Begin the day with a flight to Sandakan, where you will be transferred to Sepilok. Spend the morning at the Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre before also stopping at the Sun Bear Centre. Later, continue to the Kinabatangan River where you will arrive at your lodge. Take a river cruise at dusk to experience the local wildlife at night. Overnight stay at your lodge by the Kinabatangan.
Meal plan: Breakfast, lunch & dinner
The Sun Bear Centre is a rescue and rehabilitation facility in Sabah. Malayan sun bears, only found in Southeast Asia, are suffering from the growing pressures of forest degradation and illegal hunting. This centre aims to preserve the endangered species - creating large forest enclosures to house injured and orphaned sun bears in an effort to replicate the natural environment - facilitating their later rehabilitation back into the wild.
In the past, the town of Sandakan was populated with traders from all over the world - Dutch, Arabs, Indians - as well as Chinese planters. However, following its destruction by the British in World War 2, it has since had to rebuild itself. It has achieved this with the support of an ever growing timber trade and, later, the palm-oil industry. Today this port is Sabah's second largest town, boasts excellent seafood especially along its waterfront and its bay is dotted with Chinese fishing trawlers.
Sepilok Forest Reserve & Orangutan Sanctuary occupies an area of 16 square miles, consisting of an orangutan sanctuary and mangrove trails. Most well known for its orangutan sanctuary, founded in 1964, its primary aim was to rehabilitate orphaned and confiscated orangutans. Located on the edge of the Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve, this sanctuary is now home to somewhere between 60 and 80 wild and 25 young orphaned orangutans. Orangutans are fed the same meal every day in a bid to encourage them to venture out on their own in search of variety, a tactic that has proved very successful.
At a length of 560 km, the Kinabatangan River is the second longest river in Malaysia. The river and its banks are renowned for its extraordinary wildlife including macaques, elephants, monitor lizards, and of course the unique proboscis monkeys with their harems of wives. It also boasts a diverse birdlife including rhinoceros hornbills and blue-banded kingfishers. Furthermore you can find limestone caves, swamp forests and salty mangroves along its vast length. A boatride on the river is a special highlight of Borneo.