This nature tour will bring out the explorer in you as you brace yourself to face the infamous Rafflesia flower, known also as "corpse flower".
Your day starts at 8.30 am. The drive from your hotel to the Rafflesia Information Centre will take about 1.5 hours as you journey through the rugged hills of Crocker Range, which was recently recognised as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2014. Once you have reached the centre you will need to register for the jungle trekking activities. This is followed by a brief introduction by the park ranger.
The duration of the trek depends on the plot venue but usually takes between 15 minutes to 1.5 hours. Do take note that even though there are around 12 species here, seeing a Rafflesia bloom is never guaranteed as the flower only blooms 3 to 5 days….in a year! After working up a good appetite, the tour group will have lunch at a local restaurant before returning to the hotel.
So what makes this flower such a unique and fascinating plant? One distinct feature is its stench of rotting flesh, which has earned it local nicknames such as “corpse flower” and “meat flower”. The stench helps to attract carrion flies for pollination. The Rafflesia is also an incredibly shy parasitic plant, preferring to hide between the stems of jungle vines. And there are two impressive titles to its name—the world’s largest known individual flower (measuring 90 centimetres across) and the world’s heaviest flower (weighing 22 pounds).
The Rafflesia is so rare and impossible to find that to this date it has been unable to survive anywhere except in its natural habitat. Many of its species have become endangered as its pollination method is quite incomparable. Both a male and female flower must be open at the same time in order for pollination to occur.