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Orangutan Samboja Lestari & Sungai Wain Exploration [PICTURES] (4D/3N)

Tour Code: BTG-BORNEO12

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Orangutan Samboja Lestari & Sungai Wain Exploration [PICTURES] (4D/3N)
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Following the waves of fire that ravaged forests in the early 1980s, making many locals sick and endangering unprotected endemic fauna, the Borneo Orangutan Foundation (BOS) begins a project with the aim of providing a safe haven for rehabilitated orangutans and reforestation efforts while at the same time, it provides a source of income for the local population.

On this 3-night tour in the Samboja Lestari Reserve, translated as “Samboja Forever” you will have the opportunity to explore the behavior of these rehabilitated orangutans in their new natural habitat. In addition, you will enter the tropical jungle that is the home of 137 species of birds and 9 species of primates and you will witness one of the canopy bridges built on its old trees more than 30 meters high. Let the adventure begin!

  • 3 Nights
  • Difficulty : Easy
  • Pickup: Balikpapan, Borneo (BPN)
Itinerary: Orangutan Samboja Lestari & Sungai Wain Exploration


Welcome to Balikpapan! It is now a port city but once a fishing village built by Bugis people. You can find jewelry and gemstones sold at many markets, as well as nice white sandy beaches on the coast area. Upon arrival at the airport, meet our guide who will take you to Samboja Lestari Reserve. It is where you will be able to see the orangutans and other animals such as the sun bears. During the journey, we pass the rain forest over the muddy road.

We will arrive Samboja Lodge which will be your accommodation. We take a look from the tower to have an overview of the area. Then, go to the other area to see the orangutans and sun bears in their rehabilitation process back in the wild. Lunch and Dinner at the lodge.

Meals: Lunch – Dinner

Accommodation: Samboja Lodge


After breakfast, we do trekking to observe the orangutans around the lodge, and also the other animals like Sun bear. This area is strictly for the orangutan survival foundation which has been developing since 1992 in Borneo. Now, Samboja Lodge has about 210 orangutans that have been released into 6 islands around lodge.

After Lunch, drive to Bukit Bangkirai where you can observe the typical Borneo rain forest, then soft jungle trekking to enjoy with canopy bridge. If there is enough time, continue to enjoy canoe trip at Sungai Hitam River for observing proboscis monkeys and then back to Lodge. Dinner at Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Accommodation: Samboja Lodge


Breakfast at Lodge then transfer by car to Sungai Wain, for a jungle and wetland safari. The area of Sungai Wain (Wain River) forest originally spreads about 10 thousand hectares. However, due to illegal logging, it continues to decrease and nowadays around 60 percent of the conditions remain preserved.

Nowadays, it still houses some wildlife species such as the orangutans, proboscis monkeys, sunbears, and deer. Morover, you can see some endemic Borneo birds as well as endangered plants. Lunch box will be provided, then in the afternoon return to Samboja Lodge for dinner and overnight.

Meals: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner 

Accommodation: Samboja Lodge


After Breakfast, free time to trek through the jungle of Samboja Lestari Reserve. Until departure time to Balikpapan Airport for your next destination. Thank you for exploring this little haven. Sampai Jumpa!

Meals: Breakfast  


Photos: Orangutan Samboja Lestari & Sungai Wain Exploration

Price Includes

  • Accommodation and meals according to the itinerary
  • English speaking guide
  • Ranger during trekking
  • Transportation and activities according to the itinerary
  • Donations, entrance fees, permits
  • A unique experience!

Price Excludes

  • Domestic/international flights
  • Travel Insurance (Highly Recommended)
  • Visa
  • Airport tax
  • Alcohol, soft drinks, personal expenses
  • Extra expenses occurred due to causes beyond our control (force majeure) such as cancellations of flights, natural disasters, diseases, etc.
  • Everything that is not mentioned in “INCLUDES”
Map: Orangutan Samboja Lestari & Sungai Wain Exploration


When is the best time of the year to do this tour?

Our favourite time for travel in Indonesia is between April to October, although Indonesia is a great year-round destination, offering memorable experiences for all kinds of adventures. July to August are the peak summer months. In West to Central part of the weather is delightfully warm and it’s a popular time for travellers to visit for holidays, whilst if you wish to travel from October to April, the Eastern part Indonesia, like Banda and Raja Ampat, would be the best option.

