Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebration 2017

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebration 2017

Kota Kinabalu Christmas

Celebration 2017

22

December, 2017

Our Kota Kinabalu Tour!

Taste of Borneo Cooking Class

Mari Mari Cultural Village

This year marks the 13th edition of the Christmas Celebration in Kota Kinabalu City and this celebration will be organized through a collaboration of Kota Kinabalu City Hall (DBKK) and Sabah Council of Churches (SCC), which will be held on December 11th – 14th 2017 at the Padang Merdeka, Kota Kinabalu City. This is a yearly event that anyone should not miss out especially for those visiting Sabah Borneo for their Borneo Holidays.

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations Poster

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Given the theme for this celebration is “God’s Love, Man Hope”, with the purpose of bringing all community, regardless of their difference in race and religion, to celebrate the Christmas Celebration together on this event. For this year Christmas Celebration, there are a variety of exciting performances which showcases cultural diversity, classical, as well as modern elements. Apart from that, there are also local and international artists invited to perform during the event too.

What makes everyone looking forward to this joyous Christmas Celebration (me being one of them), was the stalls during the event; vendors selling a variety of food and drinks, as well as featuring their Christmas element into their display and designs to bring out the Christmas spirit. I am glad to say that I got a chance to visit the Christmas Celebration this year. It was truly an eye-opening event, where you can see many stalls selling a variety of foods and drinks, Christmas delicacies, preloved stuff, Christmas gifts, Christmas Choirs, as well as some exciting games.

Despite it raining since the first day of the event, it did not stop the crowd coming to enliven the Christmas Celebration. Here are some of the pictures that I have taken during the event:

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Christmas lights hanging on the tree, can you see the “Merry Christmas” signboard above?

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

A big and tall Christmas Tree decorated with red ornaments is sponsored by YES(a mobile 4G brand)

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

One of the things that make the event interesting, there is a stall selling LED light Balloons!

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Handmade Christmas ornaments using pinecone

Some of the photos of yummy foods and drinks are sold during the event:

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Lamb Teriyaki Skewers

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Cute shapes of Cartoon Characters waffles

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebration

Cendol in a cone

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Ice Blended Fruit Juice

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

This is my first time to see a Galaxy drink (wow!)

 

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

I manage to get it for myself too! ^-^

 

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Check out this cute Unicorns meringue!

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

.….and more foods!

 

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Check these photos from Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebration Facebook page:

Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations
Kota Kinabalu Christmas Celebrations

Need to see more photos? Check out their Facebook Page here.

Miss out on this event for your Borneo Holidays? Don’t worry, there is always next year for you to visit the Christmas Celebration and each year will have different kinds of activities and performance for the event. Apart from that, check out our other blog posts to know places in Kota Kinabalu that you can visit with your kids for your Borneo Holidays.

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Hinompuka – Kadazan Traditional Delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka – Kadazan Traditional Delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka – Kadazan Traditional Delicacies in Sabah Borneo

20

December, 2017

Our Kota Kinabalu Tour!

Taste of Borneo Cooking Class

Mari Mari Cultural Village

Sabah Borneo is known for its stunning nature, beautiful underwater life, exotic Borneo flora and fauna, as well as rich indigenous culture, which later reveals a wealth of fresh produce from Sabah Borneo. These ingredients, along with the creativity of Sabahan cooking resulted in a truly diverse and fascinating delicacies. One of the delicacies that travelers should try it out, will be Hinompuka, a traditional delicacy of Kadazan (Major tribe in Sabah Borneo). It is a common and popular sweet desserts within the Kadazan people in Sabah Borneo.

What is Hinompuka?

Hinompuka, also known as a steamed glutinous rice cake, is basically a delicious sticky cake that is popular among Kadazan people, one of the indigenous group in Sabah Borneo. The ingredients for this delicious delicacy is made of a mixture of brown rice flour, glutinous red rice flour, palm sugar, and grated coconut flesh. Then, wrapped it in banana leaves before steaming it.

Hinompuka - Traditional delicacies in Sabah Borneo

The above two Hinompuka are in Banana flavor, while below two are in Tapioca flavor. Photo: Dolly MJ

Nowadays, the Kadazan people are so creative, they even fill either banana or sweet potato into the Hinompuka in order to create a variety of flavors inside the delicacies. Hinompuka is usually served on certain occasions such as Kadazan traditional weddings, Kaamatan Harvest Festival (celebrated yearly on 30th-31st May), or other celebrations such as birth, engagement, etc.

