A popular hike although I’m not entirely sure why. Maybe it’s popular with fans of trucks and diggers, or people who enjoy walking around a working quarry. Anyway, it wasn’t that popular with me.
So, why am I writing about it? Well, this is my role. I’m a servant of the people. I hike these hikes so sometimes you don’t have to.
If you do head out to Bukit Sungai Long, be warned I think this is less of a hike and more of a prolonged trespass on private property that is permitted as long as you behave, which I did.
Nice enough view, but is it worth the walk?
Sungai Long Hill is located just east of Bandar Baru Sungai Long in Selangor. On a map, it’s kinda the most easterly edge of the wider Kuala Lumpur metropolis before the real hills and jungle begin.
This led me to think it was probably going to be a wilder hike than most. I was wrong.
I semi-followed the most popular route on my Alltrails app, which you can do too although I’d recommend you don’t. Rather avoid the main road heading up to the peak and opt for smaller secondary trails instead.
The best time to visit would be for sunrise or sunset like I did at Sri Bintang hill hike. I imagine the viewpoints will be popping places to enjoy a weekend sundowner (or a sun-upper if that’s a thing?). Again don’t do what I did and turn up for a midday meltdown.
Getting There and Away
Easy peasy. Even though Sungai Long Park is on the very edge of the city, getting here by Grab was simple. It took about 30 mins from downtown to get there. And it took less than a minute to find a return ride.
As far as I could work out MRT Bandar Tun Hussein Onn is your closest station but you would be mad as it would be an 80-minute walk from there to the trailhead, or a bus and hike. So just Grab it.
Parking at the trailhead would be pretty easy I think. Just make sure you don’t block any of the routes the trucks take otherwise you might return to a flattened car. Eek!
My Grab dropped me off right at the entrance, which I liked.
The entrance is hard to miss being a great big rock painted with the words “Bukit Sungai Long”. Which I also liked. It looked like a giant preschool art project.
Love a good rock. This, people, is a good freakin rock.
There was also evidence of a refreshment stall but as this was a weekday it was all closed up. I have an inkling that when it’s busy at the weekends this little stall will do brisk business.
I was following a route suggested by my trusty Alltrails app. The most popular route in the area. Popular must mean good right? Hmmm.
The climb started pretty steeply along a tarmac road. Quite a few giant trucks passed me as I walked. Nothing too bad but definitely not the most relaxing way to spend time.
Who doesn’t love the sound of screeching brakes on a hike. Relaxing times.
As the walk was on a road there was none of the lovely jungle canopy shade that Ketumbar Hill and other most hikes in Kuala Lumpur had, my poor face was just in direct sun.
Hmmm, a bit concretey for my liking folks.
Now I had a hat on, and I was slathered up with suncream but unlike my Taman Tugu hike in central KL it wasn’t sheltered by leaves so it was not the most pleasant experience. I’d suggest you bring along an umbrella for extra shade.
Looks fun, probably more fun than the hike.
Early on I passed a kinda playground cafe-looking spot with some super fun-looking swings and seesaws. I would’ve quite enjoyed a little mess about but it was all closed up.
There was a chap in there, maybe the owner. Not sure what he was doing exactly but I gave him a big smiley wave and he gave me one right back. It was nice. I thought about it later how from such a quick and simple interaction you can get such positive vibes.
Maybe in another life, we would’ve been best friends.
Awarded a Level 3, must be good eh!
About a quarter of a way into the climb, maybe a third, you will come across a viewpoint called Lion King Rock with a sign declaring it to be a “Level 3 Sunset Hill”.
This might be a bit of a wonky translation but I like to think someone in a department of the Malaysian government has designated every rock a sunset level on how pretty it is to sit there with a lemonade and watch the sunset. If there is, I want that job.
I’m not sure if Sunset Level 3 would be high on the scale or middling but I imagine the sunset from here would indeed look pretty sweet. But since I was here at midday it was a Sweatballs Level 11 on Mike’s Sweatballs scale. So I didn’t dawdle for too long.
There was a nice array of seating set here by friendly locals. Completely deserted at my time of visiting apart from a friendly pile of sleeping puppies. Awwww puppies.
Highlight of the hike, the puppy pile.
As I continued on I came across rocks painted with leaves, maybe these were part of the same school art project as the entrance rock. Or maybe this was some kind of meta-commentary on how soon all the plants in the area will soon be gone and only rocks will remain.
