Map of Classic Borneo including Malaysia

Get ready to go wild on a journey through Borneo

Experience natural wonders and abundant wildlife you can only find in Borneo on this 10-day adventure. Head into lush rainforests, down scenic rivers and through the traditional villages of this beautiful region. Hang out with orangutans in Sepilok, cruise along the Kinabatangan River, chill out on the stunning Manukan Island and get a taste of city life in Kota Kinabalu. There's no doubt that this adventure in Borneo will find its way into your heart and leave you with unforgettable memories.


Start
Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Finish
Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Destination
Malaysia
Style
Comfort
Theme
Explorer, Wildlife
Code
TMKB
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • One of the wildest places on earth, Borneo offers rare treats for the nature lover – see orangutans in Sepilok and proboscis monkeys at Labuk Bay.

  • Visit the mountainous village of Kampung Kiau where you’ll meet the locals, learn about a social enterprise that empowers women and enjoy a traditional lunch of regional favourites.

  • Search for wildlife when you’re cruising the Kinabatangan River on a water safari and while you’re in the depths of the wilderness at your jungle lodge.

  • Explore the unspoiled wilderness of the Kinabalu National Park by walking the trails at the base of this much-admired mountain.

  • During two days on glorious Manukan Island, there's plenty of time to soak up the relaxed beach vibe and to get close to marine life on an included snorkelling trip.

Is this trip right for you?

  • As you travel across Borneo, you'll stay in a variety of different accommodation, from standard hotels, to jungle lodges. Some accommodation may have less amenities than a standard hotel, but the unique locations and proximity to nature make them stand out favourites.

  • You’ll be walking some of the lower trails in Kinabalu National Park, but you don’t climb the mountain itself. If this is something that interests you, check out our Sabah Adventure (TMSC).

  • Be prepared for some long drives of up to 5 hours. Wherever possible, you'll make stops in interesting locations to break up the trip.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2023 to 31 Dec 2023.
View the 2020 itinerary
Selamat datang! Welcome to Malaysia. Your adventure begins with an important welcome meeting at 6pm. If you have any free time beforehand, why not get out and explore this intriguing city that was born between the Borneo jungle and the South China Sea. Modern-day 'KK' is a vibrant modern metropolis, having recovered from World War II bombings. You may like to peruse the local handicraft market on the waterfront or take a wander around Chinatown.
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place.

