Kayan Mentarang National Park is the biggest uniformity of primary
and secondary forest, which covers 1,360,500 hectare, and still remains
in Kalimantan and in the Southeast Asia. It is located in Bulungan, East
Kalimantan, Indonesia, with humid weather and temperatures around 16°C -
30° C. This national park, situating at 200– 2,258 meters above sea
level, has approximately 3,100 mm per year of rainfall.
of its geographical location, this national park is blessed with various
biodiversity, ranging from tropical flatland area to heavy rainforest
at mountain range, which becomes cocoon for many types of vegetation and
A few vegetations are: * pulai
(Alstonia scholaris), * jelutung (Dyera costulata), *
ramin (Gonystylus bancanus), * agathis (Agathis borneensis),
* kayu ulin (Eusideroxylon zwageri), * rengas (Gluta walichii),
* gaharu (Aquilaria malacensis), * aren (Arenga pinnata),
* various types of orchids, * forest palms, and *
Tropical pitcher plant or Kantong semar.
of the vegetations are not yet identified, and considered new ones in
Indonesia. There are 100 species of mammals (15 species of them are
endemic), 8 species of primates, over 310 species of birds, and 28
species among them are Kalimantan endemic and have been registered by
ICBP (International Committee for Bird Protection) as the endangered
A few endangered animals are as follows: *
Clouded leopard/ macan dahan (Neofelis nebulosa), * Honey bear/
beruang madu (Helarctos malaynus euryspilus), * White Head Lamur/
lutung dahi putih (Presbytis frontata frontata), and * Buffalo/
banteng (Bos javanicus lowi).
There are approximately 20,000
– 25,000 people from Dayak tribes, namely Dayak Kenyah, Punan, Lun Daye
and Lun Bawang, live in the vicinity of this national park. They live
side by side with the surroundings in reference to their indigenous
knowledge and wisdom. That uniqueness is apparent in the way they
preserve natural diversity. Many kinds of archeological inheritance like
burial places and ancient stone equipments could be found in this
national park. It is estimated that Kayan Mentarang National Park is one
of the major archeological sites in Kalimantan.
There To access this national park, travelers might
want to use available airlines from Samarinda - Long Ampung, and Tarakan
- Long Bawan routes, for approximately one hour). Another alternative
is by boat from Tarakan - Tanjung Selor - Long Pujungan routes. Cruising
Mentarang River by speedboat will take around 6 hours, and smaller
motorboat requires 1 day to get there.
Alternatively, to access
the southern part of this park, travelers can fly from Samarinda (East
Kalimantan) or Malinau to Long Ampung Airport. From Long Ampung, the
trip continues heading for Data Dian (Kayan Hilir Village), taking about
5 hours journey by boat. Since fuel is oddly expensive, boat cruising
is considered costly, although travelers might find half the price when
going with the locals on public boat, heading to Data Dian.
Around You can move around this national park on foot
or cruising the rivers by longboat. Chartered motorized canoe costs
about 180,000 IDR per hour (20 USD).
To Do Here,
travelers are invited to do many activities in several spots, among few
Pulau Datok Beach and Lubang Tedong Hill; It is
the best spot sea cruising and swimming.
Palung and Panti
Mountains; Mount Palung (1,116 meters above sea level) and Mount
Panti (1,050 meters above sea level) are perfect choices for hiking,
observing flora and fauna, savoring the waterfalls, and camping.
Panti; It is a nature research center, which features research
station facilities, lodges, and library. Travelers will have the
opportunity to see orangutans, gibbons, and leaf monkeys.
Baru; Here, visitors could conduct an observation on proboscis
Matan and Simpang Rivers; These rivers are ideal
spots for visitors to do an observation on archeological sites, or just
having fun experience with the rapids of these rivers by longboat. To
Kayan Mentarang National Park is considered a remote area.
It is possible to stay overnight in the villages as many hospitable
Dayak settlements inside this national park are available. The villages
can only be reached on foot. Camping in the forest may be an adventurous
alternative. Still, around Long Bawan area, there is a comfortable and
clean accommodation called Agung Raya Inn. It costs 50,000 IDR per night
(5 USD). If you prefer to stay overnight in homestays, the rate ranges
from 50,000 - 85,000 IDR per day and this includes 3 meals per day.
* The ideal time to visit this national park is on September up to
December each year. * DAS (Dirgantara Airline Services) and MAF
(Mission Aviation Fellowship) flights require advanced booking (minimum 1
month before departing date) and both airlines reserve the authority to
prioritize seats for local citizens from around the park. * It
is good to bring luggage less than 10 kg when flying with DAS (DAS
limits each person, including luggage, up to 80 kg). This makes it more
flexible to secure a seat on board on last minute seat available. MAF
puts even more restrictions on luggage weight (up to 10 kg/person) on
regular flights unless chartered. * Necessities for the trip
include a flashlight/ torch, warm clothing, sleeping bag, comfortable
trekking shoes or rubber shoes, and glove as a protection against the
freezing temperature at night. * Before start trekking, hiking or
climbing, make sure that you eat beforehand, or you can bring some food
and drink from your places of stay. * It is wise to hire local
guides with some knowledge of Indonesian Bahasa, as no one in this area
speaks English (cost 70,000 IDR per day / 7 USD). * Bring
mosquito repellent and at least two pairs of knee-high socks for
leaches. Preparing anti-malaria pills is a good idea, although there
seems to be no malaria.