Highlights of Kalimantan

Kalimantan is the Indonesian name for Borneo, and almost three quarters of the island lies within Indonesian territory. The geography provides optimum conditions for rainforests and wildlife to flourish – a large landmass straddling the equator, with no volcanoes and location south of the typhoon belt. With only 12 million inhabitants in an area the size of France, and much of the interior being impenetrable, the infrastructure is basic. With a limited number of paved roads, the rivers become its highways, so for those with a restricted amount of time, the highlights are limited to the protected forests near the provincial airports of Pangkalan Bun, Balikpapan and Palangkaraya. There are a growing number of wildlife lodges and river cruises located in conservation areas that protect the islands abundant wildlife, which include the orangutans, gibbons, hornbills wild elephants and the elusive clouded leopard.

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Orangutan & baby, Tanjung Puting National Park
Set on a peninsula jutting out into the Java Sea, Tanjung Puting was first declared as a game reserve in 1935, and then a National Park in 1982, to protect 3,040 km2 of low lying forest and swamp punctuated by rivers. The best known animals in Tanjung Puting are the orangutans, made famous by the Camp Leakey research station, but also present are the bizarre looking proboscis monkey and seven primate species.