Expedition Borneo

//Expedition Borneo

May 2019 Monthly Newsletter

Hi everyone! In this brand new post, get to know Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures and read about our activities in the May 2019 Monthly Newsletter. We have gathered a selection of special happenings for your reading pleasure as well as to showcase the beauty of Sabah and give you an insight on us as a company. This month, we welcome another adventure group from Denmark for their one-month Expedition Borneo program, our staff receives more quality training from our multi-award winning PADI Course Director Richard, further guidance for the work-for-career interns, a new and detailed food post on our blog, and unveiling the brand new Borneo Bird Identification Guide!

We are extremely excited about our brand new Borneo Bird Identification Guide! This is the work of our Company Directors Richard and Joanne Swann. After decades of being bird enthusiasts and avid photographers, they have collected a massive amount of bird photos that have been included in all the Borneo Bird Identification Guide! Our team here then added bite-sized information on each bird for even easier identification! We hope that the guide will help Twitchers/bird enthusiasts all over the world to identify the beautiful birds here in Borneo! We will continue to add more into the guide as time goes by and hope you will benefit from it!

New on the blog is our Top 15 Must Try Foods in Kota Kinabalu , you have to try these while visiting Sabah! The compiled list is a great blend of traditional and modern dishes enjoyed by all in Sabah! Of course, there are so many other dishes that are delicious but we can only fit 15 dishes this time! Remember to try these dishes out during your walkabouts in the city Kota Kinabalu, Borneo.

To download the newsletter, click here. For further info, you can contact us at +6012 866 1935 or email us at Contact Us.

May 2019 Monthly Newsletter

May 2019 Monthly Newsletter

May 2019 Monthly Newsletter2019-07-05T15:39:26+08:00

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari

The Longest River in Sabah & Malaysia

A Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari is a must when visiting Sabah. The Kinabatangan River is home to some of the most varied and easily accessible wildlife in all of South East Asia. The Kinabatangan is Sabah‘s longest river and the second longest in the whole of Malaysia. Rising from the eastern Witta Range of Sabah, the Kinabatangan River begins its 350 mile (563km) north-easterly course towards the Sulu Sea. About 20 oxbow lakes form part of the lower regions of the river. Created over time and separated from the main river as erosion and deposits of soil changed the river’s course, oxbow lakes are paradise for bird watchers.

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari

River People, or Orang Sungei, live in small settlements spread out along the river. It’s fascinating to see their self sufficient, peaceful homes fully operational, making a living through fishing the lakes and rivers and farming vegetables on its banks. They use the forests of the Kinabatangan as a source of building material, firewood food and medicine.

Ten Different Primates in One Location (11 including you)

WWF (formerly known as World Wildlife Fund and one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations) states that this area is one of only two known places on earth where 10 primate species can be found. Some of these include orang utan, proboscis monkey, macaques, maroon langur and Bornean gibbon, most of which are endemic to Borneo.

Bird lovers will find the bird watching incredible. All eight of Borneo’s hornbill species are seen regularly. Occasionally, 2 species of the gorgeous pitas can be spotted too, as well as the storm stork and the bizarre oriental darter also known as the snake bird. Of the 200 other species of birds recorded in the area, 8 of these are on Malaysia’s threatened bird species list.

The Lower Kinabatangan is also home to Bornean pygmy elephants, which are a recently discovered species and endemic to this region.

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari

Planning a Visit to Kinabatangan River?

Most of the wildlife lodges are concentrated around the Sukau area, which is very accessible and offers a wide range of facilities, here our partner is Sukau Rainforest Lodge, an award winning premium lodge with very comfortable accommodation & great food. We also like to travel slightly off the beaten track we have two wonderful lodges located in Kampung Bilit, a tiny village with about 150 inhabitants. The lodges offer very comfortable and clean accommodation and are considered a mid-range option. Bilit village is quiet with very little disturbance made to the surrounding forest and unlike Sukau you don’t have lodge after lodge along the river-bank. The staff at the lodges are mostly from Kampung Bilit and the guides are extremely knowledgeable about the local wildlife, plants and medicine, always ensuring that you are well informed on the diverse ecosystem that surrounds you. Last but not least is our preferred choice in Abai. A little further up-stream, again very quiet. Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort offers very comfortable accommodation in an ideal location.

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari

A recommended length of stay for a Kinabatangan River wildlife safari is 2 nights / 3 days. During this time you’re offered various riverboat safari trips all of about 2 hours duration, jungle night walks or night safari riverboat trips. Also offered within the package is a 3 hour hike, to one of the Oxbow Lakes. Our Kinabatangan River wildlife safari can can also be combined with trips to Turtle Island, Gomantong Caves, Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary and Labuk Bay.

