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A Taste of Malaysia, Borneo & Bangkok

Malaysia: Kuala Lumpur, Kuching, and Borneo with Bako National Park, Semenggoh Orangutan Center & Batang Ai plus Bangkok with optional day to Ayutthaya; optional extension to Phuket.


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Style Small Group TourTravel with a small, intimate group of no more than 24 likeminded travelers (and often much fewer), escorted by an English speaking guide and/or tour manager for some or all of your journey. More of these packages
Tour escorts & guides for some segments
Departures Group Size 24 travelers max
Themes ActiveBucket ListNature & Wildlife
Activity Level Advanced
What to Expect This fast-paced, escorted tour involves a significant amount of walking or hiking, often on uneven terrain, requiring a high level of physical fitness to fully enjoy the trip. Note the infrastructure in some areas of Borneo is limited as roads may be bumpy with few rest stops.
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If you've been dreaming of a vacation to Southeast Asia, then this is the tour package for you! Your journey begins in Malaysia where you’ll explore the fascinating aspects of Kuala Lumpur with its modern skyline and British Colonial landmarks. Then embark to the island of Borneo, where a mosaic of indigenous tribes, intriguing history, ancient rain forests, and diverse wildlife await. From Kuching, visit Bako National Park, one of the best places in Sarawak to see wildlife in its natural surroundings, set sail on a longboat ride down the Engkari River to a real Iban longhouse to share a meal with the locals, and more! Your discovery of this fascinating region continues in Thailand, where you'll enjoy a few days in the packed and pulsing capital city of Bangkok with included visits to the Royal Grand Palace and Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. Want to explore more? Take an optional day tour to Ayutthaya, home to ancient palaces, Buddhist temples, and towering monasteries. Top off your visit by taking advantage of your already-included airfare and joining our optional extension to Phuket Island for some sun and sand relaxation!

Package includes

  • Flights
  • Coach
  • Transfers
  • Hotel
  • Meals
  • Guides
  • Round-trip airfare from Los Angeles including fuel surcharges and taxes and fees
  • All intra-Asia flights and ground transportation
  • 11 nights in deluxe and superior first class hotels
  • 22 meals: 11 buffet breakfasts, 6 lunches & 5 dinners, including welcome and farewell dinners
  • Comprehensive sightseeing tours
  • Professional English speaking tour guides

Optional add-ons

  • Post-tour extension to Phuket Island

Why you'll love it

  • Set out on a panoramic city tour of Kuala Lumpur, a glittering cityscape blending modern skyscrapers and historic buildings.
  • Journey through the jungle trails of Bako National Park, a unique botanical treasure comprised of seven complete ecosystems inhabited by long-nosed proboscis monkeys, Borneo bearded pigs, mousedeer, monitor lizards and more.
  • Join an optional excursion to a local factory to witness the production of crafts, and then travel to the Batu Caves, home to the world's largest statue of Lord Murugan.
  • Learn about the nurturing of orphaned or injured orangutans at Semenggoh Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, an 1800-acre forest that provides sanctuary to some of Malaysia's most protected wildlife.
  • Sail by longboat to an authentic Iban longhouse and participate in a traditional dance, followed by a blowpipe demonstration.
  • Marvel at the incredible reclining Buddha at Wat Pho, Bangkok's oldest temple, and visit Bangkok's top "must-see" attraction, the Grand Palace.
  • Savor traditional Thai snacks and fresh fruit at the famous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market.

Itinerary at a Glance

A Taste of Malaysia, Borneo & Bangkok map

Phuket Island Extension



Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Depart USA

  • Your fascinating journey begins tonight as you check-in for your flight bound for Malaysia

Day 2 En route

  • Cross the International Date Line and lose one day en route. (You'll recover a day on your return trip.)

