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Poring is part of Kinabalu National Park. It is popular destination for the hot springs, canopy walkway and its many waterfalls.
The Poring Hot Spring story began with this small little water hole, that was first discovered by a British Geologist back in the Colonial time, when Sabah was known as North Borneo. During the Second World War, Poring Hot spring was well visited by the Japanese soldiers, where at their mother land bathing at hot springs is a great past time. Thus the beginning of visitors coming to the Poring Hot Spring.
In 1964 together with Mt. Kinabalu, Malaysia's first world heritage site, Poring Hot Spring was established as a National Park. Poring Hot Spring is located at the northeast side of the park, and takes about 45 minutes drive (40 km) from the Mt. Kinabalu park headquarters. The drive also passes through a small town called Ranau, a very good place to stock up some essential supplies.
By the early 90s a highway that leads to Poring Hot Spring was finally completed, hence the beginning of mass tourists and locals invasion. Today Poring Hot Spring is arguably the second most visited destination in Sabah after Mt. Kinabalu. Day trip from Kota Kinabalu City to Poring Hot Springs and together with Mt. Kinabalu tour is one of the most popular tourist package and nearly all of the tour agents will have this package, so price can be quite competitive.
Two of the most popular activities at Poring Hot Springs are the hot bath at the public bath area and the adventurous Canopy Walk.
At the public bath area visitors can soak up at the many bath tubs that are provided free by the park management. The bath tubs area is now covered with a roof top which was completed at the first quarter of 2007. There are hot and cold water taps on each bath tub, so that visitors can adjust the water to their desirable temperature. Soaking at the bath tub is especially relaxing when one has just conquered Low's Peak, the highest point of Mt. Kinabalu, giving the tired legs and body a much needed therapeutics treatment.
The pubic bath area is on a first come first occupy basis. Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays are especially crowded as many of the locals who leave near by will join in for the many benefits that the hot bath provides. Many people claim that the sulphur enriched mineral water can help to rejuvenate the skin.
For those visitors who need a bit more privacy, there are a few huts that are completed with a bath tub for rent. The rental for an hour is around RM 15 for standard and RM 20 for deluxe. Beside the public bath area there is this pool called Rock Pool, which is great for a cold dip when one finds the water at the hot tubs too warm.
The 150 meter canopy walk is a wonderful way to experience life at the tree top which is about 40 meters above the ground. It also provides a great view across the park forest. For those people who are afraid of height, this walk can be a real challenge. The entrance fee for the Canopy Walk is RM 5, and RM 3 for MY card holders. Open daily from 9am to 4pm. There are also a night canopy walk, for this, one needs to arrange with the park rangers.
Other interesting places to visit here are the Butterfly Farm, Orchid Conservation Centre, Tropical Garden, Bat Cave, Kipungit Waterfall and Langanan Waterfall, and a Visitor centre that houses useful exhibition on the ecosystem of the Tropical rain forest.
For more information on accommodation go to Sutera Sanctuary Lodges. There are also a restaurant which is managed by the Sutera Sanctuary Lodges. Just outside the park entrance there is a single row of many wooden houses, where one can find souvenir shops, grocery shops, and small cafes.
Poring is a kadazandusun word meaning bamboo.
Opening hours: daily 7 am to 6 pm.
The conservation fee for adults is RM 15 and students (below 18 years old) is RM 10. For MY card holders the fee for adults is RM 3 and students (below 18 years old) is RM 1.