Thought I'd start a forum post to see who's booked onto the Trails of Borneo trip, departing 23rd October 2010.
Look forward to hearing from you all,
Yeah I am booked on this trip too. Well looking forward to it, although it is still a fair way off yet. Hoping that the volcano doesn't come back to haunt us in October.
I'll be joining this trip too and am really looking forward to it. Did the Inca Trail & Rainforest in May and had to buy all the walking gear, so might as well get my money's worth and use it in Borneo ;-) Holding onto the same anti-volcano wishes as James - we were delayed by a day getting to Peru :-(
You guys on the group flights from London or making your own way there?
See you soon!
Yep, me and my dad will be on the London flights. How did you enjoy Peru? I was there a couple of years ago, in the Tambopata amazon reserve and also did the short inca trail.
I'm off to Iceland in a couple of days, so will try and keep the volcano under control!
Peru was amazing!! Stayed at Tambopata, did the 4 day Inca Trail and then hit Lake Titicaca. Fabulous!!
I'll be on the group flights to Borneo too. I live in Luxembourg, so would probably have to travel via London anyway! Got most of the gear I need thanks to the Peru trip, but must buy leech socks!
Have fun in Iceland! (Don't you get around?!?!)
I'm on this trip too. Not done anything like this before! I'm booked on the group flights too...
Well I'm happy to bring the pink hat with me if you think it may help with leech protection (was wearing it for fancy dress)!! I have ordered a bright pink rucksack that should go quite nicely with it. If anyone has any tips re- vaccines/things to bring that may not be on the trip notes etc please do let me know!
One question I have is about sleeping bags. I was going to just bring a sleeping bag liner to save on space, rather than bring a full sized sleeping bag. I expect it'll be pretty hot and humid most of the time, so no need for anything extra warm at night. Also, it seems that we have a 15Kg limit on the internal flights, so a sleeping bag liner should save a kilo or two. What are you guys doing?
Yes, it's a liner for me too, for all the reasons you state!
Anyone got any thoughts re the leeches, are they a big deal? I've looked ont Interweb and found leech socks but I can't say I like the thought of wandering about in those!! I'm inclined to risk it and just knock off any that do get attached.
I'm not going on the trip, but was just reading the thread!
Don't buy a sleeping bag liner , just use a single duvet cover!
More room inside and cheaper!!
Thanks for the tip.
As for the leech socks, I agree. They don't look like the most practical/comfortable of things! May buy myself a pair and just keep them in my rucksack during the day in case the need for them comes up. Hopefully not though.
Vaccinations: The trip guide states "There are no mandatory vaccination requirements for this trip, however it is advised that you are vaccinated against Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid and Hepatitis A." Think I'm covered for all of those luckily. Gonna pick myself some malaria tablets up at some point though.
Not sure what to expect on the mountain hike in terms of weather. It'll probably get a little chilly during the 2am walk to the top, but I'll just bring a few layers along (lightweight jacket, fleece etc). Am also expecting a fair amount of heavy rain throughout the trip; am I right in thinking that it'll be approaching rainy season when we arrive?
One thing I was wondering about was how much of a chance we'll get to charge up our camera batteries during the trip.
I'm just taking a sleeping bag liner - light and folds up really small. I have a silk one - they're better than the cotton ones. Seems that if we need blankets, they are provided.
As for leech socks, they are recommended and even if they're not the most attractive fashion accessory, I think I'll invest in a pair - better safe than sorry and I really don't fancy having any of those little suckers (literally!) stuck to any part of my body!!
Seems from the Trip Notes/reviews as though there are plenty of places to charge batteries. I got the Freeloader Solar Charger when I went to Peru, which is really good, but mine doesn't seem to have an adaptor that fits to my camera!! Top tip is to get at least one spare battery and make sure they're both fully charged before setting off on the trek - worked a treat on the Inca Trail!! Steph, I would got for the extra battery option with a decent camera, rather than throwaway ones. I invested in a new camera with about 16x zoom after I got back from Peru, where my previous camera with a paltry 3x zoom meant I missed loads of good photo opps, especially in the jungle. I am thinking of getting one of those waterproof pouches for it though, as it seems humidity is going to be way high!
My niece has a pink stetson with "Dancing Queen" in flashing lights on the front. Happen I should bring that with me when we meet up in the bar at the airport. Mine's a large red wine please!
See you all soon! Gail.
To whet your appetites you could do worse than read the above by Eric Hansen.
Just got from from a chat with my GP re the above. Have a long and very expensive list of jabs to choose from. Not sure I am going to bother with all and may just follow the advice I've found in the literature ie Hep A & B, Tetanus & anti malarials.
Anyway it seems most vaccinations must be obtained/administrerd 8 weeks prior to departure ...so gets your skates on guys and gals and start saving up!!
Just bought mine, Malarone 25 tablets for £56 from TravelPharm.com, you'll struggle to find cheaper.
I plan to take the trekking boots I took to Peru - they're really comfortable and will be good for this trip. In any case, I don't have anything else suitable without going shopping and I've done enough of that lately!! And Steph, yes, it is best to wear them in first, even if you just wear them around the house. Saves a lot of pain and problems on the holiday!! Regardless, make sure you take a supply of the Compeed blister plasters - they're great!
