Poring Hot Spring & Nature Reserve, Sabah's most famous hot water spring, is located amongst the foot hills of Mt. Kinabalu near Ranau, with accommodation and restaurants managed by Sutera Sanctuary Lodges. The hot spring, located about 3 hours from Kota Kinablau, is managed by Sabah Parks, whilst Sutera Sanctuary Lodges manages the various accommodation and dining facilities.
The nature reserve and humid lowlands offer botanical attractions such as orchids, rare butterflies and the world's largest bloom, the Rafflesia. The curative waters of this popular local hot spring rejuvenates aching muscles after the challenging climb to Mount Kinabalu. The excellent collection of tropical plants includes more than 500 orchid species.
The four hectare lowland Poring Orchid Conservation Centre has a superb display of rare and endangered epiphytes and ground species. Varieties include Dendrodium and Bulbopophyllum of which there are over 90 species on Kinabalu. The main flowering season for most orchids here is from October to February. Six of the twelve Borneo Slipper Orchids, including the rare Rothchild's Slipper Orchid, are endemic to Kinabalu. Palms, aroids, begonias and gingers are also found in abundance. The micro-propagation laboratory currently conducts research into the ex-situ conservation of rare orchids and pitcher plants.
Located on the Park's boundary at the edge of the Mamut River, Poring Hot Spring & Nature Reserve offers chalets and hostels, a butterfly centre, an orchid conservation centre, a five acre tropical garden with an animal rehabilitation farm, picnic areas, hot pools and a canopy walkway overlooking the forests. To reach the Poring's hot pools which are located in a clearing in the forest, one must cross a short suspension bridge over the Mamut River. From there, a path leads past some old trees and a grove of Gigantochloa Levis, a giant bamboo species from which Poring got its name. Fruit bearing trees, shrubs and flowering plants attract many species of birds, bats and insects.
Water temperature in the 5 hot springs ranges between 49 to 60 degrees celcius. Visitors can enjoy a refreshing dip in the swimming pool or soak in sulphurous water channelled from the hot springs into tiled pools and tubs.