EXO Travel
Exo Travel


Danum Valley / Sepilok / Kinabatangan River / Sandakan

For anyone who has ever dreamt of experiencing the raw natural wilderness of Borneo firsthand, this is the ultimate journey. Wander through primordial rainforests which have existed in their current state for more than 130 million years. Cruise on a riverboat through remote stretches of virgin rainforest in search of wildlife and head out under cover of darkness to experience the jungle’s mysterious night shift.

Exo Travel


Tour Highlights for Sabah Ultimate Wildlife
Explore Ancient Rainforests

Explore Ancient Rainforests

Wander one of earth’s oldest rainforests and hotspot for biodiversity.

Cruise Kinabatangan River

Cruise Kinabatangan River

Glide past remote unexplored stretches of rainforest on a riverboat.

Experience Tabin Wildlife Reserve

Experience Tabin Wildlife Reserve

Spot day and nocturnal wildlife in this premiere nature refuge

Exo Travel


Sabah Ultimate Wildlife - 9 Days / 8 Nights

DAY 1 - Arrival, Sandakan transfer to Hotel

Exo TravelSandakan Airport to Sepilok (17km) 20 min

After meeting with the guide and driver at Sandakan Airport, head by private minivan to Sandakan Memorial Park for a quick stopover to learn about Sabah’s fascinating role in WWII after walking through this very well maintained and beautifully landscaped park to the museum, hop back in the car and transfer to Sepilok.

After arriving in the late afternoon, there are plenty of optional activities available to fill the rest of the day. Ask the travel consultant to add one of these to the itinerary if desired. Alternatively, take some time to rest at the resort after checking in.

Overnight Sepilok

DAY 2 - Sepilok MealsMEALS [B]

Exo TravelSepilok Hotel to Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre: 5-minute walk

After breakfast in the morning, depart for Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre at 09:30 in time for the morning feeding session at 10:00 then head to the Sun Bear Conservation Centre nearby. This centre aims to increase awareness of this endearing, but little-known bear species – named after the crescent shaped patch of fur on their chests that resembles the rising sun.

Walk back to the hotel for lunch and afternoon at leisure.


Transfer 30mins from Sepilok with driver and guide to visit the Labuk Bay Proboscis Sanctuary for the afternoon feeding. (Viewing/Feeding times: Platform A: 09:30/14:30. Platform B: 11:30/16:30) This is a great location to see the local proboscis troop up-close (additional charges apply, please request further details and timings).

OPTIONAL: NIGHT WALK OF DISCOVERY TRAILS (18:00-20:00, Join in Tour) (Available Mon, Wed and Fridays only)

The jungle comes alive at night and this tour is a great opportunity to explore the often-missed nocturnal animals that inhabit these lush jungles. A local guide will point out a variety of insects and wildlife that hide under the cover of darkness, and then appear literally right before your eyes!

Overnight Sepilok (additional charges apply, please request further details and timings).

DAY 3 - Sepilok to Kinabatangan RiverMealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelKota Kinabalu Airport to Sandakan: 40mins (flight) Sandakan Airport to Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary (17KM): 25mins Sepilok to Sandakan Jetty (26km): 30mins Sandakan Jetty to Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort by boat: 1.5hrs Cruise times: PM – 16:00 Cruise duration will depend on wildlife spotting: approx. 2 hours

At 11:00 in the morning, transfer by private air-conditioned minivan with the guide to Sandakan Jetty to meet the boat and transfer to the Kinabatangan River. This two-hour boat journey passes by local villages and lush rainforest and provides excellent wildlife-spotting opportunities for those looking to gander at some of Borneo’s quirky inhabitants.

At 13:00, arrive back at the lodge, check in and enjoy lunch at leisure. Listen as the local guide conducts a briefing on the upcoming activities and advice on recommended gear. Time in the afternoon to relax.

Late in the afternoon, at 16:30, hop on a riverboat for a cruise up the Kinabatangan River to search for one of Borneo’s most iconic inhabitants -the proboscis monkeys which is endemic to the island. Other fauna is likely to be spotted in the Lower Kinabatangan Reserve including elephants, hornbills, gibbons, and many birds. Return to the lodge for dinner before mid-evening and take a stroll along the boardwalk while keeping eyes peeled for nocturnal animals and interesting insects.

Overnight at Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort 

DAY 4 - Kinabatangan MealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelCruise times: AM – 06:30, PM – 16:00. EVE – 20:00 Cruise duration will depend on wildlife spotting: approx. 2 hours

Rise early in the morning at 06:30 along with the birds and other animals of the jungle for an unforgettable river cruise to Kelenanap Oxbow Lake, a crescent shaped lake that formed when the river’s meander became so wide that it cut itself off. The stillness of the lake and relative protection provides a haven for animals and plants making for an ecosystem that’s completely distinct from that of the active river.

