Incredible trip combining the best that Borneo has to offer any tourist. Well organised and realistic in terms of travelling to experience the best sights and experiences on the island. People, food and accomodation fantastic.
- What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
Seeing wild orang-utans on several occasions. All of the other amazing wildlife including proboscis monkeys, macaques, grey and red leaf monkeys, crocodile, pythons, wild boar, hornbills, eagles...... the list goes on!
Climbing Mt Kinabalu for sunrise; a challenging but incredibly rewarding experience.
Seeing 3 million bats emerge from the cave at dusk in neverending ribbon-like formation. Also the smell of the bat guano brought tears to our eyes.... not for the faint hearted, especially at the Gomantong Caves!
- What did you think of your group leader?
- Arthur was really fantastic. He made sure all the organisation was done efficiently, which considering the amount of travel in this trip, was no mean feat! He had a great sense of humour and interacted well with everyone in the group. He was knowledgeable and informative and gave us tips to ensure we were in the best place at the best time to see and experience things.
- Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Lots of our group got leeches on their legs during the aclimatisation walk in the Sabah Tea plantation. We weren't advised that this was a leech area so no-one wore leech socks. Take some for this part of the trip if you are worried about them.
Do either the night walk or the night cruise at the river. Our night cruise was really exciting and we saw some huge pythons, owls, frogs and crocodiles. It adds another dimension to the amazing wildlife spotting opportunities.
You don't need to take any toiletries on the Mt Kinabalu trek. Everything you would need including shower gel, shampoo, toothbrushes and paste and even razors and sewing kits are availble both at the Park HQ and Laban Rata Resthouse. Pack as light as you can for the trek. It wasn't particularly cold on the night we did the summit trek, in fact we wore shorts! But you do need several layers, gloves and a hat. Do take time to stretch before and after though.... my husband is still suffering with sore calves and thighs 3 days later!!
Don't bother bringing walking poles or mosquito nets from home. You can hire both really cheaply where you need them.
- Is there anything else you would like to add?
You won't regret booking this trip but read the trip notes carefully so that you know exactly what to expect. You do need a reasonable level of fitness to do Mt Kinabalu, more for the 8km trek to the Resthouse in the heat, than for the summit attempt. We took half an aspirin a day for 3 days before the trek to try an combat the altitude sickness, which worked well as neither of us really suffered. Two people in our group did suffer though so listen to the advice of the guides regarding this. Nevertheless all 11 of us made it to the top! A great achievement.