Bird lovers can never really describe the joy and love they have for this hobby of theirs, and giving a gift which supports this pastime will definitely be much appreciated for years to come. So what if we say we have the ultimate experience perfect for any bird lover? . more >
Nestled within Malaysia’s largest wildlife reserve, 2 birders are definitely in for a real bird fest! Amidst enjoying staying comfortably at our charming timber river/hill chalets within the wild itself, don’t be surprised to see astonishing variety of birds and small mammals even right within the vicinity of the resort as well!
You may relax and chill at our open sided cafe where a number of brightly coloured birds are attracted by the surrounding greenery and flowering plants. As you take a sip of your coffee, feast your bird loving eyes with active species such as the Black-backed Kingfisher, Yellow-rumped Flowerpecker, Red-throated Sunbird, Malaysian Blue Flycatcher and the Black and Yellow Broadbills. Be also entertained by the melodious calls of Black Magpie nearby.
There is even a bird hide facing the flowing Lipad river which provides a wonderful site for viewing birds. Huge boulders in the river are a favourite perch for the Oriental Darter, Stork-billed Kingfisher and Lesser Fish Eagle, especially after rain. To add the delight of guests, a happy family of otters have also been seen up and down this part of the river.
As you explore and take a stroll along the road nearby the resort, White-bellied Munia can be commonly found in the bushes, and sometimes, a family of large black and chestnut Lesser Coucal. Even the rare Storm’s Storks have made our reserve their home and can sometimes be seen. You will most likely be able to spot one or more of Borneo’s eight species of hornbill such as the Black, White-crowned, Rhinoceros, Wreathed, Oriental Pied and Wrinkled Hornbill either flying in groups across the sky, or in pairs perching on bare branches. Let our knowledgeable guides share with you the tales about the origins of the Helmeted Hornbill’s calls.
After a satisfying dinner, enjoy a slide presentation on the reserve’s natural wonders, followed by a night safari trip to look out for nocturnal wildlife and birds. The Brown Wood-owl and Savanna Nightjar are some of the species that you may sight along the reserve road. Stay alert as you may also get to spot the Leopard Cat, Civet cats, the nomadic Bearded Pig, the Red Giant Flying Squirrel and perhaps even to the Clouded Leopard and Slow Loris.
After a simple early breakfast, depart for the active Lipad mud volcano with packed lunch. The soccer field-sized Lipad mud volcano serves as a mineral salt lick for wildlife and birds. The endemic Black and Crimson Pitta has been sighted along the trail leading to the mud volcano. After trekking through the jungle for 20 minutes, arrive at an elevated bare area of the mud volcano. Here, you will notice the multitude of animal footprints – evidence of how various wildlife are drawn here for a taste of its minerals. Don’t forget to also try the natural mud-masque facial treatment from the mud volcano. The mud is rich in minerals and is said to have a soothing effect for your complexion, and of course it is fun too.
There is an observation tower here where you can climb and admire the superb view of the bare area of the mud volcano and its surrounding thick forest. Just also great for viewing birds, you may even get to spot species such as Finsch's Bulbul, endemic Bornean and Black-throated Wren-babblers, White-crowned Forktail, Dark-throated Oriole, Malaysian Blue Fly-catcher around the area. A nearby fig-tree is a busy feasting place for hornbills and other birds and primates during the fruiting season. Across from the observation tower, bare branches of towering trees are favourite perching place for Green Imperial Pigeons and Jambu Fruit Dove with its wonderful coloured chest. When the night comes after dinner, go for a night walk to discover more nocturnal bird species.
On the next day, after an early breakfast, you will depart for birding along the road leading to the Core Area of the reserve. The fully regenerated secondary forest with its relatively lower canopy and good natural light provides a much delightful birding experience. You will be entertained by wild bird songs and the calls of Borneon Gibbons. On some bare tree trunks, busy Dollar birds can be found. The Rufous Woodpecker, Bronzed Drongo, Blue-crowned Hanging Parrot, Speckled Piculet, Chestnut-capped Thrush, White-fronted Falconet, Long-tailed Parakeet, Temminck’s Sunbird, Purple-throated Sunbird and are some of the other species that can be seen . The abundance of wild ginger plant attracts a variety of colourful birds, including the Thick Bellied Flower pecker.
A picnic lunch will be set up overlooking the river or the valley, a truly enjoyable experience. If time permits, you and your fellow birder will trek along the Tomanggong Road where the Giant Pitta has been sighted. The White-fronted Falconet, Long-tailed Parakeet and Orange-backed Woodpecker as well as other good birds, the Little Spiderhunters, Yellow-rumped Flowerpeckers may also be sighted. Apart from birds, you will most likely be able to observe Long-tailed Macaque and Orangutans along this road.
On your very last day, after breakfast, take the time to relax in the cafe while enjoying more birds in the surrounding garden, or venture to the riverside bird hide to for a last dose of wildlife discovery while you still can. You will depart after lunch.
The ultimate experience that might even give you an overdose of birds! What would be a better gift for bird lovers than a birding experience at Malaysia’s largest wildlife reserve?
This experience includes:
• 4D3N stay at a rustic timber lodge (twin share) with your own private balcony, ceiling fan and heated shower.
• Scheduled return transfer Lahad Datu/Tabin/Lahad Datu
• Entrance permit
• Full board meals
• Guided tours and activities at the resort.