Peninsular Malaysia and Borneo are a paradise for wildlife-spotters, harbouring over 600 types of birds and 200 mammal species – including Asian elephants, sun bears, tigers, tapirs, barking deer, gibbons, hornbills and pythons. Borneo’s speciality is the proboscis monkey, so-called because of its bulbous, drooping nose. The island is also one of only two natural habitats (with Sumatra) for orang-utans – indeed, the name is Malay for “man of the forest”. Marine life is equally diverse: divers can swim with white-tip sharks, clown fish and barracuda, not to mention green and hawksbill turtles, which drag themselves ashore in season to lay their eggs by night.

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