East Borneo Hidden Paradise



Highlight of the trip        :  Orangutan, Proboscis Monkey, Red Leaf Eating Monkey, Gibbon, Malayan Sun Bear, Pig Tail/Short Tail Monkey, Estuarine Crocodile, Horn Bill , Spectacular Panorama Karts Mountain, 4.000 years Cave Man Hand Paintings, Exotic                 wildlife and birds, Cristal Clear Water lake and River, Pristine Jungle, Beautiful Long House     

Access                         :  Fly to Balikpapan City accessible from Singapore

Duration                        : 12 DAYS 11 NIGHTS

Start/Finish                   : Balikpapan Airport/Berau Airport

Grade                           : Easy


Descriptive day to day itinerary :


Upon your arrival in Balikpapan, pick up service by our guide team then transfer to Samboja Lodge. It takes about 1 – 1 ½ hours or about 45 km in some bumpy road drive depend on the condition of the road Samboja Lodge is a venture of Borneo OrangUtan Survival (BOS) Foundation. Here visitors will be able to gain first-hand knowledge on what is required to rebuild a forest and protest its wildlife, especially in our effort to preserve the rainforest and critical endangered Bornean orangutan. Samboja lodge's unique design is based on local architecture. All interior and exterior walls are made from recycled materials. The cosmetic touches are all traditional handicraft and are produced by local and dayak communities around the area. It is surrounded by lush vegetation and each room has its own patio or balcony from which to enjoy surrounding forest. For the time being The Lodge has in total 26 rooms completed, 22 standard with Air-conditioning, Two Suite Rooms with Air-conditioning and hot water shower and 2 treetops suites, with fantastic view, and off course Air conditioning and hot water shower. The Lodge is completed with a towering area to oversee the Jungle area, a Lobby and a Restaurant, laundry service and kitchen facilities, including an Internet access area. The time for you to observe Samboja lodge with such a beautiful surroundings forest. Lunch and dinner at the lodge.



After breakfast at the appropriate time you will lead by the guide then walk about 10 minutes or drive away to the island of Orangutan to see feeding time. Then we walking through the Sun Bear Sanctuary to see the activity of the Malayan Sun Bear in the sanctuary. Lunch on the lodge then after lodge we drive about 1 hour to Bukit Bangkirai (Bangkirai Hill)  an area in East Kalimantan/East Borneo made for conservation of tropical trees endemic to Borneo Island, especially East Kalimantan province. It’s located about 58 km from Balikpapan or more or less 1 ½ hour or 150 km away from Samarinda or Tenggarong or 20 km away from Samboja District with some bumpy road. This place is called Bukit Bangkirai or Shorea Hills. Along with its uniqueness, there are also canopy bridges built for observation tower. Bukit Bangkirai covers the area of 1500 hectares to protect Bangkirai trees (Shorea laevis), Keruing trees (Dipterocarpus Comutus), Jelutung trees (Dyera Constulata), Kempas trees (Koompassia malaccensis), rattan (Calamus sp.), and other tropical trees endemic to Borneo/Kalimantan Island. Bangkirai Hill covered protected tropical rain forest dominated by Bengkirai Tree with about 40 – 50 m high and diameter 2,3 meter with average age of the tree about 150 years old . The canopy bridges in Bukit Bangkirai were made from 64 meters of steel connecting 5 huge Bangkirai/Shorea Laevis trees. This canopy bridges were built at 30 meters above the ground. This is normal since Shorea Laevis could grow more than 30 meters tall. In this place we will observing the typical Borneo rainforest, then soft jungle trekking to enjoy with canopy bridge. This Canopy Bridge is the first Canopy Bridge were built in Indonesia, second in Asia and 8th in the world. In this Canopy Bridge you will spot  very beautiful canopy forest the natural habitat for gibbon, Hornbill, Asian Paradise Fly catcher, red leaf eating monkey and other endemic wildlife of Borneo. Back to Samboja Lodge for dinner at local restaurant/lodge and overnight. (B, L, D)



After early breakfast  (or if possible breakfast box) transfer to Sungai Wain about more or less 1 hour . Sungai Wain is the former releasing site for around 80 orangutan beside the home for Malayan sun bear, Proboscis Monkey, 242 birds plus 9 species of Hornbill.. Upon arrival in Sungai Wain, we meet local team and bring us to the jungle searching for all those beautiful creatures.  This is one of preserve jungle close to Balikpapan City. The trek is easy and some part little bit muddy but rich of exotic wildlife. Actually this place is the home for the endangered rare Argust Pheasant but you need very special arrangement to see this beautiful creatures. After trekking then back to the place where we start at ranger house for lunch. In the late afternoon we will starting slowly boating on the river by long motorized canoe boat searching for Proboscis Monkey and could be also Estuarine Crocodile. Back to Sungai Wain and drive to Samarinda for Dinner and overnight. (B, L, D)



