New experiences bring new meaning and on a recent trip to Malaysia, I wanted to do exactly that for my own family, create an experience they would fondly remember for years to come. A hike in a Kuala Lumpur Rainforest is exactly what the travel doctor ordered for this brand-new family experience.
A hike hardly seems a hair-raising experience, and for the extremist out there it’s not, but chuck in a couple of growing boys, a five-hour hike through some tricky terrain can be quite the challenge. A challenge a lot of young families should embrace, because what a great way to have a family-bonding activity in the great outdoors of Malaysia and do a heap exercise in the process. It’s another great way to get your kids of those electronic devices and instead, one with nature.
Booking the Kuala Lumpur Rainforest hike through Airbnb
Upon booking our Airbnb accommodation in Kuala Lumpur, a range of day tours were opened to us through Airbnb website that ranged from city tours to food tours, amongst other activities. The hike option appealed to me immediately, especially when you throw in a lush rainforest and waterfalls, the decision was easy to make.
Through a few easy steps on the Airbnb website and couple of quick messages to the guide who runs the program, the hike in the Kuala Lumpur rainforest was confirmed and paid for. Keeping in mind this article is not a sponsored post and the hike was paid for out of my own funds, so my opinions in this article are real and my own.
The location of the Hike in Kuala Lumpur
The hike took place at Maya falls, or locally known as Lata Medang, which is part of the township called Kuala Kabu Bharu. It’s only an hour drive Kuala Lumpur, give or take depending on traffic in the big city. You don’t need to worry about getting yourself to the isolated area, because Thomas the guide will give you a ride as part of the day tour.
Thomas – The Experienced Guide who made the trip
Thomas, as mentioned previously, is the guide for the occasion, a down to earth character who is full of knowledge of the forest we hiked and Malaysia in general, with many searching questions asked to him answered. An experienced guide on the Maya Falls trail, Thomas is equipped with a first-aid kit, ponchos in case of rain (more on that later), along with juice, water and snacks also packed in his heavy backpack.
At times, the terrain will get tricky with sloping hills and unpredictable surfaces, before the commencement of the hike, Thomas hands outs hiking poles and water shoes for when you get to the gorgeous waterfalls. He also has a top notch camera and takes plenty of photos, so if you feel your camera may be a burden on this hike, leave it at home.
Enjoying Local Malay Food Before and After the Hike
The day is not only about the hike, although that is the most rewarding part of the day. Before and after the hike you get to enjoy a few local Malaysian dishes for breakfast and lunch at a nearby restaurant in Kuala Kabu Bharu, all included in the price. Not a bad way to start and end the day with a fine selection of Malaysian food that you probably never tired before.
Heading into the Jungle
Once the drive is completed, and we have had our fulfilling breakfast, it’s time to head into the Kuala Lumpur rainforest for an adventure to remember. Taking with us a few lightweight backpacks with the basic essentials included and our hiking poles, we head into the jungle to begin the uphill ascent.
Instantly, you fall in love with surroundings of the rainforest, it’s breathtaking, from the sounds of the creek, to the insects buzzing around with the cicadas leaving the loudest noise, the local dogs join the crew on the walk too and never leave our sight for a second, there is no doubt they know the trail as well as the guide.
Often on the hike we stop for a few local facts and stories about the jungle which is told to us by Thomas, who explains about the cicadas, the wild bores and various information of the jungle that is all useful knowledge, It’s all intriguing and an education at the same time.
On the uphill ascent you do encounter a few tricky and vertical slopes that is handled with ease by my boys, so any parents with concerns you can erase those fears right now. There isn’t too much danger for the young ones on this hike, however as with any forest around the world, you always need to remain cautious and diligent.
The Three Tantalising Waterfalls
At the half way mark of the hike, before the downhill descent, you stumble across three gorgeous waterfalls that makes you appreciate this rainforest of Maya Falls even more than you had previously, if that was even possible.
You come across the first waterfall of the hike, it looks sensational, but as you get to the second waterfall, it goes to another level, before the stunning climax upon reaching the third and last lot of falls of the hike, it is by far the biggest and most spectacular waterfall of the trio.
It’s at that location that we stop for a well-earned swim in the gorgeous water-hole of Mayo Falls that has the breathtaking waterfall right above us for all to see. We each have a go at standing under the powerful water surge from above and feeling the pressure of the water crash onto us, not too hard that we go falling over, but with enough power that brings a few chills and laughter.
It’s a great moment in the hike to get the cameras out and snap a few pictures at will, some action shots are incredible. We have a few light snacks and guzzle more water, it’s time to go downhill, but the weather has now taken a turn for the worse, it’s going to be a wet and wild trek back to the vehicle.
A Wet and Wild Hike on the Return
A wet and wild hike is not what we signed up for, but in some ways, I am glad we encountered this problem on the downhill descent, because it took this hike to another level of experience when thinking back of our memories during our time in Malaysia.
Naturally, the downhill part is meant to be quicker, but the powerful rain and the storm above slowed us down. The ponchos came out and now the hiking poles are being fully utilised as the surface is certainly slippery underneath.
By now the sounds of the forest are long gone and the only noise heard is the sounds of the storm above, it certainly did turn dark suddenly and it’s only in the afternoon. There is something special about the rain that makes the rainforest look even more beautiful, I can’t quite put my finger on it, but to me it just looks better with the water dripping from all the trees and plants inside the forest.
A couple of hours into the downhill descent the wet and wild hike is concluded, now we just feel damp and cold from the water that has saturated our clothing, but we are all laughing, we are smiling, that experiences makes us feel proud, it makes me feel proud as a father that my two boys marched ahead with the guide, with no complaints or moaning about the weather. Meanwhile mum and dad lagged several metres behind trying to keep with the leaders up front. The boys were warriors inside the Kuala Lumpur rainforest and I couldn’t have been prouder.
A great family outing in the Kuala Lumpur Rainforest
The experience is real and it gives great satisfaction upon reaching the finishing line after enduring the hurdles inside the jungle. If you are seeking a family bonding activity that creates challenges and brings you closer together, a hike is the way to go. I know the Kuala Lumpur rainforest hike was one of the most memorable moments of our time in Malaysia, even if it did bring a wet and wild conclusion to the eventful day.