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Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

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Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

It seems that we do not have time to make it to both Mt. Kinabalu Park and Kinabatangan river.

Those of you having visited both, which one would you leave out? Both seem very nice, very hard to choose.

So, we have two choises:

1) we make 2N/3D trip to Kinabalu Mountain area (spend one day in the park and see the fauna and 2 days climb the mountain) and 1N/2D trip to see Selinga Turtles and the Orangutans (and perhaps day cruise on the river).

2) we just climb the mountain (1N/2D), and then take 2N/3D trip to selingan+sepilok+kinabatangan (spend one night on the Kinabalu river watching wildlife)

We definately want to see the turtle island and climb the mountain, and the Orang-utans seem interesting too (have not found a trip to both Selinga and Kinabatangan without the Orang-utans...)

Kota Kinabalu...
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1. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

Hi Marissa,

I think your option 2 is probably the best bet - the fauna and flaura you could see at Kinabatangan is much more substantial than in Kinabalu Park - even if you're one of the unlucky ones and see nothing more than birds, monkeys and monitor lizards, it will probably still outshine what you can find in Kinabalu Park.

Maidstone, United...
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2. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

I agree with Eastofwest. I spent 1 night/2days climbing the mountain after arriving from a day at Poring Springs, and this was just right. (Maybe should have done it the other way round though)!

I always overnight at the Kinabatangan River at Uncle Tans, a really basic camp but the ultimate experience for wild life spotting. I have also overnighted on Selingan, another experience not to be missed.

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3. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

Thank you, your recommendations sound very good, I suppose that's what we will choose.

How about the poring springs, is that something not to be missed as well? We were planning on going on an organized trip to climb the mountain, but none of them have the hot springs at the end. Do you think we should skip the return ride to KK and go to the hot springs and then find our own way back in the evening? Is there public transportation available (easily?)...?

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4. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

Here is my info about Poring Hot Springs

Poring hot springs for three days/two nights. This will allow you to unwind and soak away the pains. You may not be able to walk properly for around two or three days in most cases and three days at Poring is the key. One day is too rushed.

I stayed at the Jungle lodge and found it beautiful and very well maintained. You will need to book in advance to get this lodge. Can sleep three, with two in the king bed and one on the floor using the couch pillows as a mattress (I had thought it accommodated three so I had the floor option) For those on a budget you can choose other accommodation options. It has very nice fittings and is very comfortable. Also has a nice and very private outside bath (normal hot/cold water not spring).

At Poring you have numerous soaking options. There are several long tubs near the changing rooms for just soaking your legs. One is warm and the other is HOT. Use the warm first then move your legs over to the hot soak. Above this section are the baths. They take around 20 minutes to fill and the trick is to find one that does not leak from the waste plug and will never totally fill. There are 4 tubs side by side to each hut and each tub holds two people comfortably. All these outside covered units are free. Water is drained after each use. Also try to get there early as the tourist buses begin to arrive around 10am and people pile out to use the baths. I got up around 6am on day two of Poring and had the whole place to myself until around 9.30 am. If you like privacy then you can use the private baths, which are nearby, but you must pay to use them.

Around 30 metres away is a free swimming pool and the water in there is very refreshing (Cool).

There are lots of trails at Poring including the Canopy walkway but my bet is most people who have climbed the mountain will just want to rest, soak and swim (read your legs will be very sore and walking may not excite you). They also have a nature reserve at Poring, which houses animals and is worth viewing.

Take your meals outside the front gate if you want local food, though Poring Hot Springs has its own nice restaurant. There are several local cafes or there is a hotel (Round Inn), which serves alcohol and food down the road a little, or the Tropicana Coffee House and Restaurant and the bottom of the street.

You will find several places that will wash your clothes outside the front gate also. It is very cheap and they do quality work. I used the laundry, which is the first shop as you near the entrance to Poring Hot Springs.

In the main street you will find many street stalls selling crystal, copper, silver and other assorted rocks and wares. Whatever price you see advertised halve it at least

Any questions just ask away


Maidstone, United...
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5. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

I was a little disappointed with the springs as they seemed so commercial as it is mainly all tiled baths with one unheated natural looking pool. However, there was also a nature walk there which we thoroughly enjoyed and even saw a wild Orang Utan.

To get to Poring Springs we took the Sandakan bus from KK at 7.30 in the morning which dropped us at Ranau, the nearest point. From there it was a short taxi ride to Poring Springs. From Poring to the park we had the same taxi driver come back for us at a pre-arranged time.

I do not know how good the evening transport would be, but I would negotiate a taxi fare back. (After descending the mountain our legs were like jelly and we were a bit later in the day than normal and accepted a private ride in a mini bus where the driver considerately laid all the seats flat for us)! This was in 2000 and the cost from the Park to KK was about 18 English pounds at that time.

6. Re: Kinabatangan by night OR Mt. Kinabalu Park?

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