Tambunan Rafflesia Forest Reserve is part of the Crocker Range Park and is the place to visit if your purpose is to see and smell for yourself the wonder of the world's largest flower, the Rafflesia. This Class VI Virgin Jungle Reserve covers an area of about 386 acres and gives you the best chance to view a blooming Rafflesia flower. The Rafflesia flower blooms all year round with no fixed blooming season and the blooming flower will lasts for a few days only. As such, you need some luck and good timing to view it.
The Rafflesia Information Centre, which is along the roadside at the edge of the forest reserve, is the starting point for your search of the flower. Learn all about this parasitic flowers, which is rootless, leafless, wiithout stem and chlorophyll from the exhibit here, which is complete with photos and detail explanation. This center is also the place to arrange for your guided jungle trekking adventures into the forest to view the flower for a fee. In this forest reserve, the experience and friendly forest rangers have already identified and earmarked areas within the forest which have a blooming Raflesia flower at that time so that you do not waste your time to search for one.
Beside from the Raflesia, take your time to enjoy this highland dipterocarps forest with 20-35 meters high canopy and various species of rattan and wild gingers scattered on the forest floor. This forest is also a good place for bird watching as there are various species of Borneo native birds that can be found along the trail such as the Hornbill, Mountain Serpent Eagle, White-fronted Falconet, Borneo Ground Cuckoo and many more. Visitors should wear proper shoes and socks and long pants to protect themselves from the tiny leeches found abundantly on the forest floor before venturing into the forest.
Getting There: Located in the interior division of Sabah, along the roadside from Kota Kinabalu to Tambunan Highways about 36 miles (58km) from the city of Kota Kinabalu (or 16 miles (25km) from the town of Tambunan). A taxi or bus will take about 1½ hours to this place.
Note: For your own safety, always engage a forest ranger before venturing into the forest and also all visitor should be out from the forest by 3.00 pm.
The Rafflesia Information Centre