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Borneo & the Malaysian Peninsula
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Taking both the jungles and wildlife of Borneo and the colonial history and sizzling street food of the Malaysian Peninsula, this Small Group Journey with Exodus Travels is filled with heritage, nature and culture. Exploring the rivers and cities, you’ll look for orangutans, visit a tea plantation, trek the rainforest and chill out on the glorious beaches of this diverse country.
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Your Example Itinerary
Fly from the UK to Sepilok
Arrive in Sepilok, meet the rest of your group at your hotel and, if there’s time, set off on a night walk. The next day visit the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary, which rescues orphaned and captured orangutans, rehabilitates them and releases them back into the wild. You’ll visit at feeding time for the best chance of spotting one. Later, visit the Rainforest Discovery Centre, where you can walk along the canopy for a birds’ eye view of the jungle. You’ll also have the option to visit the Sunbear Conservation Centre.
Stop off at the Gomantong Caves on your way to Kinabatangan. Here you can watch the workers as the harvest the swift nests from high up in the caves (in season). Once in Kinabatangan, keep an eye out for pygmy elephants, orangutans, gibbons, proboscis monkeys and birds, as well as the vast array of trees and flowers that live here. The next day, take a wildlife cruise on the river (look out for crocodiles!) and explore an oxbow lake, before learning more about forest conservation efforts.
Kinabalu National Park
Kinabalu National Park is your next stop, where the looming peak of Mount Kinabalu (4,101m) towers above you. Take a walk along the lower slopes and admire the diverse plant life. Later, continue to Sabah Tea Plantation, where you’ll spend the night in a traditional longhouse made from bamboo. The next morning, watch the sunrise over Mount Kinabalu and learn more about tea harvesting and processing before continuing on to Kota Kinabalu.
Catch a flight from Kota Kinabalu to the Malaysian Peninsula and transfer to Malacca, a colonial town, boasting a mixture of Portuguese, British and Dutch architecture. The town is stuffed with antiques shops and restaurants, as well as various temples and a mosque, as well as Malaysia’s oldest functioning church. Explore the city by rickshaw and then try out some of the local Nyonya cuisine, a spicy and sour mixture of flavours.
Leaving Malacca behind, head for Malaysia’s vibrant capital, Kuala Lumpur, whose bright lights and towering skyscrapers are in stark contrast to the historic towns and national parks you’ve visited so far. Take a look around the Batu Caves, just outside the city, the National Monument, the National Mosque and the National Palace. Take the rest of the day to explore at your own pace – perhaps visit the Petronas Towers. The next day, enjoy a tasty food tour of the city.
Take the train to Butterworth and Penang, where you’ll stay in Georgetown, a World Heritage site. Georgetown is filled with tempting food to try, so spend your time sampling the different dishes. The next day, head for Fort Cornwallis, the site of the original British settlement, and Kek Lok Si, one of the largest Buddhist temples in Southeast Asia. Your afternoon is free to explore Penang Hill and the Botanical Gardens, or to enjoy a G&T at the Eastern and Oriental Hotel.
Hop on the ferry to Langkawi and ride the cable car for fantastic views over the island. The next day, you’re free to laze on the beach or try any of the myriad activities on offer. Choose from cycling, touring the mangroves, or taking part in a cooking class. Langkawi is actually about 100 islands surrounded by warm turquoise waters and pristine beaches, so there’s plenty here to enjoy and end your Malaysia adventure in style.
Depart Langkawi and return to the UK
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