Is Malaysia's first World Heritage Site designated by UNESCO in December 2000 for its "outstanding universal values" and the role as one of the most important biological sites in the world. Located on the west coast of Sabah, east Malaysia on the island of Borneo; it covers an area of 754 square kilometres surrounding Mount Kinabalu, which at 4,095.2 metres, is the highest mountain on the island of Borneo. The park is one of the most popular tourist spot in Sabah as well as in Malaysia. In 2004, more than 415,360 visitors and 43,430 climbers visited the Park. The region was designated as a national park in 1964. British colonial administrator and naturalist Hugh Low led an expedition from Tuaran to the region in 1895. He also became the first recorded man to reach the peak of Mount Kinabalu. The highest peak of the mountain was later named after him—Low's Peak.
This botanical site contains a variety of flora and fauna that ranges over 4 climate zones; from rich lowland dipterocarp forest through the montane oak, rhododendron, to the coniferous forests, to the alpine meadow plants, and to the stunted bushes of summit zone. The mountain is also known for its many carnivorous plant and orchid species, most notably, the Nepenthes rajah. It is also home to a multitude of endemic animal species, including the Kinabalu Giant Red Leech and Kinabalu Giant Earthworm. The park also plays host to a variety of birds, insects, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles. Mount Kinabalu is one of the youngest non-volcanic mountains in the world. It was formed within the last 10 to 35 million years. The mountain still grows at a rate of 5 millimetres a year.
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