Don’t miss this when
you’re in RANAU!
Ranau is a small town which is located in Sabah, the island of Borneo. It is situated in the West Coast division of Sabah, where it is noted as a hilly geographical structure and the major producer of highland vegetables in Sabah. Ranau is inhabited almost entirely by the Dusun community and is on the highway which is connecting Kota Kinabalu to Sandakan. Ranau is also known for its tourist destinations,one of is the being Mount Kinabalu (the tallest mountain in Borneo).
However, if climbing Mount Kinabalu is not your cup of tea, there are actually few other places that travelers can go to to spend their trip in Ranau. Here, we will give a few examples of interesting places in Ranau for travelers to go.
1. Kinabalu National Park
Kinabalu National Park has been recognized as a Center of Plant Diversity for Southeast Asia by UNESCO, as it contains a vast expand of pristine forest. The main attraction of the Park is the majestic Mount Kinabalu. However, if travelers did not manage to climb Mount Kinabalu, travelers can go for jungle trekking around the park headquarters. There are nine networks of trails around the park, which are the Bundu Tuhan View Trail, Kiau View Trail, Pandanus Trail, Bukit Ular trail, Bukit Tupai & Bukit Burung trail, Mempening trail, Liwagu trail, Silau Silau trail and Mountain view trail.
Walking around on the trails will allow travelers a chance to exercise those seldom used muscles and adjusting to the altitude before climbing the summit of Mount Kinabalu. In addition, travelers can have a greater chance to see birds and other small wildlife. Kinabalu National Park also has a botanical garden, where travelers can see some rare flowers that can be found in Borneo.
2. Desa Cattle Dairy Farm
Desa Cattle Dairy Farm is located at the foothill of Mount Kinabalu, approximately 8km from Kundasang town -known as “Little New Zealand in Sabah”. The farm is 199 hectares and it is a milk processing factory for cows and goats. Travelers could get the chance to see the majestic view of Mount Kinabalu in the early morning at Desa Cattle Dairy Farm. On the other hand, travelers could also take in the breathtaking view of the scenery plus enjoy the cooling breeze air at Desa Cattle Dairy Farm.
Apart from visiting Desa Cattle Dairy Farm to take in the fascinating scenery there, travelers can also do a few other activities, such as feeding calves with bottled milk, feeding goats with grass, Raw Milk Processing and Milking Process. Travelers also can purchase some souvenirs there especially the popular dairy products like Desa Cattle’s milk in a box, ice cream, yogurt, and many more to satisfy your sweet tooth.
3. Mesilau Nature Park
Mesilau Nature Park is a great place for travelers to escape from the hot tropical sun as the climate in that area is much cooler. It is the highest point that can be accessible with automobiles, surrounded with hills and closer to the foot of Mount Kinabalu. Due to the chilly climate, there are sparsely spaced trees, but with a great range of ferns, fruiting shrubs, orchids, rhododendrons, the biggest pitcher plants in the world (Nepenthes Rajah) and other medium-height vegetation.
Mesilau Nature Park also serves as an entry point to the Mesilau trail, which used to be an alternative starting point to the Summit trail (originally started from Kinabalu Park headquarters), in order to conquer Mount Kinabalu. However, the Mesilau trail is recommended for those who are fit and sturdy due to its uneven trail which goes in a vertical manner compared to the Timpohon Summit Trail. Travelers can enjoy a nature walk in Mesilau as there are several trails that travelers can embark on, such as Kogonon trail and Nepenthes Raja trail. There are also an impressive numbers of bird species and insects that can be found in Mesilau for travelers to see.
4. Poring Hot Spring
Poring Hot Spring is situated in the lowlands, and about 43km from Kinabalu National Park. Travelers can go there to de-stress and soak away the sores and aches of their muscles in the spring’s hot sulphuric minerals, known to have healing properties and very commonly popular among the locals.
Apart from just soaking inside the hot spring, travelers can also venture towards other attractions in the Poring Hot Spring, such as the butterfly farm, Poring Orchid Conservation Centre, the tropical garden, Rafflesia Flower site, Poring Canopy Walkway, Kipungit waterfall, Bat cave and Langanan waterfall. For more information, you can read here.
