Wildlife of India & Borneo

India | Borneo (Malaysia)

Culture | Wildlife

Get under the skin of Asia's two best wildlife spots.

21 days £5,495 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
Dates & Prices

Intro

Explore two of the most iconic wildlife destinations in the world on this unique wildlife tour. Go in search of long snouted crocodiles (gharials) on a Chambal river safari. Look out for the majestic tiger in Ranthambore National Park and the illusive leopard amongst the Aravalli Hills in Bera, southern Rajasthan. Fly to Borneo and explore UNESCO-listed Mulu National Park take in its famous bat exodus. Continue to Sepilok to see endangered orangutan and sun bears. Cruise along the Kinabatangan River and spot rare pygmy elephants, proboscis monkeys and explore the unique Tabin Wildlife Reserve.

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

  • Crocodiles on the Chambal river safari.
  • Go tiger spotting in Ranthambore
  • Jodhpur’s blue buildings and magnificent forts
  • Boat ride on Lake Pichola in Udaipur
  • UNESCO-listed Mulu National Park
  • See the native orangutan in Sepilok Forest Reserve
  • Visit the port town of Sandakan
  • Take a boat on the Kinabatangan River

Places Visited

Delhi - Agra - Jarar - Chambal - Ranthambore National Park - Jodhpur - Bera - Mumbai - Udaipur - Kuching - Mulu National Park - Kota Kinabalu - Sandakan

What's Included

Arrival & departure transfers
Ground transport with driver
Domestic flights
Accommodation
Meals (refer to itinerary for meal plan)
English-speaking guides
Entrance fees to sites & parks
Itinerary & Map
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Day 1 : Arrive in Delhi

Arrive at Delhi airport, where you will be met by a Travel the Unknown representative and transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Delhi. 

Meal plan: Dinner

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Day 2 : Delhi

Spend the day on a walking tour of the city. Overnight in Delhi. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

India’s capital and a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines the ancient with the modern. Amidst the vast spiraling skyscrapers, the remnants of a bygone era in the form of its many monuments, stand as silent reminders of the region’s ancient legacy. The first impression for any visitor travelling in from the airport is of a specious, garden city, tree-lined with a number of beautiful parks.

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Day 3 : Delhi - Agra - Jarar

Depart Delhi and drive to Chambal Safari. Stop en route in Agra, where you will visit the Taj Mahal and Agra Fort. Overnight in Jarar. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

​The Taj Mahal is an immense mausoleum of white marble, built for Mumtaz Mahal, the wife of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. The construction of the tomb began in 1632 and employed more than 20,000 workers. Situated on the right bank of the Yamuna in a vast Mogul garden, this funerary monument, bounded by four isolated minarets, reigns with its octagonal structure capped by a bulbous dome through the criss-cross of open perspectives offered by alleys or basins of water. The materials were brought in from all over India and central Asia and white Makrana marble from Jodhpur. Precious stones for the inlay came from Baghdad, Punjab, Egypt, Russia, Golconda, China, Afghanistan, Ceylon, Indian Ocean and Persia. The unique Mughal style combines elements and styles of Persian, Central Asian and Islamic architecture.

Situated on the bank of the river Yamuna, the UNESCO World Heritage Agra Fort is an enormous, grand structure. The special feature of this fort is the 2.5km long and 21 metre-high circuitous wall of solid red sand stone in which each of the stones are closely bound by iron rings. The fort is surrounded by a deep moat. Some of the important buildings inside the fort are the Jahangiri Mahal, the Moti Masjid and Mena Bazaars.

Built in the early 16th century and formerly the capital of the mighty Mughals, Agra is famous for its beautiful medieval monuments. The city was pampered by the Mughals for more than two centuries, adorned with their beautiful artworks and striking architectural styles.The crowning jewel of Mughal architecture, the Taj Mahal (World Heritage Site) is one of the world’s most beautiful and beloved structures. 

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Day 4 : Chambal Safari

Embark on a boat safari in search of Gangetic dolphins. Spend the afternoon bird spotting with a local guide. Overnight in Jarar.

