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Borneo/Malaysia Trip Advice - Kathy & Others!

Borneo/Malaysia Trip Advice - Kathy & Others!

Mar 15th, 2006, 07:48 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 396
Borneo/Malaysia Trip Advice - Kathy & Others!

My husband and I are thinking of 10-14 days in Malaysia and loved Kathy's trip report. First thoughts are climbing Mt. Kinabalu (1 night stay), seeing orangs at Borneo Rainforest Lodge, visiting Taman Negara Rainforest for the canopy walk (are both worthwhile or redundant?) and maybe a beach stay for snorkeling but we are not divers and like activity more than pampering. The beach stay doesn't have to be top-shelf but would like some creature comforts as this would be near end of trip.

If the rainforest areas are similar (we have visited rainforests before), would it be better to include Singapore for a short stay? Is all this doable and do you need to work with a travel agent for hotels, flights, etc. between the various areas. Any suggestions for agents,websites, lodging, etc. would be appreciated.
kacollier is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 09:01 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,631
I'll respond with more detail when I have time, but a couple of comments. I booked everything myself - it was easy. Consider that the Danum Valley COnservation area (where the Boreneo Rainforest Lodge is located) is the most pristine rainforst you'll see. So do things like Mt. Kinabalu first, as it was underwhelming to us after BRL. BRL has canopy walks, I'm not sure I'd make the trip to Taman Negra for that.
Kathie is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 09:46 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93
we went to singapore,borneo and tioman island last april,i booked everything over the internet,it was very easy.I would suggest a short stay of a couple of nights in singapore,we stopped there 3 on the way out,and 1 on way back.We stayed at the tanjung aru in kota kinabalu,really great hotel,you can easily climb mount kinabalu from here,we did and it was excellant.We also went white water rafting,saw the orangutans at sister hotel, lots of wildlife[huge monitor lizards],and relaxed on the beautiful islands just 5 mins awy from hotel by boat.A fantastic holiday,Borneo is a fab place,so much to see and do
Have fun
suziuno is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 09:57 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 284

My cousin is going to Malaysia and SIN. Currently he is thinking Kuala Lumpur. He works night shift so he is busy sleeping now and I have become his helper/secretary to ask question . He is into adventure. Can you tell me which website did you use to book your trip? He really wants a tour guide, but I'm trying to convince him that he really doesn't need one. Thank you.
clear is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 10:26 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 284

Sorry, i forgot, even though I'm helping my cousin with his trip planning, i'm not really good at planning either. Since he is going to SIN and Malaysia, if you don't mind, can you describe your route in details that you took from where to where and which airline and etc. That will make it easier for me to explain it to him. Thank you!
clear is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 11:43 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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clear, I'm not sure if your cousin is interested in Borneo or not. Have him read my Borneo trip report posted in early December to see if he's interested in that kind of trip. Thinking about KL and Singapore is VERY different from going to Borneo.

kacollier, A stop in Singapore would be convenient or a stop in KL, since you'll have to fly into one city or the other (KL if you take Malaysian Air, Singapore for most other airlines). To access Mt. Kinabalu and Lahad Datu, you must fly into Kota Kinabalu. You can stay at a beach resort outside KK for you beach time. If you are going to the Borneo Rainforest Lodge, I would suggest not going to a Orangutan Rehab Center, as you will have the opportunity to see the orangs in the wild. Borneo Rainforest Lodge has a website where you can book your stay there. I'd also recommend going to Kuching since you are goingn to Borneo, as you'll remember from my report, I loved Kuching and wished I had more time there.
Kathie is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 03:56 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 121
hi kacollier

i think if you have 10-14 days you are better off concentrating on singapore and borneo and skipping taman negara. besides being redundant (as you would probably get more pristine rainforest conditions at the borneo lodge), you would also be wasting travel time.

there are enough things to do in and around kk - snorkelling and other beach activities (parasailing etc), there is a hotspring with also canopy walk at poring, whitewater rafting.

the only thing i would suggest to add that would be a different experience is perhaps the mulu caves in sarawak. most people take a flight there - from kk you would have to fly to miri and then to mulu national park. miri is fairly close to kk, so its only a short flight (?1/2 hour)
hornbill is offline  
Mar 15th, 2006, 04:00 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 121
sorry - clicked reply before i finished! most people take a 3d 2n package for mulu to do the 4 usual caves. a small number add a couple more days to attempt to climb gunung api to view the huge limestone pinnacles in teh valley behind the mountain. this mountain is REALLY tough. so unless you are really fit, you will not enjoy this climb (you climnb a distance of 2km to climb 1km height , in the tropical heat). especially if you are still recovering from the mt kinabalu climb.

hope this helps
hornbill is offline  
Mar 16th, 2006, 06:13 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 179
I agree with kathie and hornbill. If you're going to Borneo / Mt Kinabalu, forget about going to Taman Negara. Borneo epitomise everything about rainforest.

But remember, not all rainforests are the same (since you mentioned u have been to some rainforests). Equtorial forests in Africa and Latin America have different make-up compared to Borneo's. By the way, Borneo's rainforest escaped the last Ice Age, making it the oldest in the world - older than Africa / Latin A. Borneo rainforest is made up of dipterocarp hardwood family of trees. Mature forest has very little undergrowth and very tall trees with unbrella-like canopies. Very little sunlight reach the ground. However, it's bio-diversity is unrivalled. In 1997, international researcher found an astounding 1175 tree species within a small plot of 52 hectares in Lambir Hills Park, setting new standard for diversity (National Geographic).

Spending 1 night and climb Mt.Kinabalu? You gotta be quite fit for that! Suggest you spend at least 2-3 nights to recover from fatigue before going off to other parts of Borneo. Mt.Kinabalu's foothill town Kundasang is a nice place to hang out and soak in its highland setting.
TravelTwiddle is offline  

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