Many people may not recognize the name Malaysian Borneo, although they're familiar with both Malaysia and Borneo as independent entities. In fact, Malaysian Borneo, also commonly known as East Malaysia, is the part of Malaysia that is located on the island of Borneo. Malaysian Borneo is further divided into two states, geographically divided by the country of Brunei. The history of this unique destination is a complex story in itself, but visitors to this exotic land are in for an adventurous treat. With stunning wildlife and breathtaking natural beauty, Malaysian Borneo draws thousands of visitors each year, while also doing its best to maintain the integrity and purity of this truly amazing region.
There are many different ways to enjoy your time here, but organized and reliable tour companies are not always in high supply. If you make your way to Malaysian Borneo, there are countless things for you to experience, but there are certain highlights that any trip to this magical land should include. Put your trip in the hands of experienced travel professionals that know the best way to make a trip to Malaysian Borneo unforgettable. The following are some of the true treasures of this legendary part of the world.
When you say the word Kinabalu in Malaysian Borneo, you can be referring to one of two things, the tallest mountain in Southeast Asia or one of the most remarkably preserved national parks Borneo has to offer. The mountain is the third-tallest in the world that can be climbed without major technical gear, and stands at a mighty 13,435 feet. More than 40,000 climbers make the trek each year, and the view from the top is nothing short of spectacular—you literally look out above the clouds. The national park, however, which surrounds the mountain is not something to overlook. It is a 300 sq. mile park that boasts more than 4,000 species of flora and fauna, drawing biologists, botanists, and nature lovers from around the globe. We can organize a mountain hike or a national park excursion, depending on your vision for the trip!
If you are a primate lover, then coming to Borneo tovisit orangutans is probably already on your life list. As one of only two places left in the world where you can view orangutans in the wild, many primatologists and fascinated primate fans come every. Most people choose to visit the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, which is located in East Sabah, but there is also a wonderful refuge called the Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Center near Kuching, located in the southwest area of Malaysian Borneo. For a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to interact and observe some of the smartest primates on the planet, this is not a trip to pass up!
Iban Tribe Longhouse
While many people want to see orangutans in the wild, it takes a much different kind of traveler to become a part of the effort to preserve their habitat and species. There is an Orangutan and Tribes Tour available in Malaysian Borneo that will give you the opportunity to work at an orangutan sanctuary, spend a week in one of the most beautiful jungles in the world, and even spend time with the legendary Borneo head-hunters, the Iban tribe, who are now the caretakers of the wild orangutans in Batang Ai, one of the island's national parks. This may be the most unique cultural experience you've ever had, and for those with the time and adventurous spirit for this type of trip, it will be something you'll never forget.
An absolute must whilst in Malaysian Borneo is a jungle trek. With many national parks to visit including Bako and Batang Ai, going on a jungle trek is the only way that travelers to this destination will have the opportunity to see some of Borneo's most iconic animals in the wild. Along with having the opportunity to go out in the wild in search of wild orangutans and the famous long-nosed proboscis monkeys jungle trekking can offer the opportunity to meet ancient tribes such as the Iban and other branches of the Dayak people.
Some people prefer a jungle, while others love a good river trek. The Kinbatangan River in the Sabah region of Malaysian Borneo features lodges and knowledgeable guides who will take you upriver and reveal the wonders of the region, including a wide variety of animal species, including crocodiles, pythons, elephants, various primates, and a wealth of stunning flora along the riverbanks. This is one of the few places where you can go in search of pygmy elephants and wild orangutans.
The most populous city in the southwest state of Sarawak offers a historical adventure for those less interested or able to journey out into the wilds of nature. From legendary forts and sprawling palaces to nearby national parks and one-of-a-kind cultural relics, Kuching is an endless paradise for those who love exploring the history of exotic cities.
Sipadan Island Scuba Diving
Although you will find plenty of exciting adventures to explore on land, Malaysian Borneo also hides some of its wonders beneath the waves. Certain areas have therefore become popular scuba diving for amateurs and highly experienced divers from around the world. Sipadan Island is perhaps the most famous spot for this, but due to the popularity and exceptional reefs in the area, a limit has been imposed on how many people can dive there each day. As mentioned, Malaysian Borneo realized and respects what a natural gem it is, and works hard to protect it from degradation and preserve it for future generations. If you plan of diving in Malaysian Borneo, Sipadan Island is highly recommended.
Mulu National Park
Mulu National Park is home to some of the most geologically fascinating caves in the world, and the park draws tens of thousands of visitors each and every year. The limestone karst formations are remarkably well preserved and have tantalized scientists and researchers for decades. Don't miss your chance to peek into geologic history and explore these awe-inspiring caves, particularly Benarat Cavern and Sarawak Chamber, as well as nearby Deer Cave, the largest single cave passageway on the planet!
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