DAY 1 - KOTA KINABALU – KARAMBUNAI PENINSULA
Arrive at Kota Kinabalu airport and transfer to the Nexus Karambunai Resort, set in a stunning beachside location. Upon arrival at Kota Kinabalu International Airport, please look for our representative who will be holding a sign with either your name or ‘Imaginative Traveller’ on it. Overnight at the Nexus Karambunai Resort, Ocean Panarama Deluxe Room.
Nexus Karambunai Resort
Located 30km north-east of Kota Kinabalu city on 3,335 acres of natural and landscaped surroundings, this resort borders a 6km long pristine white sandy beach on one side and a tropical rainforest on the other. It offers luxurious rooms with private balconies and traditional solid wood furnishings and wonderful facilities including an 18 hole golf course, spa treatment rooms, 3 free-form swimming pools, an outdoor Jacuzzi, a gym, and tennis and squash courts.
Please Note: There is also an option to stay at the Shangri-La's Rasa Ria Resort should you prefer. Please ask your Consultant for details.
DAY 2 - KARAMBUNAI PENINSULA
Free day to take advantage of the wonderful facilities available. Overnight at the Nexus Karambunai Resort. (B)
DAY 3 - KARAMBUNAI PENINSULA – KINABALU
Today, we drive 2 hours overland (88 km) through paddy-fields and Dusun villages over the ridges of the Crocker Range to the foothills of Mt. Kinabalu at 5,000 feet. We take a short stop at the roadside stalls at Nabalu market to savour the local fruits in season. At Kinabalu Park World Heritage Site, visit the Education Centre and Mountain Garden, home to various species of the flowering Rhododendrons, carnivorous pitcher plants, orchids, ferns, oak trees and birds. Night temperature at the park is around 14°C - 25°C. If time and weather permits, take a guided walk on one of the trails in the cool surrounding to observe the montane forest. Overnight at Perkasa Hotel, Superior Room. (B,L,D)
Please note: Those who wish can start to climb Mt Kinabalu today. If you choose to take this option, your itinerary will be adjusted accordingly. Please book early if you wish to do this as there are limited numbers allowed on the climb. If you do not wish to climb the mountain, you can enjoy a guided trek along some of the many extensive trails in its foothills.
Kinabalu Mountain Garden
Visit the Mountain Garden where you can view more than 1000 species of rare orchids as well as the endemic and medicinal plants found within the Kinabalu Park.
The markets at Pekan Nabalu are a colourful introduction to the culture of Borneo. All of the stalls are crammed with goods ranging from delicious tropical fruits to small local handicrafts.
The hotel is situated approximately 5,000 feet above sea level and has a naturally cool atmosphere as a result. There is a commanding view of the majestic Mt. Kinabalu, the highest mountain in South East Asia, and also a panoramic view of the sprawling foothills dotted by the temperate vegetable farms of Kundasang.
DAY 4 - PORING
After breakfast, continue 40 km overland journey to Poring, 1,500 ft above sea level, east of Kinabalu Park HQ. Explore tropical lowland rainforest and the jungle trail leading up to the treetop canopy walkways, suspended 41 meters above the forest floor across giant Mengaris trees (notes: there will be local camera/video fees to pay). Visit Kipungit Waterfall and soak in hot sulphur pools. Proceed to Kundasang Memorial Park to learn part of Sabah's WWII history. Overnight Hill Lodge, Chalet. (B,L,D)
Kinabalu National Park
Your guide will take you on some of the extensive trails that wind throughout the 754km² of protected parklands in the foothills of Mt Kinabalu. You will trek through lowland rainforest and see oak and fig trees, rhododendron shrubs, wild berries, conifers and other alpine vegetation.
The Canopy Walkway
This walkway is a suspension bridge, anchored in three giant trees and situated some 100-200 feet above the floor of the forest. It takes 40-50 minutes to cover the length of the walkway and you will get fabulous views over the surrounding scenery and a unique view of the many birds and animals of the forest.
Poring Hot Springs
Within Kinabalu National Park are the Poring Hot Springs, where hot sulphurous water has been channelled into several tiled pools and tubs. Whilst the area can get very busy, a soak in one of the tubs can be pleasantly therapeutic after a morning of walking.
DAY 5 - MT KINABALU – MIKI'S JUNGLE SURVIVAL CAMP
Check out from the lodge and take a short transfer to Kiau Village, where we trek to Miki’s Survivor base campsite. Spend the day doing jungle activities, trekking across mountain ranges, through rice paddies and into primary forest to learn about survival in the jungle. Spend the night in a tent at Miki’s campsite. (B,L,D)
Miki's Jungle Survival Camp
Miki, his family, and the local people developed the survival camp to help preserve the environment and to benefit the indigenous people of the region through education. Miki will give you an unforgettable experience of survival in the jungle. Miki may teach you to build a hut, to make traps, to identify edible fruits and foods and to learn to pick traditional medicines. You will spend the night in a tent at Miki’s campsite.
Note: The campsite and tent are very simple; if you prefer to stay in comfort, please discuss this with your consultant and they will be able to suggest an alternative itinerary for this day.
DAY 6 - SANDAKAN
Today we transfer overland to Sandakan and to the world famous Sepilok Nature Resort in Sandakan. In the afternoon you visit the orang-utan sanctuary to see 'feeding time'. Later you will enjoy an evening jungle walk to search for other wildlife. Overnight at Sepilok Nature Resort, Chalet. (B,L,D)
The Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve is home to the last wild orang-utans of Northern Borneo. On the edge of the reserve lies the Sepilok Orang-Utan Sanctuary, a world -renowned centre for rehabilitating orang-utans rescued from captivity or orphaned and displaced by logging activities. The animals are kept for up to seven years until they are fit for release into their natural habitat. Other species are also cared for at the sanctuary, including sun bears, gibbons, Sumatran rhinos and the occasional injured elephant.
