Borneo ENG

Day 11

We are enjoying another day in the rich tropical rainforest and can continue to discover both big and the small new species.

At Borneo there is one of the world's largest ants, the giant forest ant, at 28 mm. And did you know that there is a recently discovered new species of tree-living ant on Borneo, which in order to protect its colony against attackers, can explode? At an attack, it bends its body so heavily that it bursts and releases a poisonous fluid, thus sacrificing itself for the survival of the colony. We are also looking for some of the forest's camouflaged insects and of course the three-horned rhinoceros beetle, a beast of up to 11 cm with three big horns on the forehead.

In one of the smaller waterways in the woods we have the chance to experience some of Borneo's species of waving frogs. This very special group of frogs lives in the streams where the sound of the flowing water would override the frogs' calls. To get around this, the frogs have developed a way to wave their hind legs, exposing lighter skin between the toes, thus signaling the opposite sex. An exciting thing to experience, showing the frogs' adaptation to their specific environment!

In the evening we can keep an eye open for mouse deers, there is a chance to see these, the world's smallest deers, only 30 cm high! Check for reflections from eyes in the dark!

Accommodations: Danum Valley - Danum Valley Field Center Resthouse - 2 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: Enjoy nature around the small waters in the rainforest and be amazed to see how adapted many species are to their environment. Maybe we'll see a tarsier in the evening!

Day 12

Today we take a goodbye of beautiful Danum Valley for this time with a last morning walk in the woods. Perhaps we get a glimpse of one of the world's largest pheasants, bigger argus phase (great argus). The rooster with its beautiful armrests adorned with rows of eyelids and a clear blue head is a spectacular sight. Or perhaps a glimpse of the splendid, endemic bristlehead bornean. Unique to the species is its featherless head with short yellow brush-like committees, which gave the name its name. One of the forest's many special species with unique appearance.

After lunch we check out and drive to Lahad Datu Airport. Where we take a domestic flight at 16:00 back to Kota Kinabalu.

Accommodations: Kota Kinabalu - Dreamtel Hotel - 3 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To have breakfast in a company of chestnut brown leaf trees clinging to the trees outside the veranda.

Day 13

After breakfast there is time to pack our things together, take a last look in the city and prepare for the flight home. Transport to the airport and return home.

Meals included: Breakfast and lunch

The paradise snake can glide from tree branches by flattening its body. Photo: BNT.

Magic experiences in the rainforest! Luminous mushrooms are one of them. Photo: BNT.

A small stream through the rainforest in Danum Valley. Photo: BNT.

Marvel at the spectacular three-horned rhinoceros beetle, one of the giants in the insect world. Photo: BNT.

The western tarsier is one of Borneo's strangest species. It captures insects in the night that it detects with its giant eyes. Photo: LG.

Borneo bristlehead is another of Danum's beautiful endemics, a dream for many visitors to Borneo! Photo: LG.

Join us to Borneo!

About the destination

Follow us on a trip to Borneo and trek in beautiful rainforests, take a boat trip at dawn on a misty river or enjoy a cooling dip in a waterfall. Enjoy meeting everything from orangutans and elephants to carnivorous plants, flying lizards and colorful giant insects. Borneo is the world's third largest island, just over 1.5 times Sweden, and its location in the middle of the equator makes the island covered with lush rainforest. The temperature of the lowlands varies between 25-34 degrees Celsius, and the forests are constantly green due to the abundant rainfall, between 2000-4000 mm per year, the climate is therefore perfect for the development of rainforest. Borneo's rainforest is one of oldest in the world, it has existed for 140 million years, giving plant and animal life plenty of time to develop a variety of unique adaptations.

