be the most exciting part, which is the Painting Cave (4km from the starting point)... Unfortunately, it was closed for maintenance on the day I went there! Crap! I will go there again, someday, somehow!

In order to get out from the cave, just walk back the same way you entered. That will sum all the total walking distance as 8km!

Gua Niah and I

And there, Gua Niah and I! If you plan to go, I would suggest you to reach Gua Niah early, like 9am. So you can have the sweet time for this venture.


January 12, 2013

Road trip to Kuching from Miri

Throughout my 5 years of study in Miri, my uncle and I have always planned (always fail) to drive to Kuching with his car, and I shall be the main driver! At last, after completed my final year, I had this opportunity to ride to Kuching! We decided to spend a week for our road trip. In case you might not know, Kuching is approximately 799km away from Miri (according to Google map).

All started 4am from Miri and we stopped by several places for fueling and short break, such as Tatau (about 250km away from Miri), Sarikei (about 480km from Miri) and some small shops along the journey.

Almost 11 hours of journey, we reached my uncle's hometown, which is Sri Aman (about 650km from Miri).

Before proceeding to Kuching, we spent a night there. To be exact, we spent our night in Selepong Lop, which is my uncle's mother side. I was hoping to overnight at any longhouse (just wanna experience), but in the end we overnight at my uncle's relative own-made single detached house.

Long house in Selepong Lop.
Next morning, we had our breakfast @ 2 Storey Integrated Market, Sri Aman town. If you got the chance to stop by, do try out the fried kway tiaw at stall #33, highly recommended!

Without further delay, we continue our journey to Kuching for another 2 hours plus including "stoppage time" at Serian (about 180km from Sri Aman)... And there, Kuching! Literally, it means "cat"... Miao~

Likewise, we spent most of our time (about 4 days) at Kuching Waterfront for souvenirs etc~

Nonetheless, the mood of hunting local foods in Kuching is inevitable and unstoppable. Do check out my previous blog post on June 2011, titled "Hunting local foods in Kuching"! Nom nom nom~

Beef noodle @ Open Air Market
After 4 days of excitements in Kuching, we then head back to Miri with a heavy heart!

We spent 1 night in Selanjan Angkong Jalong (one hour away from Selepong Lop), which is my uncle's father side (again, own-made single detached house), and another night in Selepong Lop.

The main minor road to Selanjan Angkong Jalong
On our way home to Miri, we stopped by Sibu (about 400km from Miri, 6 hours drive) for heavy lunch. And there you go, breaking my own driving record! Based on this road trip, the driving experiences were great! The roads here are challenging, there is no highway, only 2 lanes of hilly and winding narrow roads! To sum up, our total distant travelled is 2066km! Woot woot~ Just nice for car servicing! :)

If I had the chance to be the pilot again, I'd be glad to fly high again!