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What to Expect

Sabah, located on the island of Borneo, is known as the Land Below the Wind. Sabah benefits from a warm equatorial climate, supporting tropical rainforests and abundant animal and plant species. Impressive mountain ranges cover the west side and form the Crocker Range National Park. The area is also home to the Kinabatangan River, which is the second longest river in Malaysia and runs through Sabah. Mount Kinabalu is the tallest peak in all of Malaysia. The region’s capital, Kota Kinabalu, offers various attractions such as a marine park, pristine jungles and mountains, national parks and amazing wildlife encounters, along with examples of the incredible culture, heritage and peoples of Malaysia.

What You Will Do

Day 1

Arrival Kota Kinabalu – North Borneo Cruise

(D)

Welcome to Sabah, Borneo! Upon arrival, you will be met by your guide and transferred to your hotel for check-in (standard check-in time is 2 PM)

At 4 PM, please be ready at the Hotel Lobby and transfer to Sutera Marina Jetty. Your tropical evening on the North Borneo Cruise begins at Sutera Marina Jetty. Get ready to become acquainted with the charms of Kota Kinabalu on a whole new level. Board the cruise and spend your evening on the sun-tinged South China Sea, cruising past the islands and water villages that dot Sabah’s west coast. You are free to wander around the vessel. Panoramic ocean views, the warmth of the setting sun and gentle sea breezes grace the upper-deck while a live band serenades the ethnic-themed air-conditioned restaurant below with acoustic favourites. Enjoy a buffet dinner before your rendezvous at sea comes to an end. You will disembark from the cruise at the Sutera Marina Jetty and return to your hotel.

Overnight at your hotel

Day 2

Kota Kinabalu – Half-Day City Tour

(B)

Following breakfast at your hotel, begin the day with a morning tour of Sabah’s capital city, Kota Kinabalu, including visits to the Sabah Foundation Building, Po Toh Tze Buddish Temple, the State Museum, State Mosque and stop for a photo of a water village. Return to your hotel afterward and the rest of your afternoon is free at leisure. Opt for another tour or simply stroll around Kota Kinabalu town area.

Overnight at your hotel

Day 3

Kota Kinabalu – National Park - Sabah Tea Plantation

(B/L/D)

Enjoy breakfast and then check out. Depart by 8 AM for a 2-hour drive to the Crocker Range and enjoy serene views along the way. Kinabalu Park is located at about 1,500 metres above sea level and is a naturalist’s paradise with more than a thousand species of plants, including Orchids and Pitcher Plant species. Experience and explore one of the many trails with your local guide in the national park before heading for lunch.

After lunch, proceed to Poring Hot spring. The main attraction here would be the canopy walkway, which provides an amazing bird’s eye view of the green tropical forest below. The walkway is suspended between trees at a height of 40m and offers an excellent opportunity to observe wildlife above the ground. If time permits, take the opportunity to soak yourselves in the hot sulphur waters, renowned for their therapeutic properties. Continue to Sabah Tea Plantation and check in upon arrival.

Overnight at your hotel

Day 4

Sabah Tea Plantation – Kinabatangan River

(B/L/D)

Rise early for a morning walk and view a majestic sunrise over Sabah Tea Plantation, which is the largest of its kind in Sabah. After breakfast, take a guided tour of the factory to learn how raw tea leaves are processed and packed for export across the globe. Prepare to check out and depart for the Kinabatangan River, with a stop at nearby Tagal Moroli River; a local conservation effort where you can enjoy a natural fish massage for your feet, as the fish gather and gently nibble away your dead skin. Lunch is provided en route during the drive towards Kinabatangan.

The overland journey takes approximately 3 hours, taking you through scenic countryside, local villages and plantations. Continue with a short boat ride to the river lodge. Check in upon arrival.

At 4 PM, depart for an afternoon of sightseeing and wildlife on a river cruise along the river. The lower reaches of the Kinabatangan River have the greatest concentration of wildlife in Borneo, including species such as Borneo Pygmy Elephants and the the bizarre-looking Proboscis Monkeys, with their large noses and pot bellies. Return to the lodge after the boat tour. Overnight stay at a simple lodge (no air-conditioning) along the Kinabatangan River.

