Borneo – Gomantong Caves & Jungle Elephants (Malaysia)

Categories: Travel reports, Asia, Malaysia

Today we were picked up by our guide at our hotel Four Points by Sheraton in Sandakan. Today’s destination was a river cruise on the Kinabatangan.


The Gomantong Caves

Our first destination today were the Gomantong Caves,which are located about 30 kilometers south of Sandakan (see Google Maps). The caves are known for the up to 1.5 million bats living there and especially the Salangans, swallow-like birds. Their nests are re-energized and exported to China. Because there the nests are dissolved in a soup and eaten – a real delicacy for Chinese. In Southeast Asia, the trade in swallow nests is a very big business. Many Chinese pay several hundred euros for this delicacy – 1 kilo can cost up to 20,000 euros. Above all, there are plenty of crawling animals in these caves, starting with spiders, spider runners and lots of cockroaches. A place to feel good 😉

A boat trip on the Kinabatangan River

After the visit to the cave we drove on to the Kinabatangan River. There was a small local lunch and then we set off with our guide and a boat guide for a river trip lasting several hours. We have seen different bird species and different monkey species, some also very close to the river.

The jungle elephants on Borneo

But what we actually wanted to see were the jungle elephants. For two hours we drove up and down the river and were almost on our way back, because we just weren’t lucky. And then it happened: on the shore a large herd of elephants came out of the jungle and ran to the river to bathe. It was fascinating to see more and more elephants coming out of the jungle and going towards the river. An insanely beautiful experience that you probably shouldn’t experience often.

Especially the little elephants fought with each other or threw grass on their backs. In the end, 6 elephants were right in front of us in the water and some more on the shore.

When it started to dawn we went back to the shore and to Sandakan. What a great day ♥

All travelogues from South-East Asia (2013)

In this holiday through South East Asia we travelled through 5 different countries. Starting with our flight to Hong Kong (China), then on to Bangkok (Thailand), to the million metropolis Singapore, then into the jungle to the UNESCO World Heritage Angkor Wat to Siem Riep (Cambodia), on to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and finally to the island of Borneo (Malaysia). An unbelievably fascinating journey with an incredible number of impressions and experiences.

Reiseberichte Südostasien China: Hong Kong - Explore tourist attractions & things to do
China: Hong Kong - Peak Tram & the viewpoint from Victoria Peak
China: Hong Kong - Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery & the Big Buddha
Thailand: Elephant Camp – Bathing with elephants in the Khwae Noi River
Thailand: Kanchanaburi – The Tiger Temple Wat Pa Luangta Maha Bua
Thailand: Bangkok – The Royal Palace, Wat Pho & Wat Arun
Thailand: Ayutthaya – The Temples & Ruins of the UNESCO World Heritage
Thailand: Ayutthaya – The Elephants at the Royal Elephant Kraal Village
Singapore: Chinatown, S.E.A. Aquarium & Sentosa Island
Singapore: A day trip to Singapore Zoo
Singapore: Marina Bay Sands Resort & the Infinity Pool
Cambodia: Siem Reap – Hotel, Old Market & the Butterfly Farm
Cambodia: Siem Reap – The temples of Angkor Wat
Malaysia: Kuala Lumpur – The Petronas Twin Towers
Malaysia: Kuala Lumpur – The Batu Caves & the Aquaria KLCC
Malaysia: Borneo – Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre
Malaysia: Borneo – Proboscis Monkey Labuk Bay Sanctuary
Malaysia: Borneo – Gomantong Caves & Jungle Elephants
Malaysia: Borneo – Diving at Sipadan Kapalai Dive Resort
Malaysia: Borneo – The Sipadan Kapalai Dive Resort