Better get used to more of this if deforestation keeps up?!
I’m not sure but it was soon after here that my hike in the jungle turned into a walk around a giant working quarry. Not what I expected at all.
As I walked on following the route suggested by Alltrails it became very apparent that I was walking straight into somewhere I didn’t want to be. Up ahead were a whole heap of trucks and excavators loading up with something and generally being loud.
This was not the picturesque scenery I had arrived here to see. If I’d wanted trucks I could have stayed in the city and stood on an overpass and watched a road. So I went rogue and abandoned the trail my app suggested and just picked a small path at random.
Considering the fact I’d just been walking on a tarmac road in the hot sun I wasn’t sad to see the back of that route at all.
Lots of careless children forgetting their toys on this hike.
I knew the peak of Sungai Long Hill had gained a bit of popularity on the socials for its mystical “sea of clouds” effect. but that was a sunrise during the raining season thing, not a midday thing.
So when I hit the peak there wasn’t barely a cloud in the sky. It felt like the sun was only an inch from my face. Maybe it was. I am kinda tall.
I’m sure the view would’ve been pretty at sunrise and sunset but during midday, it was just a little bit boring. But admittedly maybe my opinion of the whole Sungai Long Hill experience was not great by now.
Finally a bit of jungle action. This is more like it.
Fuelled up on cookies and 100Plus and having read that the nearby waterfall that used to be an added attraction was now buried by those same pesky excavators I’d seen earlier. I decided to cut my losses and get out of dodge before I melted completely.
My descent was much more enjoyable than the ascent. I opted for small jungle trails and they were much more rewarding than the slog up the tarmac road.
I’m sure locals who know the hill well would look at the route I took and shake their heads in dismay. But I say to them, get that information out there. Other jungle hill walks in KL have much more information online about them. Come on Friends of Sungai Long Hill (if you exist), get the word out.
As I reached the entrance and waited a few minutes for my Grab I was swarmed by the same helicopter-sized mosquitoes that I’d become used to in KL hikes.
This time as an experiment, instead of frantically swatting them away and getting sweatier, I let them land. And folks, it’s here I had an exciting revelation. I’m immune to mosquitos.
My arms and legs are so hairy that the mosquitos can’t make it through to my delicate juicy skin underneath. Ha! Mike 1, Mozzies 0.
So my advice, throw away that DEET and those stinky citronella candles and just grow yourself a nice layer of fur like me. Think I’m joking, I am not. Research backs me up here. Finally being a caveman pays off.
As I rode back to town in my Grab I remincisced about my KL hikes so far.
When I did my very first Kuala Lumpur mini jungle island hike, the brilliant Taman Tugu I was bowled over by how they had managed to salvage land from developers and regenerate a once landfill site into an awesome preserve of jungle glory. It blew my mind at the foresight.
After two weeks of hiking every jungle island spot I can find in Kuala Lumpur, I think I’m changing my mind a little. I think there is a chance every subsequent hike I’ve done won’t be there in a few years. The insatiable jaws of development are getting closer, munching up every tree in their paths.
These so-called “forest reserves” must be looking over their metaphorical leafy shoulders for the first sign of diggers and chainsaws.
It’s probably unfair to classify Sungai Long Hill as one of these if it is just private land that we hikers are permitted on. But it was the most glaring example of forestry destruction. And it was a little sad to see.
Sorry if that offends any locals who love the hill, but I just say it how I see it.
I did love that rock.
Honestly, probably my least favourite of all my Kuala Lumpur hikes so far. I liked the jaunty start with painted rocks. Very merry. But after that, it was all downhill. Not literally, literally half of it was up a very sweaty hill. I mean, the experience was a letdown.
Now, there’s a chance I just messed up. My mistake was opting for the most popular hike on Alltrails, which in KL often seems to be the most boring hike in the area. I knew this from other hikes like Bukit Kiara trail. People here may like concrete underfoot. I don’t. Not on a hike anyway.
There isn’t a huge amount of info about this hike online, at least not in English. So I was going in a little blind. But I was hoping Bukit Sungai Long was going to be a hidden gem but in fact I think the reason there isn’t much about it is that there’s not much to say.
In short, unless you are coming here super early to get the “sea of clouds” or coming late in the day to enjoy that “Sunset Level 3” goodness with a drink, I’d say maybe don’t bother.
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