A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about monkey

LOMBOK, INDONESIA

From my disaster in the village of Tetebatu, to the wonderful resort area of Senggigi.

sunny 40 °C

large_IMG_2478-001.jpg
I am about to tell you about the worst hotel I have ever stayed in! Ironically I can't remember the name of it, nor did I write it down in my journal, lol! Its located in the little village of Tetebatu, on the island of Lombok (the island next to Bali). Upon arriving the hotel looks nice (pictured above). Cute little cottages overlooking rice fields & Mt Rinjani. What could go wrong, right?
large_IMG_2496-001.jpg
So like I said, it looked great upon arriving, so I immediately booked myself in for 3 nights. That was was first mistake. Then I went for supper at the hotel's restaurant. Turns out the front desk clerk who is also the bell boy, is also the waiter ... and would be my guide the following day, lol! After supper I headed back to my room for a hot shower. In addition to a nice, hot shower at the end of a long day, I also need wifi (I travel solo and my mom fears for my life when I'm gone, so she demands to hear from me daily or else assumes I've been kidnapped or am dead), and free breakfast in the morning. I already gave up the wifi upon checking into this hotel (the entire village is without internet - so this is a good place to come and relax and get away from the world), and I discovered they had lied about the hot water! It was FREEZING cold!! I cant do cold showers, I just cant! How's a girl supposed to shave when she's shivering and covered in goose bumps?! Later on as I'm laying in bed writing in my journal I noticed big turds on the floor! At first I thought it was a bug, so I flicked it away, only for it to stick to my finger!!! OMG! Then I started noticing those little turds everywhere in my room. What on earth is living in here??!! Was is a mouse? A rat? A gecko? I had no idea! I continue writing, trying not to think about what could possibly be living in my room, when a GIANT moth starts fluttering around my lamp! And by giant, I mean like the size of a bird! I am deathly afraid of moths, and grasshoppers, frogs ... basically anything that jumps at me. I know moths are harmless, but I cant help but freak out! Since I'm traveling solo, I have to deal with this intruder on my own. I grab a flip flop and smack that bastard to death! But now I have a giant moth carcass smeared across my wall, and I know the Indonesian ant army will appear in no time, so I have to clean that hot mess up! Puke. Once again I go back to writing. Now I notice that the toilet is making a noise. So I get up to go check it out, I flick on the bathroom light, and freeze! There, on the shower wall, is the biggest !@%#!! spider I've ever seen in my life! Open your hand ... Its THAT big! (the next day I saw the same kind of spider thats now in my shower and took this photo below)
large_IMG_2483-001.jpg
Just the body was the length & thickness of my thumb! Its legs were so long it had knees! If it has knees it can jump, right?! I think that spider and I stared at eachother forever, both not knowing what to do! I couldnt let him get away, deeper into my room, so I bent down to take off my flip flop, aka killing machine ... and it scurried across the wall and down the shower drain! Oh thank God! The shower had a bucket of water & a scoop to 'sponge bathe' yourself with, so I quickly moved that heavy bucket of water over top the drain so it couldnt get out! Giant moths, mysterious turds, AND a giant spider?! For real?! I cant even deal with this. I plop myself down on the toilet, head in hands, wondering how I'm gonna be able to get any sleep knowing all of what is in my room (Oh, did I mention there's holes all over my screened windows? Some are 'fixed' with bandaids, but others are still wide open for more giants moths to invade, along with malaria carrying misquitos), when what do my eyes see .... a freaking toad the size of my fist blocking my exit from the bathroom!!!!!!!!!
large_BD0E8315CA1E045AE90E546104EDD1C7.jpg
HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO GET IT OUT???!!! I cant smack it with a flip flop or step on it, it would explode all over the place! And I dont want to get anywhere near it, for fear of it jumping at me and sticking to my leg!!!!!!!!!!!! So here I am, on a toilet with my pants down, and a toad blocking my way. I want to cry! I stared at is for so long, and it didnt move ... to the point of me thinking 'maybe its a ornamental door-stopper', cuz it was sitting in just the right place. No such luck. On closer inspection I saw his throat move. Was it sleeping? Do toads sleep with their eyes open? I pulled up my pants , and in one big leap, I jumped over & past the toad and into my bedroom. Phew! It's still not moving. I have come up with a plan: trap it under the water scoop, and use my umbrella as a shield in case it jumps at me. Take a moment and envision this: me with open umbrella in hand, defending myself from a stupid toad, little red scoop in the other hand, like I'm going to war ... with a toad. It was so ridiculous I nearly started laughing at myself. I hesitated over & over again, so worried that I'd miss and he'd jump past me into my bedroom ... then what would I do?! But I needn't worry, I somehow managed to capture it on my first try! OMG I did it! Yay me, lol! But as soon as I had it trapped, it started jumping and trying to make an escape. The water scoop wasnt heavy enough to hold him down! So I put a full 2L bottle of water on top of the scoop and that held it down. But all night long I heard it jumping and bonking its head. Over & over ... all night long. Sigh. Well I guess that explains the giant turds all over my room! Needless to say, I didnt sleep at all. I had my sheet wrapped around my head covering my ears cuz I was so afraid something would crawl into my ears while I slept and give birth. Blech!

Ok, new day. Breath. I awoke with a migraine. Probably from stress and lack of sleep. I went straight to the front desk and complained. The lack of english here is infuriating! They had NO idea what I was saying/asking/complaining about. And remember, I booked in & prepaid for THREE nights!!! After nearly an hour of trying to explain my self in different ways to make them understand, I think they finally got it. I wanted my money back. But they didnt want to give it. Seriously?! I work part time at a hotel in Canada, and if you are unhappy with your room, not only do you get a discount/refund, you get a voucher for a free night. Not in Indonesia. Ugh, lesson learnt. But I at least convinced them to transfer the $ I had paid towards the room, to a guided day hike and a hired car to take me to Senggigi.

Day hike commence. I was first taken through the rice fields and village.
large_IMG_2517-001.jpg
large_IMG_2488-001.jpg
Rice
large_IMG_2494-001.jpg
large_IMG_2510-001.jpg
Mt Rinjani in the distance - Indonesia's 2nd largest active volcano!
large_IMG_2497-001.jpg
Thats not 2 peaks ... its one giant volcano with a crater in the middle!
large_IMG_2499-001.jpg
This is how red hot chilis are grown
large_IMG_2513-001.jpg
large_IMG_2511-001.jpg
My favorite part of the hot, sweaty hike that confirmed my lack of fitness, was seeing the locals go about their daily life. Whenever I've gone on an excursion to a village its seems very fake. Like they know tourists are coming, so they are putting on a show. Showing us how to do this, and how to make that. But this was real!
large_IMG_2525-001.jpg
large_IMG_2528-001.jpg
large_IMG_2529-001.jpg
large_IMG_2530-001.jpg
large_IMG_2532-001.jpg
large_IMG_2534-002.jpg
large_IMG_2535-001.jpg
large_IMG_2538-001.jpg
The whole point of me signing up for this guided hike was to see Black Monkeys. I was expecting it to be like Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali ... monkeys absolutely everywhere. But that was not the case. These were actually wild monkeys, unlike the super tame ones in Bali. My guide had a machete and was hacking us a path through the trees! The problem with that was the monkeys could hear us coming from a mile away. We couldnt get anywhere near them. So after hours of hiking & hacking, all i got was one lousy photo.
large_IMG_2546-001.jpg
We emerged from the hot jungle at a dam just in time to see all the little kids getting out from school and racing over to said dam, strip down to their birthday suits, and jump in the water, lol!
large_IMG_2561-001.jpg
large_IMG_2557-001.jpg
large_IMG_2558-001.jpg
large_IMG_2559-001.jpg
large_IMG_2553-001.jpg
Then we headed over to my guide's brother's house for a home cooked meal of chicken, eggs, noodles, rice, veggies, and tempe. These are his boys.
large_IMG_2562-001.jpg
After the meal he led me down a steep & slippery trail to a waterfall. As my guide nibbly leapt from rock to slippery rock, I blundered along like the uncoordinated fool I am. We came to a 'staircase' of slippery mud and wet bamboo that led through a bamboo forest, before finally arriving at the waterfall.
large_IMG_2569-001.jpg
large_IMG_2490-001.jpg
large_IMG_2574-001.jpg
After some time enjoyed here, I had to climb that same slippery 'staircase' back up. From there I was whisked away on a scooter back to the hotel. And from there I grabbed my backpack and said 'good riddance' to the worst hotel stay of my life, and got in a car headed to the resort area of Senggigi. I assumed my bad luck had ended. But no, it hadnt. About halfway we stopped for gas, so I bought myself some ice cream. The kind dipped in chocolate and on a stick. I attempted to eat it in the back seat of the car. But its so dang hot at the equator that ice cream melts faster than you can eat it. Chunks of the chocolate shell kept melting/falling off. And since the window was open (cuz the car had no a/c), the wind from driving fast caused the melting chocolate pieces to fall all over me! One fell on my shorts and melted on contact, making it look like I shit myself. Another hit my face and then slid down my chin and fell into my shirt, and continued to melt and slide into my bra. In the meantime I'm still holding my ice cream on a stick and its melting at an insane rate. I have melted ice cream to my elbows! At this point I look like a 2yr old trying to eat ice cream for the first time, LOL! My driver glanced at me in his rear view mirror and just burst out laughing! FML. We stopped somewhere so I could clean myself up & change, and then continued on our way.

