Break Boring Routines By Going Hiking in Kuala Lumpur This Weekend - Without Having to Travel Far from KL's Concrete Jungle
Our brutal cycle of work, responsibilities, and endless to-do lists can definitely catch us in a web of boring monotony.
Most of us spend hours scrolling through social media, so it’s easy to think that you can only break boring routines by buying a flight ticket to your next desired destination.
But what if you could break free from the mundane - without leaving Kuala Lumpur?
The city of Kuala Lumpur is home to hidden and not-so-hidden natural gems that promise relief to your blue light-saddled senses (I’m guilty of using the laptop for hours, and I’ll bet you are too) and tired mind.
These natural gems are some of the best hiking trails to go hiking in Kuala Lumpur because they take you through a hiking adventure across green trails that make you feel like you’re no longer within the city. Which is truly one of the best things you can do for yourself after weeks of work, chores, eat, sleep, and repeat.
So get ready this weekend to swap your laptop bag for a small backpack that’s just enough to carry a double-walled thermal insulated bottle of your favourite cold drink and a favourite snack to keep your energy levels up and to prevent the activity from becoming an exhausting hike.
Because we’re going hiking in Kuala Lumpur at one of these fantastic spots below!
9 Stunning Hiking Trails to Go Hiking in Kuala Lumpur this Weekend Without Having to Leave KL City
1. Taman Tugu
If this is your very first hiking attempt, Taman Tugu's hiking trail is definitely one of the best to get a foot in!
Taman Tugu boasts 66-acres of easy trail near the iconic Tugu Negara found in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. It’s known as a rainforest preservation site with over 1000 indigenous flora while also being one of the most popular trails for beginner hikers and families with little children.
You get access to 5km of forest trails with up to 5 different hiking trails to explore for an easy hike thanks to its nice balance of flat terrain and stairs. There are also signposts placed at each checkpoint with directions so there’s no need to fear getting lost.
Something to note about Taman Tugu is that you’ll find monkeys towards the deeper end of the routes. The rule of thumb is to avoid feeding and approaching them. Though there are also situations where you won’t even encounter these monkeys.
The trail takes between 45 minutes to 90 minutes to hike depending on your speed. Because of its relatively easy difficulty and short hiking time, I’d recommend bringing only a small to medium sized bottle of water and perhaps a small fruit or granola bar as a nice titbit while hiking.
There’s parking available at Taman Tugu Nursery Parking Lot just outside the hiking trail. If that’s full, you can always park at the multi-level car park near Lake Gardens. Washrooms are also available nearby the nursery’s parking lot for you to freshen up after your hike.
Taman Tugu tends to get packed during weekends especially early mornings and evenings. But because it’s nicely shaded and cool thanks to its endless canopy of trees, you can even start your walk at about 3pm to skip the crowd without feeling the heat!
Opening Times: 7am - 6:30pm, daily.
Address: 94-1, Pesiaran Sultan Salahuddin, Kuala Lumpur, 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
2. Bukit Kiara Hill Walk (a.k.a. Ayuria)
Bukit Kiara Hill Walk, also fondly known as Ayuria to regular hikers, is a popular trail amongst locals, tourists, and nature lovers that spans up to 250m in terms of elevation. It’s a large hiking area that consists of multiple trails to be explored in the middle of the city that spans across Sri Hartamas, Mont Kiara, and Desa Park City.
Its various entry points come with different terrains and split trails, making this hiking location a moderate to advanced one. I’d recommend bringing someone familiar to the area or someone who knows their way around Komoot or the AllTrails app to keep tabs and avoid getting lost because of the split trails.
You’ll get to experience a mixture of steep, hilly paths and flat surfaces depending on the trail you start with, which could bring your hike up to a 4 hour adventure. These trailheads can be from one of these locations:
Taman Tun Dr Ismail Park at the eastern end of the parking area,
The main entrance to Kiara Hill Walk,
The more popular Ayuria Kiaramas Condominium entrance, a.k.a the Ayuria trailhead,
Heliconia trailhead which is one of the more challenging trails,
And lastly the Sri Bintang Hill entrance for more experienced hikers which begins from Desa Park City.
Along the trail, you’ll get treated to a number of scenic spots which include the IG-worthy Bamboo Canopy, Mossy Rock, Angkor Wat Tree, Starbuck Corner (there’s no actual Starbucks Cafe, but a rest stop to catch a breather and get a few sips in), Serenity Tree, the opening ends of the Penchala Tunnel, and the Great Canyon located at the south of Kiaramas trailhead.
Depending on which hiking trail you take or decide to deviate along the way, it’s best to bring up to 1L of water or your favourite refreshing drink, a banana or two, and a few snacks because of the moderate to advanced difficulty of the trail as a whole.
That said, TTDI Park and Ayuria’s trailheads are the most popular entrances to this hiking spot so it may get crowded on weekends.
Do remember to go with a group or someone familiar to make sure your hiking trip is both a safe and a fun one!
Opening Times: 7am - 7pm, daily. (Applies to Kiara Hill Walk entrance only.)
Address: Bukit Kiara Trail, Sungai Penchala, 60000 Kuala Lumpur, Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
3. Bukit Gasing Forest Park
Yes, I know that Bukit Gasing is in Selangor, but it’s a special mention because its trail straddles between Kuala Lumpur and Selangor. Not to mention it’s just a short 20 minutes off Federal Highway, making it one of the most accessible ones still somewhat within Kuala Lumpur.
Bukit Gasing is a popular spot for first-time hikers and experienced hikers to stay on top of their game. It spans over 100 hectares and is a forest reserve at about 160m elevation, which makes its difficulty an easy to moderate one via its trails.
Its terrain ranges from flat to slightly steep trails with countless steps, with trails that take up to 2 hours to be covered until you arrive at the famed suspension bridge. However, there’s also an easier route which only takes up to 20 minutes for you to hike to the suspension bridge.
The trail begins at the Gasing Hill Trail Entrance, which is also where the parking lot and washrooms are located.
Bear in mind that limited parking lots are available so you must come early if you’re going by car. Alternative parking is available on the roadside but do so at your own risk of possible summons (why make a free activity into a paid one?).
Bukit Gasing’s notable scenic spots are the suspension bridge which you can access through all the trails, and the watchtower which is found at its peak.
Since it’s a relatively easy trail, you don’t need to bring much on you except for water and perhaps a granola bar or banana.
It’s a popular spot for hiking groups during the weekend so those who don’t like the idea of hiking in sheer silence may prefer hiking then.
Opening Times: 24 hours, daily.
Address: 1267, Jalan Telok, Bukit Gasing, 46000 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
4. Ketumbar Hill
Popular amongst nearby residents and even the elderly (that’s right!) during early mornings and weekends, Ketumbar Hill is part of a forest reserve in Cheras that encompasses Bukit Apek (Apek Hill) and Bukit Saga.
The trail’s difficulty ranges between easy to moderate with 300m of elevation for a hike that lasts up to 1 hour.
Your path begins right away at Jalan 6/95B (a dead end street) which is located a stone’s throw away from Ketumbar Heights Condominium. Here’s where you’ll be greeted by a staircase trail and alternates between flat and some steep terrain as you hike for a fun variety.
Towards the peak of the trail, you’ll get to feast your eyes on stunning scenic views of the mountain on one side with walking trails, and a lake on the other side.
Ketumbar Hill is known for its local furry four-legged residents, namely the wild boars and monkeys. Same rule applies just like the one mentioned in Taman Tugu - do not feed, do not approach, and do not stare at them.
For those coming by car, there’s free parking on the street. But with many housing blocks nearby it tends to get busy so do come early. If there’s no parking available, there’s also a pay-to-park area along the street.
I’d reckon you don’t need snacks for this trail because of how simple and easy-going this trail is. Just don’t forget your water and some insect repellant!
Opening Times: 24 hours, daily.
Address: Jalan 6/95b, Taman Cheras Utama, 56100 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
5. Bukit Sri Bintang
Bukit Sri Bintang, popularly known as the Twin Peaks, is a popular haunt for the hiking enthusiasts, advanced hikers and residents of Desa Park City. It’s one of the least crowded hiking trails during weekends because of its moderate to advanced difficulty. Perfect if you’re not a fan of crowds!
This particular hiking spot extends all the way to Bukit Kiara Hills, with the first peak consisting of resting areas like benches with a stunning view, while the second is a challenging peak for hikers seeking to train their endurance against steep inclines and unusual terrain.
Hikers are treated to two trails with moderate to advanced difficulty that can get muddy and treacherous during the wet season, with the right split trail being the less muddier of the split trails.
It takes approximately up to 1 hour and 30 minutes to hike Bukit Sri Bintang, regardless of the trail taken.
The trail begins at Jalan Sri Bintang 8, also known as Jalan 11/36, where hikers who come by car can park on the road close to the trailhead or nearby on Jalan 4/36. Just remember to be considerate to the residents too and park responsibly.
The Twin Peaks boast one of the best views out of all trails in KL as you can spot KLCC, KL Tower, the Mont Kiara landscape, and even Batu Caves on clear days. You’ll likely run into groups of monkeys who generally keep to themselves, so just steer clear and do not approach or feed them.
Pack lightly as it’s a relatively short hike, so you’ll mostly only need water and insect repellant. Those who find themselves getting hungry midway through most walks and hikes may want to sneak in a granola bar just to keep the hunger pangs away.
Opening Times: 24 hours, daily.
Address: Jalan 11/36, Taman Sri Bintang, 52200 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur.
6. KL Forest Eco Park
KL Forest Eco Park is an odd bird that comes with an entrance fee of RM10 for locals, and RM40 for international tourists as opposed to other hiking trails.
Long-time KL residents will know of its old name as the Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve. It’s located within the heart of KL city and it’s one of the oldest forest reserves in KL, making it perfect for nature escapades without having to venture beyond the central business district.
The KL Forest Eco Park is an easy trail that takes up to 1 hour to complete as you enjoy a relaxing canopy walk on developed pathways. You can enter from either the Taman Eko Rimba KL Head Office located at Jalan Raja Chulan, or the other more popular entrance just beside KL Tower.
Enjoy the popular canopy walk, which is a wood-and-steel aerial bridge that treats hikers to a scenic view of KL’s skyline. With this hike being incredibly relaxing and easy, there’s no need to pack food - just water will do. And bear in mind that it tends to get crowded on weekends as it’s a national tourist attraction.
Opening Times: 7am - 6pm, daily.
Address: Lot 240, Bukit Nanas, Jalan Raja Chulan, 50250, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
7. Taman Rimba Bukit Kerinchi
More of a park and less of a forestry trail, Taman Rimba Bukit Kerinchi offers visitors a beautiful forest view in a calm, cooling and serene environment.
It’s dense with trees and canopies which treats you to a nice, shaded hike that takes up to 3 hours depending on whether you stop for photographs or not. The walking trail in this forest reserve is mostly made of concrete and is well-maintained, making it one of the city’s easiest trails.
Those who romanticize being on suspension bridges will enjoy the fact that there’s one here. That said, it does get very crowded during the weekends due to its Instagrammable nature.
Just so you know, there are monkeys around with the rare monitor lizard sighting, so come with a friend or two if you’re not a big fan of monitor lizards. It’s recommended to enjoy the hike with some light snacks or some fruit as the trail can get long, even though it’s an easy one.
Parking is available on-site and by the roadside, but the latter is located at a distance from the park. So come very early or enjoy this place during the weekdays to avoid the crowd.
Opening Times: 6:30am - 7pm, daily.
Address: Bukit Kerinchi, 59200 Kuala Lumpur, Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
8. Bukit Dinding
Bukit Dinding is one of Kuala Lumpur’s lesser known hills, but it is also one of the highest hills at 300m elevation located northeast of the city centre in Taman Setiawangsa. It’s not far from the Klang Gates Quartz Ridge and Zoo Negara so frequent visitors include the nearby residents and mountain bikers.
The trail is made out of concrete and tarmac road which makes it relatively easy to hike, with the hike taking up to 1 hour and 30 minutes. Some spots are steep, but it’s mostly steady so there’s not much to worry about.
It’s not too popular because the view up top is obscured by trees, making it more of a training and exercising spot for hikers and nearby residents. So just pack water and maybe a banana or an apple for this relatively short trail.
Opening Times: 24 hours, daily.
Address: Bukit Dinding, Setiawangsa, 54200 Kuala Lumpur, Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
9. Forest Research Institute Malaysia at Kepong (a.k.a. Research Institute Malaysia FRIM)
FRIM is one of the easier popular hiking trails in Kuala Lumpur as it’s a man-made forest and botanical garden that is open to the public for a small entrance fee of RM1 for local residents, and RM5 for international tourists. Contrary to most hiking trails, FRIM is not a public recreational park but a forest research institute.
With that small entry fee, you get to enjoy various activities like jogging, hiking, and even a leisure stroll through FRIM’s beautifully landscaped gardens.
There are several hiking trails for visitors to choose from, namely the Keruing, Salleh, Engkabang, Sebastian, and Razak trails, with the Salleh and Keruing trails being the most popular ones for its easy to moderate level of difficulty.
The climbing trails lead to waterfalls and it takes approximately 1 hour of hiking to arrive at the said waterfalls.
Hikers will be treated to various protected species of flora and you can even opt for an informational guided tour for the more botanically inclined ones.
Because it’s a relaxing and easy trail, you’d only need to pack light snacks or fruit and water for a fulfilling day out. You also won’t need to worry about the crowd as only 80 - 100 people are allowed per session.
7:30am - 7pm, Monday to Thursday.
7am - 7pm, Friday to Sunday and Public Holidays.
Advanced booking needed via online or call at +603-6279 7000.
Address: Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM), Jalan Frim, Institut Penyelidikan Perhutanan Malaysia, 52109 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia