Sabah Adventure

Trip Code: TMSC

Why we love it

Discover the natural and historical beauty of northern section of Borneo in the Malaysian state of Sabah, and understand why this one of the original and best-selling Intrepid Adventures., Climb Mt Kinabalu – the literal pinnacle of all treks in South East Asia – with local guides whose families have trekked the mountain for generations, witnessing a stunning sunrise after a morning hike., Spend time getting to know the unique wildlife of Borneo at conservation sanctuaries for orangutans, proboscis monkeys and sun bears., Witness the special life cycle of sea turtles coming ashore on Turtle Island to lay their eggs on the beach, with the hatchlings making a dash down the beach to their new life., Cruise down the Kinabatangan River and search for wildlife in this rich and unique jungle ecosystem – if you’re lucky, you may spot wild pygmy elephants!

Is this trip right for me?

Climbing Mt Kinabalu is a challenge that shouldn't be underestimated. Elevation is above 2800 m and we rise early to summit in the dark in order to be able to witness the sunrise. It's an unforgettable climb for sure, but you'll need to have an excellent level of fitness to complete it. Read our blog here for everything you need to know about climbing Mt Kinabalu: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/guide-to-climbing-mt-kinabalu-borneo/

You'll need to pack some specific items for this trip – check the ‘Packing List’ in the Essential Trip Information for more details so you are prepared.

You will get to experience a wide range of accommodation types on this trip – shared dormitory rooms in hostels, a homestay, resort, jungle lodge and hotels. Some may be a little more basic than our standard hotels, but their unique locations and close proximity to nature is what makes them special.

This trip has a focus on nature and wildlife – definitely one for those who enjoy being outdoors. If you are looking for a trip to Borneo with a bit more comfort and without climbing Mt Kinabalu, check out Intrepid’s Classic Borneo adventure – search trip code TMKB on our website for more information.

Important information

1. Please provide passport details at time of booking, as these are essential for booking services on this trip including your Mt Kinabalu permit.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Days 2 (Dusun Village), Day 3 and 4 (Mt Kinabalu), Days 5-6 (Poring Hot Springs), Day 9 (Turtle Island) where you will be in shared accommodation and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
3. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest information on travelling in Eastern Sabah before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary.
4. Please check and monitor for any entry requirements update through this website:https://covidprotocol.moh.gov.my/. You'll be required to take a test within 24 hours after arrival, even if you'll transit in Kuala Lumpur for your flight. You'll need to leave enough time for the test result to return if you are transitting through Kuala Lumpur International Airport, so please check with your airline for the best approach. We highly recommend finish booster shot before travelling as Malaysia applies different quarantine measures for travellers when there's a positive case or a close contact, depending on their vaccines, vaccination status and age. You'll find out which category you belong to when you verify your vaccination on their official portal.
5. Please note that a rapid antigen test is required for climbing Mt Kinabalu. This can easily be organized locally at a cost about 2 USD per test, or you may bring one from home.

What to bring/pack

What you need to bring will vary according to when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short distances. As well as your underwear, toothbrush and other items you always need to pack for travel, below are some items that you specifically need for this trip., LAUNDRY- there will be limited laundry facilities on this trip. We recommend you take a few set of clothes to wear for times when you don’t have access to a laundry.

LOCAL DRESS
Malaysia is a liberal Muslim country, and many Malaysian women do not wear headscarves. However, Malaysia is very conservative when compared with standards you may be accustomed to at home, and you should dress accordingly. As a general guideline, shoulders, cleavage and knees should be covered when travelling in Borneo except when on the beach. Wearing skimpy clothing is considered disrespectful to local culture at many of the small local communities we visit.

ESSENTIALS
- T-Shirts/cotton shirts
- Long-sleeved top (for evenings when mosquitoes are out)
- Long trousers/long skirt/shorts (Denim not recommended due to humidity – cotton or quick drying clothes are better)
- Walking shoes or hiking boots with a good grip
- Sandals/flip flops
- Sun protection – hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, lip balm
- Insect repellent
- Small to medium size day backpack (for overnight trips at Mt KInabalu and Turtle Island)
- Head torch (a head torch is best for when you are climbing the summit of Mt Kinabalu)
- Waterproof jacket
- Warm hat and waterproof gloves
- Warm layers (While climbing Mt Kinabalu it’s important to note that temperatures can drop to below freezing, so make sure you pack several layers that can be added/removed as you ascend/descend)
- Waterproof bag cover or plastic bags
- Swimming costume

You need to bring your main piece of luggage as well as a small to medium backpack for overnight trips (30-35 litres/8-9 gallons) that include Mt Kinabalu and Turtle Island. In this you will need to carry a change of clothes, head torch for trekking, toiletries, warm clothes and any other essentials. While trekking, you leave your main piece of luggage at a central point and return following the trek.

RECOMMENDED
- Personal medical kit. Your guide will carry a large kit but we recommend you carry items such as, mild pain killers, adhesive bandages and electrolytes.
- Camera with spare batteries/charger
- Electrical travel adaptor plug
- Hand sanitizer
- Water bottle – some hotels may have filtered drinking water to refill your bottle.
- Money belt or pouch
- Water purification tablets
- Backpack or bag with shoulder strap – rather than wheelie bags

OPTIONAL
- A good book, a journal and music player
- Playing cards
- Travel washing line and Bio-degradable washing detergent

We do not allow the use of video cameras when staying in the villages as it can be perceived by the local people as highly obtrusive.