The drive along the coast towards Senggigi is incredibly scenic! My driver was nice enough to stop half a dozen times so I could take photos.
large_IMG_2415-001.jpg
large_IMG_2419-001.jpg
large_IMG_2416-001.jpg
large_IMG_2431-001.jpg
large_IMG_2424-001.jpg
large_IMG_2426-001.jpg
large_IMG_2430-001.jpg
large_IMG_2438-001.jpg
See, I told you! Its stunning isnt it?!
large_IMG_2447-001.jpg
large_IMG_2449-001.jpg
large_IMG_2453-001.jpg
My driver stopped and bought us a bag of lychee fruit still on the branch ... and full of ants. And all warm & gross from sitting in the sun. Fail.
large_IMG_2469-001.jpg
The inside of the fruit looks all fleshy & gross, but if you get a good one, they are quite tasty.
large_IMG_2472-001.jpg
If you dont have a trailer, just pile it on top & tie it on!
large_IMG_2473-001.jpg
I stayed at the Holiday Resort for the rest of my time on Lombok. It was 700,000 Rupiah compared to only 200,000 Rupiah for the dump last night, but SO worth it!
large_IMG_2613-001.jpg
It had a pool that didnt end. It just kept twisting & turning throughout the resort. It also had a jacuzzi area & a swim-up bar.
large_IMG_2619-001.jpg
large_IMG_2621-001.jpg
large_IMG_2624-001.jpg
large_IMG_2656-001.jpg
large_IMG_2654-001.jpg
large_IMG_2615-001.jpg
Upon checking in I was given 2 vouchers for free 'Welcome Drinks'. So I went to redeem them at the pool bar and received Iced Melon Tea. The best invention ever!!!
large_melon_tea.jpg
I ordered a 'hotdog' at the restaurant and got this thing.
large_hotdog.jpg
This resort was great! Clean, luxurious (or was it that I was used to staying in crappy hotels and just finally got a good one?), and beachfront.
large_IMG_2638-001.jpg
The sand was half white and half black! I've never seen a beach so completely divided 50/50 like that before!
large_black_white_beach.jpg
Here's the awesome view from my resort looking across the ocean to Bali's volcano!
large_IMG_2649-002.jpg
large_IMG_2634-001.jpg
I went for a walk down the beach. Black sand is HOT people! HOT! Like it scalds the bottom of your feet! I came across this little beach restaurant. I was just gonna buy some cheap bottled water (only 3000 Rupiah here, opposed to 12,000 at the resort!), but ended up staying for supper and watching the sunset over Bali's volcano.
large_IMG_2659-001.jpg
Table in the sand :)
large_IMG_2660-001.jpg
For $3 I had this delicious plate of food (not sure why, but Indonesians place a fried egg on top of every meal), 2 bottles of water, and 1 can of Coke! Steal of a deal!
large_IMG_2661-001.jpg
Amazing sunset :)
large_IMG_2668-001.jpg
large_IMG_2674-001.jpg
large_IMG_2685-001.jpg
large_IMG_2679-001.jpg
So Lombok started out horrible, but ended well ... thank goodness!

Posted by ChantelleS 17:46 Archived in Indonesia Tagged ocean wildlife beach indonesia monkey jungle waterfall terrace asia lombok Comments (1)

BAKO NATIONAL PARK, BORNEO - MALAYSIA

It took 6hrs of hiking in the rain, but we finally came across the world's rarest primate ... Proboscis Monkeys!!

rain 35 °C

Well, today sucked, but was awesome all at the same time. My number one reason for choosing to travel to Borneo was to see orangutans & proboscis monkeys in the wild.
large_82EAEDDEFC4D90EA151F594DA007899B.jpg
When I woke up this morning it was really cloudy and looked like it might rain, but I headed to Bako National Park anyways, seeing how I only had 5 days total in Borneo I didnt want to waste a day. I took a taxi from Kuching to Bako NP for 50 Ringgit ($17 CAD). Yes, theres also a bus that will take you there. No, I did not feel like searching for the correct bus stop, nor standing around waiting for it. As soon as my taxi arrived at the boat termianl to Bako NP it started raining. And by raining, I mean pouring!! Sigh. Luckily there was a guy selling rain ponchos! It was the best 5 Ringgit I ever spent, lol! It kept me & my camera gear dry.
large_862BAE23E7546B4B10D1768B525D34C7.jpg
Myself, and a handful of other tourists who had their hearts set on seeing proboscis monkeys, decided to sit in the boat terminal and see if the rain would let up. It didnt. In the mean time I met a wonderful girl named Izabela from Poland. It was her last day in Kuching and she wasnt leaving until she saw some monkeys. We became instant friends :) I'm so thankful I met her, cuz if I hadnt, I probably would have gotten back in that taxi and went back to my hotel. But instead we waited until the pouring rain turnt into a light drizzle, and shared a boat to Bako NP. You pay per boat, not per person. No one else wanted to join us in the rain, so it was 47 Ringgit each (that inc paying the boat driver to stay and extra hour in the park), $16 CAD.
large_862ABD06E4E4049214DA39D0F3F81C38.jpg
Some views from the boat along the way.
large_IMG_0256-001.jpg
large_IMG_9796-001.jpg
large_IMG_9798-001.jpg
Arriving in Bako NP we found out there is no pier. They just drop you in thigh deep water and you have to wade to shore. Not fun when its already raining.