Borneo is one of 35 biological hotspots in the world, which means that Borneo is one of the most important areas for biodiversity. About 15,000 plant species have been found on Borneo, one third of which is found nowhere else on earth. For example, on a 52-hectare plot, 1175 species of trees were found, compared to all of Sweden with 45 species. Wildlife is equally impressive with more than 220 species of mammals and 420 species of birds. Borneo is also characterized by its varied topography and South-East Asia's highest mountain, Mount Kinabalu (4095 m), is also located here. It is fascinating to see how vegetation changes when you get up on higher altitude. Unlike Sweden where the tree line is at about 900 m, here there are trees up to 3300 m! The lowlands are dominated by a group of trees called dipterocarps, tall straight trees that characterize this rainforest. At higher altitudes, the forests change gradually and the trees grow lower and other species like tree ferns thrive. The higher-altitude forests are also daily swept in fog that benefit mosses, orchids and ferns. Mount Kinabalu, with its 608 fern species, has more species than all of Africa. The richness of orchids is even more impressive, more than 1200 species have been found on the mountain.


Welcome to contact us if you are interested in this tour!

Number of participants: Min 8, max 10

What is included:

  • All meals according to program
  • Private guide and private activities throughout
  • Two Swedish/English-speaking tour guides and two local guides
  • Accommodation in shared double room (single room can be booked against supplement)
  • Private land transfers in a/c vehicles
  • All entrance and camera fees
  • Domestic airfare, Lahad Datu - Kota Kinabalu

What is not included:

  • Flights to Kota Kinabalu, Borneo ToR
  • Travel insurance and cancellation insurance
  • All expenses of a personal nature, such as drinks, tipping and laundry.


Send an email with your contact information to

We will then come back with more information.

You are welcome to contact us if you have questions about the trip.

More information about terms and conditions and travel guarantee.

The flying animals of Borneo

The rainforests of Borneo are the world's tallest with trees that grow up to 90 meters! And Borneo's rainforests differ from those in Africa and the Amazon, they are more varied in height and have longer distances between the tall giant trees that rise high above the rainforest canopy. While the animals in other rainforests can easily travel between trees with the help of lianas and branches from nearby trees, the situation is completely different in the rainforests of Borneo. To travel from one tree to another in search of fruit or other food, you simply have to get down to the ground and then climb all the way up again. But 130 million years of evolution has favoured individuals who could take shortcuts around this. At Borneo, a number of animal groups have developed flying skills! There are flying squirrels, lizards, frogs and even flying snakes! They have developed membranes of skin between their limbs, skin between toes and even the ability to glide using winglike lateral extensions of skin on their ribs. Seeing a lizard jumping from a tree and then stretching out his ribs for gliding is a remarkable experience!

A real experience of the Bornean rainforests

Our ambition during the trip is that travelers will experience the rainforest for “real”. We will bring you to the best places and try to point out and describe what is Borneo's true biodiversity. We walk in the rainforest and look at everything from plants, insects, birds, reptiles and amphibians to the big mammals and explain how ecosystems work. We also do evening tours to experience a completely different world when the night animals wake up. Borneo has two seasons, the drier season with less rain between May to October and the rainier between November and April. We go during the drier season and during the part of the year when many trees bring fruit, which gives good opportunities to see fruit eating birds and mammals. Of course, we focus on trying to see Borneo's most spectacular species like orangutans, proboscis monkeys, hornbills and elephants, but we will also try to show parts of Borneo's lesser known species such as tarsiers, carnivorous plants and spectacular insects. We take you to Borneo's top destinations for wildlife where you have the chance to experience the species along with local guides who give you maximum chances of seeing Borneo's unique species.

All pictures on this page are taken by Bergman Nature Tours (BNT) or by our local guides (LG) so the photo opportunities are great!

Photo: BNT

Photo: BNT

Photo: BNT

Rivers and rainforests of Borneo

- a trip to the wild home of orangutans

Photo: BNT


Photo: BNT

Day 1

Welcome to Borneo! The adventure can start! We meet you at the airport and follow you to the hotel in Kota Kinabalu. In the afternoon there is time to take a shower and rest a little. If you have a lot of energy, we can recommend a visit to one of the city's markets. During the dinner, the tour guides present more about themselves and the program for the following days.

Accommodations: Kota Kinabalu - Dreamtel Hotel - 3 stars

Meals included: Lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To meet the other participants and your guides and feel the excitement rise for the coming adventure.

