588.4 km² (58,840 hectares) Maliau Basin Conservation
Area encompasses the whole of Maliau Basin itself (390
km²), plus an additional 198.4 km² of forested
land to the east and north of the rim, including the
fabled Lake Linumunsut, formed by a landslide blocking
a small tributary of the Pinangah River.
this entire region is rugged, the saucer-shaped Maliau
Basin is distinguished by its almost circular perimeter,
sharply delimited on all sides by cliffs or very steep
slopes, making it insurmountable on foot from most directions.
The highest point is on the north rim, at over 1,675
m in elevation, but has yet to be accurately surveyed.
Resembling a volcanic caldera, the 25 km diameter Basin
is in fact a sedimentary formation comprised mainly
of gently inclined beds of sandstone and mudstone.
represents a single catchment, and is drained by a set
of radiating tributaries of the Maliau River, one of
which descends a magnificent series of waterfalls, known
as Maliau Falls. Numerous smaller waterfalls have also
been discovered throughout the Basin. The Maliau River
then drains through a gorge out of the southeast of
the Basin into the Kuamut River, which in turn feeds
into the Kinabatangan, the longest river in Sabah.