Meal plan: Breakfast

The Chambal Safari boatmen are exceptionally skilled at manoeuvring as close to the birds and animals as possible without disturbing them. Trained naturalists accompany you and provide expert information on the Chambal wildlife, which includes the endangered Chambal Gharial (long-nosed crocodile), marsh crocodiles, Gangetic dolphins and a host of exotic birdlife. 

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Day 5 : Jarar - Ranthambore

Spend the morning on a black buck safari. Later, depart Jarar and drive to Bhratpur, where you will catch the train to Ranthambore. Overnight in Ranthambore. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 6 : Ranthambore National Park

Spend the day exploring Ranthambore on a jeep safari. Overnight in Ranthambore. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Ranthambore National Park is one of the biggest and most renowned national park in Northern India. The park is located in the Sawai Madhopur district of southeastern Rajasthan, which is about 130 km from Jaipur. Being considered as one of the famous and former hunting grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur, today the Ranthambore National Park terrain is major wildlife tourist attraction spot that has pulled the attention of many wildlife photographers and lovers in this destination. Ranthambore is spread over an area of 1,334 sq km along with its nearby sanctuaries like - the Mansingh Sanctuary and the Kaila Devi Sanctuary.The park is majorly famous for its tigers and is one of the best locations in India to see the majestic predators in its natural habitat. The tigers can be easily spotted even during the day time busy at their daily quest- hunting and taking proper care of their young ones.

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Day 7 : Ranthambore

Enjoy another day spotting native species on a safari drive through Ranthambore National Park. Overnight in Ranthambore. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 8 : Ranthambore - Jodhpur - Bera

Depart early for the train station, where you will catch the train to Jodhpur. On arrival, visit the Mehrangarh Fort, before driving to Bera. Overnight in Bera. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Jodhpur is the second largest city in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is located 335 kilometres (208 mi) west from the state capital, Jaipur. It was formerly the seat of a princely state of the same name, the capital of the kingdom known as Marwar. Jodhpur is a popular tourist destination, featuring many palaces, forts and temples, set in the stark landscape of the Thar desert. The city is known as the Sun City for the bright, sunny weather it enjoys all year. It is also referred to as the "Blue City". Jodhpur lies near the geographic centre of Rajasthan state, which makes it a convenient base for travel in a region much frequented by tourists. The old city of Jodhpur is surrounded by a thick stone wall.

Mehrangarh Fort is situated 400 feet (122 m) above the city, and is enclosed by imposing thick walls. Inside its boundaries there are several palaces known for their intricate carvings and expansive courtyards. The imprints of cannonball hits by attacking armies of Jaipur can still be seen on the second gate. To the left of the fort is the 'chhatri' (umbrella) of Kirat Singh Soda, a soldier who fell on the spot defending the Mehrangarh fort. There are seven gates, which include Jayapol (victory) built by Maharaja Man Singh to commemorate his victories over the Jaipur and Bikaner armies. Fattehpol (victory) gate was built by Maharaja Ajit Singh to mark the defeat of the Mughals. The palm imprints upon these still attract much attention even today. The museum in Mehrangarh Fort is one of the most well-stocked museums in Rajasthan. In one section of the fort museum there is a selection of old royal palanquins, including the elaborate domed gilt Mahadol palanquin, which was won in a battle from the Governor of Gujarat in 1730. The museum exhibits the heritage of the Rathores in arms, costumes, paintings and decorated period rooms.


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Day 9 : Bera

Spend the day on jeep safari drives through Bera where, along with a local guide, you will search for the local leopard. Overnight in Bera. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Bera is a dusty village in Southern Rajasthan located amidst the Aravalli mountain range. Surrounded by bodies of water, it is famous for its leopard population.

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Day 10 : Bera - Mumbai

Enjoy a morning safari in Bera, before departing and travelling to Udaipur. Take a tour of the city. Later, transfer to the airport for your flight to Mumbai. Overnight in Mumbai. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Udaipur is often called ‘Venice of the East’ or the ‘City of Lakes’, and was founded by Maharana Udai Singh in 1559 AD. According to legend, Udai Singh was guided to establish his capital on the very spot that a holy man was meditating on near Pichola Lake. Surrounded by Aravali Ranges, forests and lakes, this place was less vulnerable to external invasion than Chittaurgarh. Maharana Udai Singh died in 1572 and was succeeded by Maharana Pratap, who valiantly defended Udaipur from Mughal attacks. Maharana Pratap is the most revered Rajput icon who gallantly fought the Mughals in the battle of Haldighati in 1576. Mewar continuously defied foreign invaders and has a history of bloody battles, until the British intervention in the 19th century, when a treaty was signed to protect Udaipur. Upon gaining independence, Udaipur merged with the union of India.

