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Cruising Adventures! Orangutan

Orangutans and Dragons

Example 12 Day Cruise aboard Ombak Putih
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This exceptional sailing adventure combines a gentle river cruise on a traditional wooden riverboat through the forests of Kalimantan, Central Borneo, with a sea cruise on a traditional pinisi schooner through the turquoise waters of Komodo National Park and Indonesia’s Lesser Sunda Islands. Kalimantan’s meandering rivers remain the best way to travel through the hinterland of Borneo, with its wealth of ecological and cultural treasures that survive deep within the rainforest jungle. Here, observe proboscis monkeys and witness the fascinating Dayak culture, as well as experience the ultimate encounter with Asia’s only great ape, the orangutan. Meanwhile, a sea cruise through a panorama of islands is the only way to see the legendary Komodo dragons.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Bali, Indonesia
Day 2 : Palangkaraya | Embark Riverboat
Day 3 : Rungan River | Bapallas Island
Day 4 : Lake Tahai
Day 5 : Tanjung Sangalang | Sanur, Bali | Embark Ombak Putih
Day 6 : Amed, Bali
Day 7 : Lombok
Day 8 : Moyo Island
Day 9 : Wera, Sumbawa
Day 10 : Komodo Island
Day 11 : Rinca Island
Day 12 : Flores Island | Disembark


  • Explore Palangkaraya, capital of the Indonesian province of Kalimantan
  • Visit the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) Education Center
  • Canoe Lake Tahai at dawn for superb enjoy bird watching
  • Join ranger-led nature treks in search of Komodo dragons
  • Snorkel and view the kaleidoscopic beauty of the underwater world


Ombak Putih

Places Visited


Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

Cruising Adventures! Orangutan Cruising Adventures! Dances, Dragons, & Magical Lakes cruise Orangutan in the wild Cruising Adventures! Komodo Dragon

Day 1 Bali, Indonesia

Arrive in Jakarta or Bali, and be transferred to your hotel for an opportunity to rest up after your long journey for the adventures ahead.

Day 2 Palangkaraya | Embark Riverboat

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning fly to Palangkaraya, the capital of the Indonesian province of Central Kalimantan. After meeting your fellow travelers, be transferred to Palangkaraya Harbor, and board a river boat to start your journey, cruising upriver past stilted and floating houses and small villages. In the early evening, take a canoe through the shimmering black water lakes, keeping an eye out for proboscis monkeys, red langurs, hornbills, and brahmini kites. Then return to the boat for a quiet dinner in the midst of the jungle.

Day 3 Rungan River | Bapallas Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The boat moves up the Rungan River as you enjoy breakfast. On arrival at Bapallas Island, take a motorized canoe to observe the orangutans in their natural habitat as seen in Animal Planet’s ‘Orangutan Island’ series. At the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) Education Center, observe the adult orangutans that are waiting to be placed on the pre-release islands. Then have a leisurely lunch onboard while cruising to Kanarakan, a tiny village on the Rungan River. Arriving in the afternoon, be greeted by the village elder with a Dayak Ngaju welcoming ceremony before strolling around the village with a local host for a glimpse into the daily lives of the local people in this isolated community. See the village's home gardens, rubber fields, and a rubber tapping demonstration, and visit the elder’s house to enjoy traditional spiced coffee while sharing stories about the Dayak culture. Back to the boat you cruise down to Lake Tahai overnight.

Day 4 Lake Tahai

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
At dawn, enjoy canoeing at Lake Tahai for bird watching, followed by a leisurely breakfast onboard as the boat passes the orangutan pre-release island of Pulau Kaja. Next, visit the village of Sei Gohong to meet the traditional medicine expert after which you take a short walk to the nearby forest to find several of the plants that are used as traditional medications by the Ngajus. Returning to the village, be shown a larger collection of the traditional medicines and discuss their functions with the locals. Back on the boat cruise downstream to Muara Rungan, passing Katimpun village before overnighting near Muara Rungan.

Day 5 Tanjung Sangalang | Sanur, Bali | Embark Ombak Putih

  • Region
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After breakfast, the boat cruises to Tanjung Sangalang for check out and transfer to Palangkaraya Airport. From here fly to Bali via Jakarta and spend the night in a hotel in Sanur (Bali) in preparation for Part Two of the adventure.

Day 6 Amed, Bali

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Upon waking, your boat will be anchored and waiting for us just off shore. After a leisurely breakfast you will board the vessel you will have a chance to settle in as you head off in the direction of Lombok across the Lombok Strait to the Gili Islands where you will snorkel and swim. This deep trench of water between Bali and Lombok marks part of a very important ecological boundary, which was first described by Sir Alfred Russel Wallace, the British naturalist. Wallace noticed that the flora and fauna of the islands to the west are home to Asiatic animal and plant species, whereas the islands to the east of the invisible ‘Wallace Line’ have a greater similarity to species found in Australia. Later that evening you will head off to the west as you watch the sun go down over Bali as you enjoy cocktails on the back deck.

Day 7 Lombok

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Wake off the beautiful white sands of Kenawa Island in West Sumbawa, where after breakfast you will snorkel, paddle board, swim and explore the island’s beaches, grasslands and corals throughout the morning. After lunch on the boat you will set a course 10 miles further east to Bungin Island, home to a group of Bajau ‘Sea Gypsies’, famous for living in stilt houses above the water and living entirely off the sea. It is the second largest Bajau settlement in Indonesia and will provide you with an amazing and rare opportunity to experience a part of Indonesian culture that is a huge part of the country’s seafaring tradition. Later in the afternoon you will set sail for Moyo Island.