Sepilok Nature Resort
Hidden amidst tropical plants and grasses, huge trees and spectacular blooming orchids, the traditional bungalows of the Sepilok Nature Resort provide the perfect base for visiting the forest reserve. All the timber chalets sit on the shore of a beautiful natural lake and have attached bathrooms with hot and cold water, a shower and a bathtub, a ceiling fan and air-conditioning. Meals are served in the central building under covered terraces.
DAY 7 - SANDAKAN – TABIN
Transfer overland to Lahad Datu and the Tabin Wildlife Lodge. Deep in the heart of the eastern Sabah rainforest, it’s one of the largest wildlife reserves in Malaysia. Upon arrival, resgister, rest and unpack.
In the afternoon, visit the Lipad mud volcano located nearest to Tabin base. After trekking through the jungle for twenty minutes, arrive at the elevated bare area of the mud volcano that is known to be frequented by deer, wild boars, elephants and birds. Look out for and identify footprints of animals. Walk up the Observation Tower for wildlife viewing or bird photography. After dinner, there will be night activities to look out for nocturnal wildlife. Overnight at Tabin Wildlife Lodge. (B,L,D)
Tabin Wildlife Reserve
Tabin is Borneo wilderness at its best. With a protected forest area of 120,500 hectares, Tabin plays an important role as a dedicated breeding ground for the endangered wildlife and protected mammals in Sabah. You will find the wildlife reserve to have large numbers of animal species inhabiting its forest, including several which are highly endangered. It is no wonder that Tabin is one of the finest wildlife viewing areas in Borneo. The three largest mammals of Sabah, namely Borneo Pygmy Elephant, Sumatera Rhinoceros and Tembadau are all found within Tabin.
Tabin Wildlife Lodge
The Tabin Wildlife Lodge has been carefully and sympathetically integrated into its magnificent surroundings with accommodation and facilities to ensure a memorable and comfortable stay whilst experiencing the spectacular Borneo flora and fauna. There are just 20 timber jungle chalets all nestled within the forested hill or overlooking the river, each with its own private balcony, en-suite bathroom and hot shower and ceiling fan. Each chalet is linked by an inter-connecting timber walkway to the Sunbird Café where you can sample delicacies of the traditional local cuisine and maybe steal one or two recipes from the chef when he is in a good mood!
DAY 8 - TABIN
Today, we trek through the lush green jungle known for its rich biodiversity of plants and animal species to visit Lipad's Waterfall. Take a dip in the natural pool and enjoy the refreshing splash coming down from the waterfall. Explore the surrounding vegetation or just relax. Return to base in the afternoon. At dusk, go for bird watching within the reserve. After dinner, there will be night activities to look out for nocturnal wildlife on a different route. Overnight at Tabin Wildlife Lodge. (B,L,D)
Please bring along swimwear, change of clothes, binoculars, drinking water bottle, insect repellent, leech socks, long sleeve shirts and long pants, short pants, raincoat, sun hat, comfortable trekking shoes (two pairs needed), torchlight, personal toiletries and camera.
DAY 9 - TABIN – SANDAKAN
Transfer back to Sandakan where the rest of the day is free to relax. Later this morning you will transfer overland back to Sandakan and stay at the Sepilok Nature Resort overnight. Travel time permitting there may be another chance to see one of the world’s most endearing Primates up close. Overnight at Sepilok Nature Resort. (B,L,D)
DAY 10 - SANDAKAN – LANGKAYAN ISLAND
Take an early morning transfer to a jetty for a boat ride to the Langkayan Island Resort for three nights of pure relaxation. Overnight at Lankayan Dive Resort. (B,L,D)
A tiny jewel-like island in the Sulu Sea, unpopulated and covered by thick tropical island vegetation, this peaceful, untouched little piece of paradise is ringed by an endless pure white sandy beach. From March to May there are regular sightings of gigantic but harmless whale sharks.
Langkayan Island Dive Resort
The resort offers simple, elegant accommodation in a handful of roomy and perfectly appointed seafront chalets made out of local wooden materials to blend with the natural surroundings. Meals are informally served in the central open-air building with its beautiful wooden terrace from where you can admire dozens of juvenile black tip sharks swimming leisurely a few feet beneath you. Despite the remoteness of the location you will enjoy all the amenities of an international resort.
There are excellent snorkelling and diving opportunities in the waters off the coast; if you are a qualified diver and wish to take advantage of these, please do not forget to bring your PADI certificate. There is an option to pre-book your Diving Package to maximise your diving opportunities. Please ask your Consultant for details.
DAY 11 TO DAY 12 - LANGKAYAN ISLAND
Two full free days to dive, snorkel and swim. (B,L,D)
DAY 13 - LANGKAYAN ISLAND – KOTA KINABALU
Depart Langkayan Island by speed boat to Sandakan. Transfer to Sandakan Airport for a flight back to Kota Kinabalu. On arrival, drive to the Shangri-La's Rasa Ria Resorts 5 star hotel for your last two nights’ accommodation. Overnight at Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria, Deluxe Sea View Room. (B)
DAY 14 - KARAMBUNAI PENINSULA
There is the option to take a day trip to the Kota Klias wetland for a river cruise in search of proboscis monkeys and other wildlife, or to drive to Kota Kinabalu for a day of sightseeing. Alternatively, relax and enjoy the last day of your special trip in Karambunai. Overnight at Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria. (B)
DAY 15 - KARAMBUNAI PENINSULA – KOTA KINABALU
Transfer to the international airport for your onward flight. (B)
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