|Welcome back to my online travel journal.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoy writing it and sharing my experiences with you. This time I'll tell you about what I have seen in Borneo so far.
The Borneo "side-trip" started as soon as I had a place to stay at a hostel called Laban Rata. I know it's a strange name, but this particular hostel is really special. It is located at Mt. Kinabalu in 3272 meters above sea level. Phew, that's high, and I've planned to hike all the way up there - and beyond.. The thing is, Mt. Kinabalu is South East Asia's tallest peak at 4100 meters above sea level so it is going to be quite a challenge getting up there. It is also one of the few very tall mountains you can climb without special equipment so thousands of people do it every year. That's why I'm so happy about getting a climbing permit / a space at Laban Rata, many people think they can just show up and then get extremely disappointed.
Anyway, I left Singapore on the 22'Nd of April and crossed the border to Malaysia via the "causeway" into Johor Baru, and then went straight to the airport to catch a cheap flight with Air Asia to Kota Kinabalu the capital of Sabah. Since my climbing permit is for the 28'Th of April I had a few days to spend exploring Borneo, so I decided to see the second most famous attraction in Malaysian Borneo - the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center. It's the largest Orangutan Rehab center in the world rescuing many abandoned Orangutans every year, and training them to be free animals again so they can be released into the wild once again.
To get there I had to get another flight, this time a short one though, to Sandakan and then a taxi to Sepilok. Don't worry, both taxis and flights are ridiculously cheap, and comparable to RyanAir.
Now I'm back in Kota Kinabalu for just one night, and tomorrow is a big day. I'll get a bus to the Kinabalu National Park and World Heritage Area Head Quarters and check in at a nice hostel and then go see a bit of the surrounding area. The Park HQ is at 1563 meters above sea level. On the 28'Th I begin the ascent of Mt. Kinabalu in the morning around 8-9'ish and hopefully be at Laban Rata in the afternoon about 4 o'clock. Then comes the tough part... I have to get up at 02.30 in the morning and go the rest of the way to the summit in darkness to be there at sunrise. It is supposed to be nothing short of spectacular. When I've got my photos I'll begin the decent back to Laban Rata and then all the way back to Park HQ. Hopefully I'll be back down in the afternoon, and then travel to the Poring Hot Springs to soak up some mineral water and restore my body... (I'll need it).
On the second of May I have a flight from Kota Kinabalu to Kuala Lumpur the capital of Malaysia. From then on - no plans. :-)
I don't know when I get the chance to upload the photos from Mt. Kinabalu, but check in once in a while to see if they are there yet.