Arriving in Bako NP
large_IMG_9848-001.jpg
As soon as we made it to shore, it starting pouring again. And what do I do? Slip and fall in my flip flops, stub my big toe, and rip my toenail off!! Completely off! I nearly vomited it was so gross!! Thankfully there is a lodge here with a medical center (who fixed me up good), toilets & a cafeteria. The food was cold and gross, so bring your own if you can. We ate a crappy lunch together, and then sat watching the rain for awhile, hoping it'd let up. It didnt. So we donned our rain ponchos, and huddling together under my umbrella, we walked the trails, looking up into the falling rain, in search of the world's rarest primate! It was great to share this adventure with someone who appreciates wildlife as much as I do, and understands how incredibly rare these animals are!

Well the first 5 soggy hours all we found were some wet Bornean Bearded Pigs near the lodge, and a few Long-Tailed Macaques.
large_IMG_9823-001.jpglarge_IMG_9824-001.jpg
large_IMG_9831-001.jpg
large_IMG_0040-001.jpg
large_IMG_0079-001.jpg
large_IMG_9846-001.jpg
Even though it literally rained the entire time we were here, one could not complain. The rainforest is SO lush & green! And despite the rain, we weren't cold because it was still 30C out! We were prunes by the end of the day though, lol!
large_IMG_9882-001.jpg
large_IMG_9913-001.jpg
large_IMG_0026-001.jpg
large_IMG_0030-001.jpg
large_IMG_0001-001.jpg
Part way down one trail was a shelter-hut. We stopped to take a few photos. Izabela set her backpack down, and a macaque stole it in 2.0 seconds!! They can be quite vicious, so you dont want to just walk up and take your bag back. No point in getting bitten / rabies. With one bite it had chomped a hole right through the canvas material!! But Izabela needed her backpack back ... her passport was in it! So I gave her my umbrella to use as a sort of shield to protect herself in case the monkey attacked. She opened & closed the umbrella over & over again in front of the monkey and that scared the monkey off. Backpack saved :)
large_IMG_9884-001.jpg
large_IMG_9890-001.jpg
large_umbrella_vs_monkey.jpg
We took a break from walking through puddles and staring up into the trees, and headed back to the lodge. We were beginning to feel defeated, that we had wasted our money and an entire day. But then we talked to some people who had been staying in some of the cabins for rent in the park who said the proboscis monkeys come close to the lodge around supper time because they can smell the food. We decided to take a chance and paid our boat driver to wait an extra hour til supper time in hopes of spotting some. And it was the best decision of the day!! Sure enough, right around supper time we heard a 'bang bang bang' as a huge proboscis monkey jumped out of a tree, landed on the metal roof of a nearby cabin, ran across it, and then lept into a tree!!! Rain ponchos on, umbrella up, and off we went cameras in hand to get a closer look :)
large_IMG_9970-001.jpg
They are tall like a man! Much bigger than I was expecting! And the noses ... hahaha! The males have a huge nose! They look like Muppets :)
large_IMG_9938-001.jpg
Eventually the big male lept from tree to tree and disappeared deeper into the rainforest. But now our spirits were up, and the rain even stopped! So we went exploring once again.
large_IMG_0151-001.jpg
large_IMG_0155-001.jpg
large_IMG_0142-001.jpg
large_IMG_0530-001.jpg
large_82EAEDDEFC4D90EA151F594DA007899B.jpg
large_IMG_0176-001.jpg
large_82F49AF7F089E831DFA6B01BD11DC452.jpg
They are quite active, but I managed to get a photo of one leaping from one tree to the next.
large_IMG_0232-001.jpg
The females are alot smaller, and dont have those big noses.
large_IMG_0187-001.jpg
We even spotted this baby way up in the trees :)
large_IMG_9997-001.jpg
That last hour that we paid the boat driver was definitely worth it, but it went by much too fast. After a successful, albeit wet, day, we headed back down the river to the boat terminal. Only to discover that all buses & taxis disappeared after the park closed. So we were trapped in a little village. But we made the most of it. We found a little outdoor market.
large_IMG_0288-001.jpg
large_IMG_0274-001.jpg
large_IMG_0277-001.jpg
large_IMG_0279-001.jpg
large_IMG_0280-001.jpg
large_IMG_0282-001.jpg
large_IMG_0283-001.jpg
large_IMG_0285-001.jpg
Beside the market was a little shack of a restaurant where I ate the best meal I had the whole time in Borneo! The ladies working there didnt speak a word of English so we had no idea what we were going to get. But what we got was delicious and only $1! A great end to the day :) We hitched a ride back to Kuching with a local man heading that way in his car. Call it hitchhiking I suppose ;)
large_IMG_0293-001.jpg

