Trekking with Borneo Travel is a wonderful experience

5 HUGE Reasons Why NOT to Visit Borneo

(or maybe reasons TO Visit!)

After almost 35 years of providing spectacular adventures and itineraries to new and returning visitors of Borneo, I thought it would be a great idea as to why some people are missing should they be the wrong type of person to visit this beautiful area.  Yes, it may seem strange to write a ‘why not..’ post but I have put this together having had messages from people from all walks of life, from all backgrounds and whom are looking for different things from their vacation or holiday.

We are, of course, very proud of our Borneo travel itineraries and what we offer to all people coming to visit us here.  There are some people that may be looking for something else and some people that really will appreciate this great place, the amazing people and the fabulous wildlife.  I am sure that if you are reading this then you are one of those people – and if so Borneo welcomes you.  But just in case, please do read our 5 huge reasons why not to visit us here in Borneo:

1 – You are NOT after a Unique Borneo Adventure

This is number 1 for a very good reason.  One of the greatest things we love, and hope you do too, is the fact that any visit to our beautiful Borneo is not just another ‘trip’ – it will be unique to you.  We have people coming time and time again with us here are Borneo Travel, after that unique adventure that is so different from their previous visit.  Borneo offers you so much more than just beaches to relax upon.  It offers excitement, variety, diversity and more.  Borneo can give you memories that really do last a lifetime – but more than that.  We help you to create those memories that are unique to you and your travels.  Our itineraries are made with you in mind but also taking into consideration the views and wishes of past travellers that have come before you and will, of course, return too.  With our 35 years in this industry – we are still around for a reason!

2 – You are NOT Eco-Friendly

Here at Borneo Travel and in Borneo as a whole, we are proud of our ability to work in an eco-friendly way.  We encourage and plead with any visitors to uphold our strong beliefs in the need to secure this habit, the wildlife and the ways in which we live – our culture – for generations to come.  If this is something that you will find difficult to abide by then maybe Borneo is not for you?  For many years there have been problems across the world with increased tourism that is not done so in an ethical or moral way – getting rid of jungle, habitats and more to make way for those tourists.  We are different – or at least we try hard to be.  So, join us in that mission and you’re welcomed with open arms!  Many of our visitors do partake or at least engage in this philosophy which really does help us to maintain this beautiful land.

3 – You are NOT a Fan of Wildlife

Sorry but Borneo is full of wildlife, from the famous Orangutans to the Pygmy Elephants.  Of course, we can’t guarantee you will see animals in the wild, but Borneo has some amazing ways to see the wildlife at its best – when it is truly wild.  We also have some amazing sanctuaries that work hard to protect all the species, including the endangered ones.  Borneo is home to some amazing animals which we love dearly and try our best to protect, hence another reason why the ‘eco-friendly’ part of our post and ethos is so important.  We know that wildlife is not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’ but we really want you to see what Borneo is all about, how the wildlife lives alongside the human population and how this can be an amazing part of your Borneo travel experiences and holiday/vacation.

4 – You JUST Want to Relax

Okay – so we admit that Borneo, of course, offers the ‘relaxing’ part of any itinerary – if that’s what you want!  There are plenty of holiday companies out there that offer this too, the same standard trips that you can take time out and ‘relax’ to your hearts content……but what about adventure?  How does cycling around islands, taking in wildlife, mountains….meeting the true locals or diving in the beautiful waters off the coast sound?  Are you coming to do something you can do in any other part of the world or are you coming to Borneo to do something that you will want to talk about when back home?  Something that will make you want to come back for more……adventure.  There will always be time to read that book in between adventures…..maybe!

5 – You are NOT open to Cultural Experiences

This is last on our list as we know that not everyone is open to new experiences or socialising with the local population be we love to meet you!  We love to share what it means to be living in this wonderful landscape, to be part of this amazing place you want to visit.  The majority of people that have booked with Borneo Travel time and time again do so because they not only love visiting Borneo but they love the people too.  Real people, sharing real experiences about their lives in Borneo.  Real villagers that strive to live in what can be a difficult environment at times but that hold on to their cultural beliefs whilst being open to visitors and their beliefs and culture too.  You will find us to be friendly and engaging, honest and hard-working – welcoming you with open arms and sharing what it is to live in Borneo.

So, I hope, after reading this small post, you can see why people come to Borneo and why some people are best suited to…let’s say alternative……holidays.  We don’t promise you the earth…..but we do promise you that it’s a beautiful part of it.  We have itineraries to suit all needs and can certainly talk to you about different ideas should you not be sure what you want or not see it on our website.  You will find us to be open and friendly and more than just a travel company – we actually live and breathe Borneo and that’s what makes us different.

Come and travel to Borneo and see for yourself what it’s all about!

Borneo Holidays – More than just Orangutans!


Holidays to and around beautiful Borneo can offer a life changing experience for all that partake in the rich history and diversity of this amazing island, situated In Southeast Asia’s Malay Archipelago.

The Boneo orangutans are, of course, a major part of the islands all tourists itineraries and holidays “must do” list but there is so much more to see, do and explore.

So what can a Borneo holiday offer?

Any holiday in Borneo is going to be special and here at Borneo Travel we want to show you what else you could enjoy.

