Declared as a national park in 1982, Tanjung Puting National Park encloses different types of ecosystem including the lowland tropical forest, dry-land forest, peat swamp forest, mangrove forest, coastal forest and secondary forest. Tanjung Puting supports the natural habitat of various endemic wildlife on the brink of extinction such as the proboscis monkey, agile gibbon and sun bear.
Rivers that meander across the sanctuary are populated by the arowana or dragon fish, false gharial, saltwater crocodile and soft-shelled turtle. A variety of large mammals also inhabit the wilderness of Tanjung Puting, such as the common muntjac, bearded pig and Javan mouse-deer.
The national park is recognized for its orangutan rehabilitation center, the first of its kind in Indonesia. The rehabilitation center is spread across three main locations: Tanjung Harapan, Pondok Tanggui and Camp Leakey. At Tanjung Harapan a raised platform function as a feeding area for orangutans. This activity is the most awaited moment of the tourists when visit to Tanjung Puting National Park.
Food is placed on this platform to avoid orangutans from having no compete for food with other animals. Although food is supplied on a daily basis, orangutans do not always make their way to the feeding platform. When the fruits are in season, the orangutans would prefer to seek food on their own in wilderness.
Proclaimed by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve, it’s wetlands functions as a source of food and help control erosion. The wetlands are also a natural biological filtration system that supports the breeding of seasonal fish, a healthy source of animal protein for nearby communities. Tanjung Puting National Park also brings forth a wide variety of non-wood forest products such as honey, rubber, aromatic woods and fiber for ropes and cloth.
To reach Tanjung Puting national Park, water transport is the most popular, mainly the Klotok or traditional river boat powered by engine. The size of the wooden vessel is normally 3 m by 12 m and features two main decks. The Klotok captain, guide and crew occupy the lower deck, while the upper deck is reserved for tourists. The top deck is a multi-function area for relaxing, having our (tourists) meals and retiring.
From June to September is the best time to visit, from Jakarta you can take flight or ferry to Pangkalan Bun, Central of Borneo. Then continue by land to Tanjung Puting National Park Harbour, from here charter a Klotok or speedboat to Tanjung Harapan, Pondok Tanggui and Camp Leakey. Which normally takes three days to be able to visit all of them. The trip will be more intense because you have to live on Klotok for 3 days.
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