Wow. Gorgeous. Like many photos, it was even better in person. After a day of hiking and photographing wildlife, I had just put down my camera to relax, but this view got more impressive every 5min, starting with about this point. I wanna go back!
Hiking through Bako National Park turned out to be an unexpected highlight of my trip. It’s a 10.5 square mile island with rainforests, secluded beaches with sandstone cliffs, waterfalls, jungle streams, and lots of wildlife (including about 150 of the aforementioned rare proboscis monkeys).
The coast line was beautiful – millions of years of erosion of the sandstone have created a coastline of steep cliffs with brilliant colored patterns formed by iron deposition.
Monkeys were everywhere – mostly Long-tailed macaques and silver leaf monkeys. And of course the highlight was seeing rare probiscos monkeys . We also saw lizards and bearded pigs.
Bako National Park also has nearly every type of vegetation found in Borneo (25 distinct types). In a couple of days of trekking through the jungle trails, you can see “Beach vegetation, Cliff vegetation, Kerangas or heath Forest, Mangrove Forest, Mixed Dipterocarp Forest, Padang or Grasslands Vegetation and Peat Swamp Forest,” according to the official site.
Consider this a sneak preview of the sunsets I saw in Borneo – the ones in the next few posts were even better! Read more...(182 words, 6 images, estimated 44 secs reading time)
My base for diving in the Semporna Archipelago was Mabul Island, a tiny little island. I really loved my time there. Like any island in a beautiful region they have pricey luxury resorts, but they also had SCUBA diving backpacker hostels and bungalows with a great community, and the rest is the local village that’s built on stilts.
You could spend $300 USD per night at the luxury resort and get a beautiful place with privacy, or you can spend $30 with meals included in a great community. I chose the latter. I stayed with “SCUBA-Junkie” and really loved the community of divers. Pictured below are some of my friends from Denmark, Sweden, and Canada. I kept meeting such great people.
I also spent a night in the village amongst the local community in a “longhouse” hostel – a basic room on stilts for 45 ringgit (~$15) per night.
The diving was impressive and certainly the best I’ve done, but even besides that, the people are what made it a highlight of my trip, and some of my favorite days so far. Read more...(185 words, 4 images, estimated 44 secs reading time)