A Taste of Borneo (Island)

– Duration: 2 weeks – 

Experience true island living on this 2 week programme as you become immersed in the rich culture and stunning natural landscapes on the beautiful island of Mantanani.

You will spend your time living amongst the local community as you work on sustainable project initiatives that improve the local infrastructure and protect the local environment. You’ll have plenty of time to relax and kayak and snorkel in the surrounding clear blue waters.

You’ll truly become part of the community during your time in Borneo and you’ll be inspired by the warmth of the people you meet.

Best for:

Community Marine

This programme is designed to impact the following UN Sustainable Development Goals:

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Dates & Prices>>>

Taste of Borneo Island

A Taste of Borneo (Island)

$1,340 per traveller

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The impact that you'll make


Developing Community Ammenities & Marine Conservation (Mantanani)

Mantanani circle

The community of Mantanani is now struggling with sudden influx of foreign tourists and development that comes with it. Like most coastal villages, Mantanani faces challenges in trash accumulating on the beaches, threatening the marine life and environment. You’ll help through beach clean-ups and sustainable waste management solutions alongside an NGO, as well as working to improve buildings in the village using up-cycled materials. We are also helping the school to build a block to accommodate 2 classrooms and a row of stalls in front of the school to encourage entrepreneurship.

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Camp Mantanani

For those who love white sand beaches, crystal blue waters and their own remote tropical island (and let’s face it, who doesn’t?), Mantanani might just be the perfect location.

The island lies about 80km north of Kota Kinabalu and is home to around 800 permanent residents. The surrounding coral reef and lagoon are home to juvenile turtles, rays, a variety of tropical fish and even the occasional dolphin passes by.

The camp itself is set right on the beach a little way from the main village where many of our community projects are based, allowing you to feel part of this amazing community for the time that you’re here.

Location: 80 km north of Kota Kinabalu. (around 1.5 hrs drive from KK to Kuala Abai Jetty, then 1 hr boat ride to Mantanani Island)

Accommodation style: Beautiful open sided driftwood bunk houses with comfy mattresses & bedding including mosquito net. Asian style toilets, cold water showers & sinks

Power: Generator (between 18:00 – 06:00). British 3 pin power sockets

Social area: Beach, campfire, volleyball courts

Signature dish: Stewed beef in soy sauce & pumpkin in coconut milk


camp mantanani

Day to Day

Day 1

Welcome to Borneo

Arrive in Kota Kinabalu, where you will be met at the airport by a member of our Camp Borneo team and transferred to your accommodation in the city. Here you will meet our Country Manager who will run an arrival briefing for you and your group before your welcome dinner.

Day 2

Marine Awareness Day with Borneo Marine Research Institute

The research institute is within the University of Malaysia, Sabah and this is where you will be based for the day. The morning will be spent learning about the importance of marine life and the conservation activities carried out to protect marine life in Borneo. During the afternoon you will be taken on a tour of the aquarium and museum, with an opportunity to see marine life including turtles and baby electric eels. You will transfer back to KK for the night.

Day 3

Welcome to Camp Mantanani

After a much-needed sleep and a good breakfast, you will be transferred to the beautiful island of Mantanani by boat. Meet the Camp Mantanani team, including your Camp Manager, who will give you a tour of the island and a briefing on what your time here will involve. Then it’s time to choose your bed in your new beach longhouse home.

Day 4

Marine conservation and community projects

Enjoy waking up in your new island home before we get stuck into a project orientation where we will explain the work you will be getting involved with. Underneath its picture-perfect surface, Mantanani faces challenges with poor waste management and trash accumulating on the beaches, which threatens marine life. The local people also struggle with a lack of funding for community and education facilities. You will be helping to support them on these key issues throughout your time here.

Day 5-6

Soak up island living

What better place to spend a relaxing weekend? Kayak, snorkel or sunbathe on the beaches and watch the most amazing sunrise and sunsets you’ve ever seen

Day 7-11

Project work begins

Spend the next few days volunteering alongside the island communities and a local NGO on valuable initiatives such as beach clean ups, sustainable waste management solutions and constructing new buildings for the school.

Day 12-13

Chill weekend at the beach

Enjoy some well-earned free time this weekend as you make the most of your amazing surroundings.

Day 14

Last day at project work

Spend your last day helping the community on the island before your transfer to Kota Kinabalu.

Day 15

Transfer to KK and Depart

Say your goodbyes to the community in the morning then depart by boat back to Kota Kinabalu before we head to the airport in time for your flight home.


Top up your trip

If you’d like to add in some extra adventure, we offer the opportunity to book some exciting add-ons which can be included within your trip duration or added on to the start or end of your journey. Speak to our team to find out more about how to add these awesome adventures to your programme.

Tropical PADI Scuba

If you’re interested in exploring life under the water and gaining your PADI dive qualification, why not consider adding one of our diving add-ons to your programme? Run through our awesome dive partners at PADI...

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Trek Mount Kinabalu

Mount Kinabalu (or Mt K as the locals call it) stands at an impressive 4096 metres above sea level and is the highest point in South East Asia. The views from the summit are utterly...

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What's included

Drinking water
Pre-travel support from dedicated UK team
In-country support from dedicated local team
In-country airport & activity transfers
All project costs & materials
Orientation & language lessons
24-hour emergency support
Camps t-shirt


Don’t forget… flights, travel insurance, visas and vaccinations. Please note, you must be over 18 years old at time of departure.

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