Central Borneo
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How you get to Leakey
Camp Leakey, in southern central Borneo, has been Indonesia's major orangutan research center and reserve since 1972. http://bit.ly/HbvMje To get there, you book passage on a klotok, the traditional local wooden varient of a cabin cruiser. Our group of about 40 from the Orion II expedition cruise ship, came up river from Kumai Harbor on these. During the leisurely four-hour trip, we spotted orangutans and proboscis monkeys in the rain forest, as well all sorts of birds. Our arrival at Camp Leakey created a slight traffic jam around the dock (on the left).
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Coming into Kumai
The arrival of the Orion II, a small ship by cruise standards (100 guests maximum), attracted attention as we moved slowly upriver from the Java Sea into Kumai Harbor, the taking-off point for visits to the Camp Leakey orangutan study center. Many of us were out on deck taking in Kumai's unique mixed "skyline" of traditional riverside homes and high-rise "bird houses" (the yellow building in the background), built to harvest swiflet nests for the booming trade that supplies the key ingredient for bird's nest soup throughout much of Asia.
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