Posted by ChantelleS 20:05 Archived in Malaysia Tagged rainforest wildlife monkey malaysia jungle borneo animal pig proboscis Comments (0)

KUCHING, BORNEO - MALAYSIA

Kuching's waterfront, life along the Sarawak River, Semenggoh & Matang Wildlife Center

semi-overcast 37 °C

After a week of traveling all around Bali, Indonesia I flew to Borneo. Where the heck is Borneo you ask? Its right above Indonesia. Its that big island on the map. Its made up of 3 countries. Mostly Indonesia, part Malaysia, and a wee bit Brunei. I visited the Malaysian part. I flew into Kuching, in the northwest part of Borneo and stayed there for 5 days.
large_borneo_map.jpg
I stayed at the Harbor View Hotel, I forgot to take a photo of it, but it was really nice, I promise, lol! This was the view from my room. It was $43 CAD a night. They served breakfast in the morning, but it was not included and cost about $10 CAD. They also offered my favorite amenity ... free wifi :)
large_87E07677BA168E73870BA3081FA81750.jpg
large_87E16667D60786F72CDB32CD32993428.jpg
My hotel was across the street from Kuching's waterfront. Its a long boardwalk that runs the length of the Sarawak River.
large_87E9399F083580962E4593600D9A87AF.jpg
Main street along the river with many shops.
large_87FC06F5D70243F303A997B146F61310.jpg
I spent alot of time walking along the waterfront. The place really came alive at night with vendors selling all kinds of food & souvenirs, street preformers & musicians. There were also great views of the giant golden temple across the river ... which is actually not a temple, but the government buildings! Fancy!
large_87EA779CA716631EB8C81A808DBE64BF.jpg
large_88233E779D525753A6D8A7D2454789E7.jpg
I also noticed many Chinese temples everywhere! One right in front of my hotel.
large_88084087AA2E94278FF6693C1A411913.jpg
large_880B92A4C55FEC2972C2FDC4AC802478.jpg
large_88186C2CDF482F82FCCA92932E3E72D0.jpg
Chinese gazebo & lanterns along the waterfront.
large_881F55CCDA160EC38B8870FCE8EC9B0E.jpg
large_87F9CFD40FB7AB9762B406A785C683F2.jpg
One of my favorite things to do was to watch the boats on the Sarawak River. You could pay for a ride along the river, or for a ride across to the other side. I passed though. Its the same view from land looking across as it is from a boat.
large_8834FBEDCAB2A1B17F4CDC33285F0C41.jpg
large_883E6011A6974156D8BE343DAC3B86DF.jpg
large_8834103B97A80726591372F0E6A4D485.jpg
large_883D56560124722D732F8DB8468D65B1.jpg
Walking through the city I came across my very first mosque :) They are beautiful!
large_882EB53EDABC3AD0A0DE7435A1B4A6CF.jpg
large_882D8DD7CD9014DC1723930D24B0C131.jpg
I booked roundtrip transportation & admission to Semenggoh through the front desk of my hotel for only 50 Ringgit ($17 CAD), which is a steal of a deal considering my Lonely Planet guide said it would be 45 Rinngit just for the transportation one way! So the very next day thats where I went!
large_IMG_8842-001.jpg
My main reason for traveling to Borneo was to see wild orangutans! They only live wild & free in 2 places left in this world which is quite sad ... Borneo, and in Sumatra, Indonesia. Upon arriving at Semenggoh there is a small visitor's center with info on the orangs, and washrooms, but no snacks. No food is allowed in the area. You are given a guide who leads you through the rainforest to 2 different viewing areas. Wooden platforms have been built in the rainforest, and ropes attached to the platforms for the orangs to play on. The platforms are then piled high with bananas, coconuts & pineapple. And then we wait. And wait & wait. And then wait some more. Just to clarify, the orangutans in the following photos are 100% WILD, so they dont care how far you've traveled, or how much $ you've paid, or how long you have to stand there waiting ... they are wild, and free to do what they want. So they only show up if they feel like it.