On a recent 3D/2N visit to Bilit Adventure Lodge, our mid range partner we saw the following: Silvered Langur (adults and juveniles), Long Tail and Pig Tail Macaques, Proboscis monkeys (adults and juveniles), Orang Utan (mothers and babies) Saltwater Crocodiles, Bearded Pigs, Rhinoceros, Wrinkled and Asian Black Hornbills, Giant Moths, Lantern Bugs, Leaf Insects, Frogs, Scorpions, Field Millipedes and last but not least the Bornean Pygmy Elephants. On our birds-spotted list we’ve noted Scarlet Rumped Trogon, Garnet Pitta, White Rumped Shama, Dollorbird, Stork Billed and Blue Eared Kingfisher, Storm Stork, Jerdon’s Baza, Crested Serpent Eagle, Oriental Darter, Woodpeckers, Purple Heron and Egrets.

Contact our specialist team at Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures to tailor your perfect Kinabatangan River wildlife safari.

Kinabatangan River Wildlife Safari2018-12-16T08:07:48+08:00

Salt Trail Presentation and Briefing

After their trip in Sandakan the Expedition Borneo group from Denmark was briefed about their next destination, the Salt Trail.

Located within the confines of Crocker Range Park, the Salt Trail is a jungle trekking route originally used by local traders.

At regular intervals they journeyed to the markets of towns on Sabah’s west coast to barter with their fresh produce for notably salt, as well as other goods.

Although some of the easier accessible villages are connected by roads, the Salt Trails are still the only access route to some of the more remote villages in the park, particularly those near the upper part of the Papar river and near Tambunan.

For 4 days and 3 nights, the group will venture into the Salt Trail and experience nature like no other as well as catching glimpse into the life of the villagers there.

It is a challenging yet exciting adventure, as the environment and surroundings of the trail will put the group out of their comfort zone. However, the journey undeniably promises an amazing and unforgettable experience.

Before leaving, they were briefed about vital preparations and given tips for their trek at our Downbelow Adventure Lodge. What to bring, what to expect during the trek, wildlife they will encounter; our team made sure they were given enough information to ensure that they have an incredible time at the Salt Trail.

Salt Trail Presentation and Briefing2018-02-03T00:58:18+08:00

Zipline Action in Kota Kinabalu!

Our second expedition group of the year tried the Zipline action in Kota Kinabalu for an extra land day trip to explore more of the very best attractions in Sabah.

Seven young adventure group from Denmark tried zipline, wall climbing and rope-walking activities in between their adventure trip in Sabah.

One of our Downbelow Travel Centre experts, Lulu, escorted the group to the venue and assisted when necessary. There’s a long list of attractions in and around Kota Kinabalu and it is important that our travel and tour packages consist of other operations that also share our corporate responsibility to practice environmental friendly programs.

Get more information on how we can assist you to create a detailed itinerary for you and your group to explore Sabah!

Zipline Action in Kota Kinabalu!2016-04-29T01:24:56+08:00

Our Second Adventurers From Denmark Is Here!

For a 30-day Expedition Borneo Adventure Program, our second group from Denmark will be discovering the natural beauty of Sabah’s many attractions and under the safety-conscious supervision of our experienced staff throughout!

As part of their Expedition Borneo program, the group first visited our premier PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre on Gaya Island for a week of camping and learned to scuba dive.

Many more adventures follow to experience the best of Sabah, such as climbing to Low’s Peak on the iconic Mount Kinabalu, white water rafting the raging Padas River, wildlife safaris at the Kinabatangan River and jungle trekking historic forest trails.

Contact our Head Office to experience such an itinerary as our Danish adventurers’ on their Expedition Borneo program! We can create a program to suit your needs to explore exotic Sabah!

Our Second Adventurers From Denmark Is Here!2016-04-29T01:26:00+08:00

First AdventureDK Group on Expedition Borneo program Completes A Month of Adventure!

We hosted a farewell dinner as we said goodbye to our first Expedition Borneo group of 2016.

The group completed the one-month adventure program tailored by Downbelow where they experienced the best of Borneo.

They completed diving courses and became certified PADI Open Water Divers while camping in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, battled the white water of Padas River, enjoyed wildlife safari, met with Orang Utans, scaled the majestic Mount Kinabalu and trekked the tropical jungle of Borneo for 4 days 3 nights via the Salt Trail.

We are sad to see our adventurers’ travel to their next exciting destination, we are elated they have enjoyed their adventure in Sabah, Borneo!

Do you want your own Borneo adventures? Contact us and see what we can do for you and your group.