Day 2

After breakfast we head towards the western part of Kinabalu National Park on the mountain Gunung Kinabalu, the highest mountain of Southeast Asia at 4095 meters. A two-hour bus ride takes us up to Sayap's forestry station, just over 1000 meters altitude, which was originally established to control illegal logging and hunting in the area. Sayap is a beautiful, lush place where we end up in the middle of untouched nature. The temperature is a pleasant 20-25 degrees with cooler nights. We spend the day walking along the trails and exploring small streams in the surrounding forest while searching for birds and other animals. Wildlife is exciting with a mix of highland and lowland species thanks to the altitude of the station. Sayap also has a high concentration of endemic species. Here we have the chance to see, among other things, three beautiful and special bird species found on Borneo, the so called Whiteheads trio, Whitehead's trogon, Whitehead's spider hunter and Whitehead's broadbill. In the evening, we enjoy the first night walk of the trip. In the light of the headlight we look for the endemic bird species like bornean frogmouth, beautiful amphibians and exciting reptiles. Also, over 30 species of night-active mammals have been observed.


Accommodation: Sayap - Sayap substation Camping - Camping in tent, shared toilet and shower.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To see one of Borneo's endemic bird species, why not the incredibly beautiful Whitehead's trogon!


Day 3

We wake up early when the forest animals and birds wakes up to enjoy all the sounds of the morning. Sayap is an exciting area with many endemic bird species, so the goal of this day is to find some of the species in the lush rainforest. One species to look for is the green broadbill, perhaps the greenest of the worlds birds! A challenge to get an eye on, but we will do our best to see it. After lunch, we continue exploring the area, we visit a beautiful waterfall where you can take a dip if you want or just enjoy the beauty. We also try to find some of the area's orchids, if we are lucky some of them show their beautiful flowers. Or why not one of the carnivorous plants found here, the pitcher plant, which attracts insects to drown in digestive fluid. One of nature's wonders! In the evening we take a trip with our headlights again and try to find new night-active species, maybe we'll also find some sleeping birds.

Accommodation: Sayap - Sayap substation Camping - Camping in tent, shared toilet and shower (cold). Washing in the nearby river is a wonderful alternative!

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To look down in a beautiful pitcher plant and see what it has caught.

Day 4

After breakfast we drive towards our second stop on the slopes of the majestic mountain Kinabalu. Beautiful views meet us when we arrive after about 3 hours to our accommodation located on a small hill between two lush valleys. Large tree ferns and misty valleys create a wonderful atmosphere and remind us of the ancient rainforests here at Borneo. This lodge is at a somewhat higher altitude, about 1500 meters, and the temperature is about 20 degrees. During the afternoon, we look for new species along the trails in the nearby forest. Kinabalu National Park is a very diverse area with more than 5000 plant species and more than 400 bird and mammal species. Some of the endemic species that we hope to see during this day are Golden-naped Barbet, Bornean Green Magpie and Bornean Treepie. But as usual, we are looking forward to everything exciting that can pop up, big or small!

In the evening we walk out and look for the area's spectacular insects, amphibians and reptiles. The nights are cool, 13 degrees, so bring warmer clothes for these walks. If we are lucky we will find some of the area's endemic horned frogs. Therefore keep your eyes open for beautiful and well-camouflaged frogs among the leaves on the ground! Or why not Malcolm's pitviper, also an endemic species, with a very beautiful black-green color pattern.

Accommodation: Kinabalu National Park - Ayana Resort - 2 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: Enjoy the lush greenery of the cloudforest and all the sounds of birds and insects as we walk along the trails.

Golden-naped barbet are one of the beautiful endemic species in the species rich cloudforests of Mt Kinabalu. Photo: BNT.

