Put simply, the island of Borneo is an extraordinary place for a holiday. It is home to the world’s oldest rainforest, with the richest biodiversity in Asia and countless incredible species. However, with Borneo’s unique forest environment increasingly under threat, we believe that low impact, responsible tourism is vital. That’s why we design Borneo trips with sustainability at their core - which actually makes a better experience for you, too.
To travel to Borneo is to be transported worlds away from the everyday. We all know the island for its iconic orangutan, but there are innumerable exotic creatures to discover: proboscis monkeys and pygmy elephants, sun bears and Sunda leopards, hornbills and the world’s largest flower, to name just a few. Beyond the wildlife, you’ll find vibrant culture, staggering landscapes, and beautiful beaches (some of the most underrated in Asia, we reckon).
We’ve put a lot of thought into how we can enable you to experience the best that Borneo has to offer, while having a positive impact on the environments and communities you visit. One of the key ways we do this is by working with private nature guides who are genuine experts in their field. They have the skills to ensure you get the best possible wildlife sightings and the knowledge to educate travellers on the challenges this magical island faces.
Where to Visit on a Holiday to Borneo?
The majority of visitors to Borneo have one main experience in mind: spotting orangutans. Sighting these incredible creatures in the wild is without a doubt magical, and something every wildlife-lover should try to do on their trip. Yet there are countless more wildlife (and non-wildlife) based activities that the island has to offer. You might explore the intricate temples and thriving food scene of Kuching. You could discover the ancient traditions of the Murat people or other indigenous groups. Or the more intrepid might try to summit Mount Kinabalu, the highest mountain in Malaysia, for incredible views (and impressive bragging rights!).
Most of our itineraries focus on Malaysian Borneo, the most accessible part of the island which comprises the states of Sarawak and Sabah. However, more intrepid travellers may wish to explore Kalimantan, or Indonesian Borneo, where we can organise fantastic experiences too. We usually recommend an itinerary of 14 days or more for an in-depth exploration of the island.
We won’t give away all our secrets now: part of the fun of an ETG trip is the element of surprise. Have a look at our sample itineraries for inspiration, or get in touch for a personalised holiday suggestion. Our friendly travel team is always happy to help curious travellers get to the heart of this beguiling island.
Wind your way down the Kinabatangan River to discover evocative jungles and wildlife.
Did you know that Borneo is home to the world's largest cave chamber?
To us, Borneo is one of Asia's most underrated beach destinations. We can find you coastal escapes away from the crowds.
WHEN TO GO TO BORNEO
From March and October is considered the dry season and so the best time to visit Borneo. It’s also the best time for spotting wildlife, including orangutans. If travelling with families, it’s therefore ideal for an Easter or Summer holiday. Trekkers should note that September, with its clear skies, is a good month to tackle Mount Kinabalu.
Suggested itineraries in Borneo
Your luxury Borneo holiday will be bespoke. All our itineraries are built from scratch and go deeper than standard package trips. For Borneo family adventures and for first-time visitors, the Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak offer an irresistible ‘pick n mix’ of tropical islands, rainforests, charming cities and gobsmacking geological features. With formidable mountains and the world’s largest caving system, Borneo adventure holidays are fantastic for the whole family, and we have plenty of unique experiences to free your intrepid side. The island is also edged by beautiful beaches, so you can still find that balance between discovery and relaxation.
An in-depth, expertly guided three-week tour taking in a wide variety of Borneo’s many natural wonders.
Off The Beaten Track in Borneo
Away from the crowds with some unusual experiences on this in-depth tour of Malaysian Borneo.
Slow Paced Borneo
Borneo's wonderful wildlife and beaches at a slower pace with less overland travel and our specialist guides.
Witnessing an orangutan in the wild must be on every nature-lover's bucket list.
We design experiences that help protect Borneo's majestic wildlife as you encounter it.
Popular hotels in Borneo
To get a full and dynamic experience, we recommend travellers stay in various accommodation for different parts of your trip. For example, you could stay in a characterful boutique hotel while in the city and a rustic lodge while in the jungle. Some of the best luxury hotels in Borneo are beach resorts, many around the popular Kota Kinabalu, so you may wish to indulge in something high-end during the seaside segment of your trip. We’re committed to finding hotels in Borneo that are perfect for you.
Borneo Rainforest Lodge, Danum Valley Conservation Area
Located in one of the country's most biodiverse and unique areas with its own canopy walkway.
Gaya Island Resort, Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park
Luxurious and relaxing beach spot on the stunning shores of Pulau Gaya, off Kota Kinabalu.
A little different from the big resorts, enjoy this private beach villa close to the northern tip of Borneo.
Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort, Kinabatangan River
This tranquil off-the-beaten-track resort is wonderful for wildlife spotting and relaxing.
Nanga Sumpa Lodge, Batang Ai National Park
A simple lodge where you can experience the culture and lifestyle of the local Iban community.
The Marian , Kuching
Restored colonial-style hotel with 40 rooms in the heart of the city.
More Travel Information for travel to Borneo
Tourism - done fairly and responsibly - can play a huge role in protecting the Bornean rainforest and help prevent further destruction for palm oil and logging. That’s why conservation and care are at the heart of our Borneo holidays.
Curious Travellers Guide to Borneo
If you’d like to discover more, why not download the Curious Traveller’s Guide to Borneo? This is where you’ll find our experts’ edit of hotels, experiences and beaches. We also break down the best time to visit Borneo by month and share more information about our approach to conservation in-country.
It is important that all our travellers have complete peace of mind before booking a trip. Please rest assured that we are a member of both ABTA and the ATOL scheme, which means that you are 100% financially protected from the moment you book. Take a look at this web page for more information about financial protection. Please also note that we’ve partnered up with Campbell Irvine to offer the best travel insurance policy on the market.
For advice on staying safe and healthy throughout your trip, a member of our friendly team will be on hand to help 24 hours a day before, during and after your holiday. We also recommend you consult the Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) for the latest travel advice before you travel.
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