First AdventureDK Group on Expedition Borneo program Completes A Month of Adventure!2016-04-29T01:27:25+08:00

Ecotourism-focused activities in Sabah!

As part of their Expedition Borneo program, the Expedition Borneo group from Denmark (AdventureDK) visited Sandakan.

Sandakan is the second-largest city in Sabah after Kota Kinabalu and is an historical city, it served as the capital for the British North Borneo during colonial times.

While in Bilit Village in Sandakan, they enjoyed a friendly football match with the villagers, and cooked local cuisine. They made themselves Chicken Curry and Sweet & Sour River Prawns and loved it! Thanks to the host, Mrs. Madiah, they got to know Sabah’s rich culture and traditions! They contributed to a Conservation Project by donating trees and spent some time planting them along the Kinabatangan River. They wrote their names and the date on a plaque so that they can check on their tree’s progress throughout future visits.

Contact our Head Office to experience such an itinerary as our Danish adventurers’ on their Expedition Borneo program! One of our experienced staff can create a program to suit your needs to explore exotic Sabah!


Ecotourism-focused activities in Sabah!2018-02-03T00:58:18+08:00

Danish Adventurers Experienced Exotic Wildlife on Safari in Borneo

Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures specialise in adventure group travel offering a one month experience of Borneo. During this one month adventure, our guests spend a few nights staying on the Kinabatangan River.

The Kinabatangan River is Sabah’s longest river and the second longest in the whole of Malaysia. In addition to the birds, the river is home to 10 primates: Orang Utan, Proboscis Monkeys, Macaques, Maroon Langur and Bornean Gibbon; making this one of only 2 places known on earth that has 10 primates!

Our adventure groups from Denmark went on the Kinabatangan River cruise where they saw an Orang Utan resting in a tall tree, a large Crocodile, lots of Proboscis Monkeys, Silver Leaf Langurs, Wrinkled Hornbills, Pied Hornbills and Bushy Tail Hornbills. Some of them went for a forest night walk along the Kinabatangan River after dinner and saw a few types of Kingfishers sleeping on branches, Long Tail Macaques, Pig Tailed Macaques, lots of spiders and even a snake.

Contact one of our friendly and experienced staff of our Head Office to discuss an itinerary to experience the natural beauty of Sabah, Borneo

Danish Adventurers Experienced Exotic Wildlife on Safari in Borneo2016-04-29T01:29:59+08:00

Danish Adventurers Certified as Open Water/Advaned Open Water Divers!

For a 30-day adventure (Expedition Borneo program), a group from Denmark will be discovering the natural beauty of Sabah’s many attractions and under the safety-conscious supervision of our experienced staff throughout.

As part of their Expedition Borneo program, the group first spent a week at our premier PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre on Gaya Island and learned to scuba dive.

We’ve put up a huge camping tent that comfortably caters to more than 20 people right next to our premier PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre on Gaya Island in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park. While they camped and were in the good hands of our resident PADI Course Director Richard Swann and the rest of the Downbelow Instructors, they learned to scuba dive and were certified as PADI Open Water divers and some continued their education with the Advanced Open Water course. They also got a unique education on Project Aware – Sharks in Peril & Coral Reef Conservation.

More adventures will follow that involve the best of Sabah, such as white water rafting the raging Padas River, climbing to Low’s Peak on iconic Mount Kinabalu, wildlife safaris at the Kinabatangan River and jungle trekking historic forest trails! During all activities, our high standards of safety are regularly monitored and updated for our adventure groups’ enjoyment!

If you’re looking for group activities, be it team building, scuba diver training or environmental awareness, get in touch and let’s see how we can get your group camping on Gaya island.

Danish Adventurers Certified as Open Water/Advaned Open Water Divers!2018-02-03T00:58:18+08:00

First Adventure group of 2016 learns to SCUBA while camping in paradise!

Our first Danish Adventure Group in 2016 has started their month of fun with Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures. They will be staying at our beach house camp located at our premier PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park and will be taught the PADI Open Water Diver Course by our Pro Instructors.

Groups of young travelers from Denmark visit Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures every year to experience our 30-day “Expedition Borneo” program personalized for the group. It offers a unique educational approach through various activities of choice.

They will continue their adventure in Sabah with other activities such as , climbing Mount Kinabalu and meeting the wildlife of Borneo on the rivers of the Kinabatangan, jungle trekking the historic Salt Trails with many other exciting exploits in between. Along the way they will meet new people from many different cultures and make friends from around the world.

Contact one of our Sabah Travel Centre staff to create a detailed itinerary that is personalized to you and your group travelling to Kota Kinabalu and Sabah.

First Adventure group of 2016 learns to SCUBA while camping in paradise!2018-02-03T00:58:18+08:00