Overview

It is time to experience Malayan life up close. Starting from Kayaking on the tributaries and the Sarawak River to visiting small pepper farms and a Bidayuh Village, this is local life all the way. The Lush green vegetation is a welcome departure from the city hustle. Visit a local family and learn to cook Malay food, enjoy what you help create for dinner. Wildlife and natural beauty are never far when in Malaysia. Visit the Semenggok Nature Reserve where you will see semi-wild orangutans before traveling on a traditional longboat to meet Borneo’s natives & spend a night in their longhouse. Mulu is a UNESCO world heritage site and the caves are just majestic. Visit Deer Cave and Lang Cave. The evening site of millions of bats flying out of the caves is stunning. We will then take a boat to Penan village before continuing to Wind Cave & Clearwater Cave. The exploration continues at Kinabalu Park and Mountain Garden with its rich flora & fauna. Finally, a boat ride to an island in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park to swim & snorkel and relax in paradise.

8 Nights 9 Days 08 Dec, 09 Dec, 10 Dec, and more
Highlights
What makes this tour special
  • Explore local flair, culinary delights and local cooking at a Malaysian home
  • Explore nature up close while Kayaking in the Borneo Rainforest, float down river amid greenery.
  • Visit the locals of a Bidayuh village and spend a night at Iban the longhouse
  • Take a longboat ride and join in the local activities
  • Be mesmerized by the vast caves of Mulu
  • Relax, swim & snorkel in the blue waters of the coral lands
Itinerary
Day 1: Kuching Arrival
  • You will be received by an English-speaking guide at the Kuching International Airport and a transfer by air-conditioned vehicle to a Hotel of your choice in Kuching. Check-in to the hotel, the day is at leisure – explore the hotel or the nearby areas. Night stay at the hotel is arranged in standard rooms.
  • Meals included: none
Day 2: Kuching – City Tour
  • Enjoy a good spread at the Breakfast before starting a day of adventure involving Borneo Rainforest Kayaking and a Culinary tour. The Kayaking is a “must-do” activity while visiting this part of the world. It will enthuse the nature lovers and everyone looking for some good adventure. We start with a short journey through scenic lands dotted with small pepper farms to a place called Bengoh. This is a picture postcard delightful Bidayuh village in the mist-covered highlands of Borneo.
  • The kayaking instructor will introduce you to the equipment and give you detailed paddling instructions and a safety briefing. Now we move to a small tributary of the Sarawak Kiri river where a set of parked kayaks await you. This small shaded stream with overhanging trees, steep banks, and a bridge overhead have just enough room for your kayaks to get through and meanders a short distance before opening into the vista of Sarawak Kiri river.
  • Once we have paddled about half-way down the river, we will alight to explore a delightful Bidayuh village and enjoy a native lunch. We now, continue our kayaking surrounded by lush green vegetation, enthralled by the ever-changing and stunning scenic views of limestone hills around each bend in the river. Just when we are reaching the end of our journey, we will have to get past an 'exciting' class 1 to 2 rapid! (depending on the water volume and flow). With the kayaking done we return to our hotel in Kuching to freshen-up before starting our culinary evening tour.
  • This for sure will be a novel experience even for the most seasoned traveler, you will visit the home of a Malaysian family. We are invited to see, experience and learn traditional local food! While we travel to the family's house, we will stop at a local market to buy some fresh ingredients. As a guest in the family's house, you will not only learn how to cook, but you will also get a deeper insight into the Malaysian way of life. Taste your self-made dishes and enjoy a delicious local dinner with the host family. We bid god buy to our hosts and return to our hotel for the night.
  • Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Day 3: Kuching Explore on your own
  • We enjoy a relaxed breakfast at the hotel and have some time to explore a bit more of the activities at the Hotel. The day is at leisure – explore the hotel or the nearby areas. Night stay is at the hotel.
  • Meals included: Breakfast
Day 4: Kuching – Semenggoh Nature Reserve – Batang Ai
  • A day of activity starts with a sumptuous breakfa st at the hotel. We then travel to the Semenggoh Nature Reserve, originally built to protect the Orangutans and to rehabilitate captive and orphaned ones back to the wild. The reserve has its own rare flora and fauna including the giant squirrel, pigmy squirrel and splendid variety of birds. Trekking trails make Semenggoh an ideal place for wildlife photographers and nature lovers.