Hinompuka - Traditional delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka in the making. Photo: CSSUPM

Hinompuka - Traditional delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka dough in the making closeup

Hinompuka - Traditional delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka is also good for breakfast. Photo: tinaskmoinjil

Hinompuka - Traditional delicacies in Sabah Borneo

Hinompuka best to eat with a cup of coffee/tea. Photo: Madona Nandu

Apart from that, Sabah Borneo has numerous delights to tempt even to the least adventurous eater. By exploring the villages and local cafes in Sabah Borneo, or by eating with the locals, travelers will get to know the new tastes and aromas which are unique to them. In Sabah Borneo, travelers can get the chance to taste out the other traditional delicacies in D’Place Kinabalu.

To experience more of the best local specialities and delicacies of Sabah Borneo, here is a blog post that travelers should particularly look for Borneo Holidays.

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Things to do in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah Borneo – Jesselton Artisan Market

Things to do in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah Borneo – Jesselton Artisan Market

Things to do in Kota Kinabalu,

Sabah Borneo – Jesselton Artisan Market

29

November, 2017

Our Kota Kinabalu Tour!

Mari Mari Cultural Village

 

Taste of Borneo Cooking Class

Jesselton Artisan Market

A trip to Sabah Borneo will grant any of us (as travelers) a promise to experience the wildest adventure in our life by going for a trekking expedition to Borneo Rainforest or spot some wildlife that is endemic in Sabah Borneo. Our Sabah Borneo Holiday will begin in the capital city of Sabah Borneo, which is Kota Kinabalu City. Kota Kinabalu City was formerly known as Jesselton City and is located on the northwest coast of Borneo, facing the South China Sea. Some might think staying in Kota Kinabalu City can be tedious, but with its own modern hip vibe, well-developed infrastructures, delicate taste of local food, breathtaking sunset view, its diverse local culture, the exquisite locals’ handmade of arts and craft, eventually will make us fall in love with Kota Kinabalu City in a day. Some might consider on extending their holiday just to explore more of the charms of Kota Kinabalu City.

One of the activity that we should not miss out to do in Kota Kinabalu City, is a chance to visit the Jesselton Artisan Market. Jesselton Artisan Market is an inspiring arts and craft bazaar, which showcases the locals’ own skilled and handmade of decorative arts, jewelry, clothing, home decorations, furniture and more interesting stuff that might amaze us. Moreover, there will be food stalls, food trucks, mini handcraft workshops, and class sessions by the artisan itself will be held during the bazaar.

A visit to Jesselton Artisan Market for a day will never make anyone feel bored. I have gone to many Arts and Craft Bazaar before, but I always end up feeling bored after spending about half an hour there. Unlike Jesselton Artisan Market, I can literally spend half a day walking around there! My last visit to Jesselton Artisan Market was on 7th October 2017 and I can say that there was never a dull moment! I was in awe to see some of the creative handmade arts and crafts, as well as listening to the music performance by the local bands/artists.

Jesselton Artisan Market is a new event in 2017 and organized by Salt X Paper. In addition, the Jesselton Artisan Market sometimes collaborate with other creative groups (such as Doodle Malaysia, Inktober Malaysia, etc) for this event.

Let me share with you some of the interesting things that can be expected in Jesselton Artisan Market:

Jesselton Artisan Market

Handmade coin purse and pieces of jewelry by The Pink Dinosaur

Jesselton Artisan Market

Handmade jewelry and crafts by iCare Crafts

Jesselton Artisan Market

Aren’t these cute cupcakes? But these are not edible cupcakes, these are handmade soaps!

