Bako, Sarawak: Malaysian Borneo for your bucket-list

I love Bako National Park.  Sadly, I was unable to stay overnight this time, but I recommend that if you possibly can – do so!  I also recommend you book well in advance to get a bed.

This park, which I believe is the smallest in Malaysia, and certainly the most visited because of the ease of access, from Kuching, Sarawak, is almost a different place when all the day-trippers leave.

At the bottom of this blog is a link to another story, with photos, that I wrote about Bako a few years ago after my first visit.  I’m still in love with the ‘ugliest animal you ever could see’ and of course the severely endangered proboscis monkey – most people have no idea that this monkey is even more endangered than the orangutan – once again, like many animals, in danger because of habitat loss.

A public bus from Kuching will take you to the dock where you can catch a boat to Bako.  Just remember, there are crocodiles in the water!

lunchtime

Here are some photos of those so-called ugly animals – I think ‘how could you not love the Bornean bearded pig’.

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The kiwitravelwriter reluctantly leaving Bako. photo by Chris Lambie
catching the boat to leave – by Chris Lambie (Australia)
arriving at Bako

here’s another blog I wrote, with more photos, about Bako

Kahoe Farm Hostel ……. the place to stay in Northland!

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Kahoe Farms Hostel , 12ks north of Kao, Northland, was recommended to me by Bare Kiwi: going by my experience of this homestay I will listen to his other recommendations!

So, what do you call a cross between a rural resort, a farm-stay, a holiday club and a homestay? Why Kahoe Farms Hostel of course!

Arriving in the morning, I spent the afternoon hiking in native bush behind this 1930s homestead; (the other one is from the 19thC. and both were built by the owners family) then watched my fettuccine being made for dinner.

kunikuni pigs
Kunekune

I also spent time talking to the cute-in-an-ugly-sort-of –way, kunekune pigs who will not be on the menu – ever!

Kahoe Farm Hotels started when a Kiwi met an Italian in London and they came back to NZ to the family farm which was started by Lyndsay’s Swedish great-grandfather who actually ‘jumped ship’ into the local harbour as his fellow sailors were heading back out after whales – the rest, as they say, is history.

Of the people staying here, one couple from The Netherlands are back for a 2nd visit in a year; an American surfer is also back for a second time, and a Frenchman is on his way up from Auckland, also a repeat visitor says it all.

This farm is also famous for its annual, New Year football (soccer) match … the world’s first tournament of the year here at the Kahoe Valley Stadium. The qualifying matches are held on New Year’s Eve and the final kicks off at midnight. The winners are presented with the Virgili trophy.

Stefano is an avid Inter Milan fan and often invites guests to play a friendly match on the Kahoe Farm stadium.

This is the crème-de-la-crème of backpackers and is surrounded by many walks and activities including a 3-hour round hike to the kauri dam, called ‘the rock pool’ by the family. It’s also a great base to for kayaking from. Canoeing among mangroves is always fun, or you can head out in the Whangaroa Harbour

This is a place to chill for a while, or get involved with the many activities on and around the farm – absolutely ideal for both kiwi travellers and tourists.

Have you stayed here? Or are you planning to?

Football anyone?
Football anyone?
Nearby Kao
Nearby Kao

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Lunch with a view
Lunch with a view

Summer in the winterless north is wonderful – esp’ off the beaten track

The ‘winterless north is great, but what do you call a cross between a rural resort, a farm-stay, a holiday club and a homestay? Why Kahoe Farms Hostel of course!

I arrived here this morning and I’ve been hiking in the bush behind this 1930s homestead; (the other one is from the 19thC. and both were built by the owners family)I’ve also been resting; downloading nearly 8 gig of photos and started the new collection of Northland pics; watched my fettuccine being made for dinner, and talked to the ugly, but v cute kunikuni pigs – and no, they will not be on the menu – ever!

Kahoe Farm Hotels started when a Kiwi met an Italian in London and they came back to NZ to the family farm . . . started by Lyndsay’s Swedish great-grandfather who ‘jumped ship’ in the local harbour when his fellow sailor’s were heading back out after whales – the rest, as they say, is history.

Of the people staying here, one couple from The Netherlands are back for a 2nd visit in a year; an American surfer is also back for a second time, and a Frenchman is on his way up from Auckland, also a repeat visitor … says it all doesn’t it!  More of that story in a later blog or print article.

Last night I went for an interactive  hike in the forest too, with Adventure Puketi. The bush a different place once the sun sets and our guide was full of great information – some of that to be revealed to you in a blog once I get home and work through all the work I have to do. Seems the daytime version of the walk is a hit with people off cruise ships.

Having my GPS with me has been helpful in finding my way around here in Northland as I love to get off the beaten track – my trusty rental car has been great

So, as its been for the past week, here are some photos to whet your appetite for more later on:

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