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“Unbelievable Experience”

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Sukau Rainforest Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Rickmansworth
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Unbelievable Experience”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 May 2011

This is an ECO lodge and adheres to the ECO principals.

The boat trips are magical if you are interested in wildlife. Due to weather we were unable to do a night cruise but speaking to those who did you must not miss it. It is well worth the extra money.

The rooms are comfortable and the food traditional.

A wonderful experience of a tropical lowland rainforest

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank N2525RICKY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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616 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (115)
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 March 2011

We had a package with Borneo Eco Tours and were picked up at Sandakan Airport, taken to lunch at a Chinese Waterfront Restaurant( food/service were poor) then transported by speedboat to the lodge. The captain of the boat was very good. We were met at the lodge by Donnie, the new manager, who was very friendly and informative. Our room was much better than we expected, it had been renovated, the bathroom was good and the glass windows next to it made a lovely view, I could have sat there and just looked out the window for ages. We had an intimate dinner with fellow guests, Donnie and Brett ( an Aussie working there), the setting was wonderful. I think that the chef would be better to stick to local cuisine rather than try to cook western food poorly. We had a dawn boat trip so we were called at 5.30am, toast and tea waiting for us and when we arrived back at the lodge a cooked breakfast awaited us. I had the best Mee Goreng I had eaten in Sabah for breakfast. We only had two days/ 1 night at the lodge and would have loved to stay for longer. The local staff are friendly but have limited English but make sure that they understand you. We felt that the friendliness of, Donnie, Brett, our guides and staff combined with the comfort of our room would make this an ideal place to chill for a couple of days. Richard our guide took us out for the afternoon and early morning boat trip. Richard was very good both with boat handling and spotting animals for us. Unfortunately the river was in flood so there wasn't so many animals but it was still a privilege sitting in the boat in such magnificent surroundings and if Richard could have produced an Orang utan for us he would have. My husband went on a night boat trip to see nocturnal animals, again with the river in flood there wasn't much to see, but the local guide did his best. Munir took us to the Gomantong Caves, my husband loves caves but he didn't feel that the visit was worth it. They do have a boardwalk, not well maintained and very slippery with bat/bird excrement but Munir got us through it. Munir took us to Sandakan and a beautiful lunch at Agnes Keith Tea rooms, followed by a tour of Sandakan and back to the airport.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
4 Thank Aussietravellers59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gothenburg, Sweden
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 March 2011

Rich animal life. Recommend at least two nights stay to see everything. Very professional and excellent guide/trackers, very silent boats so you could get really close to the animals. Excellent and very fresh room updated in autumn 2010. Good food and service. Really recommend this place !

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank 2Bergman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
peterbough
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 March 2011

We were met at Sukau rainforest lodge by Donny, the new manager and Brett and given a very welcome cool towel and refreshing drink, followed by a friendly chat about the lodge together with afternoon tea and delicious banana fritters. We were made to feel very welcome and encouraged to feel at home for our 3 days there. We were shown how to wear the sarong for dinner; although you don't have to wear it I would advise you to try it as they are surprisingly cool to wear.
We were shown to our rooms, which were lovely. For those of you who have been in the past the bathroom is now attached onto the back of the room and is modern with lots of hot water. The beds are clean and comfortable. The fan is more than adequate.
On our afternoon cruise we saw loads of macaques, birds and proboscis, but no elephant or orangutan, maybe later...
I would recommend doing the night cruise, It is amazing how close you can get to sleeping birds and monkeys.
Unfortunately our early morning cruise was cancelled as the rain was coming down in sheets, but later we did a short rainforest trek from off the boardwalk at the back of the hotel (mud nearly up to our knees), they provide lovely bright yellow wellies to keep you dry. If you are lucky you will be able to see the elephants from the boardwalk as they regularly pass by; we only saw their footprints and droppings though. The manager also organised an extra night cruise for us as compensation for missing the morning.
On our last afternoon cruise we had managed to find the elephants but hey were hiding in the undergrowth on a split in the river, the noise they make when they trumpet is amazing, then at last one poked its head out!
We really enjoyed our stay at Sukau: the wildlife we saw, good food, great staff and lovely surroundings. The only thing I would add is more comfortable chairs to on the deck area, but apparently Donny has already ordered some.
I would love to come back next year to see what changes Donny makes.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank PeterboughStruthie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dandenong, Victoria
Level Contributor
35 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2011