Day 5

Today we leave the mountain behind us and travel on to new exciting environments. Our goal of the day is to reach the rich forests around the Kinabatangan River and our accommodation for the next three nights. Our trip takes about five hours in minibus. After 40 km, we stop for a chance to see the world's largest flower, the fascinating rafflesia that can be up to 80 cm. Rafflesia is a parasitic plant, it has no green leaves but is a specialist on a single species of liana, Tetrastigma rafflesiae. Rafflesia flowers last only for 3-5 days but luckily different individuals flower at different times of the year so we have a chance to see the flower. We keep our fingers crossed! Here we also take a trip in an environment that we rarely visit. There are a series of suspension bridges high up among the trees that provide an opportunity to see life in the forest canopy. The trip ends with a short boat trip to reach our accommodation right next to the river. Now we are in the country of the proboscis monkey and orangutans! The Kinabatangan river is famous for its concentrated, rich wildlife and fascinating variety of environments, and in the afternoon we go for a boat trip.

Accommodation: Kinabatangan River - Borneo Nature Lodge - 3 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To see the world's largest flower, rafflesia! And smell it, it smells like rotten meat to attract pollinating flies.

Rafflesian is the world's largest flower, up to 80 cm! Photo: BNT.

Day 6

We use the morning hours and head out on the river before breakfast to increase our chances to meet wildlife along the gallery forests of the river. What will show up around the next river bend? Perhaps we get a first encounter with proboscis monkey munching on leaves in one of the big trees along the river, or maybe one of Borneo's eight species of hornbills will fly over our heads .

We return for breakfast and then there is time for your own discoveries and exploration of the area around our accommodation. Keep an eye open for the strange lantern bugs that sometimes sit on tree trunks with its odd shapes and colors.

Once the temperature has gone down a bit in the afternoon and the animals start to become active, we head out on the river again. If we are lucky we can encounter a group of the rare Bornean elephant that sometimes appears along the river. With fewer than 3,000 individuals remaining in the world, the Borneo elephant is highly threatened, but the area around the Kinabatangan river is one of the strongholds for the species. The area around the Kinabatangan is especially rich in fig trees, so we also have great hopes of finding orangutans who are feeding on ripe fig fruits.

After dinner we walk out after sunset to get to know some of the area's night-active species. Perhaps we'll find flying dragons, the fascinating group of lizards that can glide up to 60 meters between the tall trees in the rainforest. Pretty impressive for a 20 cm long lizard!

Accommodation: Kinabatangan River - Borneo Nature Lodge - 3 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To see a group of endangered borneo elephants who graze among the trees next to the river.

With fewer than 3,000 individuals remaining in the world, the borneo elephant is highly threatened, but the area around the Kinabatangan river is one of the strongholds for the species. Photo: BNT.

Day 7

We have another chance to meet some of the river's many species before breakfast, as we slowly explore the river in our boats. We are looking for some of the beautiful kingfisher species around the Kinabatangan river. Among other things, we can encounter stork-billed kingfisher, oriental dwarf kingfisher and banded kingfisher to name a few. Another bird to look out for is an endemic bird of prey found only in Sabah, white-fronted falconet. It's the world's smallest falk with its 14-17 cm!

We are then welcomed back for breakfast and there is time to explore the wildlife around our accommodation.

After lunch, we make an excursion to the exciting Gomantong caves. The cave system is the largest in Sabah and consists of two big caves, the "Black Cave" Simud Hitam and the "White Cave" Simud Putih. It is the former that is open to the public and let us explore this very special environment. The system is home to about 275,000 bats of wrinkle-lipped free-tailed bats. In the evening they head out of the caves to hunt insects in the night. The sight of thousands of bats that leave the cave opening is really spectacular, maybe we'll also see bat hawks trying to catch an evening meal...

In the cave there are also swallows, the edible-nest swiftlet, whose nest made of saliva, have long been a sought after delicacy in Chinese cuisine and now become an exclusive commodity with a kilo price of up to 2000 USD. In this cave system, a controlled harvest of nets is carried out twice a year, where the birds are given a chance to breed between the harvest. Licensed climbers get into the cave by using high ladders and ropes to reach the nests. The caves and the lush forest around are protected (3000 hectares) and here we have good chances of finding monkeys such as red leaf monkeys and even orangutans, along with a rich bird life in the tree canopy.

Accommodation: Kinabatangan River - Borneo Nature Lodge - 3 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To get a glimpse of a hunting bat hawk who catches bats in the air as they swarm out of the cave in the twilight.

