Second and last day of our two days one night tour through
Tajung Puting National Park with Varada
Based on the itinerary they've posted in their
this second day we'll be taken to a local village and, from there, to
the camp we still have to visit: Tajung Harapa. After looking for
Proboscis monkeys we'll be deliveres to our hotel in Pangkalan Bun.
The spots marked at map are:
0- Pangkalan Bun
1- Kumai (quay)
2- Rumba Eco Lodge
3- Tanjung Harapan
4- Pondok Tanggui
5- Camp Leakey
Cause and effect: as we went to bed early yesterday we’re
awaken with the first lights from the windows. It’s around 7 AM when I
go out from the room and immediately hear a noise that makes me look up
to see a proboscis monkey just above me.
It runs away quickly following direction opposite of the river which
recalls me guide commented these monkeys meet by the riversides to
spend the night. So I go to the river to check that monkeys are gone
from there indeed. River looks beautiful with these morning lights and
the water is so dark that makes a perfect mirror.
We get our breakfast and a bit later we meet our guide. He has
scheduled a visit to a local village nearby, so we can see the way of
living of the people here. We start walking through the jungle
following a path made of planks. We pass by some areas with houses
where we can see people from the hotel staff.
First thing we see in the village is a couple of strange
buildings with no windows, except for a small hole at the top. Our
guide explains these are for a local business as they’re used with the
bird singing we’ve been hearing since some time ago: they’re coming
from a recording coming from inside these structures that are thought
to make birds to come to nest inside them. It seems the nests from
these birds are considered a delicacy.
Main street in this village is just a line of houses in one side
and the canal in the other. This village depends on the palm oil as
most of the people here are working in the plantation just behind the
Women are mainly working in the lodge or school. Some of them are
making wood carvings to sell to tourists. It’s very hot and we’re
stopping in every shadow.
Our walk ends in the quay, which is usually the place from where
the group of tourists are accessing to the village. If they’re not
allocated in the lodge, they can only come from the river.
There our speedboat is already waiting for us and our guide is
concerned about how to keep us entertained until lunch time. He
suggests going to see some works that are far, but we can free him from
the responsibility saying we’re fine by spending the morning resting at
lodge, where we’ll need to check out and lunch at noon. We like the
thought of enjoying the peace of the lodge and we walk around looking
and making pictures of the vegetation here.
When time comes we leave our baggage at the lobby and have our
lunch at the restaurant. The only activity we have before leaving the
National Park is the visit to Tajung Harapan, the closest camp to the
entrance – and exit – to the park. The feeding time here is 3 PM.
When it’s time to leave it’s raining, so they put the canvas roof
in the speedboat for our trip to Tajung Harapan, where we arrive at
2:15 PM. We stop in one of the houses in the camp to wait for a lower
rain but, as this is not happening, we go to the feeding platform with
the oilskins the guide gives us. When we reach the platform, the rain
is already over.
This time there is no movement in the trees when bananas are put
in the platform at scheduled time and, 30 minutes later, we’re talking
about leaving the place. We’re now aware of how lucky we were yesterday
in the first camp, when we thought then that was the usual. After 40
minutes a young orangutan appears.
Soon after that, a female orangutan with child come to the
platform and then another one. They share the bananas between the five
of them. We know these are the last orangutans we’ll see so we delay
the moment of leaving.
We leave past 4 PM knowing the only thing left now is or way back
to the hotel and, tomorrow, to home. So, we enjoy our speedboat trip
through this beautiful landscape saying good bye to the place.
Once back to the wide river we can see how we’re approaching to
Kumai. Once there, we say good bye to the boat driver and, while
waiting for Wati, some local families ask for a picture with Eva,
recalling this similar thing in India.
Wati comes with the car and, in our way to the hotel,
stops by a street food stand from where she brings a bag full of small
cylinder pastries that can be stuffed with cheese, chocolate or green
beans, but you cannot know in advance which one is what. So, I liked a
lot more cheese or chocolate ones I had to eat some green bean ones as
We definitively are saying good bye at hotel entrance.
It’s been two fantastic days and we’re kind of sad when they leave and
only the feeling everything is ending remains.