Photo: Magnificent and stinky.

Gomantong Caves

Our rating:

By

Get a quote for travel insurance today.

For centuries, Gomantong Cave has been renowned as a home of birds’ nests: specifically edible birds-nest-soup-type nests produced from the saliva of the white-nest and black-nest swiftlets.

Travel better, travel smarter

Save money, receive our latest updates and get the most out of your travels.

   

The method of harvesting the nests is an ancient tradition still adhered to today, using a system of bamboo ladders and poles and rattan ropes the collectors hang from the roof of the cave to gather the nests.

The traditional system rigged up to collect the nests. Photo taken in or around Gomantong Caves, Sandakan, Malaysia by Sally Arnold.

The traditional system rigged up to collect the nests. Photo: Sally Arnold

Collectors here must possess a special licence, and only a limited number are issued each year through a tender system. This is a very controlled industry and harvesting only takes place a few times a year: February and August for the highly prized white nests, which can fetch 7,000 ringgit per kilo, and April and August for the lower quality black nests, with a market value of about 4,000 ringgit per kilo. Nineteen caves within the Gomantong system produce the nests, but visitors have easy access ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 400 words.)


Get the full story.
Create an account.

Join Travelfish

Log in

Becoming a Travelfish subscriber costs A$35 for a year. Benefits include:
1) Full access to the site
2) 250+ PDF guides
3) Discount coupons
4) 50% off our travel planning service
5) And of course, our gratitude and a warm fuzzy feeling for helping us stay in business!



Popular attractions in Sandakan

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Sandakan.



Best places to stay in Sandakan

A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Sandakan.


What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Sandakan.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Sandakan.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Sandakan.
 Read up on how to get to Sandakan.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Sandakan? Please read this.
 Browse the web securely while travelling with TunnelBear. Try with a 7–day free trial.


Skip the bus station queues!
Skip the bus station queues!
Ad Book your plane, train & bus tickets
with 12Go Asia.

12go.asia

Read more



See below for more sights and activities in Sandakan that are listed on Travelfish.org.


Top of page


Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Sandakan? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Malaysia.


Top of page