Jesselton Artisan Market

Travel quote postcards

Jesselton Artisan Market

Woven Rattan of Sabah Borneo Mini Bag

Jesselton Artisan Market

“ I solemnly swear that I am up to no good”…
A wood engraving of Marauder’s map from the movie of Harry Potter by YBcuts

Jesselton Artisan Market

A drawing of Malaysian favorite desserts, ABC or shaved ice

Jesselton Artisan Market

“Colourful drawing of Mount Kinabalu as a postcard

Jesselton Artisan Market

Pick your favorite characters of lego keychain

Jesselton Artisan Market

Handmade metal necklaces based on Borneo motives by Pogunsavat Craftwork

Jesselton Artisan Market

Aww…so cute the watercolor drawing of a baby Orangutan…

Jesselton Artisan Market

A hand-drawn mandala on wood by Henna Sapok

Apart from that, handmade arts and crafts are not the only attraction we can see during the Jesselton Artisan Market, there are also some food stalls and food trucks to fill up our hungry tummy. The food itself are creatively designed and the taste are oh-so-delicious! One of the interesting food that I have tasted (and it was my first time too!) during the Jesselton Artisan Market is the beef bacon flavored popsicle (yikes!) by Pops and Pints. They do have other flavors of ice cream, such as strawberry, yogurt, sweet potatoes, and laksa flavor too.

Jesselton Artisan Market

Lime Mint flavor(left) and Beef Bacon flavor Ice Cream (right)

Jesselton Artisan Market

Unicorn Yogurt Ice Cream by Gelato Lab

For this coming Jesselton Artisan Market, it will be held on 2nd-3rd December 2017, this time the organizer will do a Christmas themed event! (yeah!) There will be about 100 local artisan brands selling their original handmade creations, a chance to participate in a sing-along Christmas Carolling, Christmas theme of art installations and displays, as well as a Christmas Charity where we can donate to the poor and needy. Feeling excited? Save the date and see you there!

Missed out on this event? Worry no more, there are other things that we can do in Kota Kinabalu city. Read here for a travel guide to Kota Kinabalu.

KotaKinabaluTravelGuide

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Make Your Borneo Holiday EPIC with These Awesome Activities in Sabah Borneo

Make Your Borneo Holiday EPIC with These Awesome Activities in Sabah Borneo

Make your Borneo Holiday EPIC

with these awesome activities

in Sabah Borneo

26

October, 2017

Borneo Tour Packages
Taste of Borneo Cooking Class Kiulu Quad Biking 

Sabah Borneo is known to have a great treasure of nature, Borneo indigenous wildlife, one of the world’s top diving spots, along with diverse cultures, making Sabah Borneo a popular destination for travel. If you are planning to visit “Land Below The Wind” in Borneo Island, as a local myself, here are some awesome activities that I recommend to do in Sabah Borneo, to make sure your Borneo holiday will be epic!

1) Borneo River Cruise

Borneo River Cruise to spot some of the Borneo Wildlife

Break your regular National Geographic wildlife channel session and enjoy river cruise to see Borneo Wildlife in their natural habitat. You can bring your families or friends to experience a unique river cruise while searching for Borneo Wildlife such as Orangutans, Proboscis Monkeys, Crocodiles, Snakes, Borneo Pygmy Elephants, and loads of bird species (eg: Kingfishers and Hornbill). Plus, you can get to enjoy a magical night witnessing the Fireflies as they slowly light up and decorate the mangrove trees (if weather permits).

Interested to learn more? These are some of the best things you’ll see on a Borneo River Cruise.

2) Quad Biking

Experience the exhilarating activity of Quad Biking in Kiulu, Sabah Borneo

Quad Biking, also known as ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) is a must-do outdoor activity during your Borneo excursions. You can unleash your adventurous spirit and be able to enjoy the scenic ride. Before that, you will be given a safety briefing and some practice to get a hang of riding the quad bike. Then, your two-hour adventure begins! This may not be an average trip in your Borneo holidays as you ride on the ATV, see the beautiful countryside and experience the local’s daily lives. In addition, a local guide will point out the type of plants found in the area and share the history of the local living in the area. Learn more on our experience of Quad Biking!

3) White Water Rafting

Face your fear and paddle all the way…

A must for anyone traveling to Sabah Borneo! It’s time to challenge yourself on riding the waves from the rapid whitewater river… Don’t forget to paddle! There are two types of white water rafting you can do in Sabah Borneo, which is Grade 1-2 at Kiulu river and Grad 3-4 at Padas river. Don’t worry, there will be an experienced rafting guide who will be helping you to maneuver during the water raft. Challenge yourself with these exciting, adrenaline pumping, and wild fun rides of water rafting which will leave you wanting more!

