Kinabatangan & Ox-Bow Lake (2D/1N)
Sabah's longest river. The greatest concentration of wildlife in Malaysia,
and possibly all of Borneo, can be found along the lower reaches of the Kinabatangan
River. The main river is lined with forest on fertile alluvial terraces. Behind
these are extensive, low-lying forested swamps which are usually water logged
and flooded during rainy periods. Within the swamps, scattered lakes and small
hills dot the landscape.
Various wildlife species abound here, including elephants and orang-utans.
The proboscis monkey (Nasalis larvatus), a species confined to Borneo, is most
readily seen and particularly abundant in the mangrove forests of the lower Kinabatangan.
They live in groups of several up to twenty or more and always sleep next to water.
These placid vegetarians can always be found among the mangrove forests along
the river banks, late afternoon before they retire for the night, or early in
the morning, before they move off in search of food.
The floodplain of the Kinabatangan River in Sabah is one of the few remaining
forested wetlands in Southeast Asia. It is home to the Asian elephant, as well
as to other primate species, including one of the largest orang utan populations
in Malaysia. The main conflict in the lower Kinabatangan floodplain is between
human and six species of animals; elephant, orang utan, wild boar, porcupine,
pig-tailed macaque and long-tailed macaque. All six of these species eat and damage
oil palms, fruit and crop tree, causing loss to plantations and also local residents.
Elephant movements along the border of existing plantations, village crop fields
and community residential areas in the lower Kinabatangan floodplain are currently
developing into major conflict sites. The threat of completely disrupting the
movement of these resident elephants is very real as the last open habitats, particularly
riverine forests, are rapidly being developed into oil palm plantations and community
Ox-bow lakes are also a common feature of the floodplain. These are large meanders
of the river that have been cut-off from the main channel due to a process of
erosion and deposition. Over time, these lakes too will be part of the floodplain
landscape as the lakes fill up with alluvial sediments and
Our itinerary is, in the early morning, to travel upriver and visit one of
the oxbow lakes teeming with bird life. Possibilities here include Stork-billed
and Blue-eared Kingfishers, Black-and-red Broadbill, White-chested Babbler, Storm's
Stork, Lesser and Gray-headed Fish-Eagles, Jerdon's Baza, three species of blue
flycatchers, Oriental Darter, and several barbets and hornbills. We trek the lush
riverine forest along the lake and then return to the lodge for breakfast.
In the afternoon, we venture on another river cruise down the Menanggul River
and along the Kinabatangan River. Return to the lodge at dusk. Overnight, Sukau
- Meet on arrival at Sandakan Airport or at Hotel Lobby.
- Depart for Gomantong Caves, journey will take approximately 2 hrs passing
by Oil Palm plantations and villages. On arrival, take a 10 minute walk to the
cave entrance of Simud Hitam. Explore these magnificent limestone caves, home
to millions of bats and swiflet birds. During the collection of the edible bird
nest, there will be a lot of workers climbing long rattan ladders to collect the
- After exploring the caves, depart to the village of Sukau by the banks of
the Kinabatangan River, the longest river in Sabah.
- Board boat for a 5 minute transfer to the Lodge. On arrival, check in &
lunch at the main hall.
- Depart for boat cruise along the Kinabatangan river to search for the odd
nose monkeys of Borneo - the Proboscis Monkeys and other wildlife.
- Return to the lodge for dinner.
- Overnight at the lodge by the banks of the Kinabatangan River.
( Lunch & Dinner )
- Depart for an early morning visit to the ox-bow lake to search for birds and
- Return to the lodge for breakfast.
- Check out and depart for Sandakan Airport or hotel in Sandakan. End of tour.
( Breakfast )
Things You Should Know / Bring / Wear
Suitable walking shoes / change of clothes, toiletries, etc. / hat / raincoat
/ insect repellent / mosquito oil / binoculars / camera / water proof bag for
camera / torchlight / personal items.