After breakfast then we check out and drive about 30 minutes – 1 hour depend on the traffic to Pampang Village is a cultural site to see when traveling to East Kalimantan. About 20 km from Samarinda city. Dayak Kenyah tribe live in this area after their migration in 1967 from their original hometown of Apokayan in Malinau district, East Kalimantan. They left their village to stay near urban areas, so that they could obtain education and fulfill their basic needs. At present, not less than 800 members of Dayak Kenyah community live in Pampang village. Pampang is without any doubt it is the most impressive in terms of color and intricacy of Kenyah art. The external & internal beauties of this longhouse is extraordinary and deserves every tourist’s visit. Dayak Kenyah performing art is held every Sunday from 2 pm to 3 pm. No show is held other than Sunday. After enjoying with the tribes then we continue our journey drive to Sangatta for about 3 – 4 hours drive or about 173 km away depend on the traffic and condition of the road. Lunch on the way at local restaurant. Dinner at local restaurant or hotel (B, L, D)



After early breakfast then drive about 30 minutes away to the harbor to boarding the long motorized canoe for about 30 minutes to Prevab Orangutan Station. Prevab Orangutan Station is a part of Kutai national Park that more easily access compare with other station. Kutai National Park is located north of the Mahakam river and includes several lakes: Danau Maau, Santan, Besar and Sirapan. It is adjacent to the towns of Bontang and Sangatta and 120 km north of the provincial capital Samarinda. There are several traditional Bugis settlements within the national park. The Kutai National Park extends over an area of 2,000 km2, part of the former Kutai Game Reserve which has been protected since the 1970s. However this status did not prevent the logging of a third of the forest in subsequent years and the following introduction of mining companies. In an attempt to prevent further deforestation the Kutai National Park was established in 1982. Nevertheless, the great Borneo fires of 1982/83 destroyed large sections of the forest, and the constant encroachment of people along the eastern boundary continues to reduce the true park area. Approximately only 30% of the primary growth forest remains. There are two main point for tourist access to the park. Sangkima is on the road between Sangatta and Bontang and thus is accessible by car or bus. The area has a number of old formal national park buildings. There is a large loop walking track, with sections of elevated boardwalk to what was one of the largest trees known in the park. Given the ease of accessibility and being adjacent to the road, this area of park is continually under pressure from the encroachment of people. This place is very less chance to see wildlife. Other site called Prevab is the second tourist area, approximately 25 – 30  minutes boat ride up the Sangatta River from Kabo Pier (a boat ramp on the northern bank, on the western side of the town of Sangatta). Access to the park is gained by road travel to Kabo Pier and the short river trip in a ketinting (a traditional small boat for navigating rivers). The more remote nature of this section sees the jungle in fairly good condition with little disturbance of the area. Upon arrival in Prevab, accompany by the ranger we searching wild orangutan, birds, gibbon and other endemic wildlife of Borneo living in Kutai National Park.  Kutai National Park is dominated by a Dipterocarpaceae lowland tropical rainforest and has 958 species of flora, including 8 of the world's 9 genus of Dipterocarpaceae family, 41 species of orchids and 220 species of medical plants. The other vegetation types include coastal mangrove forest, freshwater swamp forest and kerangas forest. The park provides habitat to 10 species of primates, 90 species of mammals and 300 species of birds. They include orangutan, Malayan sun bear, sambar deer, banteng, maroon leaf monkey, white-fronted leaf monkey, Hose's leaf monkey, proboscis monkey, Bornean gibbon, clouded leopard, black flying squirrel, marbled cat, flat-headed cat, yellow-throated marten, otter civet, and smooth-coated otter.The number of orangutans was found to have decreased dramatically, from 600 recorded in 2004 to about 60 in 2009. However a survey conducted in 2010 identified over 2,000 orangutans to be inhabiting the park.Then we will back to the Ranger Station for having lunch. In the late afternoon we will slowly explore Sangatta River for spotting Crocodile and Proboscis Monkey. Then we will back to drop to the pier again and drive to Hotel in Sangatta for overnight. Dinner at local restaurant.



