Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Malaysian Rainforests: A Paradise for Adventure and Nature Lovers

Malaysia’s beautiful rainforests with its glorious vistas, verdant undulating terrain and varied tropical landscapes offer vast possibilities to adventure and nature lovers. From challenging rock climbing to cross-jungle trekking, from rafting in frothing rivers to canopy walking 100 feet above the earth, Malaysia’s rainforests have it all.
The tropical rainforests in Malaysia were blessed with a location far from the ravages of the earth’s ice ages that they developed much earlier than the other equatorial rainforests in Africa and South America. More than half of Malaysia’s 329,758 sq km surface is covered by tropical rainforests. Evolving for over 150 million years, they display an amazing diversity of flora and fauna, some rare and endemic.
The Malaysian rainforests are indisputably the oldest in the world and its national parks are treasure troves of its natural heritage. Endowed with high and even temperature as well as abundant rainfall throughout the year, it is the perfect haven for plant and animal species including approximately 210 mammal species, 620 bird species, 250 reptile species and 150 frog species.
From the primordial rainforest of Taman Negara to the wildlife sanctuaries at Danum Valley and the Kinabatangan flood plains in Sabah, Malaysia’s ancient forests offer nature lovers a wealth of experiences.
Taman Negara, in Peninsular Malaysia, is the largest national park in Malaysia at 4,343 sq km. The forests of Taman Negara are reputed to be the oldest in the world and were already flourishing when the world’s tectonic plates were still moving fast, forming the continents that we now know.
Today, Taman Negara is well established as one of the most popular ecotourism destinations in Malaysia. It attracts thousands of local and international travellers who love wildlife viewing, jungle trekking, hiking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, fishing, camping etc.
With a tropical, humid climate and temperatures averaging 30°C, Taman Negara is open throughout the year. It is home to some rare mammals including the Indochinese Tiger, Sumatran Rhinoceros, Malayan Gaur and Asian Elephant. Some must-do experiences here are the canopy walk, a trek on Bukit Teresek, a visit to the Lata Berkoh Park and a cave exploration of Gua Telinga.
The states of Sabaha and Sarawak in East Malaysia occupy about 26% of the island of Borneo. The vast rainforests of Borneo are an intriguing world of animal kingdoms, mystical prehistoric caves, lofty mountains and amazing underwater gardens.
Known as the Land Below the Wind, much of Sabah remains forested. Kota Kinabalu, the capital, is a vibrant city on Sabah’s west coast and the gateway to eco-adventures like mountain climbing, white-water rafting, caving, diving and river cruising. The Kinabalu National Park, located in northwest Sabah, is Malaysia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site. Home to the 4095-metre Mount Kinabalu, Southeast Asia’s highest peak, it has one of the world’s largest collections of flora and fauna.
Sarawak, the Land of the Hornbills is the country’s largest state and is characterised by distinctive ethnic groups, many of whom still live in riverside settlements. Kuching, the capital, is located on the Sarawak River. The waterfront and Main Bazaar features old shop-houses selling local pepper, artefacts, antiques, birds’ nests and exotic forest products. Sarawak’s verdant jungles are strewn with massive natural formations, the world’s largest cave chambers and vast endemic flora and fauna. The Gunung Mulu National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a treasure trove of vertical cliffs, jagged limestone pinnacles, intricate cave networks and over 20,000 animals and 3,500 plant species.
Among the best periods to go trekking in Peninsular Malaysia is the ’dry season‘ from March to September when the rainfall is low and best time to visit Sabah and Sarawak is the ‘wet season’ which is from July to October.
Discover, enjoy and release your stress within the most amazing beauty of nature. Explore the wonder of nature in Malaysia and enjoy the adventures that unfold. The 150 million years old virgin rainforest awaits you.
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