Mount Kinabalu National Park is definitely the first choice of every adventure enthusiast and nature lover on Malaysian holidays. Kinabalu National Park, located around Mount Kinabalu, has abundant natural attractions and hence the number of tourists visiting this place is increasing year by year. With a height of about 4095 metres, the great Mount Kinabalu is the highest mountain on the world’s third largest island and is considered to be the highest point between the Himalayas and New Guinea.
About Mount Kinabalu National Park
Being the highest mountain on the island of Borneo, it is located on the west coast of Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Kinabalu National Park or Mount Kinabalu National Park was established in the year 1964, and is one of the first national parks in Malaysia. Covering an area of approximately 754 square kilometres, Mount Kinabalu National Park is one of the most important biological sites in the world and is known as the central diverse plant hub of Southeast Asia.
With over 4500 species of flora and fauna, Mount Kinabalu National Park is Malaysia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site. For its “outstanding universal value”, it received World Heritage Site status in the year 2000. The national park has over 1200 species of orchids and about 40 species of oaks, spread across its six botanical zones.
These six zones are Lower Mountain Forest, Upper Mountain Forest, Ultrabasic Rock Forest, Lower Granite Boulder Forest, Upper Granite Boulder Forest, Summit or Subalpine. About 326 species of birds, over 100 species of mammals and about 110 species of land snails are found in Mount Kinabalu National Park and its surrounding area.
Things to do in Mount Kinabalu National Park
1. Dive into the Poringa Hot Springs
Another popular attraction of the national park is the Poringa Hot Springs. The sulphur-rich hot water springs are known to have healing properties that help heal tired nerves issues and rejuvenate your mind.
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2. Visit a Butterfly Farm
Near Poring Hot Springs, one can also explore the orchid garden and butterfly farming site. The orchid garden is known for the cultivation and conservation of many rare species of orchids. Apart from this, the suspension bridge built amidst the forest canopy is also quite attractive, which is very close to Poring Hot Springs.
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3. Explore the Kundasang War Memorial and Gardens
The Kundasang War Memorial and Garden has been established in Kundasang in memory of the British and Australian soldiers who died in the Sandakan POW camp during Ranu’s death march. This monument is located about 7 kilometers from the gate of Kinabalu National Park and has about 4 beautiful gardens in its area.
4. Spot a Rafflesia
The world’s largest flower, the Rafflesius, which is difficult to find, is another popular attraction in Mount Kinabalu National Park. Rafflesias take about a year to fully bloom and the flower in full bloom only lasts for 6 days. Only a few lucky people get a chance to glimpse this rare flower which is a once in a lifetime experience.
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5. Enjoy trekking at its best
Although there are plenty of things to do throughout the island, trekking Mount Kinabalu is the most popular activity in Kinabalu National Park. The path to Mount Kinabalu is very steep and therefore requires a lot of preparation before climbing the summit. Trails such as: Silau Silau, Bundu Tuhau View, Mempening, Liwagu River, Bukit Burung are the most popular trails throughout Malaysia.
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6. Visit Kipungit Waterfall
Kipungit Waterfall and Langanan Waterfall are about a few kilometers away from Poring Hot Spring. It is the best picnic spot in the whole of Kinabalu and is also popular for camping, swimming etc. all year round.
How to reach Mount Kinabalu National Park
One should plan their trip through Kota Kinabalu before heading towards Mount Kinabalu National Park. This is the easiest and cheapest way to reach Kinabalu National Park from Kota Kinabalu. Kota Kinabalu is well connected to this national park and one can easily find multiple options to reach their final destination and even go to other connected areas.
From the night market near the city centre, or from Jalang Padang, one can catch a shared mini-van which costs RM20 per person for a one-way ride. One can also take buses or coaches from the city centre. All buses heading towards Ranau, Sandakan or Tawau will pass the entrance of the national park, making it another popular mode of transport. A one-way journey will cost around 10 RM to 15 RM and take 1- 1.5 hours.
Another popular option is to rent a vehicle for a self-drive from Kota Kinabalu Airport. One can also hire non-sharing cabs which are easily available from Kota Kinabalu which serves you exclusively for the whole day at a cost of around RM150 to RM200.
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where to stay
Since Kota Kinabalu is often considered the base camp of Mount Kinabalu, many hotels and restaurants can be found here, including hotels, resorts, guest houses, homestays and villas, etc. Some such popular places are Awangio Hoteleli, and Selin Resort in Jalan Lintas, Kinabalu Daya Hotel in Gaya Street Market, and more.
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Being located in a mountainous area, it is advisable to carry warm clothes and raincoats when visiting Mount Kinabalu and its surrounding areas. Since the number of climbers is limited to 135 people per day, it is advisable to make reservations and obtain all necessary permissions at least six months in advance of your trip. trip to malaysia,
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