Allow at least three weeks for this adventurous trip into Malaysia's least-developed corners.
Find your bearings at Sarawak's small, likeable capital: don't miss the Semenggoh orang-utan sanctuary, a rewarding day-trip.
Sarawak's oldest national park, this small patch of well-preserved coastal forest is home to waterfalls, proboscis monkeys and bizarre pitcher plants.
3 Batang Ai
Take a boat through spectacular riverine forest in this often overlooked national park, and visit traditional longhouse communities such as Nanga Sumpa.
4 Gunung Mulu National Park
Spectacular jungle scenery, particularly the three-day trek out to a "forest" of limestone towers, and a network of rugged caverns.
A stepping stone to the remoter corners of Sarawak. Don't miss the caves at Niah National Park, inhabited by humans over 40,000 years ago.
Set out on some demanding multi-day trekking via remote Kelabit longhouses or up Mount Murud.
7 Kota Kinabalu
Sabah's capital has lively markets, a district of traditional houses built over the water on piles, and an interesting indigenous museum.
8 Kinabulu National Park
This small reserve surrounds wind-seared Mount Kinabulu, one of the toughest hikes in Malaysia.