Malaysia on the Cheap
Budget Travel Tips and Articles
Malaysia is a diverse country. The collection of cultures and religions, the food, and even the terrain – Malaysia seems to have it all. I think Kuala Lumpur is one of the best cities in the world. The jungles of Borneo are wildlife havens. The tropical waters that surround Malaysia are packed with sea life. If you are traveling there, you’ll find lots of information in the following articles.
I wait, slightly nervous, as a boy slowly has his hair cut. The barber runs the comb through the hair and snips at it with the scissors. The end result is a hairdo that I refer to as “the Asian”. I’m definitely not here for one of those. Two weeks of traveling has left me with a patchy fuzz across my face. It’s time we parted ways. I get into the chair and am reclined to 180 degrees.
We got up early for the 7:30AM bus from Semporna to Sukau (RM40/$13). We had booked a night with Osman’s Homestay (RM50/$16.20 per person per night inc. 3 meals) and arranged for them to pick us up at the junction, paying RM20/$6.50 for the privilege. We were dropped off at a boat dock and took the boat across the river to the homestay where Osman’s wife and children greeted us warmly. We settled into our very basic fan room – the best one in the house (including the family’s quarters). The lodgings weren’t stylish, but we were here for Osman. We had read online that Osman is the fixer for the BBC’s nature documentary crews when they are in town filming the local wildlife. He is supposedly a mine of information about the wildlife in the area, and the best around for spotting the animals.
We caught the bus to Semporna from the Sepilok junction at 8AM (RM40/$12.90, 5 hours). We were a little worried it would be full, but when we climbed on the bus a mere six fellow passengers greeted us. As our bus steamed past the Sukau junction, we were a little dismayed that Sukau hadn’t worked out exactly the way we had planned. Not to worry though, we planned on booking with another B&B in Sukau as soon as we got to Semporna.
Sepilok, Malaysia and the Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre: Don’t look for it, Taylor. You may not like what you find.
Getting to Sepilok from Kota Kinabalu is easy. We took a taxi to Inanam Bus Terminal for RM25/$8.10. The taxi drivers will tell you it’s a flat rate, but ask around as we got told a couple of different prices. When we arrived at the station (around 11am), we headed to the ticket counter and asked for tickets on the next available bus to the Sepilok junction. Any bus going to Sandakan will drop you at the junction. The next bus with seats available left at 1:30pm (RM42/$13.60, 6.5 hours). It would be a good idea to book your bus ahead of time if you want to arrive in Sepilok early. We found a restaurant across the street from the station sat down, drank tea, ate murtabak, and played chess until it was time to board the bus.