Although it took awhile, staring up at the treetops, looking for any tell-tale sign of an orangutan, was exhilarating! My first glimpse of ginger fur leaping treetop to treetop made my heart skip a beat! This is why I love to travel! THAT feeling! Some women say men make their heart skip a beat ... for me its big hairy ginger apes, LOL!!
large_IMG_8890-001.jpg
Look at hose muscles!
large_81D982FCA7479BBBC4E50E798F838FFE.jpg
I ended up visiting Semenggoh twice ... this day, and again on my last day. On my second visit NO orangutans showed up :( But on this day ... 4 showed up! I didnt realized in the moment how lucky I was to see that many, until I visited again and didnt see any, and also spoke to others who had gone 4 different times and hadnt gotten to see any at all!
large_IMG_8914-001.jpg
large_IMG_8918-001.jpg
Only 1 male showed up at the first platform. We watched him for awhile, and then the guide led us farther into the forest where the 2nd viewing area was. There were 3 orangs at this one! A mom with a baby clinging to her (!!!!!!!!) and another youngster a little older :) AMAZING!!
large_IMG_8994-001.jpg
large_IMG_9045-001.jpg
This young one was a show off, lol! He'd swing across the ropes and then just hang there upside-down eating a coconut, watching us. He even knew how to smack the coconut against a tree hard enough to crack it open and then drink the milk out! Clever little guy :)
large_IMG_8979-001.jpg
large_IMG_8983-001.jpg
large_IMG_9014-001.jpg
large_IMG_9062-001.jpg
large_IMG_9097-001.jpg
Stuffing his face fulls of bananas :)
large_8223AFFDE6E57617BA89340F15B4E939.jpg
Also at Semenggoh I saw this blue eyed lizard just chillin' on a tree!
large_IMG_0382-001.jpg
large_IMG_0374-001.jpg
There was this 'highway' of ants (or possibly termites ... I dont actually know what a termite looks like) making their way along the path and up a tree!
large_IMG_9213-001.jpg
After a few wonderful hours watching these beautiful creatures, they disappeared back into the rainforest to do whatever it is the wild orangutans do :)

I then headed over the Matang Wildlife Center. I had read that it was a rehabilitation center for wounded & orphaned animals, but it looked basically like a zoo. But there was a vet clinic area where gibbons & macaques were being tended to.
large_IMG_9757-001.jpg
Although most animals were in cages, there were a few in open-air 'pits' with platforms that humans could then look down into the pit at the animals. The orangutans could 100% get out if they tried! The walls of the pit were only about 12ft high or so. If an orang can leap vast distances between treetops, then they could definitely jump over this wall. Maybe they dont realize freedom is on the other side??
large_IMG_9635-001.jpg
large_IMG_9637-001.jpg
large_8284CDE6A6585789FE8AC76CE80DC7AC.jpg
large_82873E82E572E50711D2F19F0455B4D1.jpg
large_828B109BAFE0AE52C2ABBE05F286C714.jpg
This guy looks quite bored in his jungle gym.
large_IMG_9617-001.jpg
Matang is located literally in the middle of nowhere! The views of the rainforest on the drive out (I just took a taxi) were stunning! So that being said, while walking the trails around the center, I was still completely in the rainforest where any wild animals could attack!
large_IMG_9745-001.jpg
large_IMG_9750-001.jpg
large_IMG_9753-001.jpg
I was by myself, no other visitors were at the center while I was there ... so every little sound made me jumpy! A leaf fell & landed on my shoulder and I nearly screamed, lol! After seeing this sign below, I was even more nervous! There was also another sign (which I forgot to take a pic of) that showed photos of orangutan attack victims!! The inflicted wounds were quite gruesome!
large_IMG_9217-001.jpg
I kept looking over my shoulder every few minutes to be sure a Clouded Leopard wasnt hunting me, lol! In the end, the only wild animals I encountered were this lizard and dragonfly, lol!!
large_IMG_9569-001.jpg
large_IMG_9340-001.jpg
There was also a pit with a Malayan Sun Bear.
large_IMG_9242-001.jpg
I didnt take photos of all the animals, because some of the cages had just way too many bars to get decent photos. But here are some that I was able to get nice pictures of.
Buffy Fish Owl
large_IMG_9481-001.jpg
I dont remember this bird's name, but he looked like a grumpy old man, lol!
large_IMG_9468-001.jpg
Crocodile
large_IMG_9518-001.jpg
False Gharial Crocodile ... they are known for their long, slender snouts and razor sharp teeth!
large_IMG_9533-001.jpg
large_IMG_9529-001.jpg
large_IMG_9536-001.jpg
large_IMG_9538-001.jpg
large_9F2682419EAE0144B70E4D334594F5DC.jpg
Although most of the animals were in cages, it was still awesome to see so many Asian species I'd never seen before! We definitely dont have these animals in Canada! There was a Clouded Leopard, Gibbons (the call of a gibbon is the coolest sound in the world!), hornbills, bintorangs (aka Asian Bear Cat), and Sambar Deer.

