Photo: Street food Phetchaburi Soi 10, Bangkok.

Southeast Asia forum

Trecking footwear

Posted by mikeyspread on 1/7/2011 at 16:55


I am heading back to Se Asia in a few weeks and am planning on spending a couple of weeks in Malaysian Borneo.

I would like some advice on the footwear to take for rainforest trecking and possibly Kinabalu.

I have survived trecking around Thailand in a set of pretty sturdy trainers in the past, but think somthing more substantial may be in order for Borneo. Obviously due to the size of my pack i don't want to take walking boots, but would a set of running trainers or trail shoes do the job?


#1 mikeyspread has been a member since 8/6/2011. Posts: 2

Posted by MADMAC on 1/7/2011 at 17:40

What is a "trainer"?

I like jungle boots - the kind used by the US Army (they issue a desert boot variety as well). Durable, breaths, dries easily, and compact.

#2 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
 Send MADMAC a private message 

Posted by 9preciousGems on 1/7/2011 at 18:43

trainers = sneakers

#3 9preciousGems has been a member since 13/1/2011. Posts: 82

Posted by christay2009 on 1/7/2011 at 20:00

This is funny, I had the EXACT same thing on my mind.

I have a pair of North Face 'trainers / sneakers' that are essentially just running-type shoes. They did well in Laos. Not waterproof though. I am probably just going to use them again.

I hear mixed reports on Mount Kinabalu, some say you MUST HAVE HIKING BOOTS while others say they did it fine in trainers. The advocates of trainers usually add something like 'it is just a walk, you don't climb..' etc

I actually know someone who has been up recently, just sent them an email and will let you know what they say.

If you are going in a couple of weeks then I will be there not long after you, be good to hear a report back!


#4 christay2009 has been a member since 8/2/2009. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 414
 Send christay2009 a private message 

Posted by goonistik on 1/7/2011 at 22:13

Trail running shoes should be ok for most hikes on well-marked/developed trails. Even a sturdy pair of trainers should be ok.

If you will be carrying camping gear, and/or traversing more difficult terrain, you might need hiking shoes or even boots. It depends on what you plan to do and the terrain.

Kinabalu, AFAIK, can be done with trainers. My brother and his family did Kinabalu and I know there is a trail you can walk. I am pretty sure they did not have hiking boots.

#5 goonistik has been a member since 7/1/2010. Location: Philippines. Posts: 562
 Send goonistik a private message   Where has goonistik been? 

Posted by tknz on 8/7/2011 at 09:12


I have never been to Borneo, so couldnt comment on exactly what you should take, but I like the low cut hiking style of shoe, like the Salomons here:

I have just bought these (AUD $140) for some travels in SE Asia and have had similiar older models that I have used in NZ and central America for day hikking adn camping etc.

They are perfect, as they are very sturdy, reasonably waterproof and quick drying, but you can still wear them out with a pair of jeans or tidy shorts and not look too shabby. My experience is spend a decent amoutn ona godo pair like these, as nothing is worse than having a holiday spoilt from having foot wear/feet problems.

They should last you a few years too.

Hope that helps

#6 tknz has been a member since 4/7/2011. Posts: 2

Please login to add a reply

You need to be a Travelfish member to be able to add a reply to this post. Please use the button below to log in. After logging in you'll be returned to this page automatically to add your post. Not a member? Join up here.