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“Stay here for orangutans outside your room” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Abai Jungle Lodge

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Abai Jungle Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
165 reviews
127 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 250 helpful votes
“Stay here for orangutans outside your room”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 April 2012

I stayed here for 1 night as part of the 3D/2N Abai and Sukau Package Tour. It is about 75 minute speed boat ride from Sandakan Jetty to the Abai Jungle Lodge via SI Tours

The rooms are basic, but it had the important amenities - attached bathrooms, electricity the whole night, clean running water, a shower, and a fan. There are about 4 rooms in 1 block, and each block had a nice veranda and hammock for relaxing and wildlife viewing. Don't expect AC, but the rooms were clean and functional.

The food here is reasonably good - I had one average meal (lunch upon arrival) here but the rest of it was pretty good. We even had a Jungle Breakfast where they had an outdoor deck to serve the guests breakfast. It was certainly an experience to have breakfast out in the wild like at with nature all around you. The package tour I was on also arranged lunch at the nearby Abai Village and it was absolutely delicious.

This is a very memorable hotel - it has many highlights. Orangutans around the hotel, the nature boardwalk where guests can take off independently and view wildlife on their own, the Jungle Breakfasts, the decent food, and the warm and friendly staff. They provide welcome drinks, and warm towels upon arrival and also coffee and tea on a 24/hour basis.

While the river safaris at Abai are not the best, it is certainly worth it to stay at least 1 night just to enjoy the hotel, the lunch at Abai Village and the tree planting activity

I have some pictures from my trip and the lodge here: http://funtimesonearth.blogspot.com/2012/04/sandakan-3d2n-abai-and-sukau.html

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Lavy81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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260 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (41)
Date | Rating
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English first
malaysia
Level Contributor
61 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 April 2012

Likes: The forest is just beside the lodge - you can see orang utan, proboscis monkeys, birds, various animals without going on a river cruise. The boardwalk is a great place to view nature and wildlife. Love the breakfast among trees, and the riverside dining. There are lots of wildlife to see during the river cruise; so you don't have to go all the way to Sukau. Enjoyed the freshwater shrimps!
Dislikes: Although comfortable, the room is rather spartan. No bedside table to put watch, water etc.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank clarissachou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
97 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 April 2012

The lodge is OK. You have a fan, private and basic toilets in each room, hot water, beds a bit on the hard side, no noise isolation so you can hear conversation in the room next door. Food is simple and basic ie rice, chicken, fish and sometimes shrimp and fruits for desert...not bad for the jungle! Take a sweater and a wind breaker for the night/early morning cruise, a flash light for the night excursion around the lodge and lots of insect repelling. There is wifi connection at the bar (very weak connection) although the point here is to be disconnected. In Abai you will see Orang Outans, long nose monkeys, long tail macaques and lots of birds. No elephants here and you would have to stay in Sukau or Visit Bilit to see them. River excursions included in the package as a group although we saw a couple taking a private excursion with a guide from the lodge with incredible ability to spot animals and birds. We stayed one night, which was OK. In hindsight, we should have stayed 2, one in Abai and another in Sukau.

Room Tip: Stay 2 nights, one in Abai and one in Sukau or Bilit
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Taipan888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Uk
Level Contributor
97 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 March 2012

We had 3 nights at Abai, the first 2 we were the only guests!! The wildlife was plentiful with the lower part of the river being sparse of tourist so for the first couple of days we saw no other tours boats. The boardwalks are excellent and one afternoon we decided to sit up in one of the towers and see what happened. After about an hour we heard a sound and an otter appeared in the stream below, making its way around us until it disappeared again. Our guide had never heard of one there before. Female orangutang appeared on Day2 and hung around in the trees watching us eat our breakfast. On day 3 we headed up river as Elephants had been sighted. A Herd of 20 plus were grazing by the bank. We got very close but so did the other 10 boats that have also heard about them!! Accommodation is basic but it is the jungle so don't expect luxury, food was good. Do bring ear plugs if cant sleep with noise, the jungle can a very loud place!!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MarkMo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Abu Dhabi, UAe
Level Contributor
34 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 January 2012

We traveled with a mixed group - from an almost 3 yr old toddler to my husband, who uses a wheelchair. Unlike some of the other rain forest hikes in other places we experienced, my husband was able to negotiate all the board walks and the boat, so didn't have to miss any of the action. We had a highly experienced and knowledgeable guide, who brought us to a herd of pygmy elephants foraging by the riverside, proboscis monkeys, beautiful birds and even an orang-utan. Staff was very friendly and helpful. Rainfall was plentiful during our january stay.
AJL is busy building some larger accomodations and has plans to make their 3 cabin units into 2 cabin units, which should provide more ventilation- which seems to have troubled some other travelers. All in all a wonderful experience.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Jill_AbuDhabi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
381 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 222 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2012

We headed to the Kinabatangan Riverside lodge at Sukau but stopped off here on our way to our hotel and back to Sandakan 3 days later. During our 45 minute stop each time we had a chance to sample the lunch available at the hotel as well as using the boardwalk.

The food here was delicious and they seemed to offer a variety of items which I had not had yet during our trip (it was a nice change from just chicken with noodles)... The cat fish in particular was very tasty. However I must admit that we ate our food as quickly as possible to ensure that we had plenty of time to enjoy their nature walk.

The nature walk has a number of raised lookout platforms which bring you to the same level as Macaques and Proboscis monkeys which we saw from these. They also have Orangutans in the area which we saw right next to some of the rooms. We did not see a massive variety of animals here which was a shame because it looked like perfect habitat for amphibians and snakes. The walk alone is really enjoyable and I would recommend taking your time while walking around (taking around 30 minutes) and your patience may be rewarded. Our guide said that there have been reports of tourists seeing Clouded Leopards grooming themselves right on the board walk before!

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank G3ck0-Trav3ll3r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 October 2011

Abai Jungle Lodge is set up river from Sakau and from the rest of the tourists. We debated whether we wanted to stay here or two nights in Sakau. We ended up doing both (1 night at Abai and 1 night at Kinabatan River Lodge) and set it up to be transported by boat. Abai lodge was amazing and Rose the wild orangutan came every day to the trees by the lodge. She was adorable and was incredible to watch as she went from tree to tree to eat. This place is quiet and the guides were excellent. I think we saw the entire population of probiscus monkey's and every animal along the river. We went on a night safari by boat and walked along the property's boardwalks at night to see frogs and sleeping birds. This lodge can only be reached by boat and has many more chances or seeing wild orangutans. The rooms are basic and the food is basic too but I would have stayed longer if we would have known how amazing this place was going to be. I highly recommend staying here.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank WorldTraveler317
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Abai Jungle Lodge

Property: Abai Jungle Lodge
Address: 47 km from the river mouth of Kinabatangan River | Abai, Malaysia
Region: Malaysia > Sabah > Kinabatangan District
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 9 Speciality Lodging in Kinabatangan District
Number of rooms: 30
Also Known As:
Abai Jungle Hotel Sabah
Abai Jungle Lodge Kinabatangan District, Malaysia - Sabah

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