Borneo is one of Southeast Asia’s few summer destinations, with the best time to travel being between March and October when the island is at its driest. This is the best time to see orangutans in the wild, while turtles can be seen on Lankayan Island between June and September. During the rest of the year, Borneo experiences a tropical climate and the rains come to water the forest below. It's hot and humid for most of the year, with temperatures averaging 27C to 32C and humidity usually at around 80%. However, there's always somewhere to break up the trip; trek up Mount Kinabablu to be rewarded by stunning views and a cooling breeze, or head to the beaches for some swimming and world class snorkeling.

Speak to someone who's been there

Nicki at Bako National Park, Borneo

Start planning your tailor-made trip by calling one of our Borneo specialists on 01993 838 120

Month-by-month guide to travelling in Borneo

Visiting Borneo in January

During January, Borneo sees some of its highest rainfall for the year; particulary in Sarawak. Sabah will most likely receive less rain at this time, but storms and high winds can make sea travel and reaching the more rural areas difficult. The poor weather also means that much of the wildlife remains hidden from view as animals shelter in the dense forest.

Kinabalu National Park, Malaysian Borneo

Events & Festivals

  • Chinese New Year (date varies): Chinese New Year is celebrated throughout Borneo with the usual festivities of singing, dancing and merrymaking.

Borneo Climate

Place Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Danum Valley 27°C 221mm 27°C 165mm 28°C 179mm 28°C 162mm 29°C 211mm 29°C 170mm 28°C 168mm 29°C 168mm 29°C 178mm 28°C 194mm 28°C 197mm 28°C 210mm
Kota Kinabalu 30°C 162mm 30°C 85mm 31°C 93mm 31°C 151mm 32°C 264mm 31°C 293mm 31°C 264mm 31°C 269mm 31°C 302mm 31°C 347mm 30°C 307mm 30°C 253mm
Kuching 30°C 681mm 30°C 532mm 31°C 339mm 32°C 277mm 32°C 245mm 32°C 199mm 32°C 194mm 32°C 228mm 32°C 255mm 32°C 317mm 31°C 345mm 30°C 509mm
Lankayan Island 29°C 417mm 30°C 235mm 30°C 164mm 31°C 112mm 32°C 156mm 32°C 193mm 32°C 178mm 32°C 205mm 32°C 226mm 31°C 229mm 31°C 310mm 30°C 427mm
Mulu National Park 28°C 283mm 28°C 237mm 28°C 274mm 28°C 288mm 28°C 330mm 28°C 253mm 28°C 228mm 28°C 250mm 28°C 317mm 28°C 321mm 28°C 321mm 28°C 351mm

You may also be interested in...

Proboscis monkey, Bako National Park, Malaysian Borneo

What to see in Borneo: our highlights guide

This guide features recommendations for things to do in Borneo. It focuses on the states of Sabah and Sarawak in Malaysian Borneo, which offer a lot of variety in a smaller radius than Indonesian Borneo.

Semenggok Orangutan Sanctuary, Sarawak, Malaysia Borneo

Family holidays in Borneo

On a tailor-made family holiday to Borneo you can combine family activities such as wildlife spotting, kayaking and snorkelling. We can also highlight family-friendly resorts and the best time to travel.

Stella on morning crab and shrimp fishing trip, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo

We recommend travelling during May to avoid the peak season hotel charges, crowds and most extreme temperatures. This is a great time to see wildlife, including orangutans in the forests and turtles off Lankayan Island.

Stella, Southeast Asia Specialist
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