Well thats it for Kuching. Stay tuned for upcoming posts on hiking in Bako National Park, and a day at Damai Beach :)

Posted by ChantelleS 12:24 Archived in Malaysia Tagged rainforest water boat wildlife temple monkey malaysia borneo crocodile tropical orangutan Comments (0)

ULU WATU, BALI - INDONESIA

Broken cameras, temples, cliffs, beaches, monkeys, and a fancy resort with an infinity pool!

overcast 40 °C

large_IMG_8811-001.jpg
I woke up on Day 2 at Lake Bratan to discover my DSLR camera was BROKEN!!!!! My biggest travel nightmare had come true! I turnt it on ... nothing. I switched the battery and tried again ... still nothing. UGH! So an entire day was wasted hiring a taxi to drive 2hrs to Denpasar and search for a Canon store to buy a new one. After trying 3 stores I finally found one, and then got the same taxi to take me all the way to the southern-most tip of Bali ... Ulu Watu. This guy drove me from one end of Bali to the other, and drove all over Denpasar helping me find a camera for 500,000 Rupiah. Sounds like a fortune, but it was only $41. I settled into a nice bungalow at the Ulu Watu Cottages for the next few days.
large_94BE5BFCEA5F5F280E8A48AEBDA44149.jpg
large_951A8DC8EF8D56E7E5FA52544F45E8EA.jpg
I didnt plan on doing much other than relaxing, so I decided to splurge on my hotel. For $52 a night (which is considered expensive & high-end in Bali) this place had big rooms with vaulted ceilings, clean clean clean (thats the key word here), a terrace, a/c, hot water (also very important), free breakfast, infinity pool (my first time swimming in one!), tasty restaurant, and was located on a cliff overlooking a beach. It was well worth the money, and I think you'll agree once you see the photos.
large_IMG_8731-001.jpg
large_IMG_8733-001.jpg

The whole place was like one big botanical garden with beautiful tropical flowers & trees everywhere!
large_IMG_8738-001.jpg
large_IMG_8739-001.jpg
large_IMG_8766-001.jpg
large_E41E707DDBD536625ECFF3C6EA5E3BA9.jpg
large_IMG_8810-001.jpg
large_IMG_8770-001.jpg
This was my first time staying at a hotel with an infinity pool :)
large_IMG_8796-001.jpg
large_E46A61380D9545DEA098D6EAD106DED0.jpg
large_E44C2A0BF35BEBA9C30BF73D61890838.jpg
large_IMG_8804-001.jpg
large_IMG_8799-001.jpg
large_IMG_8800-001.jpg
And this was the fabulous view over the ocean & cliffs!
large_IMG_8805-001.jpg
large_IMG_8809-001.jpg
The next morning I took a short taxi ride to Ulu Watu Temple. Admission was 20,000 Rupiah ($1.65 CAD). Everyone (even the men) had to don a purple sarong before being allowed entry.
large_IMG_8618-001.jpg
The temple itself wasnt much to look at, but the view over the ocean & cliffs were awesome!
large_IMG_8635-002.jpg
large_IMG_8614-001.jpg
large_IMG_8633-001.jpg
large_IMG_8625-002.jpg
Beware of klepto monkeys on the path along the cliff! One jumped on my back, covering me in mud, and nearly stole my expensive prescription sunglasses right off my face!
large_IMG_8637-003.jpg
large_IMG_8627-001.jpg
There were a few more mischievous monkeys play fighting on a wall near a big puddle that they kept jumping into. Although monkeys can be thieves, they are so funny to watch play!
large_IMG_8698-001.jpglarge_IMG_8716-001.jpg
large_E4F67F9BD1C98612B7070FBA8C4DB8DD.jpg
The next day I walked 10min to the Ulu Watu Cliffs ... an area of restaurants clinging to the cliffside, shops, and great views.
large_IMG_8779-001.jpg
After taking in the view there for awhile, I headed 20min in the opposite direction to Padang Padang Beach. I arrived in the morning while the beach was still quite empty (just the way I like it). But around 11am it started getting crowded with more tourists, souvenir stands being set up on the beach, and food vendors setting up stands. Thats my que to leave. I enjoy quiet solitude, not loud obnoxious tourists. And so I headed back to my infinity pool at the resort :)
large_IMG_8782-001.jpg
large_IMG_8784-001.jpg
large_IMG_8792-001.jpg
large_IMG_8794-001.jpg
Well, thats it for the island of Bali. Next up I fly to Borneo, Malaysia for 5 days to search for wild orangutans & proboscis monkeys!

