Project Description

Tabin Wildlife Reserve is an enormous Dipterocarp rainforest landscape in the eastern part of Sabah with a most diverse range of flora and fauna. Tabin was declared a wildlife reserve because of the large numbers of animal species inhabiting its forest, including several which are highly endangered. Tabin plays an important role as a dedicated ground for the breeding of endangered wildlife and protected mammals in Sabah. It is no wonder that Tabin has been heralded as the finest wildlife viewing area in Borneo. The three largest mammals of Sabah, namely the Asian Elephant, the Sumatran Rhinoceros and the Tembadau (Banteng wild buffalo, Bos javanicus) are all found within Tabin.

In the early 1980s, WWF provided funds to the Sabah Forest Department for a faunal survey of Sabah, to identify high priority areas for protection. One of the four areas pinpointed as having high biodiversity value was gazetted as the Tabin Wildlife Reserve in 1984. Tabin was chosen because it had the only viable populations of elephant and Sumatran rhino. Tabin also has the largest elephant population in Borneo. WWF Malaysia helped to publish a management plan for Tabin later the same year. Over the years WWF has supported a variety of projects in habitats supporting elephants. In 1992, WWF funded a project to estimate elephant numbers in Tabin.

Tabin has been declared a Wildlife Reserve primarily on account of the large number of animals inhabiting its forests, some of which are highly endangered. The three largest mammals of Sabah – the Borneo Elephant, Sumatran Rhinoceros and Tembadau, are all found within the reserve. The elephant population has been estimated to 120-300 animals in 1993. Other ungulate species include Sambar, Muntjac and Mouse Deer. In addition seven of Sabah’s eight primate species are present, among them Orang Utan and Proboscis Monkey. However, these two species occur in relatively low numbers in the reserve. The biggest predator in the reserve is the Sunda Clouded Leopard. There are also several other smaller carnivores in the reserve. Of bird species, 42 families representing 220 species have been recorded.

Tabin Wildlife Reserve (TWR or Tabin) comprises a rectangular area of approximately 122,539 ha. in the centre of the Dent Peninsula, north-east of Lahad Datu town, south of the lower reaches of the Segama River and north of the Silabukan Protection Forest Reserve. It can be reached via sealed and gravel roads from Lahad Datu in about 40 minutes.


Day 01

You will be picked up in the east coast town of Lahad Datu and transferred by road to Tabin Wildlife Reserve (1:30 hrs). Check into an attractive timber lodge at Tabin Wildlife Resort, which comes complete with private balcony, air conditioner, ceiling fan and hot water shower, a welcome luxury in the forest. Nestled within the rainforest beside the Lipad river, this lovely setting is home to a surprising variety of birds, insects and small mammals, even right beside the buildings of the resort. Discover the rich variety of jungle herbs, some endemic, used for generations by local folks for the treatment of various ailments.

Visit Trogon Hall gallery for information about the conservation of Tabin Wildlife Reserve and briefing on birds, insects and animals that are found in this area. (For guest check-in before 11:00 am)

In the afternoon, trekking from the Elephant trail to the active Lipad mud volcano which provides a mineral salt lick for wildlife, arrive at the elevated bare area of the mud volcano which is frequented by wildlife and birds.

Try to identify the multitude of animal footprints here. The adventurous can try the effects of the volcanic mud, said to be responsible for a fine complexion. Trek from the mud volcano back to the main road.

After dinner, enjoy a CD/Slide presentation on Tabin’s natural wonders, followed by a night safari to look out for nocturnal wildlife and birds. Remember to look up at the clear, dark sky of Tabin, identify the constellations above you and make a wish or two. (L, D)

Day 02

Join the early morning bird walk to discover some of Tabin’s rich collection of almost 300 bird species. After breakfast, a drive to the core area stop over and climb up the birds watching tower continue along the way guide will show and explained to you the Orang Utan Release Center before trekking through the lush green rainforest known for its rich diversity of plants and animal species to visit Lipad Waterfall. Take a dip in the natural pool and enjoy a natural and refreshing shower under the waterfall. Alternatively, explore the surrounding vegetation or just relax.

In the afternoon, try out the Tabin Rainforest Foot Soak made with a natural blend of herbs, to relax tired muscles after long jungle treks (separate charges, not included in package).

In the evening, a dusk drive to look out for more nocturnal wildlife & birds coming out to look for food during this time of the day.

After dinner, go for a night walk along the trail near the resort in search of sleeping birds, frog and nocturnal wildlife. (B,L,D)

Day 03

After breakfast, free and easy until check out. (B,L)

You may opt to take up a dawn drive to look out for wildlife that is active at this time of the day.

[Not included in package/RM100.00 per person (Dawn Drive)]

Note: Activities are subject to weather condition/departure time, and maybe re-organised to best meet operational situation.

What to bring: Binoculars, Telescope, Insect repellent, long sleeve shirts & long pants, raincoat, sun hat, swimwear, comfortable trekking shoes, torchlight, water bottle & personal toiletries. Leech socks are available for sale at the resort’s shop

Package includes Scheduled return transfer Lahad Datu/Tabin/Lahad Datu, accommodation, meals as stated, guided tours and activities.

Schedule transfer : Recommended Flights: (Maswings)
Lahad Datu-Tabin: 0800 hrs & 1200hrs BKI-LDU MH 3010 0620 / 0715hrs
Tabin-Lahad Datu: 1330hrs (arrive Lahad Datu town 1500hrs) LDU-BKI MH 3019 1600/ 1655hrs

For local promotion price, call – 088 247613, 270733, 012 8182811


  • Tree Canopy

  • Mud Volcano

  • Jungle Trekking

  • Wildlife


  • Photos and Treks

  • Night Safari



Tabin Wildlife Holidays Sdn Bhd is the only agent available and is also the sole agent managing Tabin Widlife Resort.

(Office) Lot 11-1, 1st Flr, Blk A, Damai Point, Jln Damai, 88300 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.

Tel: +60 88 267 266
Fax: +60 88 258 266