Who’s up for mountain climbing?

Towering proudly at 4,095m above northern Borneo, Mount Kinabalu (Malay: Gunung Kinabalu; pronounced: goo-noong kee-na-ba-loo) is one of the most prominent mountains in South East Asia. The mountain is located in the state of Sabah and is protected as Kinabalu National Park, a World Heritage Site.

According to the regulations of the Kinabalu National Park, all climbers must be accompanied by accredited guides at all times.

The entire journey is 8.72km and an average climber takes 2 days to reach the peak. Most climbers will stop about 6km up and will stay overnight at Laban Rata.

The climb usually starts at around 07:30 – 10:30 (Malaysian Standard Time, UTC+8). The first 4km climbing to Laban Rata has been rated by many as “moderate”. The trails are equipped with stairs and rock paths. The last 2km is said to be tougher with solely rock paths. The point after Laban Rata is where the hard part comes in. Now, you’ve gotta be pretty fit to do this! The ascent from Laban Rata upwards usually begins at around 02:00 – 03:00 (Malaysian Standard Time, UTC+8) and has been rated by many as “difficult”. The journey includes climbing along very steep (sometimes wet and slippery with drastic weather) ledges and can get very gusty as you get closer to the peak. The final part of the climb is on granite rocks.

See what other climbers are saying on Trip Advisor!

Recommendations by staff at Borneo Sandakan Tours:

  • All climbers should have themselves medically checked before attempting any mountain climb
  • If your friend told you “Climbing Mt Kinabalu is EASY!”, trust us – it is not as easy as you think / see / hear it is. Any sort of extreme sports (We call this extreme because it is not one of your daily morning jogs!) require experience (or at least practice), athletic ability and technical knowledge to maintain safety.
  • Those currently with these conditions or have a history of suffering from these: (Weak heart conditions, fear of heights, difficulty in breathing at high altitudes, physically unfit, hypertension, diabetes, palpitation, arthritis, heart disease, severe anemia, peptic ulcers, Eepileptic fits, obesity, chronic asthma, muscular cramps, hepatitis / jaundice) are highly recommended that you should refrain from climbing. We have a range of alternate solutions for you! Visit the Kinabalu National Park page.
+Are You Game?

Borneo Sandakan Tours is not associated with the following, but we think you might be interested!

The Mt. Kinabalu International Climbathon is an annual event organised by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture & Environment of Sabah. Participants will attempt to run up and down Mount Kinabalu (4095.2m high with a total distance of 21km) in less than three hours to be deemed the champion of the ‘World’s Toughest Mountain Race’.