Blogs from Kinabatangan, Sabah, Malaysia, Asia

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Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan June 18th 2018

I started my only full day at Kinabatangan with a sunrise cruise on the river. Unfortunately, some rather noisy dogs right outside my window during the night meant I hadn't slept as well as ideal. The morning cruise was nice at sunrise being cool enough with nice light over the river and a number of interesting birds like fish eagles and Storm's Stork. On the mammal front, the most interesting thing was a mother orangutan and youngster in some trees by the river. So it's very nice to see some properly wild orangutans now which I didn't really expect here but it's great to get them already. The cruises seem to generally last longer than advertised which is good and there's lots of cool stuff to see. After breakfast was a guided 'nature walk' in the ... read more
Water Monitor
Storm's Stork
Swiftlets in the Cave

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan June 17th 2018

I started with an early morning at the RDC for my last morning here and it was quite a cool morning. The metal of the canopy walkway was actually cold to the touch and covered in condensation which is much better than the situation in the afternoon of minor burns to the touch. There were quite a number of birds seen from the canopy walkway including some new for Borneo but seen on the Peninsula like Long-tailed Parakeet, some completely new like Thick-billed Green Pigeon and Golden-faces Barbet and other not new but still extremely impressive like Rhinoceros Hornbill. Also extremely cool to watch was the resident pair of Wallace's Hawk Eagles right by the tower and one of them dived down to the canopy and came up with a Plantain Squirrel which it flew with ... read more
Wallace's Hawk Eagle with Kill
Rhinoceros Hornbill
Bornean Pygmy Elephant

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan May 31st 2018

Budicek na 5.30 a hor sa do restiky. Tu ja, a americka rodinka a druhy guide. Presne na minutu vyrazame o 6.00. Rieka je este trochu zahalena do hmly ale ta sa postupne rozpada. Dnes to vyzera na dazd. To ako keby zvierata citili a dlhu dobu nic. Sem tam par vtakov ale inak nic. Guide je dost slaby, moc toho nerozprava a ani moc nehlada zverinu. Ked sa ho nieco mlady amik pyta odpoveda nejednoznacne, slaba ang. Bocnym tokom prichadzame k jazeru kde je kopa plavajucich kvetin. Maju pekne fialove sfarbenie. Avsak pre rieku su hrozbou. Motor je vypnuty, stebot vtakov. Su tu s nami este tri lode. Po relaxe nazad na ubytko. Opat nic moc zverina, len daky velky vtak. V restike hned zapadam na jedlo. Bohuzial bufetove ranajky sa nekonaju. Caj, kava, voda ... read more

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan May 30th 2018

V noci ozaj dost velka zima. Na ranajky si davam nudle s kuratom a caj. Caj predrazeny na to ze bol sackovy. Majitel mi vracia zalohu 10rm za kluc a mozem sa pustit do stopovania, je 7.50 a moj ciel je sukau. Vcera som si na papier napisal destinacie. Najskor dzim v ruke mestecko telupid, neskor to otacam na text 20km a neskor nasadzujem klobuk. Ludia z aut bud ignoruju, zamavaju, vyvaluju oci alebo spomalia aby si precitali napis. Nieco po polhodine konecne prve auto. Ale iba do 6km vzdialenej dedinky kundasang. Ziadne kundy tu vsak nevidim. Zastavil mi stredoskolsky ucitel, na prednej sedacke mal babo. Z dedinky je fajn vyhlad na kinabalu ale iba chvilu, mraky prichadzaju. Opat dlha cakacka, okolo 20.min a pri tom dost velka premavka. Chlapik ang nevi ale bere ma do ... read more

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan April 24th 2018

Saturday 21st April 2018 This morning we had to be up really early at 5.30 a.m. to pack our rucksacks and fly to Sandakan. We left the rucksacks at the hostel in Kota Kinabalu and just took our small backpacks with gear for three nights. The GRAB taxi picked us up at 6.30 a.m. and we got to the airport just after 7.00 a.m. in good time for departure at 8.30. By 9.30 we were landing in Sandakan and were met by our bus driver for the journey to the Sungai Kinabatangan (River Kinabatangan) about three hours’ drive away. The second pick up in Sandakan was for a young Latvian couple, who were extremely late (no apology to either us or the driver). They were nearly half an hour late and the anxious driver had to ... read more
Landing dock at the Nature Lodge
Cabin chez Cussell
Now we have a room with a view!

