How does it feel to stand in front of the majestic 120-Meter Langanan Waterfall in Poring? Langanan Waterfall is one of the tallest waterfalls in Sabah. On the way to this huge waterfall, you will pass by the smaller Kipungit Waterfall and a bat cave, and enjoy nearly 4 Kilometers of nature trail in rainforest. Below is a walk-through for you.
Above: this is the signage at park entrance and where you start your jungle trekking.
As you can see, your first stop Kipungit Waterfall is only 665 Meters away. Please register at the Ticket Counter before you go to Langanan Waterfall.
Just follow the path and you will reach Kipungit Recreation Area after 20 minutes. It’s only a relaxing short walk and you are not really in a forest yet.
You would see some tourists playing with water near the Kipungit Waterfall. This is an area for picnic and swimming, and there are a toilet and camping ground nearby. As you are near the river and under the tree shade, the air is more cooling and refreshing.
Kipungit is the most accessible waterfall of Poring. I saw a few girls soaking their feet in calm water, giggling and pull their feet out of water. I tried to do the same and saw many tiny fishes nibble the skin of my feet. Kind of fun, haha.
With a height of only 10 or 12 Meters, Kipungit is nothing if compared to the 120-Meter gigantic Langanan Waterfall. Most tourists are happy with this little waterfall, but I decide to see the bigger Langanan 3.3 KM away.
You may watch the following 40-sec video of Kipungit Waterfall:
One of the birds you would see here is White-crowned shama (see photo above), which is endemic to Borneo and considered as the best singer of rainforest. You could see a dozen of them around the park in early morning. The surrounding rainforest of Poring has over 300 bird species and great for bird watching. Personally I had seen Asian Fairy-bluebird, Yellow-rumped flowerpecker (endemic) and a few types of bulbuls in Poring. Prevost’s Squirrel is also common here.
You will see the signage to Langanan Waterfall near Kipungit Waterfall. At normal walking pace, most people can reach Langanan Waterfall in 2 hours. Before you go, you should have registered first at the Ticket Counter. For safety reason, the Park won’t allow you to go to Langanan Waterfall after 2pm. Do bring water (600-1,000ML), raincoat and snacks (e.g. chocolate, cereal food bar) with you. There are leeches on the jungle trail, so you better put on your anti-leech socks.
After this point, you enter the rainforest and the surrounding won’t be tourist-friendly. The jungle trail to Langanan is quite steep in the first half. Poring is about 400-500 Meters above sea level, and the forest is mainly lowland rainforest and mixed dipterocarp hill forest, characterized by tall and dense tropical trees (20 to 70 Meters high), warm and humid air, and abundant liana and strangler fig tree.
Bat Cave (Gua Kelawar)
After walking for 360 Meters, you will see Bat Cave next to the trail.
There is a broken warning notice sign reads “Visitors are not encouraging to enter the cave” (the grammar sounds funny).
Actually the cave is a deep crevice formed by a few huge boulders that stacked together. The dark and humid space in the cave becomes the ideal roosting spot for bats. You can smell guano from outside.
I tried to go deeper inside the cave. The rock surface is covered with green moss and very slippery, so I don’t recommend you to go in.
There are hundred of bats clinging on the rock wall. The smell of guano was getting stronger so I only stayed shortly.
To see what’s inside Bat Cave, you may watch the 1min-27sec video below:
Rainforest of Poring
I continued my jungle trekking after visiting Bat Cave. The first 1.5 KM of the trail is steepness with 20° to 40° of inclination, like climbing a hill. There is no boardwalk, hand-rail and shelter hut. Part of the trail turned muddy after rain.
You can see some bug along the forested trail, like the 9-inch long millipede above.
I played with a pill millipede that foraged on forest floor.
You can watch the 46-sec video below to see why it is called “Pill” Millipede:
Strangler fig tree is a common sight in Poring rainforest. The host tree is killed by parasitic strangler fig tree that wrap around it.
There is a small stream to cross. The water is shallow with some rocks above water, I can walk on them to cross the river without getting wet.
I saw many burrows on the exposed soil of the slopes. I think they are belong to hornet or wolf spider.
Animal dropping next to a water hole, probably belong to small mammal such as civet.
Shed skin of cicada, can be used as cooling agent for Chinese medicine.
Above: daddy longlegs (harvestmen spider) are everywhere.
Surprisingly, I only saw 3 leeches, far less than I expected. Probably the Park clear the trail twice a month, and leech dislikes ground surface that has no grass and foliage. The buzzing deer flies are more of a concern. They cut a small wound on your skin to suck your blood. The bite will become very itchy for next few days.
The milestones along the trail have worn out and I had no idea how far I walked. On the way, I saw 2 groups of high school students and 1 group of tourists returning from Langanan. I was dismayed by their answers “the waterfall is still very far away” when I checked my progress with them. 🙁
Anyway, I just kept walking and felt relief to see the signage above. Though I was only half-way there, the trail is not steep anymore from this point on and there are more descending trail.
After long hours of jungle trekking, I heard the thundering sound of Langanan Waterfall not far away. I speed up and finally I reached Langanan Waterfall!!!
This 120-Meter Langanan Waterfall is the tallest waterfall that I’ve ever seen. Before that, the tallest fall I saw was the 38-Meter Takob-Akob Waterfall in Maliau Basin. The huge water volume creates a micro-climate, it was windy there and I was shower by the droplets from splashing water high above.
It’s such a rewarding experience. This huge waterfall really worth my long hours of hiking.
You may watch the 1-min video of Langanan Waterfall below:
Btw, before you leave the Park, don’t forget to sign-off at Ticket Counter to inform the Park that you are back from Langanan safely. Otherwise they will send a search and rescue team to look for you.
You may check out my photo album on Poring rainforest for more nice pictures:
Other articles about Poring Hot Springs Park:
- Poring Hot Springs bath
- Poring Canopy Walkway
- Gardens of Poring
- The Most Expensive Orchid in the world
- Accommodation at Poring
- Jackie, orangutan who owns a house
- Night walk in Poring rainforest
Photos taken in Poring, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo