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Padas White Water Rafting | 1 Day | Borneo


Looking for an adrenalin-fuelled day trip? Then look no further than the White Water Rafting trip along the Padas River. Offering a grade III-IV white water rafting experience, the Padas River offers something for experienced ‘rafters’ and those who want that ‘rollercoaster’ rafting experience. Lots of fun, swirling rapids and getting very wet!! It’s an early start from Kota Kinabalu to the Padas River but riding on an old train in the Sabah countryside makes for an exciting journey!

Note – The price shown above is for one person. The operator needs a minimum booking of six persons to run the trip. It is recomended you only book this trip a few weeks before your arrival. Giving the operator time to sell additional places. Once you select the number of persons in your group and your start date. The total group cost will be displayed below the calendar excluding any optional extras chosen.

Prices valid from 1st April 2024 to 31st March 2025.

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Padas White Water Rafting – Wet & Wild Adventures in Sabah, Borneo

Are you ready for adventure? Then join a white water rafting adventure along the Padas River Sabah Borneo. White water rafting on the Padas River, near Kota Kinabalu, is a challenging adrenaline-filled tour you will never forget. Experience the raging water of the Padas River, which is claimed to have the best rapids in South East Asia!

This Padas River white water rafting trip covers around 9km of the 200km long Padas River. This adrenaline-fuelled journey will take around 2 hours. During your White Water Rafting Padas River Sabah Borneo trip, you will visit such rapids as:-

  • Merry-Go-Round Rapid
  • Break Point Rapid
  • Scooby Doo Rapid
  • Cobra Rapid
  • Curve Rapid
  • Lambada Rapid
  • Head Hunter Rapid – with the name, you have a clue of what to expect.

Test yourself – Padas White Water Rafting, Sabah, Borneo

The Padas River is situated in the interior of the southwestern part of Sabah that is only accessible by train (used since the late 19th century in Borneo). So you’ll enjoy a coach ride and a train ride to reach Padas Gorge, Sabah, Borneo.

If you are looking for a gentler white water rafting trip, then check out our white rafting Kiulu River trip, a Grade – II rafting experience. Alternatively, if you want more adventure during your stay in Kota Kinabalu, you could consider a PADI Discover Scuba Diving Experience and try scuba diving along coral reefs near Kota Kinabalu.

Trip Itinerary – Padas River White Water Rafting, Sabah, Borneo

04:00hrs: you will be picked up from your hotel in central Kota Kinabalu and transferred by private minivan transfer to Tenom Railway Station, which is located in the interior division of Sabah, East Malaysia, on the Island of Borneo. 

06:45hrs – 07:00hrs: you will arrive at Tenom railway station.

07:15hrs: Boarding time for the train. At 7:30hrs, you’ll depart Pangi station. Enjoy the ride and the breathtaking views!

08:00hrs: You will arrive at Pangi Station and be greeted by the Riverbug Padas rafting team. Light refreshments will be served, and a safety briefing will be conducted. You can use the facilities here (toilet and changing rooms), and you will store your belongings here. You’ll join a safety briefing before you start rafting.

09:00hrs: You will go to the Padas rafting starting point, a short walk from the station, and prepare for the rafting activity. The rafting will then commence along the Padas River from the starting point and will take about 1 1⁄2 hours to 2 hours (10km), including 8 points of rapids as you raft down Padas Gorge. The Padas white water rafting activity will be faster / slower depending upon the flow of the River (and whether it is High, Medium or Low water level).

~ 10:30hrs: You have made it! Congratulations on completing the Padas white water rafting ride. You will arrive at the Padas rafting ending point. From here, you will head back to Pangi station for lunch by motor trolley.

~ 11:10hrs: Arrive back at Pangi station. You’ll have the chance to freshen up using the changing facilities and enjoy your well-earned lunch. You can choose to purchase here photos from your Padas rafting ride. There will be time to relax before catching the train from Pangi station – find a comfortable spot to chill out, or you could bring a book with you to read. Please note that there is no internet connection at this location.

13:30hrs: Time to say goodbye and travel by train from Pangi Station back to Tenom Station.

14:30hrs: Arrive at Tenom station. Time for a quick rest/toilet break before starting your transfer by private minivan back to Kota Kinabalu. The transfer will take an estimated 3 hours, depending on traffic.

17:30 hrs: You will arrive at your hotel in Kota Kinabalu.

Trip Pre-requisites – White Water Rafting Padas River, Sabah, Borneo

A good fitness level is required for white water rafting at Padas River Sabah Borneo. Children need to be 12 years and older to join this trip. All rafters will sign a Liability Release Form before they start the rafting activity.

Trip Inclusions

Return transfer from a hotel in central Kota Kinabalu, rafting equipment, English-speaking Rafting Guide, lunch, insurance and certificate, 0% Sales & Service Tax on the tour price as applicable from 6th May 2019.

Trip Exclusions

There is an outskirt pick-up charge for collections from Resorts/hotels north of Kota Kinabalu (e.g. the Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort). You can choose to purchase a DVD of your Padas River white water rafting activity on the day.

Recommended Packing List For The Trip

Sandals with strap, shorts and T-shirt (NOT white colour), swimwear, personal spend, insect repellent, sun-block lotion, change of clothes, towel.

Notes – Padas White Water Rafting, Sabah, Borneo

The white water rafting to Padas River involves a very early start, so get plenty of sleep the night before and remember to set your alarm. Ask your hotel for a packed breakfast to be ready for you to collect before your pick-up time.

Sometimes the train may break down on the day of your trip (as it is an old train). If this happens, your transfer route on the day will be adapted, and an alternative train route will be used. Your Guide / Driver will brief you if this is the case for your trip. As such, please ensure that you don’t have a flight to catch after your Padas white water rafting trip, as the return time will vary depending on the train condition and the current water level.

For the Padas white water rafting activity, you must have trimmed fingernails and toenails. Please do not wear jewellery or valuable items during the rafting activity (best keep the latter stored safely at your hotel).


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Kota Kinabalu tours

  • Is it easy to get from the city centre to Jesselton Point Jetty?

    Most watersports trips depart from Jesselton Point Jetty (https://g.page/JesseltonPoint) in central Kota Kinabalu. If you are staying at a city centre hotel or guest house you will often find it far quicker to walk to Jesselton Point. If you are staying at hotels or resorts such as Shangri-La Rasa Ria or Shangri-La Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa then I would certainly grab a taxi.

  • How far is Kota Kinabalu from the Airport?

    The Kota Kinabalu International Airport KKIA (airport code BKI) is located to the south of the city and is 8.5 kilometres from the city centre. This journey can be easily done by private car, taxi or shuttle bus. A taxi will charge around RM 30 each way for a pre-booked taxi. Arrivals are on the lower level with departures on the upper level. At busy times allow 30 minutes from the city centre to the airport.

  • What is there to do in Kota Kinabalu in 2 days?

    Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Sabah, is the starting point for most holidays to Sabah. From Kota Kinabalu, most visitors go to explore other parts of Sabah whether it be on a tour from Kota Kinabalu (to go rafting, biking, climbing Mount Kinabalu etc.), or via a short internal flight to visit other parts of Sabah like the Kinabatangan River or Danum Valley. If you have a couple of days free in Kota Kinabalu during your holiday then there is surprisingly quite a bit you can do and see on your doorstep.

    On the first day, you can explore the city with its many attractions. At the start of the day visit the Kota Kinabalu Wetland Ramsar Site, a bird sanctuary close to the city centre. You could then choose to walk up Signal Hill to enjoy views out over the City from Signal Hill observatory platform, visit the Sabah State Museum for a walk through Sabah’s history or explore the handicraft market located on the waterfront. Visit the Atkinson Clock Tower, the oldest building in Kota Kinabalu, or one of the famous Mosques in Kota Kinabalu – Kota Kinabalu City Mosque (‘Floating Mosque’) or the State Mosque. Later in the day watch the sunset from Tanjung Aru Beach before heading back into the city centre for a spot of early evening shopping. Finally, choose from one of the many local cafes and restaurants for a tasty meal to end the day. 

    For your second day visit the local islands in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park. The Marine Park is located in front of Kota Kinabalu and easily accessible via a boat transfer from Jesselton Point Jetty. You can choose to join an organised day tour to help you get the most from your visit to the Marine Park whether it be a Snorkeling Trip or going scuba diving to explore the tropical waters. You could also choose to visit the islands independently via an island transfer service and chill out on one of the public beaches on the islands in the Marine Park. Sun, tropical sea, sand – a perfect way to spend a second day in Kota Kinabalu.

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