Is whitewater rafting and kayaking considered dangerous sports?
No, even beginners can enjoy these paddlesports, given the proper attitude and care. Remote cases of fatality is known to have occured in other parts of the world though it is much lower compared to other sports. It's important to note that most of these mishaps occurred due to carelessness or poor attitude. Hence, before you begin your downstream rafting please follow closely our safety precaution briefing to avoid untoward happenings. It is important that you understand this briefing for the safety of all in the raft and more importantly yourself. As for beginners in kayaking, we provide basic Kayaking techniques classes before launching you into the exciting and challenging courses. Remember, any activity can turn into a dangerous situation if no proper preparation is given.
Where are the most popular spots for whitewater rafting in Sabah?
Kiulu River and Padas River are the most popular spots for whitewater rafting in Sabah. However there are a number of other sites that suits the needs of individuals or groups. As an example, we can arrange for nature observation calm water tours in Sukau, Kinabatangan to enable nature lovers get a closer look at the flora and fauna of Sabah's rivers or estuaries.
Where are safe spots yet exciting for whitewater rafting in West Malaysia?
As for now, Kampar River is considered safe and exciting river for whitewater rafting in West Malaysia and suitable for beginners and advance paddlers. This river is graded I-III on the river grading table.
What is the difference between whitewater rafting and kayaking?
Whitewater rafting is a sport that utilises water crafts to be propelled downstream by the turbulent current of certain fast flowing rivers. It can normally accomodate 6~10 pax, depending on the raft size. Compared to kayak, inflatable rafts a lot more cumbersome and difficult to maneuver. Kayaking is on the other hand a more maneuverable water craft that nowadays comes in many forms, i.e. inflatable, rigid, foldable and stowaways. Kayaking presents more challenges and freedom compared to rafting as it can go against currents and eddies given good hands.
When is the ideal time?
As it is sunny for most part of the year in Sabah, you would normally be able to enjoy these activities year round. However at certain times, especially during the Monsoon season it is not advisable to undertake these as the water or the weather could be very rough and uncomfortable. Just to be sure, it's best that you contact us well ahead of your tour to avoid disappointment.
What do I need to bring for the tour?
You would only need to bring suitable water attire (there'll be lots and lots of thrills and spills), a change of footwear if need be, sunblocks, towels and waterproof camera. Do not bring or wear your jewelleries, contact lenses, watches, earrings and other precious items that may get lost. As for the rest the rafts, kayaks, equipments, the mystic settings and a sumptious BBQ lunch (Padas Rafting and Kiulu Rafting only), it's on us.
Is Rafting Dangerous?
Rafting is a water based activity. It is EXCITING, Wild and Fun! However, as all adventure sports are, risk is involved. The risk is contributed among the people engaged in the activity and that is why many people love rafting. Guides are trained to minimize risk statistically. Statistics show that the injury rate for whitewater rafting is the same as the injury rate for
bowling! But still there is risk and you will most probably forget about it the moment you are on the raft! The most injury you will get is sunburn, while others injures often take place on land when climbing the river banks and getting in and out of the boat!
I can't swim. Can I still go rafting?
All customer will be provided with buoyancy vest, proper PFD (personal floatation device) rather than a jacket. The PFD will keep you afloat in the water, if you find yourself in the river. More importantly, you should not be afraid of the water. Non-swimmer should not go to class V trips, instead should be better off at class III and class IV river.
How fit should I be to go rafting?
That depends on the type of raft—paddle boat, or oar-paddle combination boat. You should be reasonably healthy to be able to fit to the buoyancy vests. Paddling is tiring, but guides will instruct you regarding paddling techniques. Oar boats, where you are a passenger, are available on many river. If you are still in doubt, check with your doctor before you go.
What should I wear on the river?
As a rule of thumb, it is advised that you dress for the water temperature rather than the air temperature, since you will be getting wet. Shorts and T-shirts and sandals with straps are highly recommended. You can put on sun block lotion but not on your forehead and the back of your legs because it will run into your eyes or cause you slipping all over the boat.
I have a family with young children. Who should I take?
Everyone! The minimum age to go rafting in Kiulu, Padas and Kampar are 5, 12 and 10 respectively. If the children prefers to be excluded and stay on land, they can still follow the trip but they will be baby-sit in the ending point where you will meet them after rafting.
I am a senior citizen. Which trips do you recommend for me?
For fit, active seniors below 65, you may want to try the Padas River or Kampar River. Otherwise, Kiulu River is a wise choice. All across the world active people of all ages, including 60's and 70's enjoys rafting.
What happens on a typical trip?
You will be picked up from your hotel or designated place and time that you have agreed with our company's reservationists or representatives. The guide will then release forms, and making sure that everyone is prepared for the river trip. The river guide will give a safety talk. You must listen to them carefully. There will be exciting rapids and your river guide will further instruct on how to navigate the boat.
What are my chances of falling out of the river and what should I do if I do?
Believe it or not, many people love falling out of the boat. It's exciting. But it can be disorienting and overwhelming at first. Many people have taken up rafting for many times but have never fallen in the river. Some people fall on the first trip. It’s part of rafting. If you follow your guide's instruction, your "swim" could be the best part of your trip!
It looks like rain. Will the trip still go?
Most rafting trips go, rain or shine. Occasionally circumstances beyond control like high or low
water will cause the trips to be closed. We will close down operation during these times.
What is the cancellation policy?
Cancellation made one day before the tour, a 50% of the deposit will be forfeited. If you do not turn up for the trip on the day itself, full deposit will be forfeited.
Can I bring my camera or video camera?
We do not recommend bringing camera or video cameras. It would be fine for disposable waterproof camera well suited for rafting. Besides, we provide picture packages at only *RM 50.00 for 4 best shots on the day after your trip!
* Only for Kiulu River and Padas River.
Should I tip my guide?
Tipping is not expected, but is certainly a plus! It really depends on whether you liked the trip, or the guide. If you think that your guide has done a good job, then tip accordingly. It is the way for you to show your appreciation. Some tourists even get acquainted with the guides after the trip and become friends.
Other Pages That You Might Interested On
Read about our terms that are applied in our tour purchases, including reservation, insurance, refund, cancellation and more.
Learn about our refund policy that is applied to tour booking, and return policy that's only applied to online RIVERBUG T-Shirt purchases.
This policy only applies to online RIVERBUG T-Shirt purchases - depends on stocks/ availability.
A good place to start and look for answers - learn the best time to book, what to do if you stumble upon an error, uncertainity during booking process, and more are provided in this F.A.Q
Many Malaysians would rather believe that white water rafting conducted outside Malaysia would be safer and thus more worthwhile than those done within the country. This is due to the assumption that only overseas River Guides are skilled and trained professionally. However, this belief would trouble any thrill-seekers who have 'been there done that' in Malaysia.
Get to know what are the grades means. The information provided is based on International Scale of River Difficulty.
View the map of Padas River and Kiulu River. Rapid names and other important land mark included.
We thanked you for making us among the best in the industry!
This page can help you - on reaching us at our meeting point, at Gopeng Toll. Images included.