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Borneo Rainforests & Villages Family Adventure Tour

Wondrous Encounters in a Biodiverse Haven


With untouched rainforest, ribbon-like rivers, and incredible plant and wildlife, Borneo is an unforgettable adventure destination for the entire family! So pack up the kids and journey with MT Sobek to the very heart of biodiversity in Malaysian Borneo. Explore mysterious caves, swim under hidden waterfalls, take easy jungle walks in Sepilok Nature Reserve, and enjoy beach time on stunning Gaya Island. Culture abounds, too, as you meet and dine with Murut villagers. And no trip to Borneo is complete without wildlife encounters — which you have in every way possible, from conservation center visits to nighttime forest walks.

10 Days

From: $6,995

$250 Discount for Children 17 & Under

With untouched rainforest, ribbon-like rivers, and incredible plant and wildlife, Borneo is an unforgettable adventure destination for the entire family! So pack up the kids and journey with MT Sobek to the very heart of biodiversity in Malaysian Borneo. Explore mysterious caves, swim under hidden waterfalls, take easy jungle walks in Sepilok Nature Reserve, and enjoy beach time on stunning Gaya Island. Culture abounds, too, as you meet and dine with Murut villagers. And no trip to Borneo is complete without wildlife encounters — which you have in every way possible, from conservation center visits to nighttime forest walks.

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Experience the very best of Borneo's nature, wildlife, and culture on this family-friendly adventure

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Activities, from walking and wildlife-watching to safari cruises and snorkeling, are suitable for everyone

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Sleep comfortably in luxury resorts, traditional longhouses, and stretcher hammocks in a jungle camp

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Highlights


  • Experience the very best of Borneo's nature, wildlife, and culture on this family-friendly adventure
  • Activities, from walking and wildlife-watching to safari cruises and snorkeling, are suitable for everyone
  • Sleep comfortably in luxury resorts, traditional longhouses, and stretcher hammocks in a jungle camp

Borneo Rainforests & Villages Family Adventure

Start: Kota Kinabalu, Malaysian Borneo  End: Kota Kinabalu, Malaysian Borneo

Start/End locations may vary. Do not book flights until your trip details are confirmed.

Itinerary


  • Arrive in Sandakan

    Day 1

    Welcome to Borneo! Upon arrival, meet your driver, who transfers you to Sepilok Nature Resort. This quaint collection of wooden chalets surrounding a lake is set in an impressive landscaped area of manicured lawns and hills. After brief orientation and welcome dinner, retire for the night.

    Accommodation: Sepilok Nature Lodge

    Transportation: 40-minute private van transfer

    Meals: Dinner

  • Be Amazed by the Wildlife of Borneo

    Day 2

    Walk to the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre, a wildlife conservation and research center for the world's smallest bear. After a private tour, visit the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre to meet rescued orangutans being trained to survive again in the wild. Return to the lodge for lunch before a visit to the Rainforest Discovery Center where you'll learn about the rainforest ecosystem as you search for wildlife along jungle trails and canopy walkways. Return to the lodge for dinner and relax or explore the grounds.

    Accommodation: Sepilok Nature Lodge

    Activity: Wildlife watching, easy forest walks

    Transportation: 30-minute private van transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Cruise Up the Kinabatangan River

    Day 3

    After breakfast at the lodge, visit Labuk Bay, a sanctuary for the proboscis monkey. Watch for silvered leaf monkeys, otters, slow lorises, and hornbills in addition to the large-nosed monkeys which the refuge protects. After lunch at the lodge, transfer to Sandakan jetty and board speedboats to cruise up the Kinabatangan River, home to Borneo's highest concentration of fauna; look for orangutans, pygmy elephants, hornbills, and proboscis monkeys. After settling into your riverfront lodge, take an afternoon wildlife-watching river cruise. End the evening taking in an educational slideshow with a resident naturalist.

    Accommodation: Sukau Rainforest Lodge

    Activity: Wildlife-watching walk, river cruise

    Transportation: 40-minute private van transfer; 2.5-hour river cruise

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Take River Safari Cruises & Help Restoration Efforts

    Day 4

    Rise and shine for an early morning cruise to Kelenanap oxbow lake where you can view more birds and wildlife. Next, tour a local forest restoration project site and participate in tree planting while learning about the community's restoration efforts. Enjoy some traditional batik crafts at the lodge before heading out for walk along a jungle boardwalk and an afternoon cruise to check off your wildlife sightings. At dusk, get back out on the river to discover which creatures are active at this time of day.