The Lake Palace (Jag Niwas), located in the middle of Pichola Lake, is the finest example of an architectural and cultural marvel. The grand City Palace on the banks of the lake, along with the Monsoon Palace (Sajjan Garh) on the hill above, enhances the beauty of this magnificent city. This is one of the largest palace complexes in the world. Udaipur is also the centre for performing arts, crafts and its famed miniature paintings. The Shilpgram festival is a great crowd-puller during New Year celebrations.


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Day 11 : Mumbai - Kuching (Borneo)

Spend the morning touring the city of Mumbai. Transfer to the airport for your flight to Kuching, Borneo.

Meal plan: Breakfast

Mumbai is the most populous city in India, the economical and commercial centre of the country and the home of Bollywood, the Hindi film industry. Mumbai's most famous site is the Gateway of India, a 26-metre-high arch built to commemorate the landing of King George V and Queen Mary in India in 1911. Other important landmarks include the Marine Drive boulevard, known as the 'Queen's Necklace' due to its resemblance to a pearl necklace when viewed at night from above; Dhobi Ghat, the world’s largest open air laundry; Crawford Market, the largest market in Mumbai,  named after  the first Municipal Commissioner of the city, Arthur Crawford; and the Victoria Terminus railway station, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The latter is famous for its blend of Gothic Revival and traditional Mughal architectural styles, and was built to commemorate Queen Victoria’s golden jubilee. In 1996 it was renamed to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, after the founder of the Maratha Empire.

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Day 12 : Kuching

Arrive into Kuching, where the rest of the day will be free to spend at your leisure. Overnight in Kuching. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

The state capital of Sarawak, Kuching, is often described as one of the most attractive cities in Southeast Asia. It is one of the most multiracial cities in Malaysia - north of the Sarawak River being predominantly Malay in character, whilst the south is largely populated by Chinese. The city has become a major food destination, and market stalls sell many varieties of Asian cuisine. Kuching's attractions include a picturesque port, the Rainforest World Music Festival, the historic Fort Marherita and the ornate Sarawak State Museum.

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Day 13 : Kuching - Mulu

Transfer to the airport for flight to Mulu National Park. Later that day you will have the opportunity to witness the natural phenomenon of the bat exodus. Overnight in Mulu.

Meal plan: Breakfast

Mulu National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site made up of mountains and rainforest, yet, its main attraction lies beneath the ground. Mulu’s cave networks have become the subject of much international interest - Deer Cave being the largest single cave passage in the world and the bat exodus from here, where millions of bats fly out of the cave and create swilling patterns in the sky, is a sight to behold. Mulu has become the site for many research projects, including that of the Royal Geographic Society.

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Day 14 : Mulu

Spend the day on safari drives through Mulu National Park with a local guide. Overnight in Mulu. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 15 : Mulu - Kota Kinabalu - Sepilok

Depart Mulu and travel to the airport, where you will fly to Sandakan, via Kota Kinabalu. On arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Sepilok. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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.

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Day 16 : Sepilok - Kinabatangan

Spend the morning in Sepilok, before transferring to Kinabatangan. Board a cruise and travel along the Kinabatangan River. Overnight in Kinabatangan. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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.

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Day 17 : Kinabatangan

Enjoy a full day touring the Kinabatangan region, searching for native wildlife along the banks of the river. Overnight in Kinabatangan. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 18 : Kinabatangan - Tabin

Travel on to Tabin Wildlife Reserve. The rest of the day will be free to spend at your leisure. Overnight in Tabin. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Tabin Wildlife Reserve was established in 1984, primarily in order to protect the largely endangered animal population who inhabit the forests, including the Pygmy Elephant and the Banteng, a species of wild cattle. Tabin is also the site of a rescue project for the Rhino, being home to the highest concentration of Sumatran Rhino in Borneo.