I spent a weekend at the lodge with my brother and sister-in-law. The setting is fantastic and the room was better than expected. As this is an eco lodge, there is no air conditioning, but the cieling fan was more than adequate and I had no trouble sleeping. The bed was comfortable and the shower was good. The maximum capacity is 40 guests. There were 12 staying when I was there. which made for a friendly and peaceful stay. There was a wild orangutan and hornbills in the trees at the lodge when we arrived, which was just a taste of the amazing experiences to come.
The staff are local people, which is commendable. Some are a little shy and may not undertand english well. They were very keen to assist when asked. The atmoshere is very relaxed.
Most of your time is spent in boats, cruising the rivers looking at wildlife. This experience is fantastic and one I will never forget. The guides were excellent - quick to spot wildlife and very informative.
All meals were included. The food is put out buffet style and was more than adequate. Breakfast included cereals, fruit juice, eggs, sausages, baked beans, toast, tea, coffeeand fresh fruit. Lunch and dinner included soup and a selection of asian style dishes plus fresh fruit.
Alcoholic drinks needed to be purchased separately with a very limited choice.
I thoroghly enjoyed the experience and would highly recommend the Sukau Rainforrest Lodge.

  • Stayed January 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Dandydag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
international
Level Contributor
177 reviews
87 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 December 2010

My husband and I were referred to this lodge and we stayed 3 days. The renos that were getting done on the rooms are now complete but they are continuing with more improvements which could take a while. This made the experience very noisy during the day which was our only complaint. The tours of the river, cave and surrounding forest were amazing. Wild orangs, proboscis monkeys, hundreds of bird species, many of which are endangered, made this region a must see for us. The food was much better than anywhere else we ate in Borneo, and the focus on eco tourism and the hiring of local tribal people resonated with our philosophy. We would definitely come back.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank steff0566
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milan, Italy
Level Contributor
145 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 September 2010

We have to say that the first impression of this place was not the best. They are undergoing a renovation progress and everything looked very run down, messy and a bit dirty...in one word nothing special. The only gust were the two of us (on our honeymoon) and a group of elderly American bird watchers!
Fortunately our room had just been renovated so it was all right: simple but very spacious, comfortable and super clean.
Just after arrival we went off to an afternoon cruise on the river and we understood why people come here! There where hundreds of monkeys on the trees, the nature was fantastic, and the colors of sunset on the river were really unbelievable. We where speechless!
At dinner the food was excellent, with a touch of home made that made it very tasty. The staff is fantastic: they only employ local people so most of them don't speak English very well, but their kindness and their will to please you are really unbelievable.
The guides for the river safaris have the best eyesight and can spot even a stick insect from meters of distance, even at night. The night and sundown safaris were our favorite, almost a "mystic" experience. After two days we where feeling totally at home and the initial bad impression had been wiped away by the fantastic nature and by the marvellous staff. Praise to Winston Marshall: if you meet him you're going to get the feeling that he's an old man, maybe a bit "gaga" like he says, but take the walk in the jungle with him and he'll tell you about his adventurous life and about his exclusive expertise: jungle tracking and survival!!!

I wish we could go back once they have finished the renovation of the main area because I'm sure it's gonna look great (and I must admit that it badly needed renovation). We loved the place and their super green philosophy of being one with nature: it ended up being one of the best days of our vacation.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank roadtripping1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sukau Rainforest Lodge

Property: Sukau Rainforest Lodge
Address: Sukau, Lower Kinabatangan River | 2 1/2 hours from Sandakan by boat, Malaysia
Region: Malaysia > Sabah > Kinabatangan District
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 10 Speciality Lodging in Kinabatangan District
Hotel Class:3 star — Sukau Rainforest Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The award winning Sukau Rainforest Lodge nestles on the banks of one of Borneo's most important waterways, the Kinabatangan River, home to many of Borneo's magnificent wildlife. Immerse yourself in the tranquility of the rainforest and the cacophany of its inhabitants, its majestic birds, all 7 species of Borneo Primates including Borneo's iconic Proboscis Monkey, Orangutans in their natural habitat as well as herds of Borneo Pygmy Elephants. Sukau Rainforest Lodge offers the rare comfort and luxury in the midst of the Borneo Rainforest whilst retaining an Eco-Lodge ethos, the delicate balance of true sustainability. We promise to give you and your family an experience you'll always remember and one you'll never regret. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sukau Rainforest Hotel Sabah
Sukau Rainforest Lodge Kinabatangan District, Malaysia - Sabah

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