    Accommodation: Sukau Rainforest Lodge

    Activity: Wildlife-watching, river cruises, batik crafts, tree planting

    Transportation: 15-minute private boat transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Fly to Kota Kinabalu

    Day 5

    After breakfast, soak in the sights and sounds of the jungle as you depart for a speedboat cruise along the Kinabatangan River back to Sandakan Jetty. You'll be met and transferred to the airport for your flight to Kota Kinabalu. You'll be met and transferred to your hotel for a late lunch. Head out with a local guide to find scenic viewpoints and the "floating mosque". After dinner you have the option to visit a night market packed with bustling stalls selling everything from food to handicrafts.
    n

    Accommodation: Hyatt Centric

    Activity: Guided city tour

    Transportation: 1-hour private van transfer and 1-hour flight; 2.5-hour river cruise

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Journey to a Tribal Village

    Day 6

    Depart for Orou Sapulot, a community-based eco-tourism project at the jungle home of the Murut people. Discover the virtually unexplored Pungiton Cave, with an underground stream and beautiful limestone stalactite and stalagmite formations..

    Accommodation: Munor Aulai Guesthouse

    Activity: 2-hour cave walk, waterfall walk/swim

    Transportation: 5-hour private van transfer; private longboat transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Explore Orou Sapulot

    Day 7

    Wake up and enjoy breakfast at your guesthouse in Orou Sapulot. Today you and your family will get to work together with villagers at Kampung Naunduk Sapulot on a community project to help repair the water supply (community project work may change due to the needs of the village). It is a great way to learn about village life and the challenges faced by the community. In the late afternoon, return to the guesthouse for lunch and rest. After lunch, take a stroll at a nearby farm where you will be able to see various crops and learn more about the integrated farming concept and activities.

    Accommodation: Munor Aulai Guesthouse

    Activity: Community project, farm stroll

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Enjoy a Gaya Island Beach Day and Date Night

    Day 8

    This morning, journey to beautiful Gaya Island via Kota Kinabalu. Spend the afternoon seaside, snorkeling, kayaking, or going for a jungle walk. Come evening, resort staff take the kids for fun activities while the parents have a romantic seaside dinner on their own!

    Accommodation: Bunga Raya Island Resort

    Activity: Water activities or jungle walk

    Transportation: 5-hour private van transfer; 20-minute boat transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Discover Gaya Island

    Day 9

    Relish an entire day on the remarkably biodiverse Gaya Island, a natural conservation area rife with jungle and marine life. Spend hours at your leisure, relaxing at the beach, lounging at the resort, or exploring the island. Tonight celebrate your memorable Borneo adventure with a group farewell dinner.

    Accommodation: Bunga Raya Island Resort

    Activity: Water activities or jungle walk

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Depart from Kota Kinabalu

    Day 10

    After breakfast and a relaxing morning on Gaya Island, say goodbye to the group and depart to the Kota Kinabalu airport for your flight back home.

    Transportation: 25-minute private van transfer; 20-minute boat transfer

    Meals: Breakfast

Why Travel With Us?


  • Borneo is an ideal family destination and MT Sobek knows how to show the best of Borneo to travelers of all ages.

  • With expert guides leading the way, you'll enjoy the excitement of wildlife watching, river cruising, cultural encounters and beach time on Gaya Island.

  • Only MT Sobek combines a village visit with the Muruts, swimming in waterfalls, sleeping in hammocks and the opportunity to participate in community work.

Dates & Prices


  • 2024
  • Go Private
  • Go Custom
  • Inclusions

2024

Scheduled Dates


Price is per person, double occupancy in USD.

The earlier you book, the more choice of available dates you’ll have and once you book, your price is guaranteed.

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  • $7,255 price per person dbl occ
    Which Includes:
    $260 internal airfare
    Optional:
    +$1,450 Single Occupancy
    Available

Go Private

Go Private


Gather your favorite travel companions to share an MT Sobek adventure on an easy-to-book Private departure.

Call or email us to get the ball rolling.

*Private trips require a 25% non-refundable deposit.


Looking for a private family adventure?


This trip can accommodate guests with a
minimum age of 6.

Private Trip Pricing: 2024


4 to 5 guests from $7,955 per person double occupancy

6 to 7 guests from $7,555 per person double occupancy

8 to 9 guests from $7,455 per person double occupancy

10 guests from $7,255 per person double occupancy

Included Costs:

Internal Airfare: $260

*Seasonal rates may apply.

