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 Leisure

Sukau Greenview Lodge

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28th April, 2017

by David de la Harpe

SUKAU, a little village along the mighty Kinabatangan River on the East coast of Sabah and is famed for its wildlife. Animals native to the area include the Proboscis, Macaques and leaf monkeys with a few orangutan as well. The most anticipated sightings are of the Borneo Pygmy elephants, while it is also home to some clouded leopards and many species of bird including the spectacular hornbill . Visitors usually take a river cruise to observe these animals.

Cruises are run in the early evening, at night and early morning by many of the individual guest houses in the area. There are various types of guest houses ranging from the very luxurious to the humble backpackers or even jungle camps, all depending on what your pocket can afford. There are even a few homestays especially in Sukau village .

The drive from Sandakan town to Sukau takes roughly just over an hour or so on good roads . Many tourists on packages also stop along the way at Gomantong caves which are home to thousands of bats and swiflets. The swiflets build their valuable nests out of their saliva in the roofs of the cave, and these are collected by the locals in the area for sale.

A very well run and affordable lodge in the village of Sukau is called Greenview lodge. It has a total of 20 rooms which comprise of en suite twin or double beds, family rooms and also a dormitory. Some of the rooms are air conditioned while others are fan cooled. All windows are insect screened and meals are served in a delightful café on the river bank.

Meals comprise of local Malaysian cuisine, with tea and coffee provided free of charge all day at the café. A pick-up service can be provided from the Sandakan airport, town or even the Orangutan Centre if you do not desire to drive there yourself. Excellent licensed guides who speak English are provided on the boat cruises and the guides have an in depth knowledge of the wildlife of the area, being mostly self-taught, keen naturalists themselves. The boats used for the cruises are well built, carry between 8 to 12 persons and all passengers are provided with life jackets. You can also opt for a private cruise in case you prefer to be by yourself.

But sometimes many eyes make for better sightings. Nature is nature and there is no guarantee what animals you may see. But the proboscis and macaque monkeys are almost 100 per cent guaranteed. It is always better to spend at least 3 days and 2 nights on the Kinabatangan in order to maximise your viewing opportunities.

   
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