Best of Borneo Wildlife and Beaches Adventure Safari

Venture into the depths of Borneo’s wild jungles on this adventurous journey that seeks out some of its most unusual inhabitants; but spotting primates, elephants, birds and reptiles is just one of the highlights of this unique journey into the extraordinary.

Itinerary Summary

14 Days
May - Oct
Duration Price When Destination Type
14 Days £5640 May - Oct Borneo Tailor-Made
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About this trip

This exciting safari delves into the vibrant depths of Borneo, seeking out its most unusual and wild inhabitants, and exploring some of the most amazing vistas. Starting off by visiting endangered animal sanctuaries, your journey only gets more exciting as you move on to the Kinabatangan River. Here you can spot everything from wild orangutans and proboscis monkeys, to pygmy elephants, tree snakes and civets. From here you head to the wilds of the Gomantong Caves, the Tabin Wildlife Reserve and Danum Valley – home to some of the oldest jungle in the world – before finishing your trip on the idyllic Gaya Island, where you can dive beneath the waves on the search for marine life or simply kick back on the sand.


What makes this trip extraordinary

  • Experience the feeding of orangutans up close at the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.
  • Exploring the forests where orangutans live in the wild, as well as gibbons, proboscis monkeys & leaf monkeys, swinging through the trees of their natural habitat.
  • Staying deep in primal rainforest at Danum Valley, some of the oldest jungle in the world and home to 10 species of primate, as well as pygmy elephants, sun bears, clouded leopards and an incredible array of tropical birds & reptiles.
  • Stay deep in primal rainforest at Danum Valley, some of the oldest jungle in the world and home to 10 species of primate, as well as pygmy elephants, sun bears and clouded leopards.
  • Exploring forest trails & waterfalls, view the jungle from a towering canopy walkway & go on guided night walks to spot nocturnal creatures.
  • Visit the Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary and the Sun Bear Conservation Centre to learn about the great work being done to preserve these endangered species.Snorkelling amongst the coral gardens & relax on stunning beaches in the Tunku Rahman Marine Park .

Embedded Video Overview

An exciting 14-day wildlife and jungle adventure in Borneo

from $7,388 per person, excluding international flights

Day by day

Day by day

Day 1

Arrive Sepilok

On arrival at Sandakan Airport, you will be met and transferred to Sepilok, a nature haven and the perfect base to visit the nearby animal sanctuaries and rehabilitation centres.

Overnight: Sepilok Nature Resort (B)

Day 2

Sepilok, Sun Bears & Labuk Bay

After breakfast you will visit the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in time for their morning feed. This sanctuary rehabilitates previously captive or orphaned orangutans (through deforestation, poaching, etc.) to their natural surroundings, ready for release when they are capable of supporting themselves in the wild. You then have a tour of the Sun Bear Conservation Centre to learn all about the project to save these adorable bears, whose population is rapidly diminishing. After lunch you will head to Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary in time for the afternoon feedings. Proboscis monkeys, found only in coastal swamps close to rivers in certain areas of Borneo, are lucky to have survived after the area near the mangrove swamps was nearly lost to palm oil plantations. Plans for oil were dropped, and now around 60 monkeys regularly come here to feed. Famed for their large nose, which acts as a resonator for their loud honking noises, these pot-bellied primates really are a sight to behold.

Overnight: Sepilok Nature Resort (B, L, D)

Day 3

Sepilok – Lower Kinabatangan

After checking out from your accommodation, you will head back to the Orangutan Sanctuary to visit the nursery platform, where you can watch the young and juvenile orangutans at play. You will also catch the morning feeding of the older apes at the main viewing platform. This afternoon, you will travel to the Sim Sim Jetty in Sandakan to make your shared boat transfer across the bay and into the mouth of the Kinabatangan River. Along the 80-minute transfer, you will witness small local communities at the river's edge, as well as a variety of wildlife. In the evening, join a sunset river cruise to see the fireflies light up the foliage like a Christmas tree; this area has the highest concentration of fireflies in Malaysia!

Overnight: Abai Jungle Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 4

Kinabatangan River

Wake up to the calls of nature and take an early-morning river trip to Pitas Lake to observe wildlife. After breakfast, you have the opportunity to learn about Abai Jungle Lodge's successful tree-planting project, which was set up to assist the local community. Following this, you are invited to join a tour of the village before joining the locals for lunch. In the afternoon, take your shared boat up the river to Sukau Village in search of primates, especially wild orangutans, birds and pygmy elephants. Late afternoon, enjoy a cruise to Menanggul River, a small tributary of the Kinabatangan which forms a narrow jungle corridor rich in wildlife.

