Who are we?
"Borneo Holidays" is part of a Holding Company registered in Malaysia (Twintake Sdn. Bhd.) with operations in Borneo and an office in U.K. The Borneo part is operated by "Borneo Holiday and Tour Co." a locally run family business based in Miri (Trade Licence Number 159/2002). The Jok family own and run this side which consists of a Tourist Lodge ("TreeTops", near Miri), transport and tour arrangements within Borneo (Sabah and Sarawak). The U.K. side is run by Michael Richardson who has worked in Airlines and Tourism for 30 years, and assisted by Ian Jones who co-ordinates flights and departures from UK and Europe. The majority of Borneo Holidays dealings are now conducted through e-mail and the Internet, with on-line ticketing (or "ticketless" flights) and bookings.
Ester, Managing Director of Twintake, whose family comes from near Mulu, started life in one of the longest longhouses in Sarawak (108 doors!). Mike, Principal Director of Twintake, is English by origin but has spent the past 20 years in and around Borneo - with 20 years before that in Africa!
Jok Jau, our Kayan Chairman, is in charge of building and maintenance, while Dusun Jok is presently our agent in Marudi. Your hosts at the Seaside Inn are the ever-helpful James Ong and family, and at Syabas Resort, Peter Cantwell and his wife will make you welcome.
Nick and Lisa, below,(10 & 8) are still under training!
These are your Hosts in Sarawak and Sabah.
Our London travel agent is Ian Jones, who has many connections within the Air Travel Industry. You can e-mail him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Being independent means we can offer a flexible, personalised service; there are only a few itineraries as such - but we try to fit in any suggestions or special requests. (see also " Further Reading " for ideas and special interests).
What do we offer?
For the independent traveller or eco-tourist, we offer friendly, family-run accommodation for visitors to Sarawak, as well as a selection of hotels right up to International "4-star" resorts.
Lodge/Lodge rooms are built in simple traditional style, with mainly wood and wickerwork; all have fans and some have air-conditioning. Satellite T.V. with 20 channels is available in the main lounge. Superb food available in Miri Town; probably some of the best Chinese food this side of Hong Kong!
TreeTops Lodge at Miri, Sarawak
For Visitors wanting to go to Sabah, we recommend either the Seaside Inn, run by our friends the ever-helpful Ong family, or Syabas Beach Resort nearby. The Seaside Inn is a 3 -star hotel, right on the beach and has a new swimming pool, small restaurant with bar and a new block with air-conditioned rooms, as well as the more traditional wooden ones at the Beach House. James Ong also runs tours which include climbing the mountain and white water rafting. PADI diving courses will be available on site there later this year. Syabas Beach Resort is one step up the ladder of luxury, having detached chalet style accommodation, complete with phones, TV, Video and coffee/tea making facilities and its own kidney-shaped pool, set in shady surroundings with a "clubhouse" style main building where good European (Australian too!) meals are served, with sausages and steaks a speciality! They also have an excellent 30 ft Catamaran to take you to the nearby coral islands.
For full 5-star luxury, you must of course choose one of the well known Internationally owned hotels in Kinabalu or Miri (Tanjung Aru, Rihga, Magellan, Park City Everly etc..).
If you just yearn for a few days in a luxury resort, by choosing the luxury trip to Mulu you will find this hotel one of the best in the region (run by the Japanese Rihga Hotels Group). Similarly, four days at the Tanjung Aru Beach Resort (in the top 100 Best Hotels of the World league) at the end of your stay in Kinabalu should satisfy even the most discerning of Guests.
Otherwise the Government hostels and chalets are moderately comfortable for a short stay.
We can help you find good value airfares (normally on scheduled airlines). Singapore or Kuala Lumpur are good transit stops, especially if you are visiting other Asian countries or on your way to/from Australia and America.
Its a great time to visit. Mass tourism has so far escaped Borneo; its not unusual to find you have an entire National Park to yourself!
You will be met at the airport on arrival and transferred to your accommodation in Sabah or Sarawak. Should there be any unforeseen delays, from the airport it is only a short taxi ride to your chosen accommodation.
We can arrange excursions to more distant attractions, such as Gunung Mulu, Bario, Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary and Mount Kinabalu National Parks. About a weeks notice is required to secure group (3 or more!) airfares and bookings.
When is the best time to visit?
As the climate varies so little all year round (average 28°C/82F) it is not a big factor in deciding when to visit. The so-called rainy season is also unpredictable and when the rain falls its usually warm, heavy, welcome and short-lived. And where we live on the coast, it's also usually at night! Given that, Borneo provides an ideal escape from winter.
What clothing is needed?
As the temperature at sea level never falls below 23° even at midnight, very little clothing is required. Pack shorts, T-shirts and light skirts or dresses for day wear. For walking through the jungle, trainers, very light-weight trousers and long sleeves offer better protection against mosquitoes and other insects. Bring trousers, light-weight shirts and one light, long sleeved top for the journey out and for evenings in restaurants or hotels (which are often fiercely air-conditioned).
If you are planning to climb Mount Kinabalu, bear in mind that it is often actually freezing at the summit and youll need warm, waterproof clothing. The Park Headquarters are at 5000 ft., so its cooler there as well.
Want to know more and how to book ....
Click around our website: then use the Booking Form or e-mail, phone or fax us to book your dates. 10% per person deposit required to confirm booking and the balance no later than 4 weeks before departure.
The cost of living in Malaysia is very low. We estimate that you need a minimum of around £10-£20 ($15-30) each per day for incidental expenses such as drinks, meals out and taxis.
So, for little more than the cost of a traditional holiday, you could experience a totally different environment, culture and climate by planning a really interesting 2 to 3 weeks in Borneo.
We look forward to hearing from you in the near future. Our beach house view at sunset
Mike Richardson & Ester Jok