If your main interest is wildlife we suggest to do more days at the park, event we can stay at the simple guest house at Ranger House instead of hotel in Sangatta to get more chance for NIGHT TREK as well as spotting more kind of wildlife. You will experience some other unique creatures in the jungle that you do not experiences in the day time such as Tarantulla, night birds, exotic insects, frog, could be Tarsier if you are so luckly. In the day time you may more chance to see orangutan, gibbon, and some beautiful birds of Borneo. Stay overnight at Ranger Hut and meals provided by our guide team at the ranger huts. (B, L, D)  



After breakfast packing then we will take a boat to Sangatta then drive from Sangatta to Miau Baru Dayak Village about more or less 4 hours drive or approximately 200 km away from Sangatta. It’s located at the north of East Kutai Regency on the  Trans Muara Wahau – Berau that connect Sangatta City and Tanjung Redeb City. It’s a home for majority Dayak Kayan (Uma’ Lekan) and some other tribes from Bugis (South Sulawesi) and Java. The Dayak Kayan itself still the same roots of Kayan – Kenyah – Bahau Dayak and originally came from Serawak in . This village used to be village and dry rice field for Dayak Wehea but since 1969 this village belongs to Dayak Kayan (Uma’ Lekan) . The name Long Kejik Village change to be Miau Baru  Village with the status Preparation Viilage as a national program for resettlement the people who live in the jungle and in 1997 Miau Baru Village officillay become the definite Village. In this village you will see beautiful rice barn, beautiful gate, traditional long house, dance and many exotic wood carving. We will stay overnight at the local simple  home stay. Traditional dances can be arrange upon request. Lunch at local restaurant on the way or lunch box. Dinner provided by our guide team and  stay overnight at local home stay (B, L, D)



After breakfast , you have time to enjoy and learning the daily life of the local people before packing and drive to Merabu Village. It takes about more or less 4 – 5 hours depend on the condition of the road as we will pass some bumpy roads especially when we enter the palm oil plantation bumpy roads. Lunch on the way, and we will have time to enjoy stopping for some Dayak Village.  As you may notice Kampung Merabu (Merabu Village) with their struggle and hard effort supported the Nature Conservancy in December 2013, the village of Merabu, a close-knit community of 235 people of mainly Dayak Lebo descent, was granted hutan desa (village forest). Hutan Desa gives the village the right to manage the forest in their area through an arrangement between the community and the governments. This arrangement was made binding through a decree that was sanctioned Forestry Ministerial Decree. The Village Forest of Merabu is a new landmark in the history of communities in the district as Merabu was able to get access of management of 8,425 hectares. The decision gives more long-term certainty of forest management and legal certainty to the community to maintain the ecosystems in one village boundary. The community has a very high dependency on forest resources, Karst (limestone caves) and river ecosystems. Through the granting of Hutan Desa (Village Forest), Merabu Village became one of the primary village models and a centre of economic empowerment for other village in Indonesia. The scheme also provides the community the right to manage the forests under strict sustainable forest management mostly for non-timber forest products (NTFP). The Nature Conservancy was actively involved in engaging and following up with Ministry of Forestry high ranking officials in Jakarta, including Director General of Watershed Management & Social Forestry, to ensure timely issuance of the Hutan Desa decree from the Minister. With the support of the district government of Berau, The Nature Conservancy, and other stakeholders, this collaborative effort was crucial in securing the communities’ land rights, ensuring long-term security and improving the livelihoods and well-being of the villagers on Merabu. Merabu Village is very special conservationist village that still keep their jungle to be preserve among the large scale  of palm oil plantation. \

Upon arrival in Merabu Village then we will meet with the local village team for briefing the next day program . Dinner provided by our local team and stay overnight at simple guest house. (B, L, D)



After breakfast then accompany by our local team from the village Merabu located at the foot of one of the world largest and untouched limestone forest into the Karst Mountains to the Beloyot limestone crop, which have several caves, with a historic human manuscripts about 4,000 year old, beside  unknown fossils, human sculpts, and lakes can be found in the several caves of Beloyot Limestone crop, Bloyot Cave that take about 2 – 3 hours trek. On our way we will pass some huge trees that can be adopted. You can participate for conservation program of Merabu Village to preserve the jungle by adopting trees. For the time being the fee for adoption tree to support the conservation program is IDR 1,500,00,-/tree for 2 years and can be extend depend on your request. This cost spend for the wood paging board written your name, the name of the tree you adopted and others for using maintaining to guard the trees as well as the jungle.  The trek mostly flast and some passing small stream with a bridge and grass and muddy. Upon arrival in the cave camp, resting for a while then we continue trek to Bloyot Cave that takes about more or less 30 minutes. It will be little bit challenge walking on the Karst  and small cave and some need crawling but assisted by wooden ladder. Inside the cave you may find bird nest, cave spider, bat and of course some ancient cave man paintings like handprint, animals and many others.  After enjoying the printing then we went down to the cave basement where the people can also possible to overnight for lunch prepared by our guide team. After lunch we will continue our journey for about 30 minutes passing another jungle and small wooden single bridge to Lungun , the place where the local dayak leader coffin saved in the cave like Torajan in South Sulawesi. Then we trek down back to Merabu Village that takes about  2 – 3 hours back. Upon arrival in Merabu Village take a rest and another preparation for overnight at Nyadeng crystal clear blue green water lake . It’s such a beautiful lake. From Merabu we take long motorized canoe that can carry about  3 - 4 passengers plus our boatman and our team. It takes about more or less 390 minutes boating until you reach the wooden hut . On the way you may see some water birds, monitor lizard, monkeys and pristine lush tropical rain forest of Borneo. Upon arrival in Nyadeng hut then we trek about 30 minutes to  Nyadeng Lake. On our way we will pass Chocó plantation, hude tree that you can adopted if you would like to participate to help this village to preserve their nature and jungle like mention on the way at the Bloyot Cave. Upon arrival in Nyadeng Lake we will  set up your tent for camping and relax. You have time to enjoy the crystal clear water green blue lake as well as some fish living here. Dinner provided by our local team and stay overnight at the tent (B, L, D)