  • You could take-in the views via a wonderful cycling experience, explore the island in your own time with one of the many cycling tours we offer around Borneo – See HERE for more on this.
  • You could enjoy a diving excursion through one of the many locations we can facilitate, including Sipadan, Kapalai Island and Lankayan Island – See HERE for more on these amazing diving experiences.
  • You could go trekking along the padi fields of Borneo or through the jungle, exploring the flora and fauna and, of course, glimpse an orangutan too! Take a look HERE for more about our trekking opportunities.

Okay – so we said that Borneo holidays are more than ‘just orangutans’ but let’s face it, they are an extremely important part of the rich and diverse nature of Borneo and, unfortunately, a species that is under threat.  That’s why our eco-tourism conservation policy and Orangutan Quest Trip are fully supportive of every measure that is in place to conserve and protect this wonderful, beautiful species.  You can take a look at what the International Animal Rescue team is doing to protect these species right HERE as well as our own Wildlife Tour information HERE.

So have we whetted your appetite for that Borneo dream holiday?  If so, why not get in contact with us using this link CONTACT and start to make that Borneo holiday a reality!

Cycling Holidays BorneoCycling holidays in Borneo offer a brilliant way to explore the island. You’ll cover more distance than on foot, and you don’t have to be a pro cyclist to enjoy the mountain biking tours within the area.

Borneo is an island rich in wildlife and natural beauty, with much of the island left undisturbed.

A cycling tour will take you through the beautiful countryside, mountains and beaches of the island – with plenty of stops along the way to relax on the beach or perhaps enjoy a swim in the crystal clear mountain rivers which flow from the mighty Mt. Kinabalu.

It’s likely that along the way you’ll see a variety of animal species which are native to the area along the way. Commonly spotted in Borneo is the Proboscis monkey.

These interesting looking monkeys are unique to the island of Borneo and are now classed as an endangered species.

If you’re lucky, you may be able to catch a glimpse of the almost-extinct Borneo Pygmy elephants. These elephants are approximately a fifth smaller than Indian elephants (and are incredibly cute to look at!).

Borneo is also renowned for its orang-utans. These critically endangered primates can only be found within the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra.

Their species is threatened by poachers and the continual destruction of their natural habitats, and so to see them in the wild living freely as they should be is an incredible experience.

Hundreds of turtles can also be found on the coastline of Borneo, as well as the whale shark which is the largest known fish species – spanning up to 12 metres in length.

Whilst you don’t need to be an excellent cyclist to go on a Borneo cycling holiday, it’s advisable that you train beforehand as you’ll be cycling in high temperatures which can become fairly challenging.

Retrace the poignant route of Sandakan death marches with the renowned World War II historian, Lynette Silver and Sabah’s Borneo trekking specialist, Tham Yau Kong during your stay in Borneo.

The original Death March route was left to become overgrown and inaccessible for many years after the atrocities occurred, however in 2005 Tham and Lynette were able to identity the route and make it accessible for visitors to understand what the Australian and British servicemen saw along this once deadly route during 1945.

Their knowledge of the track and its history has allowed them to create a tour which is insightful and respectable. With an impressive track record for safety, the TYK tour team have escorted hundreds of visitors safely along the route.

A TYK tour also means that you will be supporting the community of Sabah, as the team is solely comprised of locals.

Borneo Mountain Trekking

The harrowing history of the Death March began in 1942, when Australian and British POWs who had previously been captured during the Battle of Singapore were shipped over to North Borneo to construct camps and an airstrip at Sandakan.

The prisoners were often forced to work at gunpoint, with very little medical attention and food supplies. The conditions continued to deteriorate, especially after the commander and officer prisoners were transferred to Kuching.

Rations were further reduced, yet the airstrip was finally constructed in 1945. The remaining prisoners were then to be moved to the town of Ranau, 160 miles away and into the Borneo mountains.

The first marches between Sandakan and Ranau occurred between the months of January and March in 1945. Around 450 of the most able prisoners were selected by Japanese soldiers to carry supplies for the Japanese battalions who were relocating to the coast.

borneo trekkingDespite the route taking at least 9 days to complete, the prisoners were only given enough food supplies for four days of walking. Those who collapsed from exhaustion were left to die on the route, or killed. The ones which survived the journey were then ordered to construct a camp.

The second marches took place a few months after the first, with more POWs being forced to complete the journey. This march lasted 26 days, and the prisoners were in a worse state than the first march.

With very few rations, the prisoners were forced to forage for food. Out of the 536 prisoners, unfortunately only 183 managed to complete the journey.

A final march took place in the June of 1945. By this time, the remaining prisoners were so emaciated that it was impossible for them to travel the distance of the journey.

Six Australian servicemen were able to escape the marches, being cared for by the local people until they were rescued at the end of the war. It is because of these sole survivors of the marches that evidence was able to be given towards the Japanese commanders who caused these war crimes to occur.

The trek which visitors will be following will cover the last 140 km of the journey, across the mountains. Accommodation and meals will be provided for you along the way, and you will also be given information prior to the trek on the fitness levels recommended for this often challenging Borneo mountain trekking journey.

There is a new picturesque trail to the summit of Mt. Kinabalu, the Ranau Trail. The new trail will take climbers from Panar Laban (previously known as Laban Rata) at 3,272m to Sayat Sayat (3,668m) then continue on to the summit trail to Low’s Peak at 4,095m. The new trail may be more challenging than the previous trail, but climbers will be rewarded with breathtaking views along the way.

Important notice : Mt. Kinabalu is a popular destination on Borneo holidays, visitors who wish to climb Mount Kinabalu are advised to make reservations 6 months in advance to avoid disappointment. The number of climbers is limited to 135 per day.