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Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

California
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Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

We're traveling to Sabah in December/Jan 2005 and are worried about reserving a space and permit for climbing Mt. Kinabalu. I contacted the Tanjung Aru (where we'll be staying in KK) and the travel desk advised me that it would cost RM780.00 per person - this price includes travel to and from Mt. Kinabalu (to KK), a guide, entrance fee, meals, insurance, climbing permit, climbing certificate and one night accommodation (and the cost excludes porters) . The travel agent also informed me that there are very few spaces left. Should I jump on this price or look around? I thought it was quite a bit less expensive to hike Mt. Kinabalu and I'm quite surprised by the expense. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Is it possible to just arrive in KK and arrange travel/permit/lodging at Mt. Kinabalu once we're there or will we have no hope of getting a permit/lodging?

Maidstone, United...
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1. Re: Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

When I climbed Mount Kinabalu my partner and I followed the following itinerary.

Early morning bus KK to Ranau( about 10km beyond the park enterance). Taxi to poring Springs.

At 3pm the taxi returned and took us to the Park where we overnighted in a lodge for two.

8.30 the following morning we registered for the climb and obtained our own guide so as to do it at our own pace.

Spent one night on the mountain and returned to KK by private minibus with the seats laid flat, (bliss),offered by our guide, although we could have waited for the next passing bus.

We did it in 2000 and pre-booked our Park accommodation with the Sabah Parks office in KK, which you would need to do as early as possible due to demand.

Costs, (from memory), were approximately as follows, prices are per person, based on 2 sharing, in GBP.

Express Bus to Ranau 1.00pp

Taxi to Poring then on to park 2.50pp

Park enterance 2.00pp

Permit 2.00pp

Lodge 10.00pp

Mountain accommodation 4.00pp

Personal guide 6.00pp

food 1.00pp towhatever you want

Private Minibus 9.00pp (or local bus about 1.00pp)

Total about 30 - 40 GBP (or 55 - 75 dollars per person).

Due to the high altitude and energy used you will need to take your own high energy snacks such as chocolate and peanuts, beleive me, you WILL notice the difference if you don't.

Park costs will have changed a little since I did it, hopefully another contributor on this site will have more accurate and up to date info on costs.

London
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2. Re: Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

Purrfecttune's guide is close.

Transport:

From KK, you can take a bus heading for Sandakan and you'll get dropped off just outside the Park gates. Its only 50m to the office.

Accomodation:

Accomodation on the mountain and for Park HQ is adminstrated by Sutera (http://www.suterasanctuarylodges.com/). They also have an office at Wisma Sabah in KK.

Last year, I turned up at their office in Wisma Sabah, booked accomodation for Park HQ. But I was told that accomodation was fully booked up on the mountain. I took it anyway.

Next morning, cancellations! They are quite the norm so if you hang around and ask. If not today then maybe the following day. Personally, I have not heard of one single person who has not been able to climb because of accomodation. Just have to be patient.

Best if you are a bit flexible with your plans, just in case. You should be able to climb quite cheaply without having to go through big hotels or travel companies. In any case, and a lot of people miss this, Park HQ is quite pleasant. Most travellers tend to climb the mountain and forget to explore the area.

It can get very gusty up on the mountain when the vegetation starts to barren out. Go with layers. it'll be cold for the 3am climb but you might just get lucky when the sun comes up on the way down.

Bring gloves, energy drink, tissue paper, hat, rain gear too

Also give yourself good practice with this line for it will be used often after your descent, "Honey, can you drop everthing and see to me. I cant feel my limbs."

I climbed last year. Hope this helps.

California
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3. Re: Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

Thanks to both of you! Your thoughts are very helpful!

Maidstone, United...
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4. Re: Does it really cost RM780 to climb Mt. Kinabalu?

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