Early morning wake up we will then have light breakfast before starting trekking about 1 hour to Ketepu Peak. It will be little bit steep and slippery and we can trek slowing down until more or less 1 hour to reach the Peak with the elevation about more or less 400 meter ASL . Nyadeng Lek located about 200 M ASL. You will enjoy the spectacular panorama of the Karst Forest surrounding with cloud and we feel like being in the country above the sky. We can not see the sunrise as it was blocking by the hill in our backside. However beside the spectacular panorama you may hear the sounds of Hornbill, Gibbon, and other wildlife. You will refresh your mind, spirits and souls  in this hidden paradise.  Trek back to Nyadeng Lake about 1 hour walk then upon arrival in Nyadeng Lake resting and relax at crystal clear blue green water enjoying swimming and just dipping in this beautiful lake. This lake “separated” in to 2 part, 1 part with the dept more or less 20 m deep and others no body knows as very deep in this section more than 20 meter deep. Dinner provided by our guide team and stay overnight at Nyadeng Lake. (B, L, D)



Early morning  trek around the lake looking for birding and other exotic wildlife in this area. Lunch around the lake . Enjoy your time in this lake before packing and trek back to Nyadeng Hut when we start the trek in previous day. Our motorized canoe waiting for us to take us in the upper river side exploring more beauty of this pristine tropical rain forest of Kalimantan searching for more birds, monkeys and others exotic creatures. Then we will boating down searching for another wildlife that could be Long Nosed Monkey or other endemic wildlife of Borneo. Back to Merabu Village for dinner prepared by our guide team and overnight . FYI, in this village also there is a wifi !!! You can pay for faster one or free slower one. Electricity also provided in this remote village start from 06:00 pm till 11:00 pm but within the end of this year will be 24 hours supported by Solar Cell Panel System. Stay overnight at small home stay. (B, L, D)



After breakfast packing our stuffs, then we drive another 4 – 5 hours back to Tanjung Redeb the capital city of Berau Regency around 135 km away from Merabu Village. It depend on your flight, if time permit we may stop at some other dayak village. Upon arrival in Berau Airport, check in. TOURS END – END OF SERVICES OR EXTEND TRIP TO DERAWAN THE HIDDEN PARADISE FOR UNDER WATER PARADISE.



* The easiest access is we reach Balikpapan first from any major city in Indonesia


* The above program is only an idea to maximize your duration of your stay with lots of opportunity to see wildlife and can be modified to suit your duration of your trip can be longer or shorter and suit your kind convenient, interest and comfort..


* There are some comfortable hotel in Berau or Balikpapan for overnight as most of the accommodation during our stay is very simple. They can stay overnight before and/after the trip if they have some more time.


* The trip can be extend to visit Derawan Islands (Indonesian: Kepulauan Derawan) are in the province of East Kalimantan in Indonesia. They include Derawan, Sangalaki, Kakaban, Maratua, Panjang, and Samama Island and submerged reefs and islets. They are located in the Sulawesi Sea, on the coastal shelf of East Kalimantan (2°17′N - 118°13′E). The islands are part of the Berau Regency. Derawan Islands have at least two ponds contain unpoisoned jellyfish, one in Kakaban Island and the other in Maratua Island with Haji Buang Pond. Kakaban is more famous than the second which is also more difficult to access. Indonesia at least have 7 ponds with un-poisoned jellyfish, the others are 3 ponds in Raja Ampat, West Papua, one in Togean Island, Central Sulawesi and one in Rote Island, East Nusa Tenggara.

Take Part to Support Orangutan & Rainforest Conservation

We are not simply about bringing visitors to see the Orangutan but to raise awareness about the threat they are facing as a big number of Orangutans keep decreasing in the past years.  By signing up to an orangutan trip with Adventure Indonesia , you have taken part in supporting Borneo orangutan conservation project,  as some part of your land cost including the donation for orangutan project.