Gunung Mulu National Park is home to one of the largest underground cave systems in the world:
Gunung Mulu National Park, situated in the Malaysian State of Sarawak on the island of Borneo, is outstanding both for its high biodiversity and for its karst features. The park is dominated by Gunung Mulu, a 2,376 m high sandstone pinnacle, and the property is the most studied tropical karst area in the world. The geological Melinau Formation contains a remarkable concentration of caves, revealing a geological history of more than 1.5 million years.
High in endemism, Gunung Mulu National Park provides significant natural habitat for a wide range of plant and animal species, both above and below ground. The 52,865 ha park contains seventeen vegetation zones, exhibiting some 3,500 species of vascular plants. Its palm species are exceptionally rich, with 109 species in twenty genera recorded, making it one of the world’s richest sites for palm species. Providing protection for a substantial area of Borneo’s primary tropical forest and a home for a high diversity of species, including many endemics and threatened species, the large cave passages and chambers provide a major wildlife spectacle in terms of millions of cave swiftlets and bats.
The property is home to one of the world’s finest examples of the collapse process in karstic terrain and provides outstanding scientific opportunities to study theories on the origins of cave faunas. The deeply-incised canyons, wild rivers, rainforest-covered mountains, spectacular limestone pinnacles, cave passages and decorations found within the property produce dramatic landscapes and breathtaking scenery that is without rival. (World Heritage Centre #1013)
The park’s caves have attracted both tourists and scientists for decades.
You can find a gallery of additional photos of Gunung Mulu National Park on the World Heritage Centre’s website.
World Heritage Sites are cultural or natural landmarks of international significance, selected for recognition by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. More than 1000 such sites have been recognized in over 160 countries, and we feature one every Wednesday, drawn from one of our homeschool countries-of-the-week. You can find a complete list of World Heritage Sites online at the World Heritage Centre and in Wikipedia.
The World Heritage Centre also has a free and comprehensive World Heritage education kit for teachers, as well as a wonderful full-color wall map of World Heritage Sites, available for the cost of shipping. Why not add them both to your own homeschool library. 🗺
What world treasures will you be exploring in your homeschool this Leo Term? 😊
❡ Books in the running brooks: You can always turn to your River Houses almanac, atlas, and history encyclopedia for more information about any of our countries-of-the-week. The almanac has profiles of all the nations of the world on pages 752–859; the endpapers of the atlas are indexes that will show you where all of the individual national and regional maps may be found; the history encyclopedia includes national histories on pages 489–599; and you can find additional illustrations, flags, and other mentions through the indexes in each of these volumes. For an ideal little lesson, just write the name of the Weekly World Heritage Site on your homeschool bulletin board, find its location in your atlas, read the WHC’s brief description aloud, look at a picture or two, and you’re done. Over the course of the year, without even realizing it, your students will absorb a wealth of new historical, geographical, and cultural information. 🇲🇾
❡ The great globe itself: This is one of our regular Homeschool States & Countries posts featuring historical and natural sites of international importance. Download a copy of our River Houses World Heritage Calendar and follow along with us as we tour the planet, and add your name to our weekly mailing list to get great homeschool teaching ideas delivered right to your mailbox all through the year. 🌏