5. Lupa Masa Jungle Camp
Another interesting place for travelers to go in Ranau would be the Lupa Masa Jungle Camp. It is a place where travelers can simply just relax and enjoy the surrounding nature. A unique jungle camp that is located on the lower slopes of Mount Kinabalu National Park. The word ‘ Lupa Masa’ literally translated from Malay language means forget time, which many travelers tend to not realize the time during their stay there. It’s a place for travelers to snub their busy schedule and follow the primitive tempo of mother nature.
Just a 45 minutes walk from the village of Poring, travelers can go towards the camp and experience the jungle with guided help. Main activities that travelers can do in Lupa Masa Jungle Camp are jungle-based activities, such as guided day or night walks, wildlife sightings, bird watching, jungle survival courses, or for a relaxing time they can go for a swim in the waterfalls and rivers. We also provide a tour to Lupa Masa Jungle Camp, check out our website here.
6. Mamut Copper Mine
Here is another interesting place that not a lot people know about. Ranau was home to the largest mining project in Malaysia – Mamut Copper Mine. However, it ceased operations in 1999 because of an overflow of mixed copper flowing into the fields which caused many farmers to lose their crops and homes. Now, it has become one of the main attractions for the locals or tourists to visit, due to its incredibly beautiful scenery and refreshing air. There are basic accommodations available there, namely the Mount Kinabalu Holiday Camp.
7. “Tagal” Fish Spa Sungai Moroli, Kampung Luanti
Travelers will have the chance to acquire a unique spa experience when visiting the “Tagal” Fish Spa Sungai Moroli, Kampung Luanti. “Tagal” in the local Kadazan-Dusun dialect means “no fishing”, and its purpose is to preserve the environment as well as the ecosystem of the river for the benefit of generations to come. Thus, it becomes as natural ecotourism spot. Travelers can come to Kampung Luanti for regular fish massages activity which helps to remove dead skin from the feet. Apart from the fish massages activity, travelers can also choose to go for jungle trekking, camping, relaxing and get to know ways of life of the villagers in Kampung Luanti.
8. Sabah Tea Garden
Sabah is known for its own local tea brand – Sabah Tea, which has been established since 1978. Sabah Tea Garden is the only pesticide-free tea farm in Borneo. This is one of the attractions in Ranau that travelers should not miss visiting and it is only a couple minutes away from “Tagal” Fish Spa Sungai Moroli, Kampung Luanti.
A trip to Sabah Tea Garden is both fun and educational for travelers as they can enjoy few activities while in Sabah Tea Garden, such as obstacle-crossing in the Sapaon Recreational Area, jungle trekking along the trails to the peak of Kamunsu Hill, swimming in a cool and pristine mountain water, a night walk and a tea factory tour. Needless to say, travelers could have a glimpse of sustainable agricultural practices and human development in harmony with nature on this trip. Most importantly, travelers could also enjoy freshly-made tea pancakes and Sabah Tea Pandan teh tarik from the Tea House. For more info, travelrs can check their website at Sabah Tea.
9. Kundasang War Memorial
A visit to the Kundasang War Memorial is to commemorate the brave Australian and British Prisoners of War who died in Sandakan and also during the infamous death marches to Ranau during World War II, as well as for people of North Borneo who risked their lives to help the prisoner of war. Travelers not only can learn the history but also be able to see the beautiful scenery and the 4 well-preserved gardens, namely the Australian Garden, English Garden, Borneo Garden and Contemplation Garden & Pool – representing the different nationalities..
10. Lohan Paragliding
Lohan Paragliding is the newest attractions in Ranau, located in the Sport & Paragliding Complex and is only a 10 minutes drive from Ranau town. Take off point is located at the high point in Lohan, where it offers a beautiful view of Kinabalu Park and Liwagu valley.
Fret not, travelers who wishes to experience this adventurous activity but does not know how to paraglide, there will be tandem masters who will be flying together to the landing area. Travelers could also get the chance not only to experience flying but also viewing the scenic view of Borneo jungle and districts in Sabah.
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