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“Great trekking experience!”
Review of Mount Santubong

Ranked #7 of 93 things to do in Kuching
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed November 9, 2013

Mt. Santubong has 2 trekking trails - one short trail and one trail (the longer one) that goes all the way to the top of the mountain. We didn't prepare beforehand and left our hotel quite late so we ended up doing the shorter of the two trails. You're left on your own but you won't get lost because it is well marked and lettered. Plus they give you a map at the beginning.
The experience is great and very well worth it! It isn't an extremely simple walk in the park but it isn't very tedious as well. We were beginners and completed the trail in about 4 hours including stopping to take tons of pictures on the way.
Tip - even if you're short on time, don't miss this out!

2  Thank mumbai9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 23, 2013

The mountain is about 800 m above sea level and has a good variety of terrain up to the summit. This includes boardwalk, dirt tracks, tree roots, rocks, steps, slopes and the most unforgettable rope-plank ladders at the end towards the summit.

There are two different entrances you can choose from to start the climb. The first one is located nearer to the resorts and hotels at Damai and has a nice visitor's centre and a small cafe. This entrance starts off with a gentle climb, and brings you through the lush tropical forest of majestic giant trees, trickling forest streams (there's one with the rare Barclaya water plant!), and large boulders and rocks. Lots of interesting plants, orchids and wildlife to see here, but the route is longer.

The other entrance is located further up the main road and has a small booth. This trail is steep and starts off on cleared vegetation (lots of low lying ferns and grasses). The initial path is rock surface which may be a little slippery, even when dry. This eventually leads into the forest where you continue on dirt track, tree roots all the way up. Along the way, you will be able look off the dirt track at the right side to catch a bird's eye view of the places surrounding Mt. Santubong as you ascend up. This path is much shorter than the one from the first entrance.

These two trails from the first and second entrances will meet at a mid-way junction where there is a signboard that states how far you are away from the summit. There are some resting benches here as well. Do take some time to stop for a moment, catch your breath and catch some scenery. The route from here up to the summit will be much tougher as you begin the really steep climb. From the junction, the climb will be lots of steps, made up of tree roots interlocking each other across the path. Do keep your hands free as you will need them to grab hold to tree roots, rocks, tree trunks, ropes and planks to help you get up. There is a shelter and some benches along the way to rest as well.

After the shelter, the ascend is characterised by rope and plank ladders to help you scale up vertical rock faces. The rungs are spaced rather far apart, so you'll need some core muscle to help you climb the ladders. As you climb up after the mid-way junction, you'll notice the vegetation starting to change to lower montane forest as the temperatures become cooler. Once you hit the summit, it is ridge with lower montane plants such as Dipteris conjugata, lots of orchids, oak trees, etc. There is a summit shelter at one end where you can catch a view of the lowlands when it is not cloudy. I would recommend walking along the entire ridge to the other side where you can get to feel how a mountain top is like. Both sides of the ridge path are steep slopes with vegetation, so as you walk along, you may feel like you're walking on tight rope, but the path is actually wide and safe enough.

The descent would be faster and much easier than the climb. The only difficult part would be the fear of height as you attempt to climb down the rope-plank ladders.

I would recommend taking the gentle path (first entrance) up and steep path (second entrance) down. Climbing to the summit is definitely out of question for children, as it is rather challenging. You'll need to be reasonably fit to climb as well. It would take about 8 hours for a return trip. Bring along lots of water, lunch, and wear good trekking shoes.

4  Thank gnoofeew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2013

Tough but well worth it. Don't take the younger kids! Some short sections require a climb vertical of sorts on rope ladders. We used a guide from the local village. I forget his name! Recommended by the host we were staying with. We drove to the base and met him (the guide) there who lives in the nearby village, Santubong.

Thank dasmayak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 6, 2013

I wasn't expecting that it was going to be a long trek. It was really tiring but it was worth it. The waterfalls at the end of the trek was refreshing! Beware of leeches though. I didn't get bitten, but the tour guide said there are a few swimming there.

1  Thank Tiffany M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 4, 2013

We opted to do the 'jungle trek' which took us about 2 hours, but we did stop many times to take advantage of the wonderful photo opportunities such as the waterfall. We didn't see any monkeys but did see lots of insects and frogs. There were two rope ladders to climb and wet rocks to walk across so good foot wear is a must. Water can be purchased from the start point. We went mid week and didn't see anyone else.

1  Thank tracyh62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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