Orangutans & the Dayak – Private Departures


  • Travel on a traditional houseboat
  • Spend the night in a longhouse with the Dayak tribe
  • Visit Camp Leaky, home to the highest population of Orangutans in the world

Cruise through the tangle of Kalimantan’s wild jungles and lush rainforests as you search for orangutans in the heart of Indonesian Borneo.

This labyrinth of river systems is a trove for incredibly exotic and rare wildlife.

Fringe the Tanjung Puting National Park as we visit Camp Leakey, home to the endangered orangutans, founded by primatologist Dr. Biruté Galdikas, a protégé of legendary paleontologist Louis Leakey in 1971. Visit the feeding stations in the forest at Camp Leakey as you learn the significant contribution this former research station has made to save the orangutan from extinction through rehabilitation and habitat preservation. With our unique access, you will encounter semi-wild orangutans.

Overnight in traditional longhouses of the Dayak tribe, a culture who traditionally live along the river banks. They live by complex religious practices which involve numerous local spirits and omen animals. Interacting with these local tribes people offers a rare opportunity of cultural exchange as you help increase their understanding of conservation as well as providing a platform for them to teach you about their ancient ways of life.

This is truly a journey of discovery, education and enrichment – perfect for those with a wild and generous heart!

Journey map

Fitness level



Day 1 - Kumai River

Welcome to Pangkalan Bun, the main entry point to central Kalimantan in Indonesian Borneo! Upon arrival at Pangkalan Bun Airport, our guide and driver will meet and transfer you to Kumai Port. At the port, board a local klotok boat for a scenic journey along the Kumai and Sekonyer Rivers.

Begin your cruise heading along the Kumai River. After approx. 20 minutes, enter the much smaller Sekonyer River, which marks the border of Tanjung Puting National Park. The lush vegetation along the river bank first consists of Nipa palm and is slowly replaced by Pandan trees.

Lunch is served on board.

While cruising through Tanjung Puting National Park, take note of its variety of tropical animals. The area is renowned for its spectacular ecological and biological diversity, and contains mangrove swamps, rainforest and dense jungles filled with rare primates such as orangutans, proboscis monkeys and macaques.

Enjoy dinner this evening on board the boat surrounded by the beauty of nature. (L,D)

Overnight on a Deluxe Houseboat

Day 2 - Pondok Tanggui – Camp Leakey

After breakfast on board the klotok boat, start cruising up the Sekonyer River towards Camp Leakey.

The cruise turns off the Sekonyer River and enters a narrower branch of the river where the water changes colours. In addition to being a fascinating natural spectacle, this area is also full of wildlife. The guide will point out the various types of animals seen here; kingfishers, broadbills and hornbills are almost a guaranteed sighting!

Continue navigating for about two hours to reach Camp Leakey. Housing the largest population of orangutans in the world, it is the most famous place for orangutan research. Over the years as many as 200 orangutans have been reintroduced to the wild here. Today, the camp only operates as a feeding platform, but orangutans are still fed and medically monitored by the local rangers. There are only three feeding platforms in Tanjung Puting providing supplementary food to the orangutans so as to limit their reliance on feeding and to encourage them to forage in the jungle.

Lunch is served on board just before arriving at Camp Leakey.

Around 13:30, disembark at Camp Leakey for a 30-minute walk along a wooden platform. Continuing into the jungle there is a chance to spot gibbons, long tail macaque and wild pigs.

Make it in time to a feeding platform (14:00) to witness the rangers offering bananas and other fruits to the orangutans. Sitting with the park rangers (10 meters from the feeding platform), enjoy the opportunity to get up close with these amazing animals.

Return to the boat and around 16:00 and start cruising again.

At this time of the day, many proboscis monkeys, found only in Borneo, can be seen gathering in large groups around the banks of the river (excellent photo opportunity.) There is also a chance to spot a few orangutans in this area as they come to pick up fruit from the pandan trees in the late afternoon.

Dinner is served onboard the boat. (B,L,D)

Overnight on a Deluxe Houseboat

Day 3 - Kumai – Lopus Daya Village

After breakfast on the boat, disembark for a 5 hour transfer by private car to Lopus Village.

Lunch will be served en route at a local restaurant.

Upon arrival in Lopus Village, enjoy sightseeing around the village. Your afternoon is free at leisure.

In the evening after dinner, you will be welcomed by the Dayak Tomun with their Bagondang ceremony. The Dayak are a tribe who worship nature. The ceremony includes beating of traditional drums where you will have the chance to dance with the Dayak people who also will serve you rice and wine often served in a horn. Enjoy the ceremony before returning back to the longhouse. (B,L,D)

Overnight in a traditional longhouse

Note: Please bring a small bag for your goods/clothes needed for one night in the longhouse. Your main luggage will be dropped off at the hotel for the following day. Sleeping bag, towel and air mattress will be provided for the stay in the longhouse

Day 4 - Lopus Dayak– Kudangan – Pangkalan

After breakfast in the longhouse, drive to Kudangan Village to see another longhouse and jurung (rice storage building).

After your visit, begin the five-hour drive back to Pangkalan Bun. Lunch is served en route at a local restaurant. Arrive in the late in the afternoon in Pangkalan Bun and check in to your hotel.

Dinner is served in a local restaurant. (B,L,D)

Overnight in the Swissbel Hotel or similar

Day 5 - Departure from Pangkalan Bun

After breakfast at the hotel, enjoy the rest of the morning at leisure until it is time to transfer to the airport for your onward flight. (B)

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What’s included

  • Return airport transfers
  • 4 nights accommodation
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
  • Tours and transfers by private air-conditioned vehicles
  • Services of an English speaking local guide
  • All entrance fees and sightseeing as indicated in itinerary
  • International and domestic flights
  • Visas
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • All services, meals other than those indicated above
  • Personal porters
  • Any changes to the proposed and confirmed program.
  • All items of a personal nature e.g. drinks, laundry, telephone calls, tips etc

**Please note that this tour can be organised on request for private departures.

* Pricing is subject to change at anytime until full payment has been received.

* A minimum of 2 adults is required to guarantee this departure.

A non-refundable deposit of $1000 AUD per person is required to secure your place. Final payment is due no later than 60 days prior to departure. Travel insurance is mandatory for travelling with Crooked Compass. For full terms and conditions, please click here.