Kuching Borneo… Orangutans, A Birthday And a heap of new Friends

>Kuching Borneo As my plane landed in Kuching Borneo I was full of excitement, its still one of those places that evoke images in your head of head hunters and deep jungle. A short taxi ride to my hostel Wo Jai Lodge Wo Jai Lodgea great little place on the main Bazaar looking out over the river and once settled in the obligatory walk around the town to see what I could see. WOW… this is amazing, real south east Asia food markets that over power your sense of smell, roads clogged with every type of vehicle, little vendors set up all along the Bazaar, I like it already. My two main ‘wants’ here are to spend my birthday with orang-utans and do an Iban longhouse tour, so my 2nd day was spent exploring the town a bit more in the morning and then out to Semengok Wild Life Park for the afternoon ( I had to pick a Buddhist holiday to go didn’t I). The place was packed, so many people, from what I had been told I expect 30 to 40 people and there was well over 150. The head ranger went crazy at everyone for making so much noise, threatening not to open the feeding area but then we were in… In the distance there were trees starting to move, the breaking of branches and then out he came, a young male, quicklyDSC_0173 followed by a mother and baby. Amazed is an understatement, with a huge smile on my face I started to snap a few shots (ended up taking over 350 in the hour). By 20 minutes into the feeding the crowd was getting very noisy again, the Malay and Chinese Tourist put on a terrible display of “Its all about me stuff every one else’ and the ranger closed down the feeding telling all to leave, but as we left he motioned for several of the westerners to stay where we were. That left 10 of us to stand there in awe of these beautiful creatures for the next 30 or so minutes. DSC_0132Once they had left the giant squirrels came out for a feed just to put a nice end to the display, thankyou Borneo one happy birthday boy. Getting back to the hostel and hoping to find out about my Iban tour tomorrow… well to cut a long story short, they stuffed it up…. Ok so what to do now… Bako National Park sounds interesting, so does the Borneo cultural centre which is where I headed the next day, a really enjoyable day of great food, long houses, traditional dancing and tribal crafts. That night was over the 1519_570990736277872_1169220748_n river to an eatery I had heard about and had a delicious feed of chicken satays with peanut sce washed down with a tiger beer as I looked out over the water, heavenly. Its up early the next day to catch the bus out to Bako Nat Park… after 2hrs sitting waiting I head back to the hostel… yep same guy gave me wrong directions, deep breaths so now its a day of museums and exploring. Right place, right bus the next morning and its off to 942845_570987676278178_648134675_n Bako, arriving at the gate I knew there was a boat trip in and they took 5 at a time, time to find some new friends, well they found me really and un know to us at that point all future travel partners. 8473_570985549611724_1409781836_nGetting to know each other on the boat ride in was great And Denise, Sarah, Mags and Ollie welcomed me into there group and we planned our day. The hiking was breath 8915_570982916278654_220601414_n taking in both ways, hot humid jungle, steep climbs, gorgeous views and 7km of tropical beauty, Sarah and Denise took a wild paced off shoot to see a water fall, then Mags and me headed to a beach for a swim, Ollie was stuffed and headed straight back to the park headquarters and aircon. We all met up again and as we were leaving some probosus monkeys turned up looking in the windows of the hotel, what a great way to end an afternoon. A sea food dinner with the new crew and tomorrow I fly to Mulu in the mountain, along with Denise and Mags, Ollie flys up one day after us…. and I will see Sarah later in my travels in Thailand….
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