Gunung Gading National Park is located near the small town of Lundu in Southwest Sarawak. Previously, Gunung Gading was established as a Forest Reserve in 1929 and gazetted as a National Park in 1983 with a total area of 4,196 ha. Gunung Gading National Park is one of the best places in Asia to view the spectacular blooms of Rafflesia, a genus of leafless parasitic plant that produces the world’s largest flower. After 10 years as a conservation zone to protect these unusual plants, the park opened to visitors in 1994.
Reasons for Establishment:
- Protection and Conservation of ecosystems (water catchments area)
- Conservation and Preservation of Sarawak Indigenous Flora (Rafflesia)
- Facilitating the Study and Research on Biodiversity
- Protection of Natural Beauty Scenic
- Provide opportunities for Public Appreciation and Enjoyment
Park planners have taken strict measures to allow the public to see the plants without damaging the park’s delicate ecosystem, particularly the young Rafflesia buds springing up all over the forest floor. These measures include a carefully laid plank walk so visitors can observe the flowers’ habitat without walking on the ground.
It is not only giant flowers that make Gunung Gading worth visiting. Visitors can also go hiking (all jungle trekking trails are color coded) to reach waterfalls and clear jungle streams that make excellent bathing spots. The park includes four mountain peaks – Gunung Gading, Gunung Perigi, Gunung Sebuloh and Gunung Lundu – so most of the jungle treks involve a significant amount of hill walking and a reasonable level of fitness is required. The summit treks are for serious hikers – they can be done in a day but this requires 6 -7 hours of hiking, so an early start is essential in order to enjoy the rainforest scenery.
There is no cafeteria but the park is very near to Lundu Town. Visitors must make sure they take enough drinking water, some snacks for lunch and wear proper hiking attire. They can enquire at the park HQ for further information and to arrange official trekking guides as Gunung Gading is a conservation zone. Only small trekking groups are allowed.