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Day 19 : Tabin

Spend a full day in Tabin Wildlife Reserve with a local guide. Overnight in Tabin. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 20 : Tabin - Kota Kinabalu

Take a morning safari drive through Tabin Wildlife Reserve, before later driving to Tawau airport for your flight to Kota Kinabalu. Overnight in Kota Kinabalu. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Kota Kinabalu, formerly known as Jesselton under British colonial rule, is now the capital of the state of Sabah. It is situated on the north-western coast of Borneo, lying between the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park and Mount Kinabalu. Kota Kinabalu was only granted city status in 2000, but it is fast becoming one of the largest urban regions in Malaysia.
 


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Day 21 : Departure

Transfer to the airport for departure flight. 

Meal plan: Breakfast

Extensions

The Golden Triangle (5 days)

Marvel at India's most incredible forts and palaces

Kolkata & Sunderbans (6 days)

Discover colonial Kolkata and the Sunderbans Tiger Reserve

Indian Odyssey (29 days)

Experience the best of North and South India

Hill stations to the Himalayas (20 days)

Travel through the Himalayan foothills to Ladakh

Rajasthan Explorer (15 days)

Fort cities, rural villages & camel fair

Textiles & Artisans of Gujarat & Rajasthan (16 days)

Nomadic tribes, traditional textiles, crafts & Mewar Festival

Classic Bhutan & Assam Cruise (18 days)

Experience Bhutan's rich culture, colonial Kolkata and rural life in Assam

Hidden Rajasthan (13 days)

Rural villages, grand forts & wildlife

Kerala & Karnataka Explorer (14 days)

Idyllic backwaters, tropical forests & ancient temple towns

Glimpse of India (11 days)

Golden Triangle, tigers & exotic Goa

Tribal Orissa & Chhattisgarh (14 days)

Distinct tribal cultures, unique temples & traditional textiles

Highlights of the Subcontinent (22 days)

Discover iconic sights of India, Nepal & Bhutan

Essential India & Sri Lanka (16 days)

India's Golden Triangle & the best of Sri Lanka.

Essential India & China (17 days)

Visit the two most populous countries on Earth.

Nagaland: Festival of the Headhunters (15 days)

Aoling Festival, wildlife in Assam & natural beauty of Manipur

Wildlife of India & Borneo (21 days)

Get under the skin of Asia's two best wildlife spots.

Wildlife of Madagascar, India & Borneo (29 days)

Spot lemurs, tigers & orangutans

Best of Bengal & Sikkim (14 days)

Colonial Kolkata, Darjeeling toy train & Buddhism

Glimpse of India & Nepal (16 days)

Golden Triangle and the Himalayas

Classic Kerala (10 days)

Tea, spices, backwaters & beaches

Kerala Calling (15 days)

Tropical mountains, tea & spice plantations, and backwaters

Assam & Nagaland Hornbill Festival (15 days)

Wildlife, tribes & rural life in Assam, Nagaland and Manipur

Taj, Tigers & Temples (14 days)

An intoxicating immersion into India's diversity

Spirit of South India (14 days)

Temple towns of Tamil Nadu to backwaters of Kerala

Karnataka Odyssey (14 days)

Coffee farms, wildlife and stone temples

Essential Rajasthan (10 days)

Discover the forts, palaces, villages and desert of Rajasthan

Tribes of North East India (14 days)

Remote tribal cultures in Arunachal Pradesh, Assam & Nagaland

Living Bridges of Meghalaya (7 days)

Waterfalls, hills and living bridges in North East India

Sacred India (14 days)

Uncover the religious diversity of India

Markha Valley Trek (12 days)

Set foot in Ladakh's hidden Himalayan valleys

Big Cats of India (14 days)

Experience the thrill of the Indian jungle ...