Day 8

This morning, we leave the Kinabatangan river and head off towards the Danum Valley Conservation Area, a protected reserve of primary lowland rainforest with a fantastic species richness in the central parts of Sabah. We start the trip with a short river trip to the place where we change our boat to car, and then drive two hours to the city of Lahad Datu. From here, the journey continues for about two hours, of which 1.5 hours on gravel road as we penetrate deeper into the rainforest, towards the Danum Valley Field Center, our accommodation for the next 4 nights.

At the field station there is active research and education in tropical ecology, so do not be surprised if we during lunch share table with someone who researches, for example, climate change, biodiversity or the effects of deforestation. We all feel the excitement when we head out on our first walk in the beautiful rainforest that surrounds the station. There are over 300 bird species and over 100 species of mammals in the area. Müller's gibbon, orangutan and red leaf monkeys are some of the primates we have the opportunity to see here. In the coming days, we mostly do hikes on foot, the best way to get close to nature and make both small and big discoveries along the trails that goes into the forest.

After sunset and dinner, we will explore the trip's most interesting nightlife. The flashlights give us the chance to discover strange insects, sleeping lizards and maybe if we are lucky the big-eyed tarsier. This charismatic little primate hunts insects in the undergrowth and moves quickly between tree branches using their long legs.

Accommodations: Danum Valley - Valley Field Center Resthouse - 2 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: To walk into one of the world's most diverse rainforests and start exploring the secrets of the forest. The dream is to see a glimpse of the rare and threatened clouded leopard among the trees during the walks.

Day 9

We wake up to another day in the middle of the rainforest and continue to explore the diversity of unique and fascinating species of plants and animals. Across the nearby river is a long suspension bridge, with beautiful views of the river framed by the rainforest! If we are lucky, we may see a family group of gibbons pass by the tree tops next to the station. These day-active, long-armed primates travel from branch to branch and are very fascinating to look at. If we listen carefully in the morning, we can also listen to their characteristic song, which they claim their territories with. We make several walks during the day to different parts of the forest and have time to enjoy and photograph this beautiful place.

In the evening we have the opportunity to travel in an open car and with lights we look for night-active mammals and birds. Perhaps some species of civets show up. These up to one meter long predators are looking for smaller vertebrates, insects and worms at night. Some species are beautiful with stripes along the sides. We also look for more rare species such as the slow lori, which despite its sweet appearance produces a poison in special glands in the armpits. The poison is mixed with saliva and spread in the coat as a protection against predators.

Accommodations: Danum Valley - Danum Valley Field Center Resthouse - 2 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: Waking up of morning song of gibbons  that echoes among the trees in the morning hours.

The morning view over the river Segama, Danum Valley is like taken out of a postcard! Photo: BNT

Whitehead's trogon, one of Borneo's most sought after endemic species.

Photo: LG.

The lush vegetation at Sayap substation with a mix of highland and lowland species thanks to the altitude of the station. Photo: LG.

Green broadbill, perhaps the greenest of Borneo's birds! Photo: LG.

Our accommodation at Kinabalu National Park with the lush forest nearby. Photo: LG.

It is important to have sharp eyes to discover the horned frogs among the leaves. Photo: LG.

Majestic tree ferns stretch towards the light in cloudforest.

Photo: BNT.

At the Kinabatangan river, we have the chance to get a close contact with the proboscis monkeys, a species that is only found on Borneo.

Photo: LG (top) / BNT (bottom).

Our accommodation next to the Kinabatangan river have the nature right outside the door. Photo: LG..

Borneo is a mecca for kingfishers, here banded kingfisher and stork-billed kingfisher. Photo: LG / BNT.

We have the chance to see several different species of hornbills, here oriental pied hornbill. Photo: BNT.

Rainforest trees in the morning, Danum Valley. Photo: BNT.

The song of Müller's gibbon gives a special atmosphere to the mornings. They move with incredible agility between the rainforest trees, you always wonder how they can avoid falling down... Photo: LG.

Our accommodation at Danum Valley Field Center. Adjacent to the dining room is a veranda where you can sometimes see orangutans in the trees. Great dining area! Photo: LG.

