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Kayan Mentarang National Park

Kayan Mentarang National Park is an area of Borneo Island in Malinau Regency and Nunukan Regency, North Kalimantan, Indonesia, which was designated in 1980 as a nature reserve and designated as national park in 1996 on indigenous peoples and World Wide Fund (WWF) Indonesia recommendations.

Kayan Mentarang National Park has 13,605 sq km (5.252 sq mi) of primary forest and old skunder and height of 200 meters to 2,500 meters above sea level as the largest and still remaining in Southeast Asia. The Kayan river to the south and the Mentarang river to the north are the two most important rivers in the region.

Xvlor Kayan Mentarang National Park is rivers and forests system of North Borneo Kayan Mentarang National Park is rivers and forests system of North Borneo

The Apau Kayan plateau stretches from Datadian or Long Kayan in the south past Apau Ping in the middle and Long Bawan in the north. This expanse of forest extends in the eastern part of North Kalimantan Province which has a direct boundary with Sabah and Sarawak in Malaysia.

The upstream of Pujungan river, Krayan river and Kayan river have very beautiful panoramas covering lowland valleys, mountainous terrain, and steep mountain clusters formed from various sedimentary and volcanic formations covered by primary and secondary forest types.

Forests and rivers

Heavily populated by diverse forest types including Dipterocarp, Fagaceae-Myrtaceae, mountain above 1,000 meters, agathis, heath, swamp and moss on mountain peaks above 1,500 meters. Along the Bahau river is hilly forest that has steep cliffs and many waterfalls in various sizes where the flow of waterfall has sloping river bank.

Pujungan at Apau Ping is an area where the sun never rises because it is covered by fog or clouds. The rivers of Kayan Mentarang National Park come from many springs upstream in mountainous areas and flow into a large river downstream to the estuary.

The Kayan river in the southern part of the national park empties after dividing Tanjung Selor and Tanjung Palas from dozens of springs upstream of Kayan and Pujungan. Simpang Koala is a meeting between Bahau river and Kayan river as the border of the Regency of Bulungan and Malinau.

The water flow of Kayan river in Tanjung Selor is very calm and starts to fluctuate when entering Long Lejau, while the water flow of Bahau river varies greatly and is used for rafting activities. The Dayak community in the upper reaches of Pujungan give the term Bahau river as 'sei giram' which means rocky river with fast flow.

The people in this area are the most accomplished boatmen where the Bahau river at Long Aran has the lowest water level and often causes a 20-meter boat to run aground. The rivers of Kayan Mentarang National Park have different rock profiles.


At least 500 species of orchids and 25 species of rattan. At least 277 species of birds including 11 new species, 19 endemic species and 12 species are almost extinct, hornbills species, kuau raja species, Sepindan Kalimantan species and raja udang species.

The area is home to bull (Bos javanicus), sun bear (Helarctos malayanus), pangolin (Manis javanica), leopard (Neofelis nebulosa), hedgehog (Hystrix brachyura) and sambar (Cervus unicolor). At certain seasons the bulls will gather in the meadows upstream of the Bahau river.

Cultural diversity

Around 21,000 people from various ethnic and language subgroups known as Dayak tribes settled in and around the national park. The Dayak community including the Kenyah, Kayan, Lundayeh, Tagel, Saben and Punan, Badeng, Bakung, Makulit, and Makasan have long been inhabited in 50 villages within the region.

Stone cemetery in the upper reaches of the Bahau river and upstream of the Pujungan river is a relic of the Ngorek tribe indicating over 400 years ago the Dayak people already inhabited the area. The most dense archaeological heritage is thought to be the most important relic to the island of Borneo.

Communities within the park area still rely heavily on the use of forests as a source of livelihood such as timber, medicinal plants and animals. They also sell forest plants and animals because there is little chance of getting cash.

Basically people manage natural resources traditionally by basing on variations of species for example many varieties of rice grown, some types of wood used for building materials, many types of plants used for medicine, and various types of animals. Kayan Mentarang National Park is rivers and forests system of North Borneo

Xvlor Kayan Mentarang National Park is rivers and forests system of North Borneo

Location: Malinau Regency and Nunukan Regency, North Kalimantan.

Activity: You walk around in this national park or down the river by longboat. Renting a motor boat is around Rp180.000 (US$13.5) per hour.

Complementary facilities: Kayan Mentarang National Park is considered a remote area, but you can stay at a friendly Dayak tribal settlement within the park. The villages are only a short walk away. Camping in the forest may be another alternative. However at Bawan Long, there is comfortable and clean accommodation like Agung Raya Inn and some homestay.

Routes and public transport: At least three local airports in Malinau Regency within the immediate reach of Kayan Mentarang National Park are Long Apung Airport in South Kayan District, Yuvai Semaring Airport in Krayan District and Robert Atty Bessing Airport in Malinau City. Another alternative is flight to Juwata International Airport, then travel overland to the national park.

Contact: Kayan Mentarang National Park
Jl. Pusat Pemerintahan Pemda Malinau Tanjung Belimbing,
Kabupaten Malinau, Propinsi Kalimantan Utara,
Postal code: 77554, Phone: +625532022757 and +62553 2022758,
Email: [email protected] and [email protected]

Advice: The best time is September to December. Flight using DAS (Dirgantara Airline Services) and MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship) must be booked 1 month before departure date. The need for travel includes flashlights, sleeping bags, trekking shoes and mosquito repellent lotions.

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Beijing, Beijing Capital International Airport, …

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