The arrival transfer is only valid if arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-trip accommodation through Intrepid. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum 14 days prior to travel, as we may not be able to confirm a request made within 14 days of travel.
Leaving Kota Kinabalu behind, head for the hills and travel to the rural village of Kampung Kiau. Here you’ll have the chance to experience a slice of local life, visiting a coffee factory and learning about production in the region. You’ll also check out Everything Pineapple, a sustainable and community-based project that was formed in the aftermath of the 2015 Sabah earthquake to socially and economically empower women from Kampung Kiau. Take the chance to pick up some delicious handmade pineapple jam, chutney or juice. Have a wander around the village then sit down to a lunch of local favourites in a shady spot shared by the community, then hit the road and drive on to Mt Kinabalu National Park. Stretch your legs and soak up the mountain scenery with a stroll through Mt Kinabalu National Park. There are many walking trails from which you can bird watch, and the Mt Kinabalu Botanical Garden is an excellent showcase of the diverse plant life on the mountain, as flora from all over the park has been replanted here. Spend the night in a mountain lodge close to the park in Kundasang.
Included Activities
  • Mt Kinabalu National Park - Lower trails guided walk
  • Mt Kinabalu National Park - Mount Kinabalu Botanical Garden
  • Kampung Kiau - Coffee factory tour
  • Kampung Kiau - Community-based pineapple project
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Today’s total travel time is approximately 3.5 hours.
After breakfast, travel to Kinabatangan River in private minivan. Arrive at your jungle lodge, located beside the river – ideal for taking in your wild surroundings. The Kinabatangan River is a protected forest reserve, containing some of the highest concentrations of wildlife in Borneo. In the afternoon, board a river cruise, hopefully spotting some of the more elusive local creatures. Wild elephants seldom reveal themselves, but crocodiles, macaques, wild orangutan, proboscis monkeys, hornbills and kingfishers are more easily seen. After this short adventure, return to the lodge to enjoy dinner.
Included Activities
  • Kinabatangan River - Afternoon Wildlife Spotting Cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Today’s total travel time is approximately 5 hours.
Wake up to the calls of Bornean gibbons and hornbills before hopping aboard a morning cruise down the river. Keep an eye out for proboscis monkeys, long-tailed macaques and pig-tailed macaques – your leader will point out the differences between each species. Enjoy some down time to relax and enjoy your surroundings before another afternoon river cruise to see wildlife along the riverbank. This final cruise will be your last chance to snap some photographs of the incredible wildlife along the river. Spend one more night in your lovely accommodation right in the heart of the jungle.
Included Activities
  • Kinabatangan River - Afternoon Wildlife Spotting Cruise
  • Kinabatangan River - Morning wildlife spotting cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Head off this morning to the Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary, a safe haven for proboscis monkeys for over 20 years. Watch these delightful big-nosed primates from viewing platforms over the mangroves and forested areas of the centre – an experience you can only have in Borneo. Travel onwards to Sandakan and visit the Sandakan War Memorial. Here you will learn about the city's past as you stand on the same ground of the former Japanese Prisoners of War camp. This site also marks the starting point of the tragic Sandakan Death Marches, on which 2400 POWs were forced to walk through the jungles of Borneo. By the end of the march, only 6 Australians survived, and only because they had escaped. The evening is free for you to explore Sandakan. The city is celebrated for its seafood, so be sure to ask your leader for tips on where to pick up the freshest catch!
Included Activities
  • Sepilok - Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary
  • Sandakan - War Memorial
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total travel time is approximately 3.5 hours.
Start the day with a visit to the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary. The centre was set up to help reintroduce these wonderful creatures back into the wild after a life of domestication or having been orphaned. From the viewing platform, you can watch and photograph these charming creatures as they swing into view and eat the supplementary diet of bananas and milk that is laid out for them twice a day. Human contact must be kept to a minimum and it's essential that you follow the instructions of the park, as directed by your leader. Also included is a new nursery where you can view young orangutans as they learn how to climb on a specially constructed jungle gym. The viewing area is behind one-way glass so as to not disturb the animals. To see more of Borneo’s unique wildlife, you’ll also visit the newly opened Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Center. Here rescued sun bears that have spent many years being mistreated and locked away in cages are cared for, with hopes of rehabilitation and reintroduction into the wild. You’ll also check out the Rainforest Discovery Centre, where you can roam about the treetop walkways, learning more about the flora and birdlife of Borneo. Return to Sandakan for the evening.
Included Activities
  • Sepilok - Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre
  • Sepilok - Rainforest Discovery Centre
  • Sepilok - Sun Bear Conservation Centre
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total travel time is approximately 2 hours.
Say goodbye to Sandakan and fly to Kota Kinabalu this morning. On arrival take a short boat ride to Manukan Island, one of the larger islands found in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine National Park. A picture-perfect paradise of white sand beaches and clear turquoise waters, the island is a wonderful place to swim, snorkel, walk or just simply roll out a beach towel, grab a cocktail and chill out on the beach.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
See beneath the surface of Manukan’s waters today when you set out on a snorkelling trip with a local guide. Cruise out to the coral reefs where your guide will help you spot brightly coloured marine life – if you’re really lucky you may even bump into a sea turtle while you’re down there. Pull up on the beach for lunch and a chance to discuss the morning’s discoveries. After snorkelling, the afternoon is yours to enjoy. Soak up the turquoise views for another few hours as you stroll or swim about in this stunning slice of paradise.
Included Activities
  • Manukan Island - Boat trip & snorkelling
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Head back to Kota Kinabalu today by boat and minivan. You may like to stop off for a visit to the intriguing Mari Mari Cultural Village, nestled deep in the countryside. Here you will see how indigenous ethnic groups of Borneo used to live. You may prefer to check out the Sabah Museum to learn about Sabah’s past, if you didn’t have a chance to do this when you first arrived, or perhaps do some last-minute souvenir shopping at the Filipino market. Tonight, why not join your group for a final dinner to celebrate all you’ve seen and done on your adventure through Borneo.
Optional Activities
  • Kota Kinabalu - Mari Mari Cultural Village - MYR180
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today's total travel time is approximately 1 hour.
With no activities planned for today, your Borneo adventure comes to an end after breakfast.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

9 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 2 dinners

Transport

Boat, Plane, Private mini van

Accommodation

Lodge (2 nights), Hotel (2 nights), Resort (5 nights)

Included activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Mt Kinabalu National Park - Lower trails guided walk
  • Mt Kinabalu National Park - Mount Kinabalu Botanical Garden
  • Kampung Kiau - Coffee factory tour
  • Kampung Kiau - Community-based pineapple project
  • Kinabatangan River - Afternoon Wildlife Spotting Cruise
  • Kinabatangan River - Morning wildlife spotting cruise
  • Sepilok - Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary
  • Sandakan - War Memorial
  • Sepilok - Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre
  • Sepilok - Rainforest Discovery Centre
  • Sepilok - Sun Bear Conservation Centre
  • Manukan Island - Boat trip & snorkelling

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Classic Borneo trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

Prices may go up, so secure your trip today!
Jump to a departure month

Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips that start on or before 31 December 2022 are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Learn more about Intrepid’s COVID-19 policy.

1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information
3. This trip includes a domestic flight. The luggage allowance is 15kg for check in luggage and 7kg for carry on. Excess luggage will incur additional fees payable at check in to the airline.
4. Some nationalities may have increased government travel warnings in place for Eastern Sabah. Please check your government’s travel advice and that your travel insurance covers you for travel to Eastern Sabah.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View Essential Trip Information

Reviews