Our eleven (11) day Sumatra Leuser Ecosystem Orangutan Odyssey is the complete adventure package. It will take you to the one million-hectare Leuser area on the island of Sumatra. Home to 80% of Sumatran orangutans, the Gunung Leuser National Park is also home to an enormous population of other wildlife including the Thomas leaf monkey, pigtail macaque, longtail macaque, gibbons, lizards, turtles, hornbills and more.
You will journey from the tranquil river community of Tangkahan where you will walk with elephants as they graze in the forest, to the summit of Gunung Sibayak, a still active volcano, to the jungles near Ketembe in search of wildlife.
Your home on this trip will be a mix of both basic guest houses, hotels and tents. You will be escorted from one destination to the next by an experienced Orangutan Odysseys local guide.
THE LEUSER ECOSYSTEM - THE LAST PLACE ON EARTH
At around 2.63 million hectares, the Leuser Ecosystem really is a world unto itself; a rich expanse of original tropical lowland rainforests, cloud-covered mountains and swampy peatlands. It is among the most biodiverse ecosystems ever recorded by science, and it is the last place on earth where Sumatran orangutans, elephants, tigers and rhinos still freely roam.
However, the Leuser Ecosystem is now under threat. Despite being protected under Indonesian national law, massive industrial development is being planned for logging, palm oil, pulp and paper plantations and mining. This will threaten the entire ecosystem, as well as the continued wellbeing of the millions of Acehnese traditional landholders who depend on it for their food, water and livelihoods.
Our goal is to provide our guests with a unique experience, to observe wild and semi-wild orangutans in their natural habitat. We will provide you with a safe platform to observe the amazing wildlife Sumatra has to offer including monkeys, gibbons and more. We will also provide you with comprehensive information about the destination you are in so that you are fully informed of your surrounds.
Further, Orangutan Odysseys has partnered up with The Orangutan Project which supports conservation programs in both Borneo and Sumatra. Each guest's fare includes the cost of a deluxe one-year orangutan adoption package.
WHAT TO EXPECT
You are embarking on an adventure to places and amongst people whose lives are very different from your own. Many aspects of life in Indonesia will seem unusual. Remember that these are often the same aspects that make an area an exotic and attractive destination. While boat expeditions are considered easy, no trek is easy, even those rated "easy or moderate". In addition to the personal physical challenges you may face, travel conditions can present unexpected obstacles, such as rough and bumpy roads and changeable weather. To prepare for this, "pack" a flexible and relaxed attitude. Bring a spirit of adventure and enquiry, a healthy sense of humour and a willingness to encounter the unexpected and you will find your trip to Indonesia the adventure of a lifetime!
- View wild orangutans in their natural setting
- Visit Bukit Lawang
- Walk with elephants
- Trek through beautiful primary forest and see Thomas leaf monkeys, pigtail and long tail macaque, monitor lizards, gibbons, wild peacocks and more
- Trek to the summit of an active volcano (Sibayak) near the temperate zone town of Berestagi
- Part of your expedition cost is directly donated to save these wonderful creatures
ITINERARY - 11 DAYS
*Subject to change due to local conditions
Day 1: Arrive Jakarta
You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel for your overnight accommodation.
Day 2: Early morning flight to Medan - Tangkahan
This morning you will transfer to the airport for your early morning flight to Medan. You will be greeted at Medan airport by your Orangutan Odysseys guide. You will then start the journey to Tangkahan. Tangkahan is famous for its elephant village and wonderful jungle scenery. After lunch, you will go for a river walk and then tube downstream to a beautiful waterfall. You will then walk back to your jungle lodge for dinner. (B,L,D).
Day 3: Elephant Trek - Bukit Lawang
This morning you will head off to a nearby elephant station. The elephants used to help rangers monitor the nearby jungle, now offer elephant treks. Today you will walk with these beautiful creatures through the jungle as they graze on the natural foliage. After the elephant trek, you will return to the jungle lodge to check out prior to leaving for the drive to Bukit Lawang where you will take a short walk to the Eco Lodge for your overnight accommodation. Late afternoon you will take a walk around the local village. (B,L,D)
Day 4: Bukit Lawang Jungle Trek - Bukit Lawang
Today you start a day trek into the Leuser Ecosystem. You will head into the hills to the other side of the Bohorok River. On the trek, you will see orangutans, Thomas leaf monkey, pigtail macaque, longtail macaque, gibbons, lizards, turtles, hornbills and more. Lunch will be in the jungle before making your way back to the lodge via a tube ride down the river. Overnight in your lodge accommodation. (B, L, D)
Day 5: Bukit Lawang - Berastagi
This morning after checking out, you will be driven to Berestagi, a beautiful mountain town to the south of Leuser Ecosystem National Park. In the afternoon you will take a look around the town and visit the local markets. Overnight in Brastagi hotel. (B,L)
Day 6: Mt Sibayak - Ketambe - Leuser Eco System
A very early 4.00 am wake up (optional) will see you hiking up Mt Sibayak, an active volcano with panoramic views across the valleys. Then, you will head off on a long drive through to Ketembe (Aceh) to your jungle lodge for your overnight stay. (B,L,D)
Day 7: Ketambe - Leuser Eco System
Today you will start your trekking adventure into the jungle. There will be wildlife viewing all day as well as a stop at a river for a swim and there may be a hot water spa. More viewings of wild orangutans, hopefully, a dominant male and gibbons will also be spotted. Overnight accommodation will be tents in the National Park. (B,L,D)
Day 8: Leuser Ecosystem Wildlife trekking
Today you will continue trekking to see more of the local wildlife. Unfortunately, less and less elephants are being seen in these areas so you will need to be quiet and cautious. It is quite a long hike to reach the area where they might be, so we are planning to spend more time looking for orangutans, siamangs, gibbons etc. Overnight accommodation will be tents in the National Park. (B,L,D)
Day 9: Leuser Ecosystem - Ketambe
Today you return to "civilization" in Ketambe but not before a wonderful final days trek through the pristine rainforests. Overnight stay at your jungle lodge in Ketambe (B,L,D)
Day 10 : Ketambe - Medan - Deli River Hotel
After an early breakfast, you will begin the drive back to Medan. There will be a stop at Berestagi for lunch, overlooking the valleys. You will later check into the wonderful Deli River hotel and take a well-earned rest after dinner. (B,L).
Day 11: Medan & Return Home
For those heading back to their original port, you will be transferred to the airport and for those staying on to explore Indonesia further, we bid you farewell. Tour concludes (B)
We can also arrange domestic flights within Indonesia for your arrival and onward travels.
INCLUSIONS - EXCLUSIONS
- Domestic airfares
- Accommodation in Jakarta (twin share - single supplement available)
- Accommodation Tangkahan, Bukit Lawang, Brastagi, Ketambe and Medan (twin share)
- Meals as note in the itinerary (B,L,D)
- National park fees
- Tent and camping equipment
- Airport transfers
- Experienced local guide
- One orangutan adoption
- Orangutan Odysseys water bottle and travel pack
- Experienced local guides
- International airfares and any expenses due to flight delay or cancellations
- Travel Insurance
- Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry)