3rd March, 2017
Story by RMM
Situated in the scenic Kiulu valley near Tamparuli town is the Kiulu River. It takes about an hour’s drive to get there from the city of the Kota Kinabalu. Besides the picturesque local villages, rolling hills and breathtaking views, this area is famous for its white water rafting adventure.
Classified as Grade I and II rapids, this river is ideal for beginners, elderly people and family with young kids. It gives you just enough of thrill, but is still safe, easy, and enjoyable. This is the perfect training ground for those wanting to attempt high-grade rapids in the future.
The excursion stretches up to 15km in lenght, making it the longest white water rafting trip in Borneo. Each trip will take about an hour and a half to complete, especially when the water level is high.
Before commencement, a professional raft guide will conduct a safety briefing. This will include a demonstration of rafting techniques and proper handling of rafting equipment. All guests will have to sign a Liability Release form. For safety purposes, everyone is obligated to use a life jacket and helmet.
During the trip, visitors will encounter some rapids along the way, although nothing major. Most of the journey is calm and relaxing, but certain spots are slightly rough with rocks and small drops.
When encountering this, the most important thing is to not panic and keep maneuvering the raft using the oar. There are three basic moves, which are forward, backwards and stop.
The guides at Kiulu are normally very cheeky and would overturn the inflatable rafts just to get a reaction out of the guests. But not to worry, it is perfectly safe to even jump in and take a swim. As you move along the river, be sure to take in the gorgeous view of the surrounding area.
Don’t have a waterproof camera? That’s perfectly okay because a professional photographer will be snapping pictures of all the fun times for you to show off to your family and friends.
At the end of the journey, visitors will get a chance to clean up before heading to a delicious barbeque lunch. The estimate time of departure from the riverbank is around 1:00pm. A bus will be on standby to shuttle everyone back to the city.
There are many tour operators that offer this white water rafting experience. You definitely want to arrange your visit beforehand to ensure they have enough space to accomodate you. For a list of tour operators, call Sabah Tourism Board at +60 88 212 121 or visit www.sabahtourism.com.