Borneo Wildlife, Rivers and Beaches

A wild adventure into Borneo’s jungles in search of the fascinating wildlife that call it home; from swinging orangutans to honk-nosed proboscis monkeys. then head to the turquoise waters of Gaya Island.

Itinerary Summary

Duration
14 Days
Price
£5420
When
Apr - Nov
Destination
Borneo
Type
Tailor-Made
Duration Price When Destination Type
14 Days £5420 Apr - Nov Borneo Tailor-Made
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About this trip

A stunning safari through the natural heartland of Borneo, on this exciting trip you'll walk the forest canopies of Danum Valley, take in the diverse fauna and flora of the Kinabatangan River, as well as the orangutans of Sepilok. Your final stop is the pristine beaches and stunning snorkelling of Gaya Island.

 

What makes this trip extraordinary

  • Experiencing the feeding of orangutans up close at 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.
  • Going on river safaris along the wildlife oasis of the Kinabatangan River.
  • 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.
  • Exploring forest trails & waterfalls, view the jungle from a towering canopy walkway & go on guided night walks to spot nocturnal creatures.
  • Visiting the Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary & 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

A wild 14-day Borneo adventure and beach safari

from $7,019 per person, excluding international flights

Day by day

Day by day

Day 1

Arrive Kota Kinabalu

Arrive at Kota Kinabalu International Airport, where you will be met and transferred to your hotel for your overnight stay. The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your own leisure.

Overnight: Shangri La Tanjung Aru (D)

Day 2

Kota Kinabalu - Sepilok

After breakfast this morning transfer to the airport in time for your flight to Sandakan (50 minutes). On arrival at Sandakan airport, you will be met and transferred to Sepilok; a nature haven and perfect base to visit the nearby animal sanctuaries and rehabilitation centres. Check into your lodge and enjoy your surroundings. At dusk you will visit the canopy walk at the Rainforest Discovery Centre in time to catch the red giant flying squirrels emerge from their nests and glide between the trees. Return to the lodge for dinner.

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

Day 3

Sepilok, Sun Bears & Labuk Bay

After breakfast, visit the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in time for their morning feed (10:00). 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, the smallest and least known members of the species, 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 4

Sepilok - Kinabatangan River

This morning you will have a relaxed start to the day, departing at 10:30 for your transfer to the Sim Sim Jetty for your scheduled boat transfer to Abai Jungle Lodge. During the 80 minute journey along the Kinabatangan River, you will witness small local communities at the river's edge, as well as a variety of wildlife. After checking into your riverside accommodation, take some time to relax before taking a sunset river cruise to see the fireflies light up the foliage like a Christmas tree. This is the largest gathering of fireflies in all of Malaysia! After dinner, go on a guided night walk in search of nocturnal creatures.

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

Day 5

Abai - Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge

Wake up to the calls of nature and take an early morning river trip to Pitas Lake to observe wildlife. On your way back to the lodge keep your eyes peeled for pygmy elephants. After breakfast, you have the opportunity to visit Abai Village to learn about what riverside community life is like. This village have also set up their own tree planting incentive. Enjoy lunch back at the lodge before you check out to Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge. 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.

Overnight: Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 6

Kinabatangan River & Gomantong Caves

Rise early and head out on a shared morning river safari to explore a variety of fauna and flora 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 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. Return to the lodge for dinner, before heading out on another boat safari in the evening in search of nocturnal wildlife (optional activity at additional cost).

Overnight: Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 7

Kinabatangan - Danum Valley

An early check out this morning as you are transferred by shared mini-van south to Lahad Datu, then on to the renowned Danum Valley. On arrival at your rainforest lodge (about 12 noon) 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 (around 3pm) join one of the fascinating treks taking in the canopy walkway for a close up view of the rainforest. You may like to join the evening slideshow presentation, an informative insight into the local wildlife. Following dinner, there is a night drive in an open top vehicle in search of nocturnal creatures.

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

Days 8-9

Danum Valley

Set up to protect the area from logging, Danum encompasses 430 square kilometres of pristine rainforest and is home to a variety of endemic wildlife; including, orangutans, flying squirrels, clouded leopard, elephants, gibbons, and many birds. With a towering canopy walkway and a beautiful viewpoint which looks out over the jungle canopy and the dramatic mountains, this conservation area is a definite 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 floating 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 10

Danum Valley - Kota Kinabalu - 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. Wake up for your last early morning trek. After a transfer to Lahad Datu for your short flight to Kota Kinabalu (flight included), you will be met and taken to Jesselton Point for your boat to the stunning Gaya Island (about 15-25 mins). The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

Overnight: Bunga Raya (B)

Days 11-13

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 eco-systems, practice making local handicrafts or try your hand at cooking. There are also activities such as yoga on the beach or guided meditation, or even deep-sea fishing, paddle-boarding or kayaking. Of course, you can also relax at the pool, make use of the spa or just float above the coral gardens with your mask and snorkel! (All additional activities at your own expense).

Overnight: Bunga Raya (B)

Day 14

Gaya Island - Kota Kinabalu Airport

Today you will check out and take a scheduled boat (11.00 hrs) back to Jesselton jetty on the mainland. 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.

TRIP DETAILS

THIS SAFARI

Accommodation has been chosen for its proximity to the wildlife and stunning beach and is of a great standard throughout the trip

 

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

Talk to one of our specialists for further details on our Borneo safaris.

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