*Private trips require a 25% non-refundable deposit.

Take Over One of These Dates


Make Your Own Dates in These Months


Go Custom

Create Your Very Own Adventure


Dreaming of an adventure designed exclusively for you? With insider access and decades of experience, our travel experts create custom tailored adventures that are perfect for families, couples, and large groups. MT Sobek's custom adventures are designed to our exacting standards and led by our award-winning adventure guides.

When to start planning? Earlier is always better when designing a custom trip. More time allows for better availability of preferred accommodations, guides and your desired activities. Ideally, start the conversation with us at least 6 months before you want to travel. If you are looking for a custom trip that departs within three months, chances are greatly diminished in securing requested accommodations and the best guides.

*Custom trips require a 25% non-refundable deposit once an itinerary is agreed upon.

Start Planning

Inclusions

Price Includes


  • Expertise and services of our experienced adventure guides
  • All accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • All breakfasts, almost all lunches and dinners as noted in the itinerary
  • Snacks and water between meals
  • Additional regional guides and experts on many trips
  • Comprehensive Trip Planner with detailed pre-trip information
  • Private guided tours at historic sites, museums, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the itinerary
  • Special events and other select attractions as mentioned in the itinerary
  • All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
  • Equipment and experienced guides for activities as described in the itinerary
  • Park and other entry fees (unless otherwise noted)
  • Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the itinerary
  • Select transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Baggage transfers and porterage

Price Does Not Include


  • International airfare, airport taxes, and excess baggage fees
  • Alcoholic beverages (MT Sobek provides wine at select events)
  • Gratuities for MT Sobek guides and guide-drivers
  • Travel Protection Program
  • Personal expenses

Contact An Expert


800-974-0300

Need help picking your next adventure? Call us to answer your questions.

Your Guides


The best people to immerse you in a destination are the ones who live there, which is why we feature local Adventure Guides on our trips. Here are a few that you might meet on this adventure.

Charlie R.

Charlie R.

Charlie's passion for outdoor adventure, traveling, and nature has been strong his entire life. Hawaii's lush jungles first caught his attention, Central America's rainforests broadened his horizons and, finally, he found Borneo. Well-rounded in the ecology of the Bornean rainforest, he is experienced with species identification of mammals, birds, amphibians, and snakes. He has strong leadership abilities and is comfortable in any situation. He is also certified in Wilderness First Aid and has a good understanding of wilderness survival. Charlie lives in Borneo, speaks Bahasa Malay, and has strong connections with people working to save this beautiful region.

Dean J.

Dean J.

Not many people can say they've introduced the royal couple to an orangutan and her baby, but Dean can! Fueled by a curious personality, with the jungle as his classroom, Dean started guiding in his late teens. From nature novice to jungle guru, Dean quickly excelled, which led him to win the esteemed Best Specialized Tour Guide award at The Sabah Tourism Awards in 2015. His knowledge and passion for the rainforest are contagious when traveling with him. Meet Dean on MT Sobek's Borneo adventures.

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Welcome to Borneo! Upon arrival, meet your driver, who transfers you to Sepilok Nature Resort. This quaint collection of wooden chalets surrounding a lake is set in an impressive landscaped area of manicured lawns and hills. After brief orientation and welcome dinner, retire for the night.

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Relish an entire day on the remarkably biodiverse Gaya Island, a natural conservation area rife with jungle and marine life. Spend hours at your leisure, relaxing at the beach, lounging at the resort, or exploring the island. Tonight celebrate your memorable Borneo adventure with a group farewell dinner.

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Activity Level


This trip is rated activity level 2. This is a family trip designed for children six and up. You will enjoy leisurely walks through rainforest and nature reserves. There will also be opportunities to swim, kayak and snorkel.
Learn more about activity levels here.

Activity Snapshot

Day 2

Wildlife watching, easy forest walks

Day 3

Wildlife-watching walk, river cruise

Day 4

Wildlife-watching, river cruises, batik crafts, tree planting

Day 5

Guided city tour

Day 6

2-hour cave walk, waterfall walk/swim

Day 7

Community project, farm stroll

Day 8

Water activities or jungle walk

Day 9

Water activities or jungle walk

Accommodations


Remote and luxurious eco-lodges and rustic camps, allowing you to access some of the most rare and endangered wildlife on the planet.

