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Osman's Homestay
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Reviews (104)
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All reviewshis wifesense of humourdavid attenboroughfunny guypygmy elephantslocal familygomantong cavepalm oil plantationskinabatangan rivergreat cookfront porchhome stayan unforgettable experienceextra milean amazing guidegerman couplebig heart
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74 - 79 of 104 reviews
Reviewed 9 April 2013

Osmans homestay is exactly as described by the others, room for rm50 per person per night, and rm50 per person for the boat cruise. As a Malaysian myself I was disappointed to find the experience not worth the rather expensive stay.
The room is very basic, two beds and a fan; with a toilet that doesn't flush and a shower head in a room for showers. Don't brush your teeth with the water from local supply; use a fresh bottle of water like the rest of the family.

The food was basic, and osmans wife even apologized as she had not been to the market. We had meals separately and not with the family. Osman himself also never made an appearance, he was definitely around but didn't seem bothered to introduce himself or say hi. We did the boat cruise with his father in law instead, and spotted some animals before he did, and we even had to point it out to him.

We barely saw any animals, some proboscis monkeys and colorful birds. We were promised some trekking as well but the area was flooded so we just sat in a boat for two hours.

All in all very disappointing for the price we paid!

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Rene L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 April 2013

This is a homestay so the accommodation is basic! It is however a great way to spend time with a local family, experience their culture and relax in the jungle by the river.

Osman is an incredible spotter out on the river and in the jungle. Probably the best wildlife experience I have had so far! Pygmy elephants within hands-reach, wild orangutans, crocodiles, proboscis monkeys and a whole load of other macaque species!

An added bonus on my second night as the pygmy elephants decided to wander through Osman's garden...elephant spotting from your bedroom! I stayed here for 3 days 2 nights and even without running water or electricity on the first night due to broken power lines from a storm, I hope to return sometime soon. I highly recommend using Osman as a guide even if staying at other (high-end) accommodation.

Sadly it does appear that the oil palm plantations are encroaching on this last remaining piece of jungle as well!

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled solo
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Thank danielfernan7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2013

This is a unique place and osman is a unique person. For me - I loved this place. But I could see some people giving it 2, 3, or 4 stars depending on the personal preferences and experiences. Osman is the man you want for the wildlife cruises. I saw every animal I could have possible hoped for and then some. Osman is a magician at spotting wildlife. He found us 3 large male orangutans at completely different places, he found us elephants on consecutive days, monkeys, crocodiles, and even several amazing river otters. The place is very basic though and his younger kids are quite a handful for them. The food is chicken every day but tasty. No hot water and the beds are not very comfortable. The most important thing is to get Osman to be your guide, but he is not always around. If he is, then you are in for a treat. If not, you may be disappointed. But for me the experience was 5 stars all the way.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled solo
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Thank David B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 December 2012

There are two things to consider when you book with Osman

1. Accommodation

This is a homestay so if your expectations are basic rooms, local style food and a friendly, fun family who enjoy interacting with their guests then you will have a great time. It's a genuine homestay experience and that for me beats a hotel anytime. Of course if you are older or used to your home comforts and modern amenities then you might be better off booking into a higher class of accommodation.

2. Boat trips

Osman is an excellent guide. He is knowledgeable, he has great eyes for spotting and he has a very vibrant sense of humour! You'll see some great animals and be entertained as well. He's also pretty flexible when it comes to timings of trips and focusing on particular animals you want to see. His speciality is finding those elephants (although of course nothing is guaranteed).

We stayed with Osman for 3 days 2 nights and had an amazing time.

Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
5  Thank Munnsy75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 August 2012

The place itself is basic, what else would you expect if you go on a homestay in the jungle. But Osman is a remarkable guide and his wife a fantastic cook. You really feel part of the family, you'll have to, because there's only one place for all.
For the tours, make sure you have Osman as your guide. He can spot elephants by smelling them, we got out of our boat and could almost touch them (and vice versa...). He can find snakes and monitor lizzards while we even couldn't see them when we were in front of them. An amazing guide for sure.
But as other also pointed out, the river gets crowded with tourist boats and the palm oil plantations are destroying the natural habitat of the animals. So go there before it's too late...

Nic

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank Nic V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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