Kashmir and Ladakh Explorer (14 days)

Houseboats, Himalayas & Hemis Festival

Heart of India (14 days)

Lucknow, Varanasi & the wonders of Madhya Pradesh

Monks, Tribes & Rhinos (20 days)

Himalayan mountains, unseen tribes & amazing wildlife

Wildlife of North East India (14 days)

Diverse wildlife in Assam and the Sunderbans

Big Six of India (15 days)

Spot tigers, lions, leopards, buffalo, rhino & elephants

Delicacies of North India (14 days)

Discover the huge diversity of North India's cuisine

Taste of South India (15 days)

Experience the flavours and exotic spices of South India

Treasures of Gujarat (14 days)

Villages, temples, salt flats & the world's last Asiatic lions

Reviews

I thoroughly enjoyed my tailor made tour of northwestern and central India. Guides and accommodations were excellent and we saw as much of the area as could be packed into two weeks. I look forward to another tour with Travel the Unknown.

Mary Trubek (USA) , Tailormade India

What an excellent service! Rahul adapted, extended and improved our trip so many times without a qualm and we ended up with the trip of a lifetime. The destinations are unusual and interesting but everything has been checked out by the team and works brilliantly. I can`t wait to do another trip.

Penelope Smith , Assam & Nagaland Hornbill Festival, India

Another fantastic trip with this company. WE really managed to get off the beaten track and have seen some amazing sights. Well put together. We will travel again with Travel the Unknown

Hazel & James Frost , Tailormade India

This is our second fabulous trip with Travel The Unknown and we were not disappointed. Rajasthan's vibrant colours of turbans and saris, the noise, the spicy aromas, the silence in the hot air balloon over rural Jaipur, the majestic forts and palaces of ancient times, sighting leopards in the wild, all far exceeded our expectations and the heritage homes and hotels we stayed in, whilst being of high standard in every way, still had a friendly family touch. Thanks so much to Rahul and the team for such a memorable trip. Six weeks on and we still can't stop talking about it. I can't wait for the next one!

John & Christine Gregory , Tailormade India

Another great trip from Travel the Unknown. I would recommend this company to anyone who wants to move outside the boundaries of the usual tourist itinerary.

Catherine Crawford , Kashmir & Ladakh Explorer, India

Travel the Unknown put together an Itinerary in North East India - Living Root Bridges for me and a travelling companion. The accommodations, transportation, promptness of drivers, and knowledge of our guide was excellent. Easy booking from office and good pre trip information. Thanks TTU!

Christina Taft , Living Bridges of Meghalaya, India

Wow, India is incredible and Travel The Unknown put together a trip that really showed the diverse nature of the country and cultures, from the busy capital Delhi to the splendour of the Taj Mahal and then off the main tourist trek with an overnight sleeper train to Varanasi on the Ganges, the Hindu religious capital with bathing , washing and cremations alongside the river - an astonishing experience. We then moved to the forgotten North East corner where there is a tribal culture in an area seemingly cut off from the rest of India. Our destination was the Living Root Bridges which are unique and remote. Just want to go back to India for more...

Ken Sankey , Living Bridges of Meghalaya, India

Gotta say thanks to Travel The Unknown for organising my fascinating trip to a little-known area of the world. The scenery was fantastic, food was amazing, the guide was great and the living bridges were inspiring. An India not many get to see. Thanks again.

Stephen , Living Bridges of Meghalaya, India

I had been studying the Apatani Tribe for quite some time… I’m talking roughly 7 years! Travel The Unknown made my dreams come entirely true. They organized every aspect of my experience in the most minute detail. I have never felt such confidence in an agency nor worked with one more knowledgeable about their destination. Because of them and their kind efforts, I will continue to travel with Travel The Unknown for all future expeditions to this or similar regions. Thanks, Travel The Unknown, for everything!

Christian Noni , Tailormade North East India

As always Travel The Unknown were exceptional in organising my trip to India. The guides for Meghalaya and the Golden Triangle were friendly, extremely helpful and very informative. The tour was busy but never felt rushed; the combination of Meghalaya and Golden Triangle giving quite a varied perspective of India.

Terry Cooper , Living Bridges of Meghalaya

The Living Root Bridges trip was our first time with Travel the Unknown and we would have no hesitation from booking with them again.

Andria & John Palmer , Living Bridges of Meghalaya, India

This trip was my first time travelling with Travel The Unknown, but definitely not my last!

Lori Martin , Assam & Nagaland Hornbill Festival, India
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