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Published: June 25th 2011
The idea of going to Borneo first came up when we realized that our first wedding anniversary was fast approaching. Our original plans had us in Australia at the time and we decided we wanted to go someplace exotic where we could get a little better value for our dollar. Kind of funny, because what we’ve found is that Borneo is actually pretty expensive compared to the rest of Asia and it’s quickly become a splurge-fest that is costing us about the same per day as Australia. We didn’t really know much about Borneo except that we wanted to see Orang-utans, but the more we read about it, the more we got excited about going.
We thought about a beach holiday on a secluded island resort, but instead decided to do something that would be unique to Borneo. So for our anniversary we spent 2 nights at the Borneo Rainforest Lodge in the Danum Valley. A luxurious resort set in the middle of gorgeous primary rainforest. Sounds romantic, and it was; but it was also quite active. On the day of our anniversary we went on 3 guided treks and a night safari drive. Not to mention that the temperature
was consistently above 30C and humidity was simply “high” (ie: 100%) regardless of the time of day. Consequently we were taking 3 showers a day just to cool off. As luck would have it we saw three orang-utans in the wild (the first one, a big male, was before we even checked in to our room). We also saw some interesting plants, birds, nocturnal animals, and lots of creepy-crawlies. One night we returned to our room after our night drive to find a giant huntsman spider guarding our door…yikes! One of our favourite treks took us to a waterfall with a natural “spa” pool complete with fish that nibble at your toes.
After our experience in the Danum Valley we moved on to another of Sabah’s big natural attractions, the Kinabatagan River. This time we stayed at a much more basic lodge (much more basic price as well) and went for several guided cruises on the river. By contrast to Danum Valley we saw much more wildlife on the river including proboscis monkeys, crocodiles, more orang-utans, and a rare pigmy elephant (smallest elephant in the world). On the other hand, the forest along the river has been heavily logged
Strange looking creatures they are.
and was just not comparable to the virgin rainforest of Danum Valley.
We had two different nature experiences and both were outstanding. The real question for this blog is: Can we still call it a honeymoon after our first anniversary?
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