Overnight: Sukau Rainforest Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 5

Kinabatangan River

Rise early and head out on a shared morning river safari to discover a variety of flora and fauna along the banks of the Kinabatangan River. Species to be found include orangutans, proboscis monkeys, tree snakes, crocodiles, monitor lizards, macaques and much more. Herds of wild elephant may also be seen passing along the banks of the river. Return back to the lodge for lunch and some relaxation time before heading out in the late afternoon to the Gomantong Caves in the 3,924-hectare Gomantong Forest Reserve, where orangutans, mouse deer, wild boar and buffalo can sometimes be spotted. Up to a million bats of 64 differing species are thought to live in the caves. Observe the swiftlets take their last flights before nesting for the night, and the bats fly out of the cave at sunset to head off into the night to forage.

Overnight: Sukau Rainforest Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 6

Kinabatangan River – Tabin Wildlife Reserve

Wake for breakfast before departing by road for two hours to reach the town of Lahad Datu, where you will stop for lunch. From here, you will swap vehicles for a 4x4 and proceed into the Tabin Wildlife Reserve, a journey of 1.5 hours that will take you through the centre of a large oil palm plantation – a stark reminder of the challenges facing wildlife here in Borneo. Upon arrival at your simple forest lodge, check in and head out on a wildlife drive as dusk begins to fall, in search of nocturnal wildlife.

Overnight: Tabin Wildlife Resort (B, L, D)

Day 7

Tabin Wildlife Reserve

Take an early-morning bird walk before breakfast in search of resident birds and other wildlife. Following a hearty breakfast back at the lodge, head out on a jungle trek in the Tabin Wildlife Reserve, keeping your eyes peeled for gibbons and the silver-leaf monkey. In the afternoon, you'll have the chance to meet with the Borneo Rhino Alliance, learning about Sumatran rhino conservation efforts during a special meeting with the programme’s director. In the evening, head out on a night drive after dinner in search of leopard cats, civets, owls and other nocturnal species.

Overnight: Tabin Wildlife Resort (B, L, D)

Day 8

Tabin Wildlife Reserve – Danum Valley

After breakfast you will be transferred back to Lahad Datu, then on to the renowned Danum Valley. On arrival at your rainforest lodge you will have time to sit back, relax and enjoy your new surroundings. Danum Valley is one of the best remaining examples of how Borneo's forests used to be, with a thick tropical canopy and a variety of wildlife. In the afternoon you can join one of the fascinating treks, and in the evening after dinner, there is a night drive to search for nocturnal creatures.

Overnight: Borneo Rainforest Lodge (B, L, D)

Days 9-10

Danum Valley

Set up to protect the area from logging, Danum encompasses 43 square kilometres of pristine rainforest and is home to a variety of endemic wildlife, including orangutans, flying squirrels, clouded leopards, elephants, gibbons and many bird species. With a towering canopy walkway and a beautiful viewpoint which looks out over the jungle canopy and the dramatic mountains, this conservation area is definitely a must if you're in Borneo. Spend your days with one of the naturalist guides exploring the many nature trails and waterfalls, take a dip in the natural Jacuzzi pool or float down the Danum River on tubes. In the evening, dine at the lodge before embarking on an exciting night drive in search of nocturnal animals.

Overnight: Borneo Rainforest Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 11

Danum Valley – Lahad Datu – Gaya Island

After your dalliance in the jungle, it is now time to retreat to paradise for some well-deserved relaxation surrounded by nature, on the beautiful Gaya Island. After a transfer to Lahad Datu for your short flight to Kota Kinabalu, you will be met and taken to Jesselton Point for your boat to the stunning Gaya Island. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

Overnight: Bunga Raya (B)

Days 12-13

Gaya Island

Enjoy your time at Gaya Island by taking part in the myriad activities here, designed to help you reconnect with the natural world. Explore miles of forested trails and ancient ecosystems, with guided treks and a canopy walkway. Try your hand at zip-lining through the trees! Venture into the marine world by going kayaking and snorkelling, or with a visit to the Marine Ecology Research Centre and the fully equipped PADI dive centre. Of course, you can also relax at the pool, make use of the spa or just indulge in the beach-side cocktail bar!

Overnight: Bunga Raya (B)

Day 14

Gaya Island – Depart Kota Kinabalu

Today you will check out and take a scheduled boat back to the jetty at Jesselton Point on mainland Borneo. You will be met here and transferred to Kota Kinabalu Airport in time for your international flight. Late check-out and unscheduled boat transfers are available at an extra cost if you want to make the most of your time on the beach before your flight.



We have chosen the accommodation based on being in the right place at the right time to maximise your wildlife opportunities.



A tailor-made safaris is one designed specifically for you, around your taste, budget, people travelling, interests and more. This itinerary is just an example and can be refined and changed to make it perfect for you

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