Bukit Gemok Forest Reserve

sights / Parks & gardens

Bukit Gemok Forest Reserve information

Tawau , Malaysia
adult/child RM5/1
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Located 10km from Tawau town centre, this reserve is a gem, and the best option for those who need to while away a day here. Developed in the early 1990s, the jungle is filled with chattering monkeys, and has become popular with trekkers, Hash House Harriers runners and tour groups – many consider it to be far better than the trails around Poring Hot Springs. The most popular trail is a demanding one-hour (if you're fit!) jaunt up Lim Man Kui Quarry Hill , a slate-grey knife of rock. It's a huff to make it to the top, but the stunning views from the top are worth it, as is your casual disbelief at the middle-aged Chinese fitness nuts who jog up this track on a regular basis.

Within the reserve, a 231m canopy walkway offers lovely views of the surrounding countryside and Tawau itself. Be on the lookout for the relatively enormous (15cm) seeds of the gourd Alsomitra macrocarpa ; the seeds are flattened into aerodynamic pancakes and regularly glide hundreds of metres through the forest; they're fairly breathtaking to watch in flight. A taxi to the park costs RM30 – make sure your driver either sticks around to wait for you or is willing to come back and pick you up, as there's little public transport out this way.