Don't think I need any vaccinations - had to get a few for Peru so I'm good to go. Not sure what to do about malaria tablets as I hear so many stories about how sick people get on them. Plan to investigate the ones where you only take them if you actually get bitten, rather than having to take them before, during and after the trip.
Final balance paid yesterday - yee ha!!
Am not at all sure about the treatment Vs cure debate re malaria, I do know that once bitten it very rapidly colonises the body and can kill!! I don't fancy the prospect of being sick from taking tablets but prefer it to the alternative. All the sites I've looked at advocate prevention rather than relying on cure and it's intersting to note that one drug used to cure is Malarone, so if it's going to make you sick it's going to make you sick, whether before/during the hols or after ... tho' if you don't get bitten you may not need any drugs at all, I'll risk being sick I think!!
I too have just paid my final balance so whilst I am quite excited I am less jubilant than Gail at having forked out £1800!! ;o)
Soon be time, bring it on!!!!
Yeah can't wait, not long now! Paying my final balance this week. Going to sort out the boots this week too and wear them in. Made the mistake of ordering a 90L rucksack! Tested it out at a festival last weekend and it was literally the size of a small person on my back. Really impractical, will have to rethink that one me thinks!
Hi Everyone!I am going to spend a bit over a week in Kuala Lumpur and around it and join all of you in Miri. The most exotic trip for me so far has been one to Kenya. Did safari and good cultural exchange in Mombasa. After that I've been wondering around Ontario, Quebec and California. Still great, but had to plan something more exciting and decided to visit the Pearl of SE Asia. :-)Read all your posts and extracted some tips for myself. Thanks. I have taken Malarone myself with no side-effects at all. Heard of some other Malaria prevention drug you take just once a week. My travel buddy was suffering a lot from it, had even sleeping disorder / nightmares, which apparently was a direct side-effect he was warned about. Don't remember what they're called though. You should take Malarone few days before and after the trip. In all cases I would recommend seeking advice from GP.57 days left for me, see you all in 67 days! Can not wait! :-)
With a weight limit of 15kg I am sure you will find a 35L sack more than adequate.
.... but I'll be equally impressed if John fits all his stuff for 2 weeks into a 35l pack!! Wheelie bags are good, but go for a soft and squishy one rather than a proper suitcase type.
Steph, when I was in Peru, we basically just decanted stuff from big bags into the smaller ones that we'd be needing for the different bits of the trip. The main bags werere left in storage at the hotel we started out from.
Just reading the trip notes again, I see that although we have a 20kg allowance, one of the flights is only 15kg. Suppose we should pack to that limit, or wear everything we have on that particular flight to reduce check-in luggage weight!!!
It is very unlikely you will get your Malarone for free. NHS does not cover stuff like this, that is why you had to pay £7.50 for the private prescription. You would be expected to pay full price for the tablets.
Let us know if it's different! :-)
Packed a dummy run last night, tight but OK!! Guess I'm not packing (don't need to be packing) as many cosmetics as you lot!?!? ;o)
I got my Malarone precription for free from the GP ... it was the chemist who imposed the charge.
I have an appointment with my doc early October to get malaria tablets. Best he can prescribe me Malarone (never know what the Luxembourg doctors might give you!!) I'm already jabbed up to my eyeballs, so no need for more needling!!
Packing light is absolutely the way forward. Didn't bother with half of the gubbins I normally use when I was in Peru - there's no point!! You spend most of your time grubby anyway!! And it sounds like in Borneo, that kind of stuff would only melt in the heat/humidity. I just got little travel size bottles/tubes and decanted. Plus I didn't take any aerosols (deodorant for example), only stick stuff so as to avoid polluting the environment. My top tip is wet wipes and plenty of 'em!!
£60 for malaria tablets? I've been advised that deoxycycline tablets should be sufficient, so I've gone for them. £12.50 for the full prescription :)
It's only about 6 weeks now - will pass in a flash!!
Good deal on the tablets Gareth. Mine will probably cost a fortune - most things do over here :-(
Does anyone know if we can actually get malaysian currency before we go???
I usually get my currencies from Travelex.co.uk. I order the required amount on-line, pay for it instantly and collect it at the airport. You can find Travelex kiosks in every airport in England, not sure about the Luxembourg, but you are connecting in Heathrow, so you could collect it from there. At the beginning of my travels I've been comparing prices with other companies and it always came out that Travelex offers the best you can get. It is very simple to use, check it out!
Let's not forget, we can take with us the maximum of MYR 1000,- (GBP 219.25) when entering Malaysia. Afterwards we will have to stick to ATM's or traveller's cheques that should be exchanged upon arrival, I guess, because in Borneo we might struggle finding place to exchange them for cash. Travelex also offers traveller's cheques.
Thanks Janis - very useful info! I'll be flying into City Airport on the Friday and I'm fairly sure there is a Travelex there, so I'll get it sorted when I arrive.
Not sure how many ATMs we'll find in Borneo. Then again, doesn't look like there will be much opportunity to shop/spend up anyway!
Could anyone recommend a decent insect repellent that would outperform others and does not smell horrible?
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