Luxury Borneo Travel
Luxury Borneo Travel
Let's Plan Your Travel to Borneo
The steaming jungles of Borneo are synonymous with adventure and intrigue. Home to the most biodiverse patches of forest on the planet, the island’s equatorial forests teem with life: roaming pygmy elephants and sun bears, a rainbow of hornbill species, swinging langurs, macaques, and endemic proboscis monkeys, and of course – most enchanting of all – our closest primate cousins, the magnificent orang-utan.
Immersive wildlife encounters are the backbone of any trip to Borneo, but its greatest appeal may actually be its variety. Come out of the jungle and you’ll find eclectic, multicultural cities, fascinating indigenous tribal culture, and blissful tropical beaches. Accommodation throughout is of an extremely comfortable standard, with typically generous service and outstanding food as standard. Taken all together, Borneo offers a truly thrilling trip with fresh excitement each day: perfect for an adventurous honeymoon, family vacation, or introductory wildlife tour.
The island of Borneo is split between Malaysia and Indonesia, with the Malaysia states of Sabah and Sarawak to the north, and the largely untamed Indonesian state of Kalimantan to the south. As a whole, Borneo is the third-largest island on the planet, much of which is dense, uninhabited jungle. The vast majority of Borneo’s accessible tourism – and everywhere mentioned in these pages – is based in the Malaysian half of the island. Combinations with Peninsular Malaysia (also referred to locally as West Malaysia) are very possible and very attractive: most flights to and from Borneo will go through the capital Kuala Lumpur, or the dazzling city-state of Singapore at the southern tip of the peninsula.
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Suggested Itineraries for Borneo
There are many different ways to approach the forests, reserves, lodges, and beaches of Malaysian Borneo. Some sample tour ideas are found below.
Kota Kinabalu, Sepilok, Kinabatangan River, Danum Valley, Gaya Island10 NightsFrom $5,911 PPThis enthralling itinerary is the perfect first-time trip to Borneo, covering all its major highlights in comfort and style.
Kuala Lumpur, Sepilok, Kinabatangan River, Tabin Reserve, Kota Kinabalu10 NightsFrom $5,149 PPWith exotic wildlife at every turn, stunning beaches, fantastic accommodation, and generous hospitality, Borneo makes for the ultimate family adventure.
Best Hotels in Borneo
Accommodation in Borneo ranges from simple jungle lodges to spectacular private island escapes. Our specialists have picked out some of their favorite properties below.
A rainforest destination just north of the Equator, Borneo is hot and humid year-round. The best months for wildlife tours of Borneo are between March and November; December and January see a notable increase in rainfall, and February is taken up by drying and patching up of the rainforest trails. Note that as a prominent family destination the summer months of July and August see higher rates and increased visitor numbers.
Borneo is best known as the home of the orang-utan: our closest relative in the animal kingdom. Other primates include endemic proboscis monkeys, macaques, and the tiny tarsier. Larger mammal life in the forests includes Bornean pygmy elephant, sun bears, clouded leopard, marbled cat, loris, and flying squirrels. Birdlife includes eight species of hornbill, plus broadbills, fish owls, serpent eagles, and kingfishers.
There are no long-haul flights into Borneo – travelers must always transfer through Kuala Lumpur across peninsular Malaysia or the buzzing city-state of Singapore. Pre or post-stopovers in either make perfect sense and strike an attractive contrast to the forests and rivers of Borneo. Wider tours of Peninsular Malaysia can also include the historic ports of Malacca and Penang, or the island paradises of Langkawi, Tioman, or the Perhentians.
Package prices to Borneo can be higher than nearby Southeast Asian destinations such as Thailand, Vietnam, or indeed Peninsular Malaysia. Remember though that your Borneo package will include all of your guided wildlife tours, all meals at the jungle lodges, and all your transport and transfers. Once in situ, you’ll find that your day-to-day spending is minimal, thus evening out the overall trip cost. Compared to similar wildlife trips in Africa and Indian Subcontinent, Borneo is a terrific value.
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