Accessible Travel

Borneo has a long way to go in the area of accessible travel. Most buildings, tourist destinations and public transport in Borneo are not wheelchair accessible, though Sepilok in Sabah is more wheelchair friendly.

Navigating Malaysian Borneo's city centres in a wheelchair can be tricky due to high kerbs and footpaths of varying heights. Infrastructure is much less developed than on mainland Malaysia. In addition, accessible accommodation options are limited to more upmarket hotels. However, if you are willing to be flexible – think being lifted onto boats and into vehicles, and having makeshift ramps built for your hotel – and to accept the generous help that the more laid-back and friendly East Malaysians are likely to offer, travel to Sabah and Sarawak is possible.

Most tour companies offering trips to the interior do not accommodate people with physical disabilities.

If you’re thinking of travelling to Brunei in a wheelchair, you should reconsider your plans unless you have no other option. You can get a wheelchair-accessible transfer to your hotel, but thereafter you will be limited to your hotel and shopping malls. Pavements (sidewalks) are often inaccessible, most shops and buildings – including official buildings such as police stations, consulates and the national airline office for example – have steps to enter. Even the main mosque can only be entered via a flight of stairs. Blind and vision impaired visitors – and those using a cane or mobility aid – will struggle with extremely high kerbs, lack of tactile paving and completely unplanned wayfinding.

Download Lonely Planet's free Accessible Travel guides from http://lptravel.to/AccessibleTravel.