Taman Negara in Peninsular Malaysia is a national park famous for its flora and fauna. With various geographical and ecological features, the park has become one of the most serene Malaysian destinations. Hiking to Gunung Tahan, recognized as one of the toughest trails in Malaysia, is one of the most exhilarating activities available in Taman Negara.
Overview Taman Negara
Taman Negara National Park is one of the most loved destinations in Peninsular Malaysia. With so many amenities offered, the park has now become an ecotourism hotspot for tourists from all over the world. Along with various ecological and geographical features, it also offers many exciting activities for its visitors.
One such thrilling activity is the trek to Gunung Tahan, which is considered to be one of the toughest routes in Malaysia. This trail is only for those who are in great physical condition and have strong willpower. The weak-hearted are advised not to take this path.
Taman Negara is a paradise for nature lovers as well as adventure seekers. With such exotic flora and fauna that captures the heart, this national park has some rare animals such as the Malayan tiger, Malayan gaur, and Asian elephant as well as a good variety of bird species.
Among the many activities offered, canopy walks, jungle trekking, rapid shooting, and boat cruises are some of the most popular and well-liked by tourists of all ages. These are some of the unique experiences that you must not miss during your trip. The lush greenery and forests of this national park will surely attract nature lovers.
Points Of Interest
- Canopy Walk
Originally built for scientific purposes, the Canopy Walkway has now become one of Taman Negara’s most popular tourist activities. It is famous because it is the longest Canopy Walk in the world and gives some of the most beautiful panoramic sights in the whole of Malaysia.
- Jungle Trekking
There are some great routes in jungle trekking and it takes around 30-45 minutes to climb to the summit. Standing on the summit, you will be treated to some spectacular views of Gunung Tahan.
Real Inner Jungle Trekking:
It is the most difficult of the two routes available as it is longer and involves steep slopes as well as river banks that need to be crossed. Make sure your physical form is top-notch before starting on this trek.
Night Jungle Walk:
Night Jungle Walk, as the name suggests, requires you to visit the national park at night to see the nocturnal animals in their natural habitat. Reindeer, tapir, wild boar, and other animals are often seen here.
- Visit Kg. Orang Asli
Also known as tribal settlement, the Kampung Orang is a group of nomadic tribes living in the Taman Negara National Park, untouched by the Asli civilization. While visiting them you will learn a lot about their culture and will be able to communicate with them with the help of a translator. However, you should get their permission before taking any pictures to give them and their culture due respect.
- Rapid Shooting
If you are a thrill-seeker, looking for a constant adrenaline rush, then a rapid shooting is the ideal activity for you. For this activity, you need to ride through 7 rapids in a wooden kayak or boat, with Sungai tumbling throughout.
- Boat Cruise to Lata Berkoh & Kelah Fish Feeding
If you are tired and just want to relax for a few minutes in the midst of nature then this is the best activity for you. Relax on the serene Creeper Barkoh, and enjoy the scorching sun as you stroll through the National Park. Capture the breathtaking scenery with your camera. You can even feed the banana fish for an unforgettable experience.
- Animal Observation
Animal observation, as the name suggests, gives you a unique opportunity to see forest species in their natural habitat while hiding in different places so as not to scare them. This action regularly attracts reindeer, tapir, wild boar, and other animals.
Test your fishing prowess by catching a large Sungai Tembeling, Sungai Keniyam, or both! Traps, poisons, electric current, and other similar items are not allowed on the premises. There are many great sites inside Taman Negara that will help you catch some good fish, but it will take you 2.5-5 hours to get there.
- Cave Exploration
The limestone caves of Gua Telinga and Gua Kepayang Besar are waiting to be discovered, so hurry up! You will be provided with all the necessary equipment for this activity, as well as a safety briefing. In this, bats, racer snakes, and many types of insects will be seen. You can also spend the night in one of these huge caves.
- Gunung Tahan Climbing
Gunung Tahan Climbing offers some of the steepest and most difficult hiking routes in the country and is only suitable for those who are in excellent physical condition and have prior trekking expertise. There are other options, but they usually take longer to finish.
- Four Steps Waterfall Explorations
The Four Steps Waterfall is the most exquisite waterfall in the whole of Malaysia and is formed by a tributary of the Ulu Tahan. The Gunung Tahan trek can be reached by taking a little detour and will take around 30 minutes to reach. However, this route is quite challenging and is only for pro trekkers.
- Bird Watching
Tentang Negara is a sanctuary for both experienced and novice bird watchers. With so many different bird species, you will be hooked on some spectacular sights. It is recommended that you travel with a native guide to learn more about these magnificent creatures.
How To Reach
By Train – Taman Negara National Park can be reached by train. Jerantut railway station is closest to the park and KTM Intercity, as well as express trains, will pick you up to your destination.
By Bus – Tourists can also reach this place by bus to Jerantut and Kuala Tembling Jetty, however, then they have to take a river boat ride to Kuala Tahan from here. This all together would be a 7-8 hour journey, so it is highly not recommended.
Best Time To Visit
Taman Negara is open 365 days a year. However, it is recommended that you visit the national park in the spring months of March and April when it is drizzling. It marks the beginning of the mating season, so residents come out of their shelters. Since it will be drizzling, the crowds will be much less, making it more convenient to explore in peace.
Places to stay at Taman Negara
Mutiara Taman Negara Resort: You can choose to stay in the park at the Mutiara Taman Negara Resort itself. You will get the chance to spend time gazing at the stunning views of nature along with enjoying the rustic charm of the accommodation.
Kuala Tahan: Kuala Tahan offers a wide variety of accommodation options, and the common area standards have improved enough for most travelers to get a good taste of Malaysian nature without being too rough. This is especially true at the lowest end of the market, where housing has been terrible before.
Tips to visit Taman Negara
- It is recommended to visit in the spring months of March and April as residents will be out of their shelters for the mating season.
- Be sure to wear full-sleeved clothing and full pants to avoid mosquito and insect bites. Bring insect repellent cream for the same purpose.
- While heading towards the waterfall, wear a swimsuit and flip-flops instead of sneakers as you will surely get drenched in water. You are also advised to bring an extra set of clothing.
- It is recommended to hire a local guide who can give you some facts about the species and also help you get the best view of the animals.