Day 3 Kuala Lumpur

  • Arrive in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's capital. After customs formalities, you'll be escorted to your 5-star hotel to check in and rest from your flight
  • Spend the rest of the day exploring the city on your own, or enjoy the wonderful facilities of your hotel
  • This evening, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant followed by a cultural performance

PARKROYAL Kuala Lumpur or similar Dinner

Day 4 Kuala Lumpur

  • Panoramic city tour of Kuala Lumpur
  • Remainder of the day at leisure

PARKROYAL Kuala Lumpur or similar Breakfast

Full Day Itinerary
Kuala Lumpur cityscape

A city of contrasts, Kuala Lumpur blends modern skyscrapers with impressive historic buildings to create a unique cityscape. Today, enjoy a panoramic city tour including a photo opportunity at the Petronas Twin Towers, the world's tallest buildings until 2004, King's Palace, the National Museum, the National Monument, the Moorish-style railway station, and the superb buildings at the Independence Square, where you can observe the contrast between historical architecture and modern skyscrapers in an abundant setting of greenery. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure, or join an optional excursion.

Optional Excursion: Craft Factories & Batu Caves (purchased locally), $98
Batu Caves

The area surrounding Kuala Lumpur abounds with cottage industries and nature reserves. See how beautiful pewter products are manufactured at the world famous Royal Selangor factory. Then stop by a batik factory and observe how this traditional fabric is designed and printed. The excursion concludes at the Batu Caves, the famous site of the annual Thaipusam festival in January and February, where almost a million devotees congregate. You'll pass a 140 ft. statue of the Hindu god Lord Murugan, the world's largest, as you climb the 272-steps to the top of a natural limestone cavern which houses a Hindu shrine. This optional excursion must be purchased locally and may have some slippery terrain.

Day 5 Kuala Lumpur & Kuching

  • After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Kuching, on Borneo island
  • Explore Kuching on a guided walking tour

Hilton Kuching or similar Breakfast & lunch

Full Day Itinerary
City Mosque, Kuching

This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Kuching, the gateway to the legendary island of Borneo. After enjoying lunch at a local restaurant in the city, begin a walking tour of Kuching. Visit Fort Margherita, Kuching's Chinatown, see Kuching's Cat Statue, and the colorful Tua Pek Kong Chinese Temple. Continue via the golden-domed City Mosque to old Kuching, teeming with spice dealers and textile shops. Pass by the heritage buildings of the White Rajah era, including the Pavilion, the Square Tower, the Court House, the Charles Brooke Monument, and the Post Office. View the Astana, the former residence of the White Rajahs, from across the river at the Kuching Waterfront, before returning to the hotel.

Day 6 Kuching & Bako

  • Sightseeing of Bako National Park
  • Upon return to Kuching, remainder of the day at leisure
  • Join your fellow travelers for dinner

Hilton Kuching or similar Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Full Day Itinerary
Endangered Proboscis Monkey

Sightseeing begins today at Bako National Park, one of the best places in Sarawak to see wildlife in its natural surroundings. After arrival at Bako, a Malay fishing village built on stilts over the river, enjoy a 30-minute cruise on the South China Sea to this remote coastal park.

Millions of years of erosion have sculpted a coastline of steep cliffs, rocky headlands, fantastically shaped arches and sea stacks, and stretches of beautiful white, sandy beaches. The park is a unique botanical treasure housing 25 distinct types of vegetation that form seven complete ecosystems. Your local guide will help you to explore on well-marked jungle trails.

Keep an eye out for some of the park's most famous residents: the rare, long-nosed Proboscis monkeys, macaque monkeys, silver leaf monkeys, sambar deer, Borneo bearded pigs, mousedeer, otter, and monitor lizards. After lunch, return to your hotel in Kuching, where you'll have the rest of the day at leisure. (The Bako National Park excursion is subject to weather conditions, alternative sightseeing to Kubah National Park may be provided.)

This evening, have dinner with your fellow travelers.

Day 7 Kuching, Semenggoh Orangutan Rehabilitation Center & Batang Ai

  • Visit the Semenggoh Orangutan Rehabilitation Center
  • Local lunch in the small town of Lachau
  • Travel by boat across the Batang Ai Reservoir to your hotel

Aiman Batang Ai Resort & Retreat or similar Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Full Day Itinerary

Today's touring begins with a short, scenic drive to the Semenggoh Orangutan Rehabilitation Center. Established in 1975, this 1800-acre virgin forest provides sanctuary to some of Malaysia's most protected wildlife, including hornbills, monkeys, and especially, orphaned or rescued orangutans. At the center, the orangutans are carefully nurtured and rehabilitated for eventual release into the jungle, their natural habitat. You will have the opportunity to learn about the rehabilitation process and to observe and photograph the orangutans from a distance. Note: Since the orangutans in Semenggoh are semi-wild, sightings cannot be guaranteed.