If you wish to have a relaxing journey in Indonesia with less crowds, the shoulder months of April to June and September to October are ideal and slightly more economic. If you must travel in ‘high season’ but want to avoid the crowd, worry not, there are numbered of unbeaten track in Indonesia ready to be explored.

What should I bring?

The tropics is a warm and often sweaty place, especially if you have Borneo or Sulawesi included in your travel. Check out our suggestion on What to Wear:

  • Comfortable and light shirt and at least a pair of long sleeves
  • Comfortable walking shoes or trekking shoes if your trip include some trekking
  • Shorts and long pants
  • Couple of pairs of socks
  • Waterproof Jacket/Raincoat

Depends on the type of travel, you may also need these in your What to Bring list:

Underwater Trip:

  • Dive Insurance
  • Dive certificate
  • Certificate of Nitrox (for those who are using Nitrox)
  • Dive equipment except Tanks and Weights. Please consult your travel expert to find out if the equipment is inclusive or not in your booking
  • Swimsuit/Dive suit
  • Adaptor DIN or INT
  • Flashlight
  • Sunscreen SPF +40
  • Waterproof bags

Landtour and Trekking:

  • Small backpack for daily important item
  • Travel Insurance, which covers trekking and sport risk
  • Trekking shoes (check with your travel expert if you need a Goretex or simply a walking shoes)
  • Pullover (as in some area like Mt Bromo and some other places at high altitude, the temperature can get as low as 0 degree)
  • Hats
  • Small flashlight or head flashlight
  • Towel (preferably quick dry microfiber towel)
  • Flight tickets (keep the soft copy in your mobile)
  • Valid passport with Valid Visa (or check if you are eligible for Visa Free Entry)
  • Travel/Dive Insurance
  • Personal medication (include contact lenses)
  • Waterproof bag to put all important documents
  • All documents for your trip: vouchers, tickets, contact numbers
  • Credit card (in some major cities, credit card are widely accepted in restaurants and shops. Small charge might be applied)
  • Cash in Euro or USD (you may change into local currency Rupiah when you arrive here)
  • Camera, Battery and Charger
  • Adaptor (220V is used in Indonesia)
  • Toiletries
  • Sunscreen and Sunglasses
  • International driving license (if you plan to drive on your own)
  • Mosquito Repellent with DEET
  • Hygienic travel kits (mask, disinfectant or anti-virus spray, etc, etc)

How do I get to Balikpapan?

Balikpapan is easily reached from all major cities in Indonesia. Most airlines have flights to Balikpapan, including from Jakarta, Surabaya, and Makassar. Besides Garuda Indonesia and Lion Air, other domestic low-cost carriers to Balikpapan are Sriwijaya Air, Citilink, Indonesia Air Asia. Internationally, SilkAir flies direct to Balikpapan from Singapore. 

How hard is our tour?

We have classified our tours in 3 different classes. Always check which one suitable for your condition. If you have any doubt, you may consult to our travel expert.

Easy: Suitable for most people in good health. These trips can include short walk for days with around 2–3 hours in good paths and at low altitudes.

Medium: A reasonable level of fitness or technique is required, as these trips can require sustained endurance levels as the trip may include longer days of approximately 5-6 hours of activity or/and in higher altitudes, or snorkelling in strong current.

Hard: These trips are physically demanding and best suited for people with a high endurance level, good level of fitness and exercise regularly. Days can be long around 7-8 hours of activity, often at high altitudes, in remote regions and sometimes without a support vehicle nearby. Travellers may be required to carry their backpack, trip with trekking overnights without access to normal toilets or accommodations.

East Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Program

The program is run at Samboja Lestari, and it was the first reintroduction program established by the Borneo Orangutan Survival (BOS) Foundation in 1991. It specifically provides care and rehabilitation for displaced or orphaned orangutans rescued from areas of habitat loss.

Formally known as Wanariset, the project was relocated in 2006 due to insufficient space and was renamed Samboja Lestari. The program is currently located about 38 kilometers from Balikpapan, in East Kalimantan.


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