At 08:30, continue with a visit the local fishing village, Kampung Abai. Interact with local Orang Sungai, a river people who have long inhabited the area, and observe daily activities in the fishing village.

At 10:00, return to the resort for breakfast and spend the rest of the day is at leisure before heading out in the late afternoon to watch the river activities of many primate species that become active during this time. The afternoon is a particularly advantageous time to spot wildlife and the light is perfect for photography.

After a well-deserved and hearty dinner, head out again at 20:30 for an unforgettable night river safari to see some of the jungle’s nocturnal inhabitants.

Overnight at Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort

DAY 5 - Kinabatangan – Tabin Wildlife ReserveMealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelKinabatangan Wetlands Resort to Sukau Jetty by boat: 1hrs Sukau Jetty to Lahad Datu (Tabin Wildlife Reserve Office): up to 3hrs Lahad Datu to Tabin Wildlife Reserve: 1.5hrs

At 07:00 this morning, wake early for departure to Tabin Wildlife Reserve. Transfer one hour by boat to Sukau Jetty to pick up overland transportation to Lahad Datu. From Lahad Datu depart at 13:30 for an overland transfer to Tabin Wildlife Reserve.

Upon arrival, check into a charming wooden cottage within the reserve and take some time to freshen up or relax before heading out for a bit of exploration. In the afternoon enjoy a short trek through the jungle to Tabin’s mineral rich mud volcano. 

After dinner, enjoy a night walk to look out for nocturnal wildlife and birds. Remember to look up at the clear, dark sky of Tabin, identify the constellations above you and make a wish or two.

Overnight Tabin Wildlife Reserve

DAY 6 - Tabin Wildlife ReserveMealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Join the early morning bird walk to discover some of Tabin’s rich collection of almost 300 bird species. After breakfast, a drive to the core area stop over and climb up the birds watching tower continue along the way guide will show and explained to you the Orang Utan Release Centre before trekking through the lush green rainforest known for its rich diversity of plants and animal species to visit Lipad Waterfall. Take a dip in the natural pool and enjoy a natural and refreshing shower under the waterfall. Alternatively explore the surrounding vegetation or just relax.

In the afternoon, try out the Tabin Rainforest Foot Soak made with a natural blend of herbs, to relax tired muscles after long jungle treks. In the evening, a dusk drive to look out for more nocturnal wildlife & birds coming out to look for food during this time of the day.

After dinner, go for a night walk along the trail nearby the resort in search of sleeping birds, frog and nocturnal wildlife.

Please note: The Private In-house Guide will be for Day 1 and Day 2 only. If you would like a Private Guide for the morning on Day 3 please request at time of booking.  Day 3 departure will be transfer out only. Activities are subject to weather condition/departure time, and may be re-organised to best meet operational situation.

Overnight at Tabin Wildlife Resort

DAY 7 - Tabin Wildlife Reserve to Danum ValleyMealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelTabin Wildlife Reserve to Lahad Datu(Borneo Rainforest Lodge Office to pick up 4WD): 1.5hrs Lahad Datu to Borneo Rainforest Lodge by 4WD(100km): 2.5hrs (bumpy unsealed road)

After breakfast in the morning, transfer 1.5 hours to Lahad Datu.

From Lahad Datu depart for a join-in overland transfer into the thick virgin rainforest area of Danum Valley – one of the world’s most complex ecosystems. Around 30 km of this 85km journey is on sealed roads, and the last two hours are along a gravel road – so expect a bumpy but interesting ride!

On arrival at the Borneo Rainforest Lodge check in late afternoon and meet the in house nature guide to discuss the upcoming days schedule. Take the option to relax or a walk along the trails and the 130-metre-tall, 300-metre-long canopy walk, high up in the 130-million-year-old rainforest which is literally humming with jungle sounds.

After dinner, board one of the open-top 4WD vehicles for an exhilarating night spotlighting tour. Accompanied by a local guide who shines a light into the jungle looking for nocturnal animals, spot a range of nocturnal animals that inhabit reserve, from samba deer to civet cats, leopards, and a stunning array of insects and frogs.

Afterwards, return to the chalet.

Please Note: This program is based on in-house Private Nature Guide for 2 days only. Join in basis is also available. Having a Private Guide will allow for the program to be flexible

Overnight at Borneo Rainforest Lodge.