Day 8 Moyo Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning moor off Labuan Aji village on the island of Moyo, visit the village, and then walk to Diwu Mba’i waterfall. The next stop is Satonda, a strange and mystical volcanic island with a sunken crater lake in its center that was filled with saltwater when the nearby Mt. Tambora erupted in 1815, causing a tsunami that flowed into the crater. The eruption was the biggest volcanic explosion in the collective memory of mankind; it had roughly four times the energy of the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa, and gave rise to the ‘year without a summer’ because of the effect on North American and European weather. Local people believe Satonda to be magical, and with this in mind, walk to the lip of the caldera to view the mysterious lake, alongside which are trees believed to be ‘wishing trees.’ Visitors to the island tie a small stone to a tree and make a wish. If your wish comes true, you are bound to return to the island to offer thanks. The seas surrounding the island are rich with soft and hard corals and colorful tropical fish, so spend the afternoon swimming and snorkeling. Another highlight of your visit to Satonda is the sight of thousands of flying foxes that commute at dusk from the island to feed on the mainland, returning before first light the next day.

Day 9 Wera, Sumbawa

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Wake up off the coast of Pulau Sangean, an active volcano that towers 1,800 metres above sea level. After breakfast, you will go ashore to a small hamlet, which, because of the active nature of the volcano, is only inhabited for short periods during the year when the local people come to tend their crops and small herds of buffaloes, which you can see swimming in the sea. Then snorkel on both a nearby reef and a location on the north of the island where volcanic gasses escape in the form of bubbles from the sea floor among the corals, a most interesting sight. Then proceed to the island of Banta and its pure white sand beach, for an afternoon of swimming, snorkelling and hill climbing for the fit. Later that evening you proceed on to Komodo dragon country.

Day 10 Komodo Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
When you wake up, the boat will be anchored off the famous Komodo Island, one of approximately 80 islands that make up the Komodo National Park. You will go ashore at the ranger station in Loh Liang for an early morning ranger-led trek through the park searching for Komodo dragons. In this savannah-like setting of dry, rugged landscape, you will encounter, at a safe distance, these awe-inspiring, giant lizards – Indonesia’s living dinosaurs. You may spot deer, wild boar, sulphur-crested cockatoos, butterflies, rare orchids and jungle chickens among the strangle-fig trees and the distinctive lontar palms. After returning to the boat, you will cruise around the coast and visit Komodo village, where you can buy some local handicrafts. Later you will head to the gorgeous Pantai Merah ‘red-beach,’ which takes its name from the particles of red coral mingled with the sand. Here you will swim and snorkel over one of the richest reefs in Eastern Indonesia, relishing the unforgettable spectacle of the region’s many varieties of coral and marine life.

Day 11 Rinca Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today visit the ranger station of Loh Buaya on Rinca Island for another ranger-led nature trek in search of more Komodo dragons, which are indigenous to this small group of islands. Rinca is also well known for its diverse wildlife, so you may spot monkeys, wild buffaloes, and deer as well. From the top of the hills, the scenery is breathtaking. In the afternoon you can go snorkeling and enjoy some beach time with paddleboards and kayaks. With over 1000 species of fish in the waters of the national park, there is much more to this wildlife reserve than just dragons. In the evening go ashore to an island and enjoy a quintessential experience. With your feet in the sand and the stars rising in the vast Indonesian sky, the crew builds a bonfire and prepares a beach barbecue as a final celebration of your memorable voyage.

Day 12 Flores Island | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch
After breakfast in Labuan Bajo, take private air-conditioned cars to the inland village of Melo. Here, local ‘strongmen’ perform the ‘Caci,’ a ritual whip-fight between two rivals in which the players, each armed with a rattan shield and a whip, try to hit each other while dancing to the rhythm of traditional acoustic instruments. The men of Manggarai in Western Flores are famous for this test of daring and skill, requiring lightning quick moves to dodge the infliction of a wound. The winner is loudly applauded and cheered by the village. Besides this, the cultural group also showcases other traditional dances. After the performance, enjoy a light lunch on the boat before transferring to the airport for your flight back to Bali.

Ombak Putih


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Cabin Deck
Cabin Deck. Spacious, air-conditioned twin-share cabins with twin bunks or double beds and private bathroom with toilet and hot shower.


- All rates are quoted in USD and represent cost per person, based on double occupancy.
- Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.75 times the published rate.

Note: Depending on the chosen start point, meet and stay overnight in Jakarta or Bali, from where you will fly to Palangkaraya to join the riverboat. The river cruise also ends in Palangkaraya from where you fly to Bali (changing planes in Jakarta). After one night in a hotel in Sanur, Bali, embark on the sea cruise, which ends in Flores. Guests return to Bali by air from Labuan Bajo in Flores. All flights, hotels in Jakarta and Sanur, Bali (one night each) are included in the total price.

Rates Include:
  • Accommodation in air-conditioned cabins with private shower and toilet
  • Full board, tea and coffee, soft drinks, mineral water
  • Excursions
  • Use of towels
  • Use of snorkeling gear
  • Experienced tour leader
  • Transfer to and from the ship in all harbors with the exception of Serangan Harbor, Bali
Rates Exclude:
  • Domestic airfares
  • Personal insurance
  • Social alcoholic beverages
  • Crew gratuities
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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Kate was great to work with in the planning stage. She was prompt, helpful, and efficient. Our tour guide, Edwin, was knowledgeable and passionate. We were very happy to have traveled with Adventure Life, it made the trip easy and a true pleasure. We could concentrate on enjoying the experience rather than the details of travel.
Lisa Bridge

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