I am on that big fluffy cloud nine after my trip with Emmie to Borneo. It was a trial for our big trip overseas next year and after this adventure I really feel like I can do it! We can be a travelling team!
My only worry is Emmie having enough interaction with kids, but hopefully we will meet some on the way. I suppose that’s the benefit of having more than one child – they always have a travel buddy their own age. But oh well, she is stuck with me.
Borneo was the first trip where I was totally responsible for Emmie in a non-resort holiday. From day one we were together in unfamiliar territory… landing in a new country without pre-organised transport and a fancy hotel to go to which I am quite used to but for Em it was a bit strange. Our first stop was a budget Kuching hotel and once Emmie accepted she could not order room service we were good to go.
We usually set a cracking pace at Disneyland so we used the same enthusiasm and energy to trek around jungles, walk the Kuching waterfront at night, run through the Mulu rainforest in torrential rain and ride the Shangri-La’s waterslides thousands of times.
Previously we’ve stayed strictly in resorts and so this trip I was totally in control without other tourists around to help if needed. It’s a big responsibility and I had to balance being the organised protective mum with making sure the fun, adventurous mum came out. I wanted to be on my game, but I also wanted to make sure I encouraged her whole-heartedly to embrace the adventure. And I feel like I was successful – hey we made it back alive, no major injuries just awesome memories of fun and special experiences. And she learnt a LOT! We both did.
One of our favourite adventures was to Bako National Park. It’s Sarawak’s oldest national park, around 2,700 hectares, with long sandy beaches, tall eroded swirling cliffs and wild jungle. It’s around 30 minutes from Kuching and another 20 minutes or so on a little tinnie (boat) to the Park jetty.
Bako is known for its incredible wildlife, natural protected jungle and amazing waterfalls and streams. We arrived off the boat and saw amazing leaping fish on the sand, who had been washing in by the waves and were jumping back into the water, and then set off on our jungle trek to find the proboscis monkeys. After climbing up a mountain and down into a mangrove inlet we found a family of them, strolling through the trees and stopping to kick back in the branches to eat fruit,
Seriously they are the most incredible and fascinating creatures- I reckon they look like men dressed up in monkey costumes – I could not take my eyes off them. They are so chilled out, they just recline with their legs spread, chilling out in the trees.
We loved the cheeky macques, especially the babies who chased after Emmie and tried to grab her shoelaces, and saw a mesmerizingly fluourescent Bornean keeled pit viper – and had I known it was a viper I would not have been 10cms away clicking pics with my iphone – wild boar and a lemur sleeping in a tree.
It was a truly amazing day – we were so tired afterwards, but that lovely physical exhaustion and happiness at having a wonderful day.
And so then it was a bus-ride back to the hotel, a quick change into our cossies and a walk across the road to the Hilton where we swam til dusk for $10 each! xoxox