From Semenggoh, proceed to Batang Ai. After lunch in the small town of Lachau, sit back and enjoy the rest of the drive through the scenic countryside of rice fields, cocoa and rubber plantations, luxuriant tropical rainforest, wild orchids, and mountain ranges. Travel by boat across the Batang Ai Reservoir to your hotel.

Day 8 Batang Ai Longhouse Excursion

  • Sail by longboat across the lake and down the Engkari River to an authentic Iban longhouse, an entire village under one roof
  • Enjoy lunch by the riverbank or in the longhouse

Aiman Batang Ai Resort & Retreat or similar Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Full Day Itinerary
Iban village

A special treat awaits you today as you take a longboat down the Engkari River to a real Iban longhouse, an entire village under one roof. Experience the legendary hospitality and charm of the locals as you learn about their fascinating culture. Join in their traditional dance and music as they welcome you with a cultural performance, followed by a blow pipe demonstration.

Enjoy a picnic lunch by the riverbank or in the longhouse, depending on water conditions. Time permitting, enjoy a short trek through the jungle around the longhouse before returning to Batang Ai.

Day 9 Batang Ai & Kuching

  • Depart in the morning for Kuching
  • This evening, take a sunset cruise on the Sarawak River

Hilton Kuching or similar Breakfast & lunch

Full Day Itinerary
Sunset on the Sarawak River

On your way back to Kuching, stop for lunch at a charming roadside town. Continue to your hotel in Kuching and spend some time at leisure. Later today, see panoramic views Kuching City during a sunset cruise on the Sarawak River. The cruise passes by many historical landmarks such as the Fort Margherita, the Astana palace and the golden-domed City Mosque. In addition, see traditional Malay houses built on stilts, a Chinese fishing village, and watch a cultural performance on board.

Day 10 Borneo/Thailand

  • Transfer to the Kuching Airport for your flight to Thailand
  • Remainder of the day at leisure

COMO Metropolitan Bangkok or similar Breakfast

Full Day Itinerary

After breakfast, transfer to the Kuching Airport for your flight to Thailand. Following customs formalities, meet our representatives and transfer to your centrally located hotel in the heart of Bangkok, Thailand's bustling capital city. Relax at your hotel or explore the surroundings on your own.

Day 11 Bangkok

  • Enjoy a morning tour of Bangkok, including Wat Pho
  • Tour the Royal Grand Palace
  • Afternoon at leisure to explore on your own

COMO Metropolitan Bangkok or similar Breakfast & lunch

Full Day Itinerary
Grand Palace, Bangkok

After breakfast, begin your half day sightseeing and learning about the heritage of Siam. The tour will start with a visit to Wat Pho. Bangkok’s oldest temple is home to the magnificent reclining Buddha as well as the first school of traditional medicine and Thai massage and is also regarded as Thailand’s first University. Next, head to the Royal Grand Palace, Bangkok’s number one ‘must-see’ attraction as well as Thailand’s most important landmark. You will visit the main sites including the magnificent throne halls and the Emerald Buddha. Afterwards, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Return to the hotel for the balance of the day at leisure, or, join an optional excursion.

Optional Excursion: Chinatown Walk (purchased locally), $35
Gold Buddha, Wat Trimitr Photo by Fred Moon on Unsplash

This afternoon, drive to Bangkok's Chinatown where you'll head out on an exciting walk through one of the oldest parts of the city. Walk along Yaowarat Road filled with interesting shops selling unique objects. Continue to an old tea shop to enjoy a cup of Chinese tea with the locals before heading to Talad Kao, a busy local market offering a variety of fresh food, fruits, and Chinese herbs. End the walk at Wat Leng Nei Yi to visit the Taoist temple. Then proceed to Wat Trimitr on the edge of Chinatown, which houses the world’s largest solid gold Buddha. Return to your hotel.

Day 12 Bangkok & Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

  • Travel outside of Bangkok's city center to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
  • Afternoon at leisure to explore on your own, or join an optional excursion to the Jim Thompson House

COMO Metropolitan Bangkok or similar Breakfast

Full Day Itinerary
Damnoen Floating Market

After breakfast, venture outside of Bangkok's city center, leaving the high-rises behind for lush landscapes dotted with traditional wooden houses.