MORE!
If you need some further tips for packing, you can always check out our ultimate packing list., https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, WATER BOTTLE
Please bring your own water bottle to refill along the way. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please use the water dispensers which are provided on some of our vehicles and at some of our accommodation. Your leader will advise whether tap water is safe to drink in your destination, if it is you can simply refill with tap water. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day.

Physical rating

4

The Mt Kinabalu climb is quite challenging so the fitter you are the more enjoyable the experience will be. We recommend that you undertake regular aerobic exercise in the weeks before you travel, particularly if you are not in the habit of regular exercise. Walking, jogging, swimming or riding a bike are all good ways to increase your aerobic fitness, which will allow you to enjoy the trek to its fullest. Please note for those that do not wish to climb Mt Kinabalu you are not obliged to, it is an option to have accommodation arranged and stay at the base of Kinabalu at Park Headquarters. Please advise your agent at the time of booking if you do not wish to climb Mt Kinabalu so that the appropriate arrangements can be made.

Joining your group

Dreamtel Hotel - Kota Kinabalu, 5 Jalan Padang, Kota Kinabalu, 88000, MALAYSIA, Phone: +(60) 88240333

Centrally located in down-town Kota Kinabalu, rooms are equipped with private en suite, TV, AC, phone, in room safe, tea/coffee making facilities, the hotel also provides a restaurant, free wi-fi internet access & 24 hour front desk.

Joining instructions

Intrepid offer a pre arranged transfer service option. Enquire with your agent and advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your trip departure. If you have purchased an arrival transfer you will be met after exiting customs. Our representative will be holding a sign with your name on it.

At Kota Kinabalu Internal Airport If you have any problems and cannot locate our transfer representative on arrival (the driver is only able to wait for 1 hour past your scheduled arrival time) please go to the Airport Information counter (located on the same floor at arrivals) and ask them to call our transfer operator Vision Transport on +60 16 818 6890 or +60 19 818 6890 . If you flight is delayed or you have been put on a different flight number please call our local operator in advance to let them know.

If you want to take a taxi on arrival please go to the taxi service counter – here the rate is a set rate of 35 MYR and they will issue a voucher to use with the taxi’s parked outside. If you arrive between 12am – 6am expect to pay a 50% surcharge

Normal check in time at the hotel is after 2pm

Finishing your trip

Sepilok Jungle Resort, Jalan Rambutan, Sepilok Mile 14,, Sepilok, 90723, MALAYSIA, Phone: +60 89533031

Located 17km from Sandakan Airport, rooms are equipped with private en suite, AC, tea/coffee making facilities, the resort also provides a restaurant, free wi-fi internet access & 10 hour front desk.(7.30am – 5.00 pm)

If you have a transfer to the Sandakan Airport your transfer driver will collect you from your Guesthouse 3 hours before your flight time. If your transfer has not arrived within 15minutes of the scheduled pickup time please ask the hotel / guesthouse reception to call our transfer operator Sepilok Tropical Wildlife Adventure on their 24 hour number on +6012 860 0866. Your group leader will reconfirm this with you before departing.

Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 8

Lunches included: 5

Dinners included: 5

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure.

Climate & seasonal information

Please note occasionally the summit trail will be closed due to strong winds or heavy rainfall. When this happens no trekkers will be able to summit. This is a safety measure and is enforced by Sabah Parks staff and is beyond Intrepid's control. This can happen at any time of the year including outside of the wet season.

CHINESE NEW YEAR:
An important 15 day festival for the Malaysian Chinese, based on the lunar calendar in January or February. In 2022, the Year of the Tiger begins from the 1st of February. In 2023, the Year of the Rabbit begins from the 22nd of January. This can be a busy time and some transport delays, shop closures and reduced opening hours at some sites may be expected, but there are also many fabulous festivals and rituals to observe during this time, so it's a great time to travel. Although we make all reasonable efforts to avoid disruption, a flexible approach from travellers is appreciated if choosing to travel during this time in Malaysia.

RAMADAN
The important month of Ramadan will be in progress 22 March - 20 April 2023 and 10 March to 08 April 2024, and the Eid ul-Fitr festival will be held directly at its conclusion for 3-4 days. Ramadan is a festival of sacrifice where the devout refrain from eating or drinking during daylight hours. During Ramadan, business hours are shortened, including opening hours at some tourist attractions. Alcohol is not permitted during daylight hours and many restaurants will be closed. While you should expect some delays and inconveniences during this period, the month is a fantastic opportunity to travel in a Muslim country and witness this unique period, particularly the nightly celebrations when the sun sets and the fast is broken. Please note that although the Eid ul-Fitr festival can also be a fascinating time to travel it's a period of national holiday. Most government offices and businesses will be closed and some tourist site opening hours may be affected.

In case of emergency

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time.

For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the number below.

Intrepid’s Local Operator: +60 13 881 5813

Accommodations

Please note some of the multishare/dormitory accommodation can be mixed gender.

Transportation


Privacy Preference Center