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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 27°C to 32°C 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.

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Audley Travel specialist Charlotte

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

Kinabalu National Park, Malaysian 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.


Events & Festivals

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


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Borneo Climate Guide

Place Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Brunei 30°C 306mm 30°C 161mm 31°C 150mm 31°C 195mm 32°C 243mm 31°C 211mm 31°C 230mm 31°C 212mm 31°C 298mm 31°C 324mm 31°C 367mm 31°C 348mm
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
Gaya Island 30°C 160mm 30°C 80mm 31°C 88mm 32°C 143mm 32°C 257mm 31°C 289mm 31°C 262mm 31°C 264mm 31°C 301mm 31°C 344mm 30°C 307mm 30°C 250mm
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
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
Sepilok 29°C 449mm 29°C 279mm 30°C 199mm 31°C 120mm 32°C 158mm 32°C 207mm 32°C 198mm 32°C 248mm 32°C 248mm 31°C 243mm 30°C 310mm 30°C 439mm

Trip ideas and travel guides to exploring Borneo

Proboscis monkey, Bako National Park, Malaysian Borneo
Borneo
Elephants on the Kinabatangan River, Malaysian Borneo
Borneo
Stella at a Malay wedding, 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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