Overnight at your hotel

Day 5

Kinabatangan River

(B/L/D)

Wake for an early start today, then set off cruising down the river on an early morning boat trip. Most birds are active just before daylight, so this is the best opportunity to spot them while enjoying a dramatic transformation of the colours in the horizon. Some of the bird species sighted are elegant egrets; several species of kingfishers; the oriental darter, which dives under water to catch its prey; and the swift and vividly coloured bee-eaters and hornbills. Return to the lodge for breakfast. Later, start the day and continue the excitement as we will walk to Bilit Village and visit the Orang Sungei community. Orang Sungei - literally meaning ‘river people’ - are one of Sabah’s many ethnic communities, who are hospitable and diverse in cultural heritage. Return to the lodge for lunch. Finally, go for another river cruise in search of wildlife in the late afternoon.

Overnight at your hotel

Day 6

Kinabatangan River - Sandakan

(B)

Enjoy breakfast and then check out. Depart to Sandakan and make a stop en-route at the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary. Visit orangutans that have been orphaned, rescued from illegally captivity or injured. In the Sanctuary, they are being rehabilitated to prepare them to be sent back to the wild. Witness the feeding of the orangutans before continuing to visit the Bornean Sunbear Conservation Centre. Proceed to Sandakan and drop off at hotel or Sandakan Airport.

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Choice of accommodation

Promenade Hotel

A 6-minute walk from the nearest bus stop, this modern hotel is also a 13-minute walk from the city centre and 5 km from the Sabah Museum.

The airy rooms and suites come with satellite TV, complimentary Wi-Fi, and tea and coffeemaking facilities. Suites add living rooms. Upgraded suites feature dining rooms and access to a club lounge serving free cocktails.

Sabah Tea Plantation

Set in the tranquil district of Ranau and overlooking picturesque mountains, Sabah Tea Garden is the perfect for those seeking a short getaway. It offers comfortable rooms with air-conditioning and free Wi-Fi.

The property is just a 20-minute drive to the popular Poring Hot Spring and a 25-minute drive to Ranau Town – which offers a variety entertainment options. The famous Mount Kinabalu is a 45-minute drive away and Kota Kinabalu International Airport is a 2-hour drive away.

Bilit Rainforest Lodge

Located along Kinabatangan River, Bilit Rainforest Lodge offers rooms surrounded by tropical greenery. It features guided tours of the rainforest and Sandakan, a restaurant and bar. Room service is available.

Built from local hardwood, air-conditioned rooms at Rainforest Lodge Bilit are designed to blend in with their natural environment. Rooms have a fan and heating facilities. Private bathrooms have hot/cold shower.

Our ‘Sabah Nature Trails’ package includes:

  • • 5 nights accomodation
  • • Meals mentioned in the itinerary as specified (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • • All overland transfers are based on a private basis, with chauffeur-driven and air-conditioned vehicle
  • • Bottled drinking water during transfers
  • • Tours and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • • Professional and licensed English-speaking guide for tours. However, all airport transfers are without guide.
  • • Public Liability Insurance

Our ‘Sabah Nature Trails’ package does NOT include:

  • • Visa fee / arrangements if applicable
  • • Any domestic or international flights
  • • Any alcoholic beverages
  • • Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone call, room service, mini bar, etc
  • • Personal health and travel insurance
  • • Gratuities/ tipping for driver and/or guide and porterage
  • • Any high season and peak/festive season surcharge (to be advised)
  • • Any additional excursion/optional tours/activites not mentioned in the itinerary
  • • Any Local Tax (Tourism Tax, Heritage Tax, etc) and Conservation Fees (to be paid by guest in destination)

Good to know

  • • • Suitable for FITs with minimum of 2 persons
  • • • Private basis tour is available. However, all boat, cruise and train (if any) will be on sharing basis.
  • • • We encourage you to travel light when travelling to the interior part of Borneo. Recommended items to bring are a sweater, hat, raincoat/disposable poncho, good walking shoes, long sleeve shirt, T-shirt, long trousers, shorts, torch, insect repellent, binoculars, camera and sunglasses. We reserve the right to change the itinerary due to the availability of lodges.

Terms & Condition

  • • Minimum 2 persons per booking
  • • Additional charges apply during high season and peak season period
  • • Price and booking confirmation are subject to room availability
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