June 1

Orangutans and proboscis monkeys in Kuching, Borneo

I have only been in Malaysian Borneo for 24 hours and have already seen more orangutans in the wild than I ever have in a zoo. Kuching, the capital city of Sarawak state in Borneo is home to the Semengogh Wilfdlife Reserve, a sanctuary with the purpose of rehabilitating troubled animals of the state. They are free and only helped when strictly needed,  thus geting a chance to see a wild Orang Utan ( people of the forrest  in Malay) has been one of the things of my travel “to do” list that I have finally accomplished.

Orang Utan
One picture, two monkeys
Bako park entrance

The following day we did a trip to Bako National Park with  an overnight stay, another highlight of the trip so far. We saw wild proboscis (big nosed) monkeys and their smaller gray relatives which were all over the place, not afraid of humans or stealing our food. Treking is awesome but tiring, and there are a few spectacular secluded beaches where you can get away from it all.  It is certainly worth going for at least two days, which is what we did. The best way of organizing it is from the tourist info center in Kuching- they have the best prices and all the info you will need.

beach at bako park

Proboscis mokey (Orang Blende in Malay, which actually means Dutch person!)

Kuching itself is a medium sized city with a river that basically limits it on one side. From here you can organize trips to view wildlife ( seeing orangutans in Indoneisa should be a highlight). It has a special charm and is not expensive, hence a good base camp for other activities to be done around the area. The Tune hotel can be a good option if you want to stay in a modern building, and rates are similar to those os the nearby guesthouses which can be good options as well. The biggest flower in the world , the Raflessia, grows in a Park close to the city, but we skipped that option because we wanted to move north. Next destination has been Sibu, a small and frankly unattractive town where coincidentally I would spend my birthday. Not without surprises though…

Kuching riverside
Kuching riverside

Have you ever seen Orangutans? Where? What do you think of this wildlife reserve if you ever had a chance to see it? Please remember to share this post if you liked it!


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  1. Awesome article Federico. Glad you had a chance to see them up close and personal. Actually, next week I will be seeing the Orangutans, Proboscis and Pygmy Elephants in Sandakan and Kinabatangan River in Sabah as I will be there for an exploration trip.

    Also, have a great time in Sibu, though it will be a little less active compared to Kuching. Happy Birthday in advance too!

    1. Thanks David! I didn’t find Sibu to be that exciting, though the trips to head inland and live with fomrer cannibals can be a great adventure. I did read about the river while there, but didn’t do it. Are you going to climb KK?

  2. Pretty cool post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say
    that I have really liked reading your blog posts. Anyway
    I’ll be subscribing to your blog and I hope you post again soon!

    1. Hi and thanks for the comment! I will certainly keep posting, there are quite a few after the post you have made the comment in. Talk to you soon and thanks for subscribing!

  3. Lo leo en francés lo que me es mas practico.
    Os veo estupendos; vuestros amigos “los orang-outan muy atractivos..
    Bisous. Cathy

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