Tailor-Made

Borneo Orangutans and Beaches Family Safari

From swinging orangutans and honking proboscis monkeys, to sandy beaches and exploring the jungle, this safari is perfect for families with just the right mix of wildlife, relaxation and adrenaline.

Duration 10 days
Price From $2,983
When May - Oct
Destination Borneo

Safari Overview

Starting at the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, this family safari gives you the chance to see orangutans as they are rehabilitated from the wild after poaching or deforestation. Moving on to the Kinabatangan River, there is a host of activities available to you in this wildlife-rich area of Borneo, from cycling to boat safaris in search of proboscis monkeys, pygmy elephants and a variety of diverse birdlife. From here, you head off to Kota Kinabalu for some sublime relaxation on the white-sand beaches of the island's west coast.

What makes this trip extraordinary

  • Experience the feeding of orangutans up close at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.
  • Visit the Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary and the Sun Bear Conservation Centre to learn about the great work being done to preserve these endangered species.
  • A great way for children to learn about orangutan and wildlife conservation.
  • Explore the jungle-clad rivers where orangutans live in the wild, while gibbons, proboscis monkeys and leaf monkeys swing through the trees of their natural habitat.
  • Embark on river safaris along the wildlife oasis of the Kinabatangan River.
  • Swim in the South China Sea and relax on the beach with stunning views of the Tunku Rahman Marine Park.

Enjoy wild activities and intimate wildlife encounters for an unforgettable family safari.

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Day by day

Day 1

Arrive Sepilok

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

Overnight: Sepilok Nature Resort L, D

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

This morning you will head back to the Orangutan Sanctuary to visit the nursery platform, where you can watch the young and juvenile orangutans play. You also will catch the morning feeding of the older apes at the main viewing platform. After your visit, you will be transferred to the Sandakan Yacht Club Jetty for a 1.5-hour boat trip up the Kinabatangan River, travelling through mangroves and past villages, keeping watch for wildlife including macaques, wild orangutans, proboscis monkeys and mudskippers. After lunch at your lodge and a debriefing by the lodge staff, set off for your afternoon river expedition in search of the local wildlife. You will head back at dusk to amazing river landscapes and, hopefully, an abundance of fireflies.

Day 4

Kinabatangan River

Wake up to the calls of nature and take an early morning river safari (2 hours) in search of orangutans, proboscis monkeys, silver langurs and hornbills. After breakfast back at the lodge, you will join a shared boat transfer to continue 1.5 hours up the river to Sukau Village in search of primates, especially wild orangutans, birds and pygmy elephants. Arrive in time for lunch and in the late afternoon, enjoy a cruise to Menanggul River, a small tributary of the Kinabatangan which forms a narrow jungle corridor rich in wildlife. After dinner, head out on a night walk in search of nocturnal residents of the forest.

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 1 million bats of 64 differing species are thought to live in the caves. Observe as 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 dark to forage.

Overnight: Sukau Rainforest Lodge B, L, D

Day 6

Kinabatangan - Kota Kinabalu

After your dalliance in the jungle, it is now time to retreat to paradise for your last few days of relaxation. You will be transferred back along the Kinabatangan River to Sandakan before proceeding by road to Sandakan Airport (a 50-minute drive) where you will catch your short flight across Sabah to the state capital, Kota Kinabalu. Upon arrival in Kota Kinabalu, you will be met and transferred to your beach-side hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

Overnight: Shangri La Rasa Ria B

Days 7-9

Kota Kinabalu

Spend your time relaxing on the warm sand, wandering through the lush gardens or exploring the unique nature reserve. Imagine a private paradise cradled between forested hills and a long sweep of the 3-kilometre-long, untouched, pristine Pantai Dalit beach, washed by the South China Sea. Here you may have surprising encounters with hornbills gliding right overhead, peacocks displaying during breakfast, a bearcat greeting you from a tree or the occasional iguana crossing your path – all part of the magic of this remarkable resort, which you can spend the next three days enjoying.

Overnight: Shangri La Rasa Ria B, L, D

Day 10

Depart Kota Kinabalu

It’s time to wave farewell to your little slice of paradise today, as you are transferred back to Kota Kinabalu Airport to catch your international flight back home.

Trip Details

A Family Safari

This is a tailor made family safari and can be edited or restructured to suit you and your families needs. We have chosen the accommodation based on being in the right place at the right time to maximize your wildlife opportunities, as well as being family friendly with interactive experiences. 

About Tailor-made Safaris

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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Your Next Steps

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