  • The highlight of the visit is a chance to see an Orangutan, your guide will help spot one during the morning feeding time. This is when the Orangutans swing down from the trees for a free handout of fruit. This reserve is one of the few places in the world where humans can interact with their shy jungle cousins.
  • Our next destination is Batang Ai, where we spend time with the natives of Borneo. This is a 290 Km drive in an air-conditioned vehicle through the countryside. We will stop at local markets and enjoy the local flair throughout the drive. The long road will take us to a beautiful lake called Batang Ai. The local lifestyle is what we are exploring on this trip, we shift to a traditional long boat for a 60-90 min boat ride over the lake to reach our destination, a Longhouse. This longhouse belongs to the Ibans (a local tribe), we interact with the resident families and relax over a cup of tea. Your guide will take you through the longhouse encouraging you to take part in daily activities.
  • The rest of the evening is free for relaxation, go enjoy a swim in the crystal clear blue waters of the lake. Traditional dinner is arranged in the longhouse, interact with travelers and the tribe’s men before you retire for the day. The night stay is at the longhouse (This is basic accommodation in the common room, everything you need is arranged for you)  
  • Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Day 5: Batang Ai – Kuching
  • The longhouse is as close to nature as civilization gets, the morning will be greeted by the singing of cockerels as you wake up and start your day. After a traditional breakfast join the Iban people in a blowpipe demonstration. We now start our return journey by native longboat downriver to arrive back at the jetty. The drive from here to Kuching is by air-conditioned vehicle and we do stop an en-route for lunch at a local cafe. Night stay is at your hotel of choice in Kuching.
  • Meals included: Breakfast and lunch
Day 6: Kuching – Mulu National Park
  • You will be received at the Mulu airport, a quick transfer to Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa. Once settled in comfortably, change into your trekking gear. We now move to the Mulu National Park Headquarters for registration. Lunch is arranged at the park’s canteen.
  • We start our adventure with a 45 min walk to the first set of caves. This walk is on narrow forest paths made of wooden planks that take you through riverine and lowland forests on limestone cliffsides.  The first cave we reach is the Lang’s cave which has an exquisite collection of stalagmites and stalactites. You are observing nature at its creative best, we recommend carrying a good camera for some stunning pictures. The next cave we visit is the Deer cave, this is famous for its passage which is the largest for any cave in the world. The Deer cave is also famous for its large (as many as 3 million) populations of bats. These caves are designated as world heritage by UNESCO.
  • Once the exploration of the caves is done we move to the bat observation platform. The site of millions of bats coming out of the caves in the dusk is simply mesmerizing. It appears like black streams emerging from the caves. You will require a good camera as the light is low when the bats finally decide to venture out in the evening.
  • We return to the park headquarters for a transfer to the Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa, night stay in deluxe rooms is arranged.
  • Meals provided: Breakfast and lunch
Day 7- Mulu National Park
  • The day’s adventure begins with a half hour long boat ride. Our first shortstop is at a Penan settlement. This is your chance for understanding the old nomadic lifestyle of the people and indulge yourself in the local handicrafts market. The boat ride then takes us to the wind cave. A plank walk leads from the riverbank to the entrance of the Wind Cave. This cave is so named because of the cool breezes which you can feel at the narrow parts of the cave. This cave is part of the Clearwater system and has many impressive stalactites, stalagmites, flowrocks, helitites and rock corals. Some of these are illuminated in the ‘King’s” Room. A short walk takes us to the Clearwater springs, we take a short break here. 200 steps lead up through the forest to the mouth of Clearwater Cave. Clearwater is a fascinating cave system to scroll around, it has its own underground river system. Plank walks, paths and small floating bridges make this an easy and enjoyable experience. There are excellent photo opportunities for those who are bitten by the photography bug.
