Co-written by Veyroniqa
Only when we are alone and closer to nature would we be able to clear our minds, clear our thoughts and finally breathe out all the stress and negativity in our lives, even if it’s only for a brief moment. For me, hiking has always been that one thing, a detox I’d go for. Hearing the rustling of trees and the wind as I’m hiking up, nothing crosses my mind aside from paying attention to these natural sounds around me.
And when you finally reach the top, or that golden spot of your hike, there’s this sense of contentment and fulfillment you’d get, just by looking at everything around you. Don’t you miss hiking now? I know I definitely do!
If you’re someone like me who loves nature and enjoys a little bit of sweat, you need to check out these easy hiking spots that are just within reach in and around the city of Kuala Lumpur!
Difficulty levels (out of 5):
1 – Suitable for beginners/newbies. Mainly walking and requires no technical knowledge
2 – For beginners that come from an athletic background
3 – For those who regularly trek and have a fair bit of experience navigating dangerous trails
4 – For serious trekkers who can go the distance with rock climbing experience
5 – Only for experts, and should be undertaken with a tour guide unless you are an extremely experienced mountaineer.
1 hour from Kuala Lumpur: Tanah Aina Fareena cafe is a hidden riverside restaurant in the rainforests near Bukit Tinggi with an organic garden!
1. A hidden gem in the forest – Bukit Kembara
I’m very lucky to say that located just right in my city of Ampang, this hill sits right behind my family condo. Every once in a while in the morning, I’d just be able to lace up my shoes and stroll right up to this hill located behind Emerald Hill Condominium.
The forest is so dense and so refreshing to hike through in the morning. Although the trail is short, it gets tougher the further you go. But right when you reach the summit, you’ll be in awe of this hidden gem. This trail will lead you to a magnificent view of a lake (that’s actually a dam). Sit still and you can hear the sounds of the forest.
But be careful though, there’s LOTS of monkeys!2. That lesser-known scenic beauty – Bukit Botak & Bukit Cherakah
Although these two connected hills are not very well-known, they are definitely hidden gems with stunning views you must not miss, especially if you are someone who hikes for the view!
The beginning of your hike would be similar to that of Broga Hills where you’d have to cross a palm tree plantation, but the trails are shaded by the leaves so you won’t get exposed to so much heat while you’re trekking.
Around 10 minutes later, you’ll discover a beautiful stretch of lalang grass, but the journey doesn’t stop there. Keep going up and you’ll finally get to see the beautiful summit. Breathe in and take in the moment…
3. Take it easy and steady going up the hill – Bukit Gasing
I’ve been told several times by my friends to check out Bukit Gasing but till today I haven’t had the chance. Have you guys hiked up before? Do share with me your thoughts!
This place is spectacular for a leisure hike, the hills are neat, there’s suspension bridges as well and it’s easy to navigate around the forest as there are helpful signboards around. Bukit Gasing also used to be a rubber plantation!
And for the daredevils, there’s actually an abandoned mansion nearby if you’re up for some ghost-hunting after your hike! 😉
4. Leave your head in the clouds, literally – Bukit Senaling
Sometimes when life gets overwhelming and you’re looking for an escape, hiking is the way to go. At Bukit Senaling, not only is the view breathtaking, but you’ll find that at the summit, there’s a carpet of clouds waiting for you.
Imagine the cool crisp air gently touching your skin, eyes closed and mind open. Seems like a perfect meditation spot, doesn’t it? The best time to catch this would be around 10am when the air is fresh and clean.
Pro tip: If you really want to make the most out of your experience, depart from KL around 3 am to catch the breathtaking view of the sunrise.
However, climbing may be a bit of challenge as it’ll take you about one hour to 1.5 hours to reach its peak. But the experience is worth it. Hikers also have to register in advance as they only allow up to 200 people to climb at the same time, so you better book a slot while you can!
5. With ancient colonial ruins – Bukit Kutu
Once colonised by the British, this scenic hiking spot is not only rich in beauty, but even richer in history.
Before Malaysia received its Independence, Bukit Kutu was a land known among the British for its cool, safe and comfortable weather, thereafter becoming one of the important lookout points during the colonial period. Unfortunately during World War II, the facility was bombed by the Japanese on their way from Tanah Melayu to Singapore. As you hike, you can even spot ruins of old British bungalow houses built on this beautiful hill.
An average climb up to the peak would take about two to four hours, so you better rest up and eat well before going on the hike. Be careful too as the walkways tend to get very slippery.
P.S. Before hiking, you will need to make a reservation for your hike with the Pejabat Hutan Hulu Selangor and pay a small fee once they’ve confirmed your reservation, as only a limited number of people are allowed to hike at the same time.
6. A beginner’s hike to a beautiful sight – Bukit Sawa
Don’t want to go on a long hike? Take a 30-minute hike up Bukit Sawa!
This hill is fairly easy if you’re not used to hiking and is looking for a quick trip. The slopes aren’t too steep and there are ropes tied across the hike path if you require assistance. But watch out for the bees though, it’s been noted that this trail is buzzing with these buggies. You wouldn’t want to get stung while searching for a stunning view!
But here’s what you can look forward to – a hill where you can sit and meditate as you’re surrounded by a carpet of clouds.
7. Go on an easy family-friendly hike – Bukit Melati
For those who are dreaming of conquering Mount Kinabalu but have little experience in hiking, Bukit Melati is also another one that’s perfect for beginners!
Located not too far from the outskirts of Nilai, Seremban, this hill has occasional hikers who seek serenity within the trees. Here’s a little fun fact: the uphill road was actually developed by a local doctor who wanted to encourage his patients to exercise more! Wow, I’m actually ready to go back to hike this one!
This hill is also surrounded by other smaller hills such as Centipede Hill, Monkey Hill, Cobra Hill, Eagle Hill, and Mosquito Hill. I’m not sure if those hills were named after the animals that inhibit them, but they might still be worth a visit!
There’s a steeper path too if you’re looking for a challenge, and it comes with tied ropes as well to help you along the way!
8. Paraglide down after you reach the top! – Bukit Jugra
Located in the historical town of Jugra, Kuala Langat, this hill is popular for its scenic beauty. As you drive your way up to the lighthouse on top, you’ll be treated to a magnificent view of the iconic Straits of Malacca which was known as the main trading route between the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean back in the 1400s.
The recommended place to start your hiking journey would be at an entry point near Masjid Al-Muttaqin in Kampung Permatang Pasir. It will take you roughly one to one and a half hours to hike up to the lighthouse, but I promise, it’s an easy hill for beginners.
This is also an interesting spot for adrenaline junkies out there. Want to paraglide down? Go ahead and give it a try once you reach the top! Make your reservations here.
9. Which way will it be? The easy one or the difficult one? – Bukit Batu Lebah
Located in the Bukit Senggeh Forest Reserve, Bukit Batu Lebah offers you two routes with different difficulty levels.
The first trail leads up to Bukit Batu Lebah which will take you around two hours to hike and the second trail is a bit longer, for those who are intermediate, and will take you about three to four hours.
Hiking up, you’ll get to see many species of plants and perhaps bugs along the way if you aren’t creeped out. It all leads to the highest of peak Malacca where you’ll be able to explore the Crystal Cave as well!
10. Surround yourself in the sea of clouds – Bukit Taisho
Just two hours from KL and you’ll get a view of heaven on earth – a sea of clouds as you take in breathtaking views of the city.
This hill is also rich in colourful flora and lush greens. And if you get hungry before or after the hike, you can grab a bite at their popular kopitiam known as Kedai Kopi Nam Fatt. There’s also a famous pau shop that’s been running for 30 years – Bahau Sornam Pau Shop!
11. Take an easy hike up the Sahabat Trail – Bukit Denai 3 Puteri, Kota Damansara
Here’s another family-friendly spot for you to try!
Bukit Tiga Denai is a popular hill around Kota Damansara (not too far from the city as well!) and you’ll find people hiking, cycling, walking or even jogging from time to time. Depending on your mood, this hill has many trails, but if you’re in for a challenge, check out Sahabat Trail. It’s a little steeper, so you might want to charge up with some food and drinks before the climb.
You can also check out the Unity Peak, which is the highest point and will take you around five to eight hours (round trip). But the views will definitely be worth it!
12. Conquer three peaks near the city – Broga Hill
With three peaks and two 360° views, coming here is definitely worth a trip. Plus, you can take the opportunity to explore this township.
The trail is a little confusing at the beginning because there is a new and old trail – they both connect eventually but the left trail is a bit shorter and steeper. When you get to the first peak, the second one is just 10 minutes away.
The third summit doesn’t have views as nice as the first two and it requires a bit more climbing.
It is not advisable to attempt this trail in rainy weather and if you plan to do a dawn hike, make sure you bring a torchlight along as it can get quite dark.
Special Mention 1: A strenuous climb but worth the journey – Gunung Nuang
Up for a real challenge? Described as one of the tallest peaks in Selangor, this 4898-feet mountain is no walk in the park. According to some reviews, some may even consider this more challenging than hiking up Mount Kinabalu (woah). Though that may be a tad dramatic but there’s no denying that this hill isn’t just for anybody.
If you’re an avid hiker or fitness junkie, Gunung Nuang is the mountain for you, my friend. The first stage of climbing seems like a gradual incline but as you go further it becomes steeper and more rugged.
It might take you up to eight hours to climb up this 12-kilometre beast, but those who’ve made it say that the view is spectacular. This sounds like an enticing challenge for me, but I might need to work up my fitness level again since being in lockdown.
If you are ever tired midway, you can always camp out for a bit at one of their camping grounds.
Whether it’s for leisure or for a challenge, going on a hike will always be a great mental and physical reset we need when life gets hectic and we need a break. Compared to going to the beaches (though I love the beach), something about being away and only surrounded by nature seems to be more relaxing and peaceful.
But that’s just me, how about you? Which of these have you hiked or are excited to try? Let me know in the comments below!