Real jungle by night with the sounds, the smell, the deep silence underneath it all...
I take a deep breath. The rich jungle scent is entering my awareness. Looking up I see the full moon, her light revealing a dreamlike scenery. Slowly we glide with our wooden canoe over the quiet lake. Once in a while the local fisherman throws his net, hoping to catch his meal for tomorrow. It is creating the only movement seen in the river. Real jungle by night with the sounds, the smell, the deep silence underneath it all… an experience never to forget!
Text by Prem Mallika / Images by Prem Deep / 5 april 2018
HEARTWARMING WELCOME IN AUTHENTIC TRADITIONAL STYLE
After visiting the village we went on a boat trip to the nearby lake, the Masorayan lake. The setting sun put the simple houses along the riverside in a mysterious light. On the way we spotted a proboscis monkey while he was looking down on us from his safe tree. We spent the night in a floating house called a lanting in the middle of unspoiled jungle. The sun made place for the full moon and, assisted by her light, the freshly caught fish was cleaned and prepared for us. After a refreshing sleep we woke up at sunset and after delicious pisang goreng for breakfast we headed off with the canoes to a hiking trail starting a bit further up the lake. The jungle here houses different kind of monkeys, like long tail macaques, grey macaques, proboscis monkeys and also the Urang Utang might be found. We spotted a lot of playful long tail and grey macaques and the guide could tell us interesting facts about the different trees and vegetation. The fascinating mix of culture, old traditions and unspoiled nature made this trip outstanding!
A PERFECT MIX OF CULTURE, NATURE AND ADVENTURE
We were invited on a 2 days 1 night trip to this enchanting place. Not only the buildings are well preserved. The community welcomed us in the authentic traditional style with a heartwarming ceremony. It started with drums and a profesional Kendau performance, a martial art, which ended with cutting open the entrance gate made out of palmleaves and trunks. After entering the palace we were invited to sit around an old lady, who performed a welcome ceremony with some natural ingredients like mud, grass and rice. After being blessed by her we could freely walk around in the palace and have a look at the fascinating architecture.
HIDDEN TREASURES IN THE JUNGLE IN THE SOUTH OF CENTRAL KALIMANTAN
A two hours drive away from Kumai there is a little village called Kotawaringin Lama, also called Kolam. It is built on the shore of the Lamandau river. During the 17th century it was founded by the second son of a sultan, living in another district. In those days it was the custom for the second son to establish his own palace in another area. The beautiful palace, named Alnursari palace, is solely made out of iron wood, a very hard and strong kind of wood, which makes that the palace is still well preserved up to this day. Close by, with a stunning view on the river, there is a mosque built in the same period and with the same iron wood. This mosque is the second oldest mosque in Indonesia! With this rich cultural history it makes this village a unique place to explore.
THE PERFECT TRIP FOR THE ADVENTEROUS ECO-TOURIST
We were invited to this trip by the local community who are eager to preserve their cultural heritage together with their still unspoiled environment. This is not an easy task nowadays where the palmindustry is taking over Kalimantan more and more. By trying to attract eco tourism to their village they hope to be able to sustain themselves and keep this unique place intact. If you like authentic and honest tourism off the beaten track and are adventurous, this is a great travel opportunity where you also do something good for this world! This trip can be nicely combined with a trip to Tanjung Puting National Parc, the place of the Urang Utangs.
Are you interested in this authentic and honest tourism opportunity off the beaten track?
You can contact our local tour guide Herry.
This trip can be nicely combined with a trip to Tanjung Puting National Parc, the place of the Urang Utangs.