The Orangutan and Tribes Voluntour

Become immersed in tribal life, whilst working towards the conservation of magnificent orangutans

From £1,095.00

  • Up to 16 Persons
  • All Meals Included
  • 13 Nights
  • Monkeys,Orangutans
  • 3rd and 17th of every month
  • Minimum Age 18

Project Details


The aim of this project is to allow volunteers to experience first-hand, the positive conservation efforts being made in the Sarawak region, by uncovering some of the existing problems and exploring the solutions to sustaining orangutan populations in Malaysian Borneo. Orangutan volunteers should partake with an open mind, appreciating the opportunity to discover new lifestyles and cultures, and with the aim of absorbing as much information as possible about the orangutan conservation efforts.

A major part of the work at Matang Wildlife centre is creating enrichment. This promotes natural behaviours and will enhance the potential for rehabilitation to release as well as improve the lives of the animals at the centre.
Jungle Treks
Jungle Treks
During this voluntour there are numerous jungle treks with the chances of seeing wild proboscis monkeys and wild orangutans. There are also some night walks in Bako National Park and Batang Ai for the more adventurous amongst you!
Meet the Iban Tribe
Meet the Iban Tribe
When in Batang Ai there are a lot of different activities to get involved in including learning traditional handicrafts, cooking, fishing, picnics amidst breath-taking scenery, swimming in jungle rivers and waterfalls and interacting with the tribespeople. Interacting and building bonds with the indigenous people is essential in repairing the fractured human – orangutan relations in this region. The attitude of the orangutan volunteers towards the host community is paramount to the success of this project.
Organic Farming
Organic Farming
Over the past few years volunteers have helped create an organic farm to grow food for the animals at the centre to enable it to become a more sustainable institution.

We are determined for our farm to remain organic. Though many people keep recommending a whole host of chemicals for keeping the weeds at bay, we shall continue to rely on the brute force of the volunteers to keep it under control.

It is definitely a realisable dream to have orangutan centres organically growing all the food they need to keep their animals alive and healthy. Tending to the farm has, therefore, become a regular job for our volunteers


Please note itineraries are subject to change and what follows is only a rough guideline.

Day 1:
Arrive in Kuching airport (KCH). Transfer to the guesthouse for a welcome dinner and meet fellow volunteers.
Day 2:
Transfer to the Matang Wildlife Centre to meet the English facilitator and all the resident animals, including the amazing orangutans.
Day 3:
Work behind the scenes with staff at a busy rehabilitation centre and orangutan sanctuary. Help with everyday tasks such as the feeding and orangutan enrichment.
Day 4-5:
Work with the orangutans in the morning and at mid-day head for Bako National Park having lunch on the way. Once there, check into the accommodation. The day ends with an optional night walk in the jungle. The following evening you will transfer to the Malay community of Telok Serabang.
Day 6:
Today you will explore the community of Telok Serabang, helping within the local community and also exploring the beach and coral reefs. Keep your eyes peeled for endangered green turtles!
Day 7:
Today you will explore the nearby national park of Tanjung Dato where you will have a chance to see wild gibbons, bearded pigs and a whole host of other wildlife.
Day 8:
Transfer to Padawan - a Bidayau Community and one of the indigenous Dayak groups of Sarawak. Learn about the traditional culture of this tribe and take part in a range of cultural activities!
Day 9-12:
These days are spent in Batang Ai rainforest. Enjoy a whole host of activities from walks into the surrounding rainforest in search of its elusive inhabitants to learning traditional handicrafts and cooking among others.
Day 13:
Transfer back to Kuching and visit the Semenggoh Rehabilitation Centre.
Day 14:
Transfer to Kuching airport for return flight or commence independent travel plans.

Availability & Price

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*Rates other than GBP are estimates based on today's exchange rates. All payments are made in GBP.

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Updates & Outcomes

With the extinction of orangutans being a very real possibility in the near future, orangutan volunteers are essential in the process of finding a sustainable solution. A third of the price of this project goes directly towards supporting the rehabilitation of the orangutans that volunteers visit, through various orangutan sanctuaries and initiatives in the local area. This money also helps to support the Iban tribes and to sustain their way of life. It provides them with the means to protect their native jungle where wild orangutans live, and allows them to afford education and healthcare for their children.

The voluntour itself employs local guides and supports local communities wishing to live in harmony with their rainforest home, and demonstrates that orangutans and their environment are worth more alive and nurtured, than forested and sold. This is a virtuous circle, generating interest within the local community and authorities, which places value on their natural heritage and secures the future welfare of the wide variety of species that also call it home.

Orangutan Awareness Week and an update on Rocky

Orangutan Awareness Week and an update on Rocky

  • posted on Dec 6, 2012
  • by James Whiteman

"This month from the 12th to the 17th of November is Orangutan Awareness Week (OAW). We'll be going orang-mad (more so that we currently are!) with the aim of spreading love and knowledge of our forest dwelling cousins and drawing attention to their plight in Indonesia and Malaysia."

Read More

Is this trip for you?



In Kuching, volunteers stay in a boutique guesthouse, which features internet, television and phone, in shared rooms.
In the Matang Wildlife Centre, volunteers will stay in the grounds of the centre – an idyllic setting in a remote rainforest area, inside of Kubah National Park.
In Batang Ai, the accommodation consists of a basic lodge, with cold showers, electricity from a generator.

Meals and Beverages

Meals and Beverages

Three meals a day and drinks are provided throughout the tour. Meals with typically consist of noodles, rice, vegetables and meat. Vegetarian options are always available.

Fitness & Skills

Fitness & Skills

This project does not involve a lot in the way of physical labour, but it will involve trekking in the rainforest on the tour - usually in fairly humid conditions. Therefore, all volunteers should have high enough levels of fitness to be able to partake in regular treks. No specific skills or experience are required, just commitment to the project and its aims. You must be prepared to work alongside other members of the team, and to bring an upbeat, positive attitude to the endeavour as a whole.



The vaccinations required will depend on the medical history of each volunteer. We recommend that you consult your GP regarding your own immunisation needs. In conjunction with this, we would also recommend that you check Fit for Travel’s website.

Hands on contact

Hands on contact

Please be aware there is no physical contact allowed between volunteers and the apes unless under veterinary conditions. Excessive habituation to humans is nothing but detrimental to rehabilitation and conservation goals.

Project Details

Getting There

Volunteers should arrive at Kuching airport on the project start day between 7am - 5pm, where they will be met by a project representative, and taken by private transfer to each site accommodation in turn.

If you would like help booking your flights please feel free to contact our flight partners via our flights page.

Visa Requirements

There is no visa required for most nationalities to enter Malaysia. Check the Malaysian Immigration website for detailed information.

Currency and Exchange Rates

The Malaysian currency is the Ringgit. The conversion rate is around 1 MYR to 0.19 GBP, 0.23 EUR and 0.31 USD

What's included in the price of the project?
  • Airport transfers.
  • Overland transportation
  • Accommodation and meals as indicated
  • All volunteering activity equipment
  • Local guides
  • English speaking project leader
  • Conservation donation.
What's not included?
  • All flights
  • Vaccinations and anti-malarials
  • Travel insurance
  • Alcoholic beverages

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Contact Info
UK Sales Office
The Great Traveller Ltd,
Heron House,
Ferry Lane, London, N17 9NF
United Kingdom

T: +44(0) 208 885 4987

Australian Sales Office
T: +61(0) 755020457