Stop at a local railway station where a bustling country market has sprouted along the tracks. Witness the vendors quickly clearing the stalls off the railway when a train approaches the station. Then, after the train departs, watch them set up shop again and resume business as usual.

Continue to the famous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. Though nowadays many of the stalls are selling items for tourists, Damnoen Saduak remains the best example of a traditional floating market. Take a stroll and admire the floating shops, many of them selling fresh fruit and Thai snacks.

After leaving the main market area, enjoy a relaxing paddle boat ride. Pass by an old section of the floating market, and enter a labyrinth of quiet canals. See houses built alongside the waterways and catch a glimpse of local life in this rural area of Thailand, before returning to Bangkok's bustling and modern city center.

Enjoy the afternoon at leisure, or join an optional excursion.

Optional Excursion: The Silk Route of Jim Thompson (purchased locally), $42
Jim Thompson House

This morning, visit the Jim Thompson House. Located along a canal in the city center, this beautiful teak mansion was the former residence of Jim Thompson, the charismatic American silk merchant. Wander around the leafy compound, exploring the traditional teak buildings to learn more about his involvement in the silk trade and his mysterious disappearance. Admire the priceless antiques on display while gaining insight into Thai heritage and tradition.

After the tour of Thompson’s home, cross the canal to Baan Krua Thai Silk Weaving Community. This community is home to remarkable local artisans, many of whom used to weave for Jim Thompson. Today, two original weaving families still remain. Visit their local workshops, witness artisans producing high-quality Thai silk products and learn about their traditional methods of weaving.

Day 13 Bangkok

  • Your last full day in Thailand is at leisure for independent sightseeing, shopping, or optional tour
  • Venture out of the city on an optional tour to Ayutthaya
  • Enjoy a farewell dinner with your fellow travelers.

COMO Metropolitan Bangkok or similar Breakfast & dinner

Optional Excursion: Ancient City of Ayutthaya (purchased locally), $110
Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon, Ayutthaya Photo by Rin T on Unsplash

This morning drive to the ancient city of Ayutthaya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. King U-Thong founded the city of Ayutthaya in 1350 as the capital of his kingdom of Siam. Magnificent ruins of the old city still remain, some having been restored.

Upon arrival, you’ll visit some of Ayutthaya's historical sites. See the largest monument, Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, and stop at Wat Mahathat to discover a Buddha head entwined in tree roots, as well as Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon to view the reclining Buddha statue. Continue to a vibrant market to sample Roti Sai Mai, a Thai dessert similar to cotton candy and sometimes served in a sweet, colorful crepe.

After an included lunch of local Thai dishes, continue exploring with a leisurely one-hour long-tail boat ride down the Chao Phraya River. See riverside villages and Wat Niwet Thammaprawat, a Gothic-style Buddhist temple located on a small river island. Continue to Bang Pa to view King Rama IV's summer palace, used occasionally by the king and queen to host receptions and banquets. The palace and its surrounding temples represent an appealing fusion of Thai, Chinese, and European architectural styles. Return to Bangkok in the late afternoon.

Day 14 Depart Bangkok/Arrive USA

  • Bid farewell to Thailand today as you transfer to the airport to board your return flight to the USA via Taipei
  • Or, take advantage of your already-included international airfare and join our optional extension to Phuket Island, Thailand's most famous resort island!


Phuket Island Extension

Why not take advantage of your already-included international airfare and enjoy a luxurious and relaxing stay on Phuket Island, Thailand's most famous resort?

Day 14 Bangkok & Phuket

  • Today you'll fly to Phuket, where the balance of the day is at leisure.

Amari Phuket or similar Breakfast

Day 15 Phuket

  • Full Day at leisure or enjoy an optional excursion

Amari Phuket or similar Breakfast

Full Day Itinerary
Longtail boats, Phuket Photo by Frankie Spontelli on Unsplash

Enjoy two full days at leisure to relax, shop or tour this scenic island, Thailand's largest. Phuket and the 39 smaller islands to the southeast are studded with tropical forests, mountains, gravity-defying limestone formations, and pristine beaches, surrounded by coral reefs and the aquamarine water of the balmy Andaman Sea.

