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.
This programme is designed to impact the following UN Sustainable Development Goals:
The impact that you'll make
Developing Community Ammenities & Marine Conservation (Mantanani)
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.
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
Day to Day
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.
Environmental work with PACOS Trust
Today will be spent with PACOS Trust, a local community-based organisation dedicated to supporting indigenous communities in the Sabah region of Borneo. Here we’ll have a cultural orientation and get involved in some volunteering at the Kivatu Nature Farm, before transferring back to KK for the night.
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.
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.
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
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.
Chill weekend at the beach
Enjoy some well-earned free time this weekend as you make the most of your amazing surroundings.
Last day at project work
Spend your last day helping the community on the island before your transfer to Kota Kinabalu.
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.
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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...Find Out More
Don’t forget… flights, travel insurance, visas and vaccinations. Please note, you must be over 18 years old at time of departure.