Malaysia and Borneo

Sabah, Borneo

Sabah, the northern state of Malaysian Borneo, is a vast natural treasure trove of deep rainforest, tall mountains and an abundant oceanic world. This is a place that whilst it is easy to find adventure, the easy-going culture of Sabah means exploration can be as relaxed as you like, whether it’s wildlife spotting, discovering the local culture or strolling the cosmopolitan streets of capital Kota Kinabalu.

What to see

Kota Kinabalu

Kota Kinabalu

Sabah’s vibrant, welcoming capital is an atmospheric place to while away a few days. Head to the waterfront to browse the wares of the excellent markets – the huge night food market is particularly excellent. Before heading out to explore jungle, ocean or mountain, visit the Sabah State Museum where you can learn about all of Sabah’s major tribes and the diverse heritage of the state.

Mt Kinabalu & Kinabalu National Park

Mt Kinabalu & Kinabalu National Park

Mt Kinabalu dominates Sabah’s skyline. Thrusting 4095 metres skyward, it is revered by some tribes as the home of the spirits of the dead, whilst to others it is just there to be conquered. The centrepiece of the UNESCO World Heritage listed Kinabalu National Park, for those who aren’t looking to climb to the granite spires at the mountain’s peak, there are a range of excellent nature trails that showcase the national parks diverse ecology and geology – the plant life is pretty good too. From the summit, on a clear day, the views over the coastal plains and ocean can stretch as far as the Philippines, but these can only be enjoyed if you make the climb.

Sepilok Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre

Sepilok Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre

Established in 1964 and located 25 kilometres from Sabah’s second city Sandakan, Sepilok rehabilitates and trains orphaned and injured orang-utans so they can be re-introduced back into the forest. Feeding times give a guarantee to see these beautiful creatures up close, but there are also trails through the forest that may give another chance at a glimpse. Catch the video in the Nature Education Centre to get more information on what the centre does. Visit Sepilok’s companion sanctuary, Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary, to see more of the native proboscis monkey.

Kinabatangan River

Kinabatangan River

Sabah’s longest river provides some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities in the state. Cruise up the river in a little boat scouring the surrounding forest for all sorts of local fauna from hornbills to orang-utans. An area made up of lakes, mangroves and swamps the range of wildlife here is extensive enough for it to be declared the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary. It is possible to stay overnight in a lodge here, amongst this beautiful nature.

Beaches & diving

Beaches & diving

Sabah is best known for its outstanding rainforests and wildlife but there is also plenty of opportunity to take some time to relax on tropical beaches. Tropical islands dot the horizon off Sabah’s coastline – the easiest to access are the five paradise islands of the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park just off Kota Kinabalu, which you can visit on a day trip or spend a few days of total relaxation. Eastern Sabah you will find some of the world’s best diving, accessible to both beginner and experienced divers alike. Palau Sipadan particularly is at the heart of one of the richest marine habitats in the world and home to thousands of species of fish and corals. For those who don’t dive, the nearby islands of Palau Kapalai offers great snorkelling.

Where to stay

Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge

Right on the river close to the village of Sukou, the Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge is the perfect way to experience the nature of this beautiful area. Consisting of simple, clean and comfortable stilted chalets, settle into the jungle lifestyle, keeping an eye out for the local flora and fauna.

Read more

Shangri-La Rasa Ria Resort

Sat on the beautiful Pantai Dalit beach in a nature reserve, Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort offers high-end relaxation amongst tropical landscapes. With an Orang-utan Education Centre and tree-top canopy walk the resort is uniquely Borneo, whilst there are also award-winning dining options, three swimming pools and Shangri-La’s signature spa. For those feeling a little more active, try a range of watersports or play a round of golf.

Read more

Shangri-La Tanjung Aru Resort

Sat on a private beach front, the Tanjung Aru Resort offers high-end relaxation in a jaw-dropping location amongst tropical landscapes. For those feeling a little more active, try a range of watersports or play a round of golf, whilst evenings can be spent sampling the delights of the seven dining options on offer.

Read more

Hyatt Regency Kinabalu

The Hyatt Regency is a luxury hotel in the heart of Kota Kinabalu where the spacious rooms are exquisitely designed with sophisticated comfort in mind. The hotel features six restaurants, an outdoor swimming pool and the Avantang Spa.

Read more

Make an Enquiry

Submit a travel enquiry and we will contact you on by your preference,

Call one of our tailormade specialists on

0808 239 3744

or email us at

info@asiainspirations.co.uk

Contact

Click here to fill in our quote request form and one of our specialists will call you back.

Quote Request

Download the complete ASIA Inspirations brochure in PDF format.

Brochure download
Why Asia?

Why Asia?

The world’s largest and most populous continent, Asia is a vibrant and rambunctious fusion of ethnicities, cultures and customs; an incomparably rich and turbulent history showcased by mindboggling feats of architecture and engineering; a geography that encompasses towering peaks, unfathomable gorges and paradisiacal beaches; and a biodiversity that is so abundant that you’ll be reaching for your wildlife guide.

 

Why tailormade?

Why tailormade?

  • Create a bespoke itinerary that fulfils your travel dreams
  • Travel where you want, when you want, for as long as you want
  • Pick the grade and style of accommodation you are most comfortable with
  • Add all or any of the elements you want – meals, excursions, guides
  • You’re completely in control – it’s all up to you
Why tailormade by Asia Inspirations?

Why tailormade by Asia Inspirations?

  • The China and Asia experts
  • Dedicated team of tailormade specialists
  • Excellent, personal service before and during your trip
  • Flexible itineraries that fit your wants and needs
  • Excellent value
  • A network of fantastic guides to help you delve deeper into each destination

Subscribe now

Subscribe to the ASIA Inspirations Travel newsletter.