4) Cooking Traditional Ethnic Food

Hands-on traditional dishes cooking class in your Borneo Holidays

If you want to learn more about Sabah Borneo culture, the best way to understand the culture is through its own food! Apart from tasting the food in Sabah Borneo, you can also participate in the cooking class for a chance to learn the local’s way of preparing and cooking traditional food in your Borneo holidays. A suitable trip for you to bring your family or friends to join this activity, and experience a unique kind of cultural experience like you never been before. Moreover, you will get to learn more on Borneo culture through conversing with the local family while preparing the dishes, as well as to see some of the exotic vegetables at the local market or “tamu”. Want to know what kind of traditional food that you should try in Sabah Borneo? Then, you should read this articles for your information before visiting Sabah Borneo.

5) Diving

Awesome activities in Sabah Borneo
Dive in to see the beautiful array of marine life in Sabah Borneo

Did you know Sabah Borneo has some of the best diving sites in the world? Most divers from around the globe visit Sabah Borneo to experience the amazing wonders in the underwater world. When you are diving in the waters of Sabah Borneo, be prepared to witness the macro life to pelagic fishes, a chance to capture underwater macro photography in muck dive sites, the coral gardens teeming with rich diversity of corals and fishes, Green and Hawksbill Turtle making its appearance and even a variety of shark species too! Want to make your Borneo holiday more epic? You should enroll yourself to become PADI certified diver which runs at most of Sabah Borneo’s dive resorts, for a chance to witness an awesome array of underwater marine life through the course.

6) Birding

Awesome activities in Sabah Borneo
Sabah Borneo is home to many species of birds, which makes it one of the best places for birding

Borneo is known for its rich tropical rainforests, home to a diversity of flora and fauna. Apart from being home to Borneo’s mammals, there are also several endemic species of birds, which makes Sabah Borneo one of the best places for birding activity. There are various areas in Sabah Borneo that you can go for birding activity, which are Mountain Range ( Eg: Kinabalu National Park), Lowland Forest (Eg: Rainforest Discovery Centre, Danum Valley Conservation Area), and Freshwater (Eg: Kinabatangan River). Birding activity is the safest and most relaxing activity that you can do, as you will not need any lengthy training or complicated equipment. All you need to bring is a good camera and tripod, binoculars, as well as a good field guide that can point out to you the species of Borneo Birds. To make your Borneo Holiday epic, you can check out Borneo Bird Festival in Sabah Borneo, an event where you can experience more on the birding activity.

7) Tandem Paragliding

Awesome activities in Sabah Borneo
Fly “high” with tandem paragliding

Challenge yourself to fly like a bird on a tandem paragliding in Sabah Borneo. Feel the thrill and a sense of freedom, while gliding across the clear blue sky amongst the breathtaking scenery of the Borneo Rainforest. There are two places in Sabah Borneo where you can go for tandem paragliding, which is in Ranau, or Kokol Hill. Fret not, you’ll be in the safe hands of a qualified instructor as they take you on your first flight of soaring high above the sky!

Looking for tips before going for tandem paragliding? You can read here for tips before going for tandem paragliding.

Are you getting excited like we are? Pack your bags now and bring your travel buddies to experience these awesome activities in Sabah Borneo like no other!

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Best Places to Explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part II)

Best Places to Explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part II)

Best places to explore in

Malaysian Borneo (Part II)

21

October, 2017

Borneo Tour Packages
Long Pasia trekking expedition

zipline and white water rafting adventure

Best places to explore Malaysian Borneo p1

In our previous blog post, we’ve shared with you some of the best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo. Can’t get enough? Don’t worry…For this second part, we will continue to share with you other best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo.

1) Long Pasia, Sabah Borneo

Maga Waterfall in Long Pasia

Adventure in the heart of Sabah Borneo, surrounded by lush rainforest of Borneo, you will enter into a small Lundayeh (one of Sabah Borneo’s minor indigenous tribe) village. Get an insight of the authentic culture and the treasures of nature in Long Pasia jungle. Your visit to Long Pasia will never leave you bored. Long Pasia is rich with plant diversity and historical treasures. You can see there are many cultural sites which include rare burial ground, and ancient burial jars. While enjoying the Long Pasia trekking expedition, you will pass beautiful waterfalls and a hidden lake deep in the forest which holds many of the local stories, beliefs, and legends. There will be a local native guide, together with you trekking into the Borneo jungle and giving the explanation on the endemic plants, history, and information on the flora and fauna that you will encounter.

2) Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (TARP) Islands, Sabah Borneo

Swim and relax in Manukan Island

A visit to the capital city of Sabah Borneo, Kota Kinabalu, is never complete without dropping by to TARP’s group of islands. The marine park consists of Gaya Island, Sapi Island, Manukan Island, Mamutik Island, and Sulug Island. These islands are only a short boat ride away from the Kota Kinabalu city, and it is a popular destination for locals and tourists. There are few resorts and basic accommodations within the marine park, either you can choose to stay in the islands or pop over for a day trip.

Most day-trippers will choose to go Manukan Island and Sapi Island, as both of these islands are most developed and popular among the visitors for diving. There are many activities that you can do in TARP Islands such as island hopping, parasailing, zip coral flyers, snorkeling, scuba diving, and more. If you are looking for more exotic beach island getaway, you can read our top 5 islands in Sabah Borneo, or 6 hidden islands for your exotic beach getaway, and plan your next getaway!

3) Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, Sarawak Borneo

Best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part II)
This mature female Orangutan sits quietly while eating her banana. Photo By: Chew Eng O

Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre is located about 24km from the capital city of Kuching, Sarawak Borneo, and was established in 1975. In addition, Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre is the largest Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sarawak Borneo, which is more than 700 hectares in size and home to Orangutan that are of varying ages. Most significantly, Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre serves the same purpose with Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sabah Borneo, where Orangutans are rehabilitated at the center and teach them some “habitat survival skills” before releasing them to the wild. This is one of the conservation methods to preserve the dwindling numbers of Orangutans in Sarawak Borneo.

In Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, you can get the chance to see Orangutan up close especially during their feeding times (9 am and 3 pm). If you are lucky, you might encounter the Orangutans emerging from the wild during feeding time or maybe even spot the Orangutans while you are walking in the jungle.

Planning to visit Kuching, Sarawak Borneo? Click here to know places in Kuching city that you can visit by foot.

4) Kudat, Sabah Borneo

Kelampunian Beach, Kudat

Kudat is a town in Sabah Borneo, which is located about 3-hour drive from Kota Kinabalu City. On a map, the state of Sabah Borneo resembles to a dog’s head, and Kudat lies on the northern tip of Sabah Borneo, which forms the left ear of the ”dog”, namely as “Tip Of Borneo” by the locals. Surrounded by beautiful beaches and surf spots, it’s no wonder “Tip Of Borneo” is one of the up and coming attractions for visitors in Kudat.

Kudat area is inhabited mainly by Rungus people (one of Sabah Borneo’s indigenous tribe), which some of them are still living in longhouses. The Rungus people are known for their excellent weaving skills, beadwork, and intricate beadwork for their traditional costume. A visit to Kudat should not be missed out in your travel itinerary because there are a lot of activities and places you can go in Kudat. You can enjoy surfing, beach camping, a visit to Honey Bee farm, experience culture in Kampung Bavanggazo (Rungus Longhouse), a tour to Gong-making village, or just laze around at Kudat beautiful beaches.

5) Batang Ai National Park, Sarawak Borneo

Best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part II)
Experience the authentic feeling of living in the Iban Longhouse

Batang Ai National Park is located in Sri Aman, Sarawak Borneo, which officially opened for public in 1991. It covers 24 square kilometers of vast Borneo Jungle and home to some rare or protected Borneo Wildlife. It is also home for one of the Sarawak Borneo indigenous tribe, the Iban tribe. Batang Ai National Park is a great place for you to experience the authentic Borneo Jungle, a chance to witness Borneo Wildlife (eg: Orangutans, Gibbons, and Hornbills) in their natural habitat, as well as learning about the Iban cultural traditions by participating in the homestay program for your Borneo Holidays.

To reach Batang Ai National Park, you will need to hop on the longboats and cruise by the Batang Ai River to reach your accommodations. There are a few accommodations available within the Batang Ai National Park, which are Aiman Batang Ai Resort and Retreat, Nanga Sumpa Lodge, or simply spend the night in “real” Iban Longhouses.