DAY 8 - Danum Valley MealsMEALS [B|L|D]


04:30 Early rise this morning before sunrise to transfer by 4WD 45 minutes to the Global Atmospheric Watch Tower in time for a majestic sunrise over Danum Valley Conservation Area. Danum Valley Study Centre houses the first Global Atmospheric Watch Station in South East Asia – the GAW Tower is part of the station and is accessible to all visitors coming to Danum Valley. The three-storey tower offers a bird’s eye view of Danum Valley, and it so happen that sunrise view from the tower is quite splendid. The GAW sunrise package includes a light breakfast with coffee and tea for guest to enjoy while soaking in the first light of dawn. (additional charges apply, please request further details and timings).

Depart Lodge: 04:30

Transfer times: 45 mins each way

Tour duration: 3 hours

At 09:00 this morning chorus of the jungle is a cacophony of sounds ranging from birds to primates, such as the gibbon. Taking a packed breakfast, travel to a 200-year-old Kadazandusun Burial Site, known as “Coffin Cliff”, along the 2.6km Viewpoint Trail. The end of this trail rewards with results in spectacular views over an ocean-like million-year-old jungle – a truly spectacular sight. The return journey includes a trip to waterfalls!

Return to the resort for lunch.

The rest of the afternoon is at leisure; however, there is a range of optional activities available, such as private trekking, tubing on the Danum River and specialised guided tours. There is also a series of tracks leading around the Canopy Walk are free to discover at will.

This evening, venture into the jungle on foot with a local guide. Quietly entering the jungle reveals a stunning array of wildlife, not to mention the variety and size of the many insects that flourish in the evening hours.

Overnight at Borneo Rainforest Lodge.

DAY 9 - Danum Valley MealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelDanum Valley to Lahad Datu Airport (96km) 2.5 hours

Breakfast and morning at leisure.

At noon, enjoy a scrumptious lunch before checking out and then transfer to Lahad Datu Airport at 13:30 to catch an onward flight. For those wish to leave earlier, depart from the lodge after an early breakfast for an earlier flight and lunch will be in Lahad Datu.

Flight Schedule: MH3023 LDU BKI 17:40 18:35

Exo Travel


Our services include:

  • Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room in selected hotel
  • Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
  • English speaking local guide (for other languages supplements apply) for transfer and tours
  • Private English-Speaking Nature Guide for Danum Valley and Tabin Wildlife Reserve for 3 days
  • Transfers with English speaking Driver cum Guide
  • Kinabatangan boat transfers and activities based on Join In basis with In-house English-Speaking Nature Guide
  • Transfers from Lahad Datu to Tabin Wildlife Reserve/Danum Valley based on join-in Scheduled Transfers. (PVT transfers can be requested at additional rate)

Our services do not include:

  • Other meals than mentioned
  • Other services than mentioned
  • International and Domestic Flights
  • Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature
  • Tips, Travel insurance (must include helicopter evacuation for Borneo)
  • Visa for Malaysia
  • Camera/video entrance fees
  • Tourism tax


  • Seasonal Surcharge and blackout dates may apply
  • Transfers between 2300 - 0700 hrs attract a midnight surcharge
  • Children aged between 2 and 12 years at the time of travel will receive a 15% discount off the Adult Price.
  • Legislation requires a Guide from 7+ people
  • Limited Availability at Danum Valley and Tabin during high season (Jul - Oct)
  • Non-Peak season: Start at 45 days
  • Borneo Rainforest Lodge and Tabin Wildlife Reserve – Unscheduled/Private transfers available at additional cost and depending on flight schedule at time of booking.
  • Please note that there are 2 room types at Tabin:
  • Riverside Chalets (twin share basis) are closer to the restaurant area
  • Hillside Chalets are located high up on the hillside – offering superior views, however with several steps to climb
  • Chalet locations are on Request Basis and subject to availability.
  • Standard Chalet (Jungle View) (09units): (310sqft) Rainforest view with a small outdoor deck.
  • Cancellation charges for Borneo Rainforest Lodge will apply and stated at quotation stage:
  • Peak season (01 Mar 18 - 31 April 18, 15 July 18 - 15 Oct 18 & 01Mar 19 - 31 Mar 19)
  • Start at 90 days of departure

Borneo Rainforest Lodge Scheduled Transfers

  • 09:30 Hrs : Dep LDU-BRL for MH3010 06:05 / 07:05 Flight
  • 13:30 Hrs : Dep BRL-LDU for MH3023 17:40 / 18:35 Flight

Tabin Wildlife Reserve:

  • 08:00 Hrs & 12:00 Hrs : Dep LDU-Tabin
  • 1330 Hrs: Dep Tabin - LHD

Daily drinking water and cold towels

Air-conditioned van 



Not quite right or still need some more inspiration? Take a look at the journeys below and discover what other people who liked this tour also looked at!

Exo travel get in touch


We love to talk travel. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch. We're here to help!

EXO Travel


For inspiring experiences, real-time updates, the latest trends or casual conversation, explore our social networks for all things travel.