Sepilok Nature Lodge
Sepilok Nature Lodge

Sepilok Nature Lodge is a luxurious outpost beside the world-renowned Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve. Wild orangutans reside in the backyard of this tranquil property, and the sounds of wildlife serenade guests day and night. Jungle bungalows combine beautiful organic architecture with high-end comforts. Enjoy tremendous service and comfort on the property while a rich wildlife experience lies mere steps away.

Bunga Raya Island Resort
Bunga Raya Island Resort

Where can you find top-notch accommodation on the edge of pristine rainforest, mangroves, and coral reefs? At Bunga Raya, a luxury resort on spectacular Gaya Island, a natural conservation area ten minutes from Kota Kinabalu. This secluded hideaway is the epitome of tropical paradise, with timber villas overlooking an empty white-sand beach, a hilltop spa, and an underground wine cellar.

Sukau Rainforest Lodge
Sukau Rainforest Lodge
Set on the banks of the broad Kinabatangan River and accessible only by boat, Sukau Rainforest Lodge is an eco-friendly gem in the heart of one of the world's most diverse ecosystems. Wake up to the sounds of exotic birds and the rustling of leaves, with the chance to spot proboscis monkeys, pygmy elephants, and a myriad of bird species right from your doorstep. The lodge offers comfortable accommodations designed to minimize environmental impact and a commitment to conservation efforts, and guided river cruises and jungle walks to explore the ecosystem they protect.
Hyatt Centric
Hyatt Centric
Overlooking the South China Sea, the Hyatt Centric has breathtaking views of the waterfront and city skyline. The hotel makes an ideal base for exploring Kota Kinabalu and beyond. The hotel's stylish and spacious rooms are designed for comfort and relaxation, while its culinary offerings showcase a mix of local flavors and international cuisine. With amenities such as a rooftop infinity pool, fitness center, and a rejuvenating spa, Hyatt Centric Kota Kinabalu ensures a delightful stay.
Munor Aulai Guesthouse
Situated in the heart of Orou Sapulot, Keningau, Munor Aulai Guesthouse is a simple accommodation. Ideal for travelers seeking an authentic and rustic experience, the guesthouse features basic rooms with mattresses on the floor and essential facilities. The guesthouse offers a straightforward and relaxing space to unwind after exploring nearby attractions. This is the perfect choice for those who appreciate simplicity and a genuine connection with the local surroundings.

Weather


Temperatures stay around 80°F year round, with an average of 80% humidity. Expect quick changes in weather and be prepared for rain.

 
Jun
Jul
Dec
Gaya Island 
High
Low
High
Low
High
Low
Gaya Island
91
75
90
72
90
72
Kota Kinabalu 
High
Low
High
Low
High
Low
Kota Kinabalu
90
76
89
76
88
75

FAQs


Who will meet me on arrival?

Our MTS representative will meet you at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport.

Do I need a visa for Borneo?

No, American citizens do not need a visa for Malaysian Borneo.

How do I get to Kota Kinabalu?

You will need to connect through Hong Kong, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur, and the main airlines that fly to Borneo from the U.S. are Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Malaysian Airlines and Air Asia.

Do we need to bring leech socks?

No, as our guide will provide them for you.

What kind of wildlife will we see on this trip?

Although no wild animal sighting is ever guaranteed, Borneo's rainforest are teeming with animals. You have very high chances to see orangutans, proboscis monkeys, langurs, macaques, hornbills, and much more.

What makes this trip family friendly?

This trip is designed for ages 6 and up to include plenty of adventure, but with slightly shorter days than our normal MT Sobek trips. Family trip leaders have plenty of experience guiding families, and enjoy adventures with children.

Does this trip contribute to any local conservation efforts?

Yes! This trip helps support a local foundation that funds community projects in the village of Sayap. Palm oil is a main source of income in this area, which contributes to deforestation. The foundation's community projects provide skill training and jobs for locals to replace traditional palm oil plantations.

What is the minimum age for this trip?
The minimum age is 6 years old.

Guest Reviews


"Great experience every time with some of the most knowledgeable guides in their fields. We always come home with wonderful memories of the people we meet and things we see."

Bob J.
MT Sobek Guest

"MT Sobek took care of everything for our extended family vacation. Not a hiccup in the planning, the itinerary, the lodging or the guide. Everything in life should be so easy."

Kathy J.
MT Sobek Guest