6) Poring Hot Spring and Nature Reserve, Sabah Borneo

Best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part I)
Poring Canopy Walkway

Poring Hot Spring and Nature Reserve is located about 13 kilometers from Ranau Town and it is part of Kinabalu National Park. Poring Hot Spring and Nature Reserve was first developed by the Japanese during World War II, and it has become one of the top weekend getaway destinations amongst foreigners and locals alike. A must do activity will be soaking in the hot spring that could help to relieve stress and alleviate all the sore and muscle aches after climbing Mount Kinabalu. The hot spring contains high sulphuric minerals that is widely considered to have special healing properties.

In addition, you can challenge yourself by taking a stroll up to the canopy walkway amidst the lush Borneo Jungle. The canopy walkway is over 175 meters long and 41-44 meters in height; higher than an 8-storey building! Be amazed at the exquisite view of the Borneo Jungle surrounding when you are above the canopy. Apart from the hot spring and canopy walkway, you can also visit the butterfly farm, the Poring orchid conservation center, the tropical garden and Rafflesia flower blooming sites.

If you want to know more places of interest in Ranau or Sabah Borneo, click “Don’t miss this when you’re in Ranau” to know more interesting places to go when you visit Ranau, Sabah Borneo.

7) Kiulu, Sabah Borneo

Moderate adventurous (grade 1-2) in Kiulu Water Rafting. Photo by : dannychan_sg

Kiulu is a small valley that is located in the District of Tuaran, and it is about 1-hour 30-minute drive from Kota Kinabalu city. Agriculture is the main source of living for the local communities within Kiulu. There is much agriculture such as rubber plantations, fruit orchards, paddy fields (rice), and vegetable farms. Take some time to visit Kiulu in your Borneo Holidays to experience the living culture of the locals there.

The area has other activities such as water rafting that is suitable for beginners (grade is between 1 to 2) at the Kiulu River. After that, you can also enjoy the Zip Borneo Adventure Centre which offers several thrilling activities on sites, such as Zip Line, Wall Climbing, High Rope Challenges, and Abseiling. Moreover, you can also go for the thrilling experience of Quad Biking in Kiulu, where you can witness the scenic view of Kiulu villages, river, paddy fields, and more.

8) Ba’kelalan Mount Murud, Sarawak Borneo

Best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo (Part II)
Misty morning view at the Ba’Kelalan village

Ba’kelalan is a small village located on a hillside with an altitude of 1,500 feet above sea level and 4 km from the border of Kalimantan, Indonesia, as well as about 150 km from the nearest town of Lawas. Ba’Kelalan is home to the Lun Bawang tribe (one of the indigenous group of Sarawak Borneo). In addition, Ba’kelalan is known for being the origin of wet paddy farming before it was extended to Bario, Long Semadoh, and other areas on Borneo Island. The unique rice is popularly known as “Bario Rice” which can be found only in Kelabit Highlands. In Ba’kelalan, you can experience the lifestyle of Lun Bawang community with Homestay program, jungle trekking to reach salt spring, and exploring the surrounding area by visiting rice fields, apple farms, as well as the organic research farm.

Most travelers will go to Ba’kelalan as a starting point to climb up the highest mountain in Sarawak Borneo, Mount Murud, which is about 2,423 meters above sea level. It is a serious expedition hence, you will need to hire a guide or porter in Ba’kelalan in order for you to safely reach the summit. Many locals regard Mount Murud as a sacred location especially for the Christians so any alcoholic drinks and smoking is prohibited.

If you are up for the challenge to climb Mount Murud, be sure to spot some of the unique Borneo plants that you can see while trekking, such as Pitcher Plant species (Nepenthes Murudensis) and wild orchids.

Looking at all the best places to explore in Malaysian Borneo, are you ready to plan for your Borneo holidays? If your answer is YES, here how you can visit Borneo and at the same time saving your travel money too!

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Best Things You’ll See on Borneo River Cruise

Best Things You’ll See on Borneo River Cruise

Best Things You’ll see on

Borneo River Cruise

14
October, 2017
Borneo Tour Packages

Weston River Cruise

Bako National Park

You might have experienced riding a gondola in the Grand Canal, or cruising along the Mississippi River to explore the historical waterways of The United States of America. But nothing beats the experience and feeling when cruising down the rivers in Borneo. When coming to Borneo, there are numerous ways to enjoy the wildlife. One of the means where people enjoy learning and experiencing the wildlife in its natural habitat here in Sabah Borneo is via a relaxing cruise down the river.