Slow lori is one of the few poisonous mammals. With some luck, it may appear during the night walks. Photo: LG.

Day 10

The rainforest in morning light is an absolute delight for the eye and the lifting morning fog uncover the majestic dipterocarp trees and the lush greenery of the undergrowth. The day are filled with hikes where we will try to see some of the most beautiful birds in the forest, the colorful pittas. These mythical and sought-after shy birds attract birdwatchers from all over the world here. We have the chance to see six different species in Danum, and we will do our best to see some of them, why not the beautiful blue-headed pitta! They are day-active and are looking for insects on the ground and in low undergrowth. Another fascinating species to look for is the beautiful lizard, the Borneo forest dragon. An up to 60 cm long lizard where the male has a vertebral crest of sharply-pointed spines from the head down to the tail root and pale yellow dots on the abdomen and sides. Another beautiful reptile belongs to a genus with flying snakes. The up to 130 cm long paradise snake has a nice patterns in red and green shades. Extra fascinating is its ability to flatten its body, which allows it to fly to safety from tree branches.

In the evening we get ready and walk again among the night active animals. Perhaps we turn off our lights for a short while in the dark, letting our eyes get used to the dark and scout the ground. If we are lucky we are invited to a spectacular view of mushrooms that shine with a green light in the dark. These luminous fungi are believed to attract insects that can help spread their spores.

Anotherspecies to look for is the leopard cat, a spotted little feline that sometimes moves very close to the research station.

Accommodations: Danum Valley - Danum Valley Field Center Resthouse - 2 stars

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Looking forward to this day: When the intense greenery of the forest is suddenly interrupted by a beautiful, colorful pitta on a branch. A magical night experience when the fungi of the forest shine with a green skimmer.

The red leaf monkey eats mainly leaf and fruit and can often be seen in Danum. Photo: BNT.

Entry procedure

You do not need a visa to enter Malaysia. Travelers to Malaysia must have a valid passport with a remaining validity of at least six (6) months on entry and exit from Malaysia.


Our accommodations on the trip range from camping to simple but comfortable lodges. At far s the campsites, we provide tents, sleeping bags and sleeping mattress. If you want to be extra comfortable, we recommend that you bring your own favorite sleeping mattress. The price is based on double occupancy, single room supplement is added.


The meals at the lodges are usually buffet style with a variety of dishes to suit most tastes, there are always vegetarian options. If you have food allergies, contact us in advance and we'll solve it.

Forest walks

The trip involves walking in the rainforest environment along trails. The trip is therefore not suitable if  you have reduced mobility. The terrain varies but the walks are usually not particularly tiring for a person with normal fitness. What can be felt is the temperature just below 30 degrees, but we often take a break to look at species and drink water. The walks are usually 2-3 hours. You wear a light backpack with water and some personal little things like camera etc. To prepare, we can recommend regular forest walks at home of about 30 minutes. The experiences get so much better if you have just prepared a little at home!

Toilet visits in the jungle

All our accommodations have toilets but during the walks you may also need to go. If so, always cover toilet paper and leave no traces after you in the woods.


No mandatory vaccinations are required by the Malaysian authorities. However, you will need to provide a certificate of yellow fever vaccination if you arrive directly from some African or South African countries with yellow fever. However, we recommend that you visit your vaccination center to receive up-to-date information about possible vaccinations and malaria prophylaxis. It is usually recommended that you have good protection against hepatitis A and hepatitis B, as well as typhoid and Japanese encephalitis, polio, tetanus and diphtheria and take some form of malaria prophylaxis.

Leeches and biting insects

Mosquito and other biting insects are not found but not in large populations. Long sleeved shirts in the evenings and mornings and a mosquito repellent with DEET, protects well. We often get questions about Borneo's leeches and if they carry any diseases. You can relax as they are not carrying any diseases. During walks you can sometimes encounter leeches. However, it is easy to protect you from them with leech socks and long trousers. If they crawl on you, they are easy to pick up, roll into a small ball and back to the bush with them!