Posted by ChantelleS 23:39 Archived in Indonesia Tagged bali indonesia temple monkey blue pool cliff asia Comments (0)

UBUD, BALI - INDONESIA

Monkeys, monkeys, monkeys!

sunny 40 °C

large_IMG_7691-001.jpg
So Bali is sooooOOOoooo fricken far from Canada, its ridiculous! It literally took 2 days to get there! I flew from Saskatoon to Minneapolis, which was only 1.5hrs, with a 5hr layover there. Then Minneapolis to Singapore 20hrs & 20min!!!!! TWENTY HOURS!!!!! I dont even know how I survived! I really, really dont! But it doesnt end there. I had a 7hr layover in Singapore, which I spent most of trying to sleep. And then one more flight, about 3hrs, to Bali, Indonesia. I finally arrived at 11am on Day 3. I hopped in a taxi and headed straight to Ubud. I dont know how long of a drive it was, cuz I fell asleep part way. I checked into the Ganesha Hotel for 1 night. Only $27 booked on Expedia ... it was great! King bed, a/c, tiled floors so shiny I could see my face in them, free wifi & breakfast, pool, etc. After 2 days of flying with nearly zero sleep, all I wanted to do was fall flat on my face and sleep for a week. But, I knew if I let myself sleep at 11am I'd be all mixed up, waking up in the middle of the evening. And so, I put a few things in my daypack, and walked 15min to Monkey Forest.
large_C542068FEB15A5509CBEFB236C7F55E0.jpg
large_IMG_7940-001.jpg
This place did not disappoint! For under $2CAD, I saw more monkeys than I could dream of! Big monkeys, baby monkeys, fighting monkeys, grooming monkeys, and thieving monkeys! Monkeys, monkeys, monkeys! I thought I'd have to search for them, but they were literally everywhere. On the paths, in the trees, on the walls & statues, and even on the tourists!
large_IMG_7580-001.jpg
large_IMG_7984-001.jpg
large_IMG_7673-001.jpg
Before entering you can buy a bunch of little bananas to feed to the monkeys ... or you can just let them steal your bag and search for goodies! Or knock your water bottle out of your hand and proceed to twist the cap of and drink from it! Be warned ... do not bring in food you do not plan to share with them! They can smell it, even if its packaged, like a granola bar. They will follow you and take your bag. For real. Just dont bring in food. Dont do it. I had read this warning on someone else's blog, so I knew not to bring in food, but I did have a bottle of water with me. After I saw a monkey snatch someone else's, I put mine in my daypack and buckled it up. No monkey is stealing my stuff! Thieves!

Searching for food in a stolen purse
large_IMG_7773-001.jpg
Drinking water from a stolen bottle
large_IMG_7540-001.jpg
Trying to steal my glasses!!!
large_IMG_8032-001.jpg
large_IMG_8033-001.jpg
Absolutely everything is covered in moss! Its so humid you can barely breathe, but I suppose thats part of why everything is so wonderfully green!
large_IMG_7588-001.jpg
large_IMG_7587-001.jpg
large_IMG_7630-001.jpg
large_IMG_7800-001.jpg
large_IMG_7805-001.jpg
large_IMG_7808-001.jpg
Theres so many trails to follow. I was here for 4hrs! So get ready for a ton of monkey photos, lol!
large_IMG_7492-001.jpg
large_IMG_7602-001.jpg
large_IMG_7685-001.jpg
large_C5B4606DBB49CDC708DFA41A2D2E790A.jpg
My favorite were the little babies! They were so active, running & playing & stealing bananas from one another, lol! Adorable!
large_IMG_7731-001.jpg
large_IMG_7748-001.jpg
large_IMG_7776-001.jpg
large_C5C5753AABE2CE03585991D56F383B65.jpg
large_IMG_7857-001.jpg
large_IMG_8065-001.jpg
large_IMG_7838-001.jpg
large_IMG_7891-001.jpg
large_IMG_7914-001.jpg
large_IMG_7974-001.jpg
large_IMG_7991-001.jpg
large_C5DBE217CD96580626FDE68274C045DC.jpg
One trail led to a huge tree (Banyan I think), a bridge over a stream, and some green statues.
large_IMG_7629-001.jpg
large_IMG_7644-001.jpg
large_IMG_7764-001.jpg
large_IMG_7772-001.jpg
At around 5pm I grabbed some lunch, or supper, I'm not sure really, my body was so jet lagged. I had noodles, thats all I remember, lol! Then I walked back to my hotel, showered and passed out til morning! Good night!

Posted by ChantelleS 12:32 Archived in Indonesia Tagged bali wildlife indonesia temple monkey green forest asia ubud Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 6) Page [1] 2 » Next