With warm, humid weather year-round, you'll enjoy plenty of sun-drenched days lounging on the beach and all manner of water sports, including jet-skiing, parasailing, surfing, scuba and snorkeling. Most of the dive locations are suitable for all skill levels, and the waters abound with colorful coral forests, tropical fish and other marine life, including leopard sharks, moray eels, octopus and turtles.

Phuket is also the sailing and yachting center of Thailand and adjacent countries, with several races and regattas happening throughout the year. And in the unlikely event that you can pull yourself away from the beach, you'll find opportunities to ride horses or elephants, hike, mountain bike, and even golf. Afterwards, unwind at one of the many spas or one of the excellent acrobatic, theatrical or cultural shows.

Join an optional tour to the breathtaking Phi Phi islands. Take a trip by boat and bus to Phang Nha Bay and to the famous limestone spire known as "James Bond Island" for its role in The Man with the Golden Gun.

Optional Excursion: Day Cruise by June Bahtra (purchased locally)
James Bond Island

Departing early this morning, experience the spectacular limestone scenery of Phang Nga Bay onboard the June Bahtra, a traditional Chinese junk bearing designs from Thai, Malay and Dutch influences. Recline on comfortable deck cushions below the schooner’s striking red sails as the scores of beautiful islands and towering limestone spectacles unfold before you. Stopping at a deserted white sandy beach, a refreshing dip in the turquoise waters beckons. Later, a ride on a long tail boat will take you to the caves and grottoes scattered throughout the mangrove delta, with birdsong and monkey chatter keeping you entertained along the way. At James Bond Island, revel in the views of the iconic rock formation jutting out of the azure bay. Back onboard, enjoy a delicious buffet lunch followed by a leisurely afternoon of swimming, sunbathing and relaxation. Sailing the open sea on this idyllic cruise will definitely make an unforgettable memory. (Lunch included)

Day 16 Phuket

  • Full Day at leisure or enjoy an optional excursion

Amari Phuket or similar Breakfast

Optional Excursion: Day Tour of Phi Phi Island by Speedboat (purchased locally)
Phi Phi Islands viewpoint

Departing this morning, escape to a quieter and more natural side of southern Thailand with this day trip from Phuket. Travel by speedboat across the Andaman Sea to the six scenic Phi Phi Islands. The journey to Phi Phi takes around 45 minutes, passing by spectacular limestone karsts that jut out from the blue seas. Sit back and relax, enjoying the views as the boat cruises closer to paradise.

See stretches of islands that boast swaying palm trees and white sands. There are also calm, clear waters brimming with fish for those who wish to discover Thailand’s underwater beauty.

During the day, enjoy lunch while taking in sweeping views of the surrounding sea. The afternoon is spent cruising around the islands, for more chances to snorkel and swim in the Andaman Sea. (Lunch included)

Day 17 Depart Phuket/Arrive USA

  • Today, transfer to the airport for the short flight to Bangkok. Continue to the USA via Taipei



PARKROYAL Kuala Lumpur
PARKROYAL Kuala Lumpur

The PARKROYAL Kuala Lumpur Hotel provides an ideal base for exploring this bustling city, located in the heart of the capital’s premium shopping and entertainment precinct.

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Hilton Kuching
Hilton Kuching
First Class

The Hilton Kuching sits upon the enchanting riverfront promenade in the heart of Kuching. Offering panoramic views of the Sarawak River and Fort Margherita, the Hilton Kuching provides its guests a high level of hospitality and personalized service.

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Aiman Batang Ai Resort & Retreat

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COMO Metropolitan Bangkok
COMO Metropolitan Bangkok

COMO Metropolitan Bangkok is a contemporary and stylish hotel located in the central district of Sathorn. The hotel is located 10 minutes away from Silom’s vibrant nightlife scene with close access to train stations, including the Skytrain Station.

More information

Amari Phuket
Amari Phuket
Superior First Class

Hidden on a secluded beach, Amari Phuket offers a prime location in Patong’s southernmost corner surrounded by the Andaman Sea. Less than an hour’s drive from Phuket International Airport, Amari Phuket is conveniently set within a 5-minute walk to Patong Beach while Phuket Town and the island’s popular attractions are also easily accessible from the resort.

More information

In the unlikely event that a particular hotel is not available, a similar or better hotel may be substituted.

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