Borneo is the second largest island in the South Pacific (third largest in the world), which is split between the nations of Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brunei. It is known that Borneo has the oldest rainforest (roughly 140 years million old!). Additionally, it is an important ecosystem for many endemic species of Borneo Plants and Wildlife. There are some articles from National Geographic featuring some of the Borneo Wildlife, such as Borneo Pygmy Elephants, Orangutan, Proboscis Monkey, Clouded Leopard and more. Still have no idea where Borneo is? Click here to see Borneo Map!

Borneo river cruise is generally one of the top activities for Borneo holiday seekers, especially in Sabah Borneo. Embarking on a Borneo river cruise is a lifetime experience for you to discover the pristine Borneo rainforest and a chance to spot some Borneo Wildlife. We would not be surprised after your Borneo river cruise, you will be captivated by the charm of this special place and will not miss to go for another round of Borneo river cruise.

Borneo river cruise is generally one of the top activities for Borneo holiday seekers, especially in Sabah Borneo. Embarking on a Borneo river cruise is a lifetime experience for you to discover the pristine Borneo rainforest and a chance to spot some Borneo Wildlife. We would not be surprised after your Borneo river cruise, you will be captivated by the charm of this special place and will not miss to go for another round of Borneo river cruise.

A chance to spot Orangutans

Borneo River Cruise
Orangutan

Going for a Borneo river cruise at the Kinabatangan River, which is located in Sandakan, Sabah Borneo, will give you a chance to spot the critically endangered Orangutan species. Although you can easily spot Orangutans at the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, we recommend you to make the effort to see the Orangutans in their natural habitat.

Long – nosed Proboscis Monkeys!

Proboscis Monkeys can be spotted while you are cruising along the mangrove swamp area in Sabah Borneo. Since Proboscis Monkeys prefer to live almost exclusively in mangrove forest (they can also be found in lowland forest that are near to fresh water and rivers), it is impossible for you to not spot the primates in your Borneo river cruise tour, such as in Weston River, Kinabatangan River, and many more. Experience an up-close and personal experience of witnessing Proboscis Monkeys, as they jump from one tree to another (some jump from one side of the bank to the other!).

Borneo Pygmy Elephants

Borneo Pygmy Elephants

Apart from spotting Orangutans and Proboscis Monkeys, spotting Borneo Pygmy Elephants is also another reason as to why going for a river cruise here in Sabah Borneo is different. If you are lucky, you might even sight a group of Borneo Pygmy Elephants strolling by the river bank. Borneo Pygmy Elephant is relatively small compared to other elephant species, but still grows up to 3-metres tall and weigh a few tonnes. Get your binoculars ready in search for Borneo Pygmy Elephants!

Great spot for bird-watching

Blue-Eared Kingfisher bird

If you are a bird lover, joining a Borneo River Cruise will be a perfect activity for your Borneo holiday! Cruising along the Kinabatangan river is like a paradise for bird lovers. All eight of Borneo hornbill species can be seen regularly, Storm’s Stork, Blue-eared Kingfishers, various species of Eagles, and more endemic birds of Borneo have been spotted parading their beauty around the waters of Kinabatangan River. Even if you are not into birding, you can easily witness birds of Borneo gorgeously flying everywhere as you cruise along the river. Truly is a sight to experience.

Spectacular sunset view

Sunset View at Weston

Sabah Borneo is known for its spectacular sunsets. It would be a double bonus for you if you get the chance to witness the “Reddish Fire Sunset” during your Borneo river cruise tour.

Whispering with Fireflies

Fireflies in Kinabatangan river. Photo by: Jonathan Faulkner

Are you aware that Sabah Borneo is one of the places to witness Fireflies? Joining the night cruise will give you a chance to catch magical “performances” by the Fireflies slowly lighting up and decorating the mangrove trees (if weather permits). Many have experienced witnessing Fireflies lighting the sky at night which is similar to a Christmas tree being lit up.

Cruising down the rivers here in Sabah Borneo is definitely a great adventure to experience, no matter as a single traveler, traveling with your family, or loved ones. I myself have gone for several river cruises and it never seems to bore me. Instead, it keeps pulling me back for more! The enthralling beauty that Mother Nature has given to us all always seems to enlighten me in many ways, and I hope it does for you too!

If you want to read more on the experience of Borneo River Cruise, feel free to read our experience of the river cruise in Weston River and Kinabatangan river.

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