Berhala Island is an interesting and adventurous destination to sport climb. Isolated, secluded, and beautiful, the towering sun-burnt sandstone walls appear suddenly as your boatman motors around the vegetated west side of Berhala, to reveal the paradise on the other side. Arriving on a sandy beach, most of the routes start right there, up the huge sandstone walls. The rock quality varies from solid baked slab to vertical to chimney climbing, but overall quality is surprisingly good for being sandstone. However, I did break a few holds on steep routes.
Flights to Sandakan from Kota Kinabalu (KK) leave about 3x/day, from where a 20 minute shuttle takes you into town. We took a 6am flight, got the shuttle, had breakfast, walked down to the harbor, got supplies, hired a boat, and arrived on Berhala just in time for a swim before the shade arrived at 1pm. Hiring a boat wasn't too difficult from the fisherman wharf. Ask around, be patient but persistant. Its a 10 minute boat ride out to Berhala, so bargain accordingly. NOTE: There are no tourist services to the island, you must hire a villager or fisherman. So, to be cautious, we insisted to pay the boatman only 20% of the cost of the RT boat trip and the rest when he came back to pick us up! (there are no facilities on the island). The boatman was friendly, fair and gave us no trouble. (I wish Indonesia was so hassle free!)
Browse More Classics in Berhala Island
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Berhala Island:
Dick van Dyke Comes For Tea 5.10b PG13 Sport, 1 pitch, 45 feet
Featured Route For Berhala Island