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“Poor value - high price. What a disappointment!”

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Tungog Rainforest Eco Camp
Reviewed January 10, 2013

The cabins are old and moldy (see photo) and very uncomfortable - open air walls, thin mattress, mosquito net with holes. There is no electricity other than a pin-size LED light on the ceiling which was totally inadequate to find ones way to the toilet facilities. The food was low quality and the dining area is dark, dirty and dank. The lady's bathroom had 5 lavatories but only 2 worked. There's no place with comfortable chairs to relax or read a book. There did not appear to be any conservation work ongoing although we saw several guys hanging around the camp all day long. Our guide was OK but his English left much to be desired. We saw only birds and monkeys on the river cruise and frogs and spiders on the night forest walk (and a squirrel that snatched left over food from the buffet table in the dining area!). We had expected the camp to be located in a more remote area (it's just a 25 minute boat ride from the main road and near palm oil plantations). We did the 3d/2 night package and there were hardly any activities included. We expected to participate in some real conservation activities (as described by other reviewers) but were told that none were taking place due to the rainy season. Compared to other Eco-tourist venues in Asia, this camp is not well organized or maintained. Given the basic and unmaintained condition of this camp, the few activities available and the relative high cost of the package deals - this eco-camp is NOT good value. We were so disappointed especially after having traveled so far to reach the place and having read some great reviews on Trip Advisor from others who had stayed at the Tungog rainforest camp.

Room Tip: a cabin near the bathroom is most convenient but none are nice
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Conservationalist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 - 27 of 27 reviews

Reviewed December 24, 2012

Just an FYI so you know what you are getting yourself into Eco-Camp really means it is just one step above camping so come prepared!
- no electricity at the camp
- Shared toilets
- bed is a 1 inch think pillow.mattress on the ground under a mosquito net
- everything is open air so the mosquitoes attack at all times you are not under the net


Overall Advice:
-Dont go in the rainy season it rains all the time and makes for muddy trails
-Stay 1 night only -you can get the experience and do all the cool stuff (we did 2 nights and sat around most of the time)

Pros:
- The river boat tours are great - you can see monkeys and birds for sure and the experience is very pleasant.
- You really get that "sleeping in the jungle" feeling
- You could see an elephant or oranghutan if you are very lucky (but I got the sense that was quite rare)

Cons:
- Low value - high $ for what you get
- Food is TERRIBLE
- The whole place could use a good cleaning and some maintenance
- There is no comfortable place to sit and relax at the eco-camp
- They make it seem like there are alot of activities but really there is not enough to do to even fill a half day (ex. "conservation activities" means you take about 25 minutes to plant 3 trees)

Room Tip: Some rooms are closer to the bathroom which makes it less treacherous if you have to go at night
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank CommuniKatie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2012

First of all: the camp itself is really nice and the ecological idea is consequently realized; food is good and the openair huts with the mosquito nets offer you the possibility to sleep in the middle of the jungle without the danger of getting wet or stung. And specially this mosquito net is a life saver if you visit the camp during the rainy season because you will be eaten alive, no matter how much insect repellent you use.
On the other hand there was one huge negative thing: our guide. Her name was Lin and she said that she's been working for the organisation for five months now. But why she then does not know the names, behaviors, etc. of the animals? And why the heck did she chop various trees with the machete without a reason during our morning walk? Furthermore, since her English is not very well, there were a lot of missunderstandings (e.g. she didn't understand one joke we made and on the other hand she wanted to be funny but was more kind of offensive...). And the worst thing was that she had to talk all the time about nonesense or about things she has no idea of (e.g. "Curry is a good medicine against cancer.") not caring whether we were really interested. And sometimes she would even interrupt our conversation to tell something meaningless!
In the end, we shortened our stay from two to one night, telling that we were tired of all the mosquitos because we feared, that she would not understand our complaints and react rude (which obviously was true because she left us with the suggestion "to only visit cities in the future because there are no mosquitos at all).

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Nicola B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2012

Where should I start. This camp is really one of my highlights and something I would recommend to everyone.

We started off by sailing down the river and looked at monkeys and birds from the boat. We then arrived to the camp around 4pm, and could take a break and a shower.

Because everything at the camp is supposed to be ecological, food was sailed in and there was no power supply except from batteries for light.

After dinner there was a guided tour in the jungle which was exciting and gave some interesting pictures of animals in the jungle.

Sleeping in simple tree huts was really surprising as the jungle is a really noisy place but this is a part of the experience. In the morning we were so lucky to be wakened by a orangotang up in the trees.

The camp is a god opportunity to come closer to the jungle and experience it real close.

But you should not be affraid of frogs and other animals as there is a god possibility that you will end up sleeping only a feet away from them.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank mikbund
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 27, 2012
Google Translation

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Martina C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2012
Google Translation

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Mitea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tungog Rainforest Eco Camp

Address: PPM 538 Elopura, Sandakan 90200, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > Sandakan Division > Sandakan
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 29 Specialty Lodging in Sandakan
Price Range: $122 - $140 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 10
Also Known As:
Tungog Rainforest Eco Camp Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia

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