visit the Orang Utans in Sepilok
Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Center's goal is to protect all kinds of wildlife especially the rare Orang Utan.
In Sepilok, you'll mostly find orphan, injured or confiscated Orang Utans - some people hold them as a pet. Sepilok tries to feed them up, train them and release them into the wild again when they are ready. This is not so easy because f. ex. the orphans have to learn everything from man (climbing, finding food - simply surviving in the wild). Furthermore, their habitat is getting smaller and smaller since so much rainforest is cleared for precious tropical wood or farm land.
There are also many other interesting animals such as macaque monkeys, venomous snakes, insects, reptiles, mouse deers, big butterflies, sun bears, gibbons, sumatran rhinos, elephants (the latter ones you don't see regularly).
There are several nice resorts just outside the park where you can stay for one or more nights.
It is also possible to do guided night walks within the park (see tip "off the beaten path" at Lankayan).
- Theme Park Trips
- Hiking and Walking
- National/State Park
Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctury
It is possible to come to the Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre two times during the day to watch the Orang Utan come to eat at the feeding platforms.
It is a great experience. And you will be amazed how cute these Orang Utans are!
There's an interesting visitors centre that worth a look around where you can read up on all you ever need to know about the furry orange ones along with a large array of cute photos (especially of the babies). There's also a who's who gallery of all the orang-utans that are within the centre with their names, year of birth, distinguishing features and personality traits.
We turned up with the crowds for the 10 am feeding frenzy and watched in amazement as the orang-utans lazily made their way right past us with one particular chap doing multiple head-over-heel rolls along the boardwalk to the feeding platform. We then watched in amusement as the ever mischievous macaques stole whatever food they could from underneath the platform, right in front of the orang-utans! Feeding times are at 10am & 3pm.
Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre
The Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre was established in 1964. Its main purpose was to rehabilitate orphaned orang-utans whose habitat was disrupted by logging, deforestation and poaching. Included are orang-utans that were rescued or confiscated from unlicensed owners. The orang-utans are trained to adapt to the jungle environment so that they could be eventually released to the wild. This is done by providing the animals with monotonous food, to encourage them to forage in the jungle on their own.
Located about 25 kilometres to the west of Sandakan, the centre is within the Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve, which covers an area of 5529 hectares. I had wanted to come here ever since I saw a programme about it, a few years ago on TV and had looked forward to getting here throughout my 6 weeks in Malaysia and it was virtually the last place I visited in the country. We turned up with the crowds for the 10 am feeding frenzy and watched in amazement as the orang-utans lazily made their way right past us with one particular chap doing multiple head-over-heel rolls along the boardwalk to the feeding platform. We then watched in amusement as the ever mischievous macaques stole whatever food they could from underneath the platform, right in front of the orang-utans! As well as seeing these wonderful creatures, you can also visit a Visitors Centre and Shop.
Open: 9am-12pm & 2-4pm daily. Feeding times are at 10am & 3pm.
Admission: RM30 for foreigner plus RM10 for cameras/camcorders.
Sepilok Orang Uran Sanctuary
As mentioned by fellow travellers, this is one of the must-sees in Sepilok.
Although, you are not guaranteed to see any Orang-utans, but the chances are high :P
Please do not bring water bottles, food must be hidden. Do not provoke the lovely creatures. Just stand back and watch...
You do have to pay a nominal fee to use your camera, proceedings go back to the santuary, so pay up!
Use of Cameras, camcorders, camera phones etc will be charged RM10.00
I thoroughly enjoyed my 2 hrs here, we went for the morning feeding times. Staff fed the Orang-utans at 2 feeding sessions. you can watch other little monkeys stealing food from the Orang-utans!
We had the luck to see a couple of them upclose, but visitors are like paparazzi, snapping pictures and flashing at them.... :(
- National/State Park
Rainforest Discovery Centre
The Rainforest Discovery Centre in Sepilok, just down the road from the Sepilok Jungle Resort and the Orang-Utan Rehabilitation Centre, had at the time of writing this tip just been opened. We went for a walk around the grounds as part of a nighttime walk from SJR but unfortunately the centre itself was shut (it being nighttime and all!). If the grounds are any indication the centre itself is a must-see. There are a number of trails taking you into the surrounding jungle, many signposted with information about the local flora and fauna and things to look out for as you walk.
The centre itself is on a small hill overlooking a lake with a suspension walking bridge crossing it at one end. There was also a canopy walk being constructed at the time which, when finished, will be one of the longest in the world. We were able to go up to the top of the first tower as the sun set to watch gliding squirrels, hornbills, and listen to the sounds of the jungle from high up.
At the back of the centre is some wonderful planned gardens, showcasing varieties of plants from the area and around the world. Highlights were the great collection of pitcher plants, and a garden showing numerous varities of ginger plants. It's all very well done with educational signs everywhere so you can learn about what you're seeing.
Definitely worth an afternoon to explore!
Sepilok Orang Utan Rehab Centre
Feeding times are at 10AM and 3PM. Other than watching the Orang Utan video and the feeding, there is not much else to do here. You can get quite up close and personal with the beautiful orang utans. They aren't scared of humans. They each have a unique personality and are wonderful creatures.
There are lockers in which to leave personal belongings as you are not permitted to bring bags / backpacks in to the Orang Utan rainforest. Cameras are permitted for a fee.
- Family Travel
- Jungle and Rain Forest
Visit SEPILOK Orang Utan Rehab-Center
About an half-hours drive from the city of Sandakan,in the Malaysian Sabah District of North Borneo , the Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre was founded in 1964, to rehabilitate orphan orang utans. The site is 43 sq km of protected land close to the Kabili Sepilok Forest Reserve. Today around 60 to 80 orang utans are living free, another 25 orphans are in the nurseries.
In the wild orang utan babies stay with their mothers for up to six years while they are taught the skills they need to survive in the forest, the most important of which is climbing. At Sepilok a buddy system is used to replace a mother’s teaching. A younger ape will be paired up with an older one to learn the skills they need.
One can visit the center and watch many free living orangs, when they get their food at the feeding-stations in the rainforest.Visitors may walk the jungle-paths and are just advised, not to touch the orangs (but,never mind, they may touch you as rather curious animals. Better take care of your camera and glasses, otherwise they may end up high in a treetop .)
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- National/State Park
Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary
The sanctuary started in 1964 for rehabilitation of orphaned baby orang utans from logging-sites, plantations and illegal hunting, returning them to the wilds as soon as they are ready. More than 4,500 hectares of virgin jungle were designated sa forest reserve and sanctuary for orang utans.
The best time to visit is the feeding time at 10am and 3pm everyday.
The orang utans came out one after one on their feeding time. Around 10am ( I was there in the morning) the rope on the trees started to wobble, very soon the orang utans were all over the feeding platform.
When I was there, there were close 8 orang utans, including a couple of younger ones. They are rather nimbler and very much acrobat themselves. At one point, I couldn't help thinking, if these orang utans are specially trained from some circus show!
- Budget Travel
Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre
About 15 mins drive from East Coast town of Sandakan, is the world’s largest Orang Utan (‘Wild Man of Borneo’) sanctuary. This Rehabilitation Centre is managed by the State Forestry. Orang Utan which have been abandoned by their mothers, or which were formerly in captivity are cared until they are fit to be returned to the wilds. Watching these charming and entertaining Orang Utan during feeding time is a sheer delight.
Waiting to be fed
We arrived at the feeding platform about 15 minutes before the 10am feeding and this chap (I assume it's a chap and not a chapess) was waiting rather patiently for some food.
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