  • We now climb down the steps to the picnic area. At the base of the steps, there is a crystal-clear pool, swim in the pool or just relax on the picnic benches and admire the rainforest scenery. Lots of beautiful flora and fauna around, watch the swarms of butterflies that are often found fluttering around near the river bank. Your guide will help spot the Rajah Brooke butterfly with its huge bright-green colored wings. A simple picnic lunch is arranged at Clearwater spring.
  • Transfer to your hotel is arranged. The rest of the afternoon is available at leisure to enjoy the beautiful natural environment of the surrounding areas. There are a number of activities available at the Mulu world heritage area which one can join (separate from the tour). Interesting options include activities like canopy walk, a trek to a waterfall or a night walk. The park also has a short and easy botanical loop trail for you to explore. This trail has interesting information boards about the amazing flora of Mulu National Park.
  • Overnight at Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa, Deluxe Room.
  • Meals included: Breakfast and lunch
Day 8: Mulu National Park – Kota Kinabalu
  • We enjoy a quick breakfast and take the vehicle for transfer to Mulu airport for our flight to Kota Kinabalu (airfare not included). A courteous English-speaking guide will be at the Kota Kinabalu Airport for facilitating your arrival, transfer by AC vehicle to your hotel of choice and hotel check-in. The rest of the day is designed to give you some time to get used to the tropical climate and to relax away any jet lag that you may experience. Night stay at the hotel.
  • Meals included: Breakfast
Day 9: Kinabalu Park Tour
  • We enjoy breakfast at the hotel and take the road through the ridges of the Crocker Range to the Southern end of the Kinabalu Park. The drive is through a beautiful land where we will get to see native villages, handicraft stalls, rubber plantations and fruit orchards. We now break for lunch and proceed to the Kinabalu Park Headquarters. Your guide will take you to the exquisite Mountain Garden in the park. You will be able to see a large collection of rare orchids and plants endemic to Borneo in this garden. After completing the park visit we return to the city and relax at the Hotel.
  • Meals included: Breakfast and lunch
Day 10: Coral Island Tour – Kota Kinabalu Departure
  • After a quick breakfast at the hotel is followed by a checkout, we then reach the Jetty for a 20 min boat ride that takes us to one of the coral islands within the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park. The islands have shallow reefs and pristine beaches, spend the day swimming in blue waters or snorkeling amongst the corals or just relaxing on the beach. We have a simple box lunch for the day and after a quick shower return to the mainland in mid-afternoon.
  • Your vehicle is waiting to take you to the Airport for your evening flight to the next destination.
  • Meals included: Breakfast and lunch

Notes

  • We try our best to get the mentioned hotels, but during heavy bookings period, we may have to substitute within the offered category. Please note that Shangri-la Hotel in Kota Kinabalu is not a 5 star-property under Shangri-La Hotel & Resort chain.
  • The tour detailed itinerary may change due to unforeseen events - we will cover all that we have stated here only the program by day may change. For example, if our program states a city tour on Day 1, it may be postponed to Day 3 instead. This is mostly a last-minute adjustment and will be without any prior notice
  • Some package can be booked on a private basis, but certain services may be on a shared basis only. This is to minimize impacts on the natural environment or if other circumstances require so. These services include boat transfers in Kota Kinabalu/Coral Island, land and boat transfers in Mulu, and boat transfers & activities in the longhouse.
  • Sightings of wildlife depend on several natural factors (e.g. weather) and therefore cannot be guaranteed.
  • A longhouse is a traditional place mostly untouched by modern facilities, be prepared for some discomfort. We will take the best care, but You will be accommodated in the community area of the longhouse with no privacy. A mattress, mosquito net, pillow, blanket and clean linen will be provided. Simple sanitary facilities are available. Please note - Pets like cats and dogs might be encountered in the communal hall of the longhouse and livestock such as chicken or pigs are roaming freely within the longhouse compound.
  • It is customary to bring some gifts for the Iban longhouse people, which can be divided by the number of families. Your guide can assist you during one of the stops en-route to buy some suitable presents. This custom is only applicable to Iban longhouse tours.
  • The longhouse stay is simple, and we request you to please travel light. Your luggage can be kept safe at your hotel in Kuching.