Wednesday, 12 November 2014


On the way back from Niah we told our driver to stop at Lambir Hills National Park, which sits right on the bus route back into Miri, about 30-40 minutes outside of town.  I fell asleep and when I woke we both realized that our driver hadn’t stopped at Lambir and I’m pretty certain he wasn’t going to turn around!!  Bugger!

After arriving back in Miri, I very nearly got on the next bus back out to Lambir but decided against it and had another night in town and made the trip the next day.  My camera crapped out on me that day, so no pictures, but it is a beautiful park with many trails, pools and waterfalls to visit, definitely an overnight stay kinda place. 

The perfect scenario being what we had tried to do, 1 night at Niah and then stop for a night at Lambir on the way back.  If you are really pushed for time it can be done as a day trip out of Miri.

It was then time to decide on how to get to Kota Kinabalu, with the bus taking you through Brunei twice, meaning 8 border in-outs to get through??!!  That did not sound in anyway fun and I opted for the easy and cheap way of flying up.  If I had of decided earlier my ticket would have only been $13 au, but at short notice cost me around $50. 

Kota Kinabalu was another place I really loved (as usual!) a great little seaside city that was also ‘just about the right size’.  Many islands to explore nearby and a busy enough metropolitan feel with all the modern necessities that westerner’s seem to crave so much!  I stayed at High Street Inn for around $23 au per night.

FINALLY, I could rent a scooter here!!

I did some exploring by bike for a couple of days around the area and checked out the town, another place I could seriously live in.  There are plenty of other travel options to the east of here for diving but that will have to wait for another trip, as I said, Borneo is just such a vast island to travel around, apparently the 3rd largest in the world?

Now it was time to head to Sandakan by bus for a brief night’s stay before starting a tour of the Kinabatangan River for 2 nights.  Not much to report from Sandakan, was just a night’s sleep at Hotel City View ($21 au) after another 7-8 hour bus journey, though there seems to be quite a few attractions around the place, simply more things for me to check out when I return!

A mini bus picked me, and a handful of other traveler’s, up the next morning just near my hotel and drove us out to our jungle lodge, the journey taking around 2-3 hours.  The group chatted on the way there and soon we arrived at our very own jungle hideaway paradise.

Nature Lodge Kinabatangan was absolutely amazing, we stayed in basic, yet comfortable dorms and smaller rooms, though private’s are available, right on the river’s edge surrounded by jungle.  It was one of the most scenic, tranquil places I have been, with a feeling of stepping into a completely lost world.

After a quick briefing we were away on our first river tour, heading upstream to view the naturally beautiful landscape and search for wildlife.  Plenty of monkey’s along the way, with the Proboscis being the draw card, found only on the island of Borneo.

We were to have 2 nights and 3 days here, with 2 afternoon river cruises and 2 morning ones and plenty of other activities in between.  The staff were great and the food spectacular, the kind of place on your travels that you will never forget. 

If we weren’t cruising the Kinabatangan River, we were night walking in the jungle to spot all sorts of creatures or daytime hiking to the oxbow lake, the name given for it’s shape, and learning about the different plant uses along the way. 

There were 3 meals a day included in the price, with beer available to purchase also, my trip costing me around 420 myr (roughly $180 au) and was totally worth it.  

We saw crocodiles, Proboscis and various other monkeys, wild pigs, monitor lizards right in camp, sleeping kingfisher’s, tarsier’s, civet cat’s (responsible for the gourmet coffee brewed from extracted beans from it’s faeces!), hornbills and various other birds.  

I met great people and had one of the most memorable experiences to date.  Do check out the Kinabatangan River and don’t hesitate to stay with the fantastic people at Nature Lodge.


Kingfisher and butterfly


My dorm

Proboscis Monkey's

Leaping from tree to tree