Borneo is still considered a remote, adventure seekers destination when compared to other parts of Asia, but families with active children can still enjoy a safe and inspiring holiday in the island's various regions. In Sabah, experienced hikers can take their kids to the top of Mt. Kinabalu, the highest mountain in Southeast Asia, while at the Pulau Tiga National Park you can relive the TV show "Survivor," which was filmed there, although modern facilities mean you can combine the adventure with comfort and good food. The Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park is an oceanside wonder with great snorkelling options for kids to explore the clear waters and scour the coral reefs teeming with tropical fish, sea cucumbers, and giant shells. The white sands and friendly, warm seas on Manukan Island are ideal for smaller kids, while the older ones can trek with you on nature trails across Pulau Gaya in search of wild boar and monitor lizards.
In Sarawak, at the Kuching Waterfront on the Sarawak River, you can stroll along the esplanade with the family and watch the tambang (sampan) boats. There's also a playground with structures to climb on and a sculpted hornbill fountain. To get a birds eye view of the city, you can also climb up to the viewing tower, while for a fascination side trip head to the suburb of Petra Jaya, where the unique Cat Museum displays cat representations in all shapes and sizes, from Chinese paintings of cats, to Japanese porcelain cats, wooden cats from Africa and stone cats from Egypt. The Sarawak Cultural Village at Damai is another museum that houses an accurate recreation of houses and lifestyles of the various ethnic groups in Malaysia. In Kalimantan, natural splendours abound, but in many cases are quite challenging to reach so travelling with children requires plenty of planning. The roads are improving but the country's main attractions are generally accessed by boat. The cities canals feature floating markets and a thriving river culture, while deeper in the forest, Kalimantan is one of the last remaining havens for the world’s endangered orang-utans. Trips cn be organised to see these majestic creatures, wit arrangements best made through accredited wildlife organisations and travel agencies. Kalimantan also offers a rare opportunity to experience traditional tribal cultures such as the Dayak. The country's vast combination of mountains, rainforests and rivers means those with a sense of adventure and a taste for the great outdoors will not be disappointed.
Posted by Wayne Hue