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan March 18th 2016

Bilit 16-18 March 2016 What a fantastic 3 days we had at the Bilit Adventure Lodge which is on the Kinabatangan River in Sabah, Malaysia. From the time we arrived to the time we departed, we did 4 river cruises which included 2 x 6.00am and 2 x 4.00pm cruises in aluminium boats. On all of these cruises our guide and driver were incredible spotters as you will see by the photos. On our morning cruises, we would come back at about 8.00am for breakfast. It was always cooler in the morning, so light, long sleeved was the go! The 1st night we were there, we went on a night-walk and spotted so many birds. Of course they were not flying at night so were easily photographed. We also saw several mouse deer which were too ... read more
Cooking at a local village and eating it for lunch (1)
Our tree planting effort (1)
Stork-billed Kingfisher (1)

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan October 25th 2015

After seeing the orang-utans and sun bears at sepilok, I was taken to the Sim Sim jetty in Sandakan for a boat journey to the Abai Jungle Lodge. The boat journey took just over an hour and was a bit choppy in parts. I arrived at the lodge and was taken to my room which I'd been warned was basic and had no air-con, I have to say I was really quite pleasantly surprised, the room was lovely and although there was no air-con there was a huge fan on the ceiling which did a lot in helping cool the room. The lodge is situated the river, surrounded by thick rainforest. I had a little time before my first boat ride up the river so walked round the jungle boardwalks around the lodge to see if ... read more
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Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan February 19th 2014

Having dropped off Amana at her departure terminal(who incidentally passed backpacker bootcamp with honors) we boarded a plane to Kota Kinabalu (kk). We were starving at the airport and having seen the amazing food on offer outside our departure terminal we thought we may be getting a culinary treat (i.e mc Donald's) once we had checked in-no such luck, we made do with a packet of crisps and a snack on the plane. Kk is the main city in Borneo and we were flying here for two reasons 1) to spend some time with my mum and dad (caz and col) who very nicely had decided to come and see us whilst we were away and also 2) to go and meet/see some oraguatans. After a reasonable wait at immigration (not sure why we needed another ... read more
Its a hard life for an Orangutan
Good skills - Yoga and banana eating combined
Baby Orangutan at the rehabilitation centre

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan February 12th 2014

While traipsing through ankle high mud fighting leeches in the Bornean rainforest we turned to each other and laughed "We're traipsing through ankle high mud fighting leeches in the Bornean rainforest!" Just the name of this island evokes images of adventure and exploration. Matt's book of choice for this trip was Alfred Russel Wallace's The Malay Archipelago in which he writes about his collecting trips to the islands that now make up New Guinea, Malaysia and Indonesia. He spent a lot of time observing and collecting the orangutans of Borneo. As has become part of our ritual before a safari we listed our hopes to one another: I wanted to see orangutans and pygmy elephants while Matt was keen on proboscis monkeys. Matt's friend Shane had been on a safari on the ... read more
Kinabalu River
Proboscis Monkey
Leeches

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Kinabatangan January 6th 2014

After starting my holiday vacation out with a few days in Melbourne (see "The Great Ocean Road" for background), I fly to Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia (on the island of Borneo) to meet up with Nimarta, who is already there and has been there for a few days now. We are staying with one of her friends from college, Alex, who happens to live right by the airport so it's quite convenient. They meet me at the airport and I hop in his truck, because everyone in Malaysia drives a pickup truck. It's about 10:00 at night, so it's late, but not to worry. Restaurants in Malaysia are open all night. We roll into a little seafood joint and it's packed with people eating dinner, or whatever you call a 10:00 meal. Nimarta had caught a fish ... read more
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