"Interact with both the animals and the tribespeople that share this remarkable habitat."
All tribes, no tribulations with this tremendous Orangutan and Tribes Tour. This expedition helps to promote wildlife conservation, whilst also working to improve relations between orangutans the indigenous Iban tribe. On this tour, you’ll trek through the dense Bornean rainforest to try to catch sight of the iconic and gentle ginger giants in their natural habitat – a rare and precious experience! You’ll also visit the esteemed Matang Wildlife Centre, to set you on the path of discovery about rehabilitation efforts. Finally, you’ll head to the Semenggoh Nature Reserve to witness the semi-wild orangutans that have been released back into their natural habitat - of course, this is the ultimate goal in any rehabilitation effort!
You will tour the wildlife centre and nature reserve whilst also visiting Bako, Kubag and Batang Ai - three of the most spectacular national parks in Borneo. This tour allows you to gain an insight into the conservation efforts of Sarawak Forestry Corporation, an organisation working to protect the orangutan’s forest home through enrichment and husbandry. Over the course of a fortnight, you’ll explore the treasures of the rainforest, take a night-time trek through Bako national park and even go snorkelling at the tremendous Telok Serabang beach! Learn all about tribal life in the rainforest, get the chance to see orangutans in their natural environment, and help to protect these awe-inspiring animals on this amazing voyage of discovery.
With the aim of furthering orangutan conservation efforts, this tour provides travellers with the opportunity to aid the mission. Exploring the Matang Wildlife Centre and the Semenggoh Wildlife Centre gives travellers the chance to learn about how the centres provide homes for endangered wildlife in areas of protected rainforest. These centres specialise in teaching rescued or orphaned orangutans how to survive in the wild, a mission you can not only witness but also contribute to. Of course, the eventual release of animals back into the wild is the ultimate goal for any rehabilitation centre, and seeing this in action really helps to put your conservation work into perspective!
The orangutan is critically endangered and the tour allows you to get hands-on with the rehabilitation and conservation of these animals, whilst ensuring that human interaction does not negatively impact their lives. This tour also works to address the issue of human-orangutan conflict; with tension between local tribes and the wildlife, it is imperative to bridge the gap and help to repair these fractured bonds through interaction and education. So whether you’re a people-person or an animal-lover, you can get involved and become part of the community on this tour!
After arriving at Kuching Airport you will be transferred to the guesthouse to freshen up after your flight. You will then have a briefing and enjoy a welcome dinner with the rest of the volunteers.
Jump straight in today and make your way to the Matang Wildlife Centre for a tour of the centre; keep your eyes peeled for birds, reptiles, gibbons and the reason you’re all here - the incredible orangutan! You will also get your first meeting with the one and only Aman, a mischievous male orangutan who will have you raring to meet the rest of the family in the days that follow!
Get stuck in at the rehabilitation centre and orangutan sanctuary by getting involved in husbandry for the orangutans, macaques and sun bears. Feed and clean the enclosures and help to ensure that you are supporting the natural behaviours of these animals, to help increase their potential to be released back into the wild.
Spend another day working with the orangutans, before coasting to Bako National Park by boat. Don’t listen to Peter Pan – it’s perfectly fine to smile at a crocodile as long as you keep a safe distance! There’s also the opportunity to have a night-time trek through the jungle and spot the nocturnal species. If you’ve been eating your carrots, you’ll spot the little eyes staring down at you!
Explore the brilliant Bako National Park and trek through the rainforest to discover the ample wildlife, the trickling streams and the gushing waterfalls. Bako is one of the most famous areas of Sarak for wildlife so throw yourself in and take a trek through the forest in search of the wildlife. There are also stunning secluded beaches to discover! The evening will see you transferred to Telok Serabang to begin your time with the Malay community.
For these two days you’ll be based in Telok Serabang, where you can enjoy the beautiful coastal Sarawak. Get in at the deep end as you go snorkelling to spot the turtles, and ensure their natural habitat is safe with a beach clean-up. Continue the day by volunteering at the local school, before getting your night-vision goggles on for an evening of night-time turtle patrols. Take a hike through the forest to see gibbons and flying lemurs and later enjoy another opportunity to become part of the local community as you learn how to make traditional jewellery.
Another community-oriented day (this time with a Bidayau community from Sarawak) today gives you the chance to find out more about traditional tribal culture. You might even see the skulls that are remnants of the infamous ‘head-hunting’ tradition… Later, enjoy a more light-hearted evening of cultural dancing.
Hang out with the orangutans of the Batang Ai rainforest and get stuck in with traditional activities like handicrafts, cooking and fishing. You will never forget your time touring as you enjoy a picture-perfect picnic in the jungle surrounded by trickling rivers and waterfalls. Your unbreakable bond with Borneo and the indigenous people will stay with you as you remember how you’re all helping to repair the relationships between the region’s animals and people.
Unfortunately, today is the final day of your tour and you will be transferred back to Kuching. Don’t worry though, your adventure isn’t over quite yet, as you’ll be able to visit the Semenggoh Rehabilitation Centre en route to the airport. The centre is home to animals that have been rescued from being kept as domestic pets illegally, orphaned or those found injured in the forest. You’ll be able to see the semi-wild orangutan that call this haven their home before one final evening at the Basaga Guesthouse, enjoy a relaxing shower before reminiscing over your tour time with fellow guests and your guides.
Bid farewell to your friends as today you will be transferred to Kuching Airport for your flight home. Have a safe journey home and enjoy your treasured memories of this life-changing tour!
- The rate shown is a 'from' price
- Click 'Ask a Question' up above to speak to the operator directly about this tour's availability, departure dates and costs
- To secure a place on this project a 20% deposit is required at the time of booking, with the remaining balance due any time up to 60 days prior to your start date.
- Airport transfers
- Overland transportation
- Accommodation and meals (click 'Ask a Question' to chat to the operator and find out more info)
- All traveling activity equipment
- Local guides
- English speaking project leader
- Conservation donation
- All flights
- Vaccinations and anti-malarials
- Travel insurance
- Alcoholic beverages
- Anything else not mentioned in inclusions
Area & Location
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