Sukau Rainforest Lodge

Kinabatangan River (Sukau) | Superior

Responsible tourism may well be the latest buzz-phrase in travel but for the Sukau Rainforest Lodge it’s nothing new. Built in 1995 along eco-tourism principles, the lodge has been promoting sustainability initiatives to preserve the forest and support the local community for the last 20+ years.

The team behind Sukau Rainforest Lodge have gone to great lengths to ensure the property’s impact on the rainforest and its inhabitants is minimal. The boats used by the lodge for river safaris feature electric motors to minimise air and noise pollution and reduce stress to the wildlife; raised boardwalks connect the buildings which perch on stilts to prevent erosion and allow plant life to thrive undisturbed; rainwater is harvested and solar energy is used. With the majority of staff employed from neighbouring villages, Sukau Rainforest Lodge has also become an integral part of the local community. These admirable practices – of which there are many more - have earned the lodge the accolade of being one of National Geographic’s Unique Lodges of the World – one of only five in Asia.

The lodge itself is set on the banks of the Kinabatangan River, built from local hardwood and carefully designed to blend in to its rainforest surrounds. Room interiors are also in-keeping with the setting: decorated in natural hues, appointed in wood and local textiles, and feel more luxurious than you would expect from a remote rainforest lodge. The Villas are slightly larger than the Superior rooms and additionally feature a large private balcony that overlooks the forest. In line with the lodge’s environmental ethos, to minimise noise pollution there are no TV’s or radios. Why would stay in your room and watch TV when a unique world of wildlife sits on the doorstep?

When you’re not exploring the river on a boat safari, keeping your eyes peeled for pygmy elephant, orang-utan and proboscis monkeys, the lodge has plenty to keep you occupied. You could continue your wildlife spotting from one of the two boardwalks that loop through the forest from the lodge; visit the Ape Gallery and learn more about the flora and flora from the in-house naturalist; or take a refreshing dip in the swimming pool. Even the waterfront Melapi restaurant, with its outdoor terrace, offers river views and the potential to spot wildlife as you dine.


Sukau, Kinabatangan River, Sabah, Borneo

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  • Your Accommodation
    • 40 Villas & rooms
    • Superior room amenities
  • Eating & Drinking
    • Melapi restaurant
    • Gecko Lounge & Bar
  • Leisure & Relaxation
    • Small pool & sundeck
    • Attenborough & Hornbill boardwalks
    • Ape Gallery information centre
    • Small spa
    • River cruises
    • Gomantong Hall for relaxing & reading

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