1 day Pangkalan Bun/Sungai Aurt River/Pasir Panjang day tour, Kalimantan, Borneo
(Istana Kuning, Former Sultan’s home, Dayak Village, Logging Company, Dish Market
This day trip begins at Istana Kuning, the former sultan’s home, in Pangkalan Bun; the tour is usually given by one of the sultan’s descendants (5000 IDR/$0.45 USD motorbike parking and 50,000 IDR/$4.45 USD tip to the caretaker). It is nicknamed the Yellow Palace, as it used to be swathed in yellow fabric, which represents the royal family. It has been reconstructed of ironwood (Eusideroxylon zwageri) or ulin, which is known for its strength and durability, and is used to build bridges, foundations, and piers, and for flooring. It has been known to resist rotting for up to a century. Ironwood is very slow growing; trees 25-30 years old may only be 10 centimeter (four inches).
After Istana Kuning, we will visit a local Dayak community along the Sungai Arut River via small klotok boat; the Dayak are a local tribal group indigenous to Borneo. We will continue to one of Indonesia’s largest logging companies, Korindo, which employs over one thousand people, and which has been cited by Greenpeace in the past in other parts of Indonesia. We will witness the environmental challenges facing the Kalimantan ecosystem and Tanjung Puting, a mega biodiversity hotspot and the logging interests.
On the return trip to Kumai, we visit a traditional Dayak longhouse in Pasir Panjang, a modern Dayak village, which is the home of Orangutan Foundation International Orangutan Care Center Orangutan Foundation International quarantine area and training forest. The Dayak traditionally lived in longhouses called umaq daru, with a whole extended family or a clan living collectively in one longhouse. Today most longhouses have been converted to meeting halls and performance spaces for traditional music and dance performances. We will conclude with an optional tour of the Kumai fish market.