Located on the outskirts of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is a must-visit destination for wildlife enthusiasts. Spread across 280 acres, the park is home to a wide variety of animals, including orangutans, probosci’s monkeys, Bornean pygmy elephants, and many more. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Lok Kawi Wildlife Park and all that it has to offer.
History and Background
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park was established in 2007 with the aim of promoting wildlife conservation and education. The park is operated by the Sabah Wildlife Department and is one of the few wildlife parks in the world that focuses on the conservation of Borneo’s endemic species. The park is named after a nearby village, which is believed to have been founded by Chinese traders in the late 19th century.
Attractions at Lok Kawi Park
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park offers a range of attractions that are sure to delight visitors of all ages. Here are some of the highlights:
- Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre
The Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre is one of the park’s most popular attractions. Visitors can watch orangutans in their natural habitat and learn about the conservation efforts being undertaken to protect these critically endangered primates. The center is home to both adult and juvenile orangutans, and visitors can witness the feeding sessions and observe the orangutans’ behavior up close.
- Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary
The Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary is another popular attraction at Lok Kawi Park. This sanctuary is home to a large population of probosci’s monkeys, which are endemic to Borneo. Visitors can watch these unique primates in their natural habitat and learn about the conservation efforts being undertaken to protect them.
- Bornean Pygmy Elephant Sanctuary
The Bornean Pygmy Elephant Sanctuary is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in elephant conservation. The sanctuary is home to a small population of Bornean pygmy elephants, which are the smallest elephant species in the world. Visitors can watch these majestic animals up close and learn about the efforts being undertaken to protect them from poaching and habitat loss.
- Animal Shows
Lok Kawi Park offers a range of animal shows that are both educational and entertaining. Visitors can watch trained animals perform a variety of tricks and stunts, including parrot shows, snake shows, and even a crocodile feeding session.
- Night Safari
For a truly unique experience, visitors can take part in the park’s night safari. This guided tour takes visitors through the park after dark, allowing them to witness the nocturnal behavior of the park’s inhabitants. Visitors can see animals such as the binturong, civet cat, and slow loris up close and learn about their habits and behaviors.
Tips for Visiting Lok Kawi Wildlife Park
If you’re planning a visit to Lok Kawi Park, here are some tips to help you make the most of your experience:
- Wear comfortable shoes and clothing
The park involves walking on uneven terrain, so it’s important to wear comfortable shoes and clothing that are suitable for outdoor activities.
- Bring sunscreen and insect repellent
As the park is located in a tropical climate, it’s important to bring sunscreen and insect repellent to protect yourself from the sun and bugs.
- Book in advance
Lok Kawi Park is a popular tourist destination, so it’s recommended to book in advance to avoid disappointment. You can book online or through your hotel or tour operator.
- Respect the animals
As Lok Kawi Park is a conservation park, it’s important to respect the animals and their habitats. Visitors should follow the rules and guidelines set by the park staff to ensure the safety and well-being of the animals. Visitors should also avoid feeding the animals as this can disrupt their natural diet and behavior.
- Visit during non-peak hours
To avoid crowds and long lines, visitors should consider visiting Lok Kawi Wildlife Park during non-peak hours. The park is open from 9 am to 5 pm daily, and visitors can plan their visit accordingly.
- Bring a camera
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park offers many photo opportunities, so visitors should bring a camera to capture their favorite moments. However, visitors should be mindful of the park’s rules regarding photography and avoid using flash photography around the animals.
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is committed to sustainable tourism and is actively involved in conservation efforts to protect the environment and wildlife. The park operates a breeding program for endangered species such as the Bornean pygmy elephant and the probosci’s monkey and also conducts research to better understand these species and their habitats.
The park also promotes eco-friendly practices, such as using recycled materials and reducing waste. Visitors are encouraged to follow these practices as well, such as by bringing their own reusable water bottles and avoiding single-use plastics.
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park offers a range of food and beverage options for visitors, including local cuisine. Visitors can try traditional Sabahan dishes such as hinava (a dish made with raw fish and lime juice) and bambangan (a type of wild mango). There are also Western-style options available for those who prefer more familiar fare.
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is a family-friendly destination that offers something for visitors of all ages. Children will especially enjoy the animal shows and the chance to get up close and personal with the park’s inhabitants. The park also offers educational programs for school groups and other organizations.
Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in wildlife and conservation. With its wide range of attractions and commitment to sustainable tourism, the park offers a unique and memorable experience for visitors. Whether you’re a solo traveler, a family, or a group, Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is sure to leave a lasting impression. So, pack your bags and head to Sabah for an unforgettable journey through the heart of Borneo’s wildlife.