In a nutshell
Miri is a heaven for the adventure junkie and nature enthusiast. It is packed with beginner, intermediate and advanced treks, trips, hikes, and even just walks. The city has the beach, the food, the immense jungle and an intriguing concoction of cultural influences. It is really quite hard to find reason not to visit!
Why to go to Miri
Trying to find reason to visit Miri doesn't take too much convincing. Between the unreal array of options to treat and surprise your pallet, the industrial, linguistic and cultural historic artefacts and buildings, and the vast and daunting rainforest, it isn't too difficult to take the plunge and book your tickets over.
Of course, a massive attraction is the Gunung Mulu National Park, home to natural wonders of all kinds. It is a heaven to the bold and adventurous, offering a retreat from the mania of cities. It is a deep-seated immersion in the world as it once was.
The first ever Shell oil mining plant, the oldest Taoist temple in the whole of South-East Asia, a reef to go diving on and a golf course to unwind on. There is no shortage of activities for the traveller looking to be busy.
When to go to Miri
While the temperature never really differs and stays between the very comfortable degrees of 22 and 32, the best time to visit Miri has got to be between April and September. Being the dry season, you can count on all your activities panning out just how you planned them. The Northeast Monsoon Season occurs between the months of October and March, and should it be possible, should be well avoided.
Where to stay in Miri
Miri has a distinct variety of accommodations at various price levels that, as a whole, provide fantastic rates and services to travellers.
An inexpensive option with fantastic amenities is My Homestay Guesthouse. Free breakfast, air-conditioning, a twent- four hour front-desk, WiFi in the room, and motorbikes for rental downstairs all make this a superb option for your first night in Miri (at least). Rooms go for around MYR 45 for the night.
Mid-range options are of an equally high standard. Something for the more sporty inclined is well catered for by the Eastwood Valley Golf and Country Club, while the more bohemian and nature craving tourist will be well at home at somewhere like the Treetops Jungle Lodge. Rooms in this price range go for around MYR 90 to MYR 120.
Of course, Miri is not devoid of the finer kinds of accommodation. The Miri Marriott Resort and Spa is a well renowned high-class establishment. Fantastic views, services, restaurants, and amenities all make the hotel shine, putting all in price of MYR 320 into perspective.
Where to eat in Miri
A melting pot of Asian flavours, Miri is a great place for all foodies. No wonder that Halal food is found virtualy everywhere; but alongside with Malaysian staples you have a wide choice of Indian and Chinese favourites. Start you culinary journey around Miri and Sarawakian cuisine at the night market where for MYR 6-8 you can sample an abundance of local specialties.
How to get around Miri
Getting around Miri has become a solo traveller’s dream! The wonders of Uber and Grab taxi have reached the shores of this city, bringing ease, reliability, and safety to travellers getting around. While fares are fixed and cannot be negotiated down, this may be just what you are looking for.
If you are looking for a bit of a thrill and the potential of a slightly lowered price, there are regular taxis that can be hailed. Be firm but warm in your bargaining if you and the driver both decide to not use the meter. We would not suggest that you go for this approach while you are still fresh of the plane, and rather give yourself some time to get your feet.
As is the case in all of Malaysia, the public bus service is good. However, it is much less substantial that in the past with far fewer lines running these days. It is never the easiest method of getting around, but it will stretch your money much further and allow for many more desserts! The last busses run at around 6pm.
If you are looking for the highest level of freedom while zooming around the town in a really romantic sort of way, then head on over to My Homestay Guesthouse. They have motorbikes and even cars for rental at very reasonable prices - around MYR 30 for a day for two wheels, and substantially more for four.
How to get to and from Miri
International flights from Singapore are available too. Flights are frequent, efficient and moderately inexpensive. The majority of travellers are likely to utilize this option as Miri is in invariably their first stop in Borneo Malaysia. There is also the fact that getting in any other way will use up all the money and time that you have to your name.
Malaysia Airlines and Air Asia run the lion share of routes through to Miri. Get online and book in advance for a great rate on your journey. Tickets from Kuala Lumpur cost around MYR 100. From Penang, a little further out, you'll need to get a ticket to Kuala Lumpur and then change planes from here.
A less likely alternative for getting into Miri is the bus from various other cities within the Sarawak state. Busses to and from the Niah Caves take around two hours, costs MYR 20 and will leave you at the Miri Express Bus Terminal.
Coming in from Bandar Seri Begawan in Brunei has been made easy via two dedicated routes. The PHLS express leaves once in the early morning, and once in the early afternoon and will set you back around MYR 65.
Is Miri a safe place to visit?
Miri is a small-ish, and very safe town. It is free of locals looking to take advantage of tourists, is not victim to big city petty thief crimes, and is really actually filled with delightful people of a mostly very understanding and accepting nature. Do not fear for your safety or possessions, but do not act recklessly either. A smart traveller is a safe one.