2018 Tours: Mar 01, Jul 26
Listed in TripAdvisor's Top 10 destinations on the rise in Asia, it only takes a few days to fall in love with Kuching.
I'm not sure if it's the layback locals, the stunning national parks or the melting pot of traditional and emerging fusion cuisine bursting from every street corner that makes this city so unique. Whatever it is, you'll be rewarded when you take the time to explore Kuching and the nearby national parks.
And that's where we come in. Taking the stress out of your planning as I show you my personal favourite places such as Semenggoh Wildlife Centre for orang-utans, kayaking down Sarawak's Kiri River, taking a boat ride to Bako National Park and giving back a little as we help out at Matang Rehabilitation Sanctuary for orang-utan and other endangered wildlife.
All breakfasts, picnic lunches and meals where arranged meals as specified
Transport including ferries and river cruise
Entry fees to Bako National Park and Semonggoh Wildlife Centre, Kayaking, Volunteering with Project Orangutan, Matang Rehabilitation Sanctuary
click map for larger view
Immerse yourself in the charms of Kuching – one of Asia’s most intimate and unpolluted capital cities. Perched by the waters of Sarawak River, the city enchants visitors with an easy charm.
Wander its streets on this day tour to experience the fusion of Asian cultures in the riot of street foods. Step back into time at handicraft shops to see craftspeople hand make wares in intricate detail. Visit a traditional herbalist who’ll concoct herbal medicines to ease any ailments. And travel across the meandering waters of the river by boat to visit the Malay quarter with its aromatic street foods.
It won’t be long before you find yourself falling under the spell of Kuching’s charms.
Bako National Park
Depart the hotel at 8am. Breakfast on famous Sarawak laksa, popiah or roti at a popular local cafe.
Journey to Bako National Park on a 20-minute boat ride through a stilted water village bustling with local fisherman. As the inlet opens to the calm waters of the South China Sea we pass traditional fish traps, mangroves and islands. Look out for the bottlenose dolphin, crocodiles, water monitors and coastal sea eagles.
Bako National Park provides the perfect introduction to your wildlife encounter with regular sightings of the proboscis monkey, long-tailed macaque, silver leaf monkey and wild boar.
Explore a trail or two and enjoy a picnic lunch before returning to town.
Behind the scenes with Project Orangutan, Matang Rehabilitation Sanctuary
The dedicated staff and volunteers at Matang are committed to the care and rehabilitated of endangered Bornean wildlife. You'll have the opportunity to get behind the scenes and learn what is required to keep this valuable volunteer project at Matang afloat. Warning – you may find yourself smitten by the endearing nature of the resident orangutans.
Project Orangutan is a conservation company helping to save and protect the endangered wildlife on Borneo. They specialise in ethical volunteering and tourism experiences working with the magnificent orangutan and other protected species such as the clouded leopard, binturong, sun bear and false gharial, among others.
As we join the Project Orangutan team for the day we have an exceptional opportunity to gain a behind-the-scenes insight into orangutan conservation and rehabilitation.
We will have the chance to spend time with experts in the field, who will be happy to share their experiences and knowledge as they orientate us with the centre’s residents and facilities.
After lunch it’s our turn to help out, whether it’s making ‘toys’ for orangutans, building infrastructure or ‘mucking-out’ living quarters – yep, we roll our sleeves up and get down and dirty in our effort to provide real support to the centre, rather than a tokenistic volunteering gesture.
Semenggoh Wildlife Sanctuary and
Depart 8am for a full day of Borneo at its best. Kick start the day with a visit to Semenggoh Wildlife Sanctuary to witness orangutans in a relatively nature setting.
Semenggoh was established more than 40 years ago as a rehabilitation center for endangered animals and now has expanded to become a research facility into orangutan biology and behavior, providing vital information to safeguard the orangutans’ precarious future. Semenggoh also provides a successful breeding environment for orangutans unable to be rehabilitated into the wild. We’ll have the chance to see the sanctuary’s semi-wild orangutans, ranging from heart-meltingly cute infants and boisterous adolescents to the powerful male adults, as they enjoy life in a secure natural habitat.
From Semenggoh we venture further out of the city to embark on a kayak journey along the Sungai Sarawak Kiri River, stopping at scenic locations for swimming, sightseeing and a traditional longhouse lunch at a Bidayuh Village. You’ll be amazed at the ambiance, pristine beauty and sense of isolation of this river, only an hour from the State capital.
On our last night in Kuching we’ll share a meal with some of the treasured new friends encountered during our travels in and around Kuching.