Borneo: the memory of the caves - Azimuth Adventure Travel Ltd

Borneo: the memory of the caves

25th ANNIVERSARY OF AZIMUTH ADVENTURE TRAVEL LTD

“EPHEMERAL” CIRCUIT SUPERVISED BY LUC-HENRI FAGE

“If Europe has long been perceived as the cradle of art, with the spectacular sites of Chauvet, Lascaux or Altamira, it is in South-East Asia that the most ancient cave paintings have been dated. ancient history of humanity. And, in recent years, discoveries have multiplied! »

This statement from Luc-Henri Fage which you can read in an article in Dossiers de l’Archéologie (published in January 2021)...

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Day 1To Indonesia

Day 1To Indonesia

  • Rendez-vous à l’aéroport de Paris Charles-de-Gaulle et envol vers l’Indonésie.

    Horaires indicatifs avec Turkish Airlines: Paris – Istanbul – Jakarta / 19h55-00h20 & 01h50-17h35

Day 2Welcome to Jakarta

Day 2Welcome to Jakarta

  • Welcome at Jakarta airport and transfer to your transit hotel.

Meal and accommodations

Accommodation: Ibis Styles Jakarta Airport

2h 25m
Balikpapan
6h
Sangatta

Day 3Welcome to Borneo

Day 3Welcome to Borneo

  • Transfer to the airport and flight to Balikpapan. (Garuda Indonesia / Jakarta – Balikpapan / 8:35 a.m.-11:50 a.m.)

  • Reception at Balikpapan airport and transfer to Sangatta, a small mining town in North Kalimantan, and the last civilized town before the forest.

    After settling into the hotel, first briefing with Luc-Henri and his team.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Ibis Styles Jakarta Airport

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Hôtel 3-4*

Sangatta

Day 4Mount Marang

Day 4Mount Marang

  • Transfer to the small village of Hambur Batu, where the Bengalon River crosses the road that crosses Kalimantan. You then get out of the vehicle to board motorized canoes which will go up the river towards the Marang Mountains. Optional first stop at Batu Adji, where you explore a large cave and upper galleries. Arrival at the end of the afternoon at the foot of Gua (“cave” in Indonesian) Tewet.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Hôtel 3-4*

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 5Tewet cave

Day 5Tewet cave

  • At the start of the morning, exploration of the Tewet cave, discovered in 1999. You reach it by a short walk in the forest, followed by a climb of approximately 70 m between jungle and rock (you will be assured on certain passages and the last length to access the cave). Exploration of the cave, which is a 200 m2 rock shelter with breathtaking views of the surrounding area. Discovery of cave paintings (the most beautiful, according to Luc-Henri Fage), including 240 negative hands, the tree of life, etc. Return to camp in the afternoon.

  • Option for the best climbers: ascent of limestone peaks to Gua Pindi, which houses some paintings, but above all offers a nice view and a good overview of what a tropical peak karst is.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 6Marang river

Day 6Marang river

  • In the morning, you head towards a valley (steep, clayey slope) near Gua Tewet, to explore Liang Karim, a cave discovered in May 2003, renowned for its fantastic “honey tree”. » and a “tapir” (a species which disappeared in the Pleistocene, that is to say at least 10,000 years ago!).

  • At the beginning of the afternoon, you leave the camp. The canoes go up the Bengalon River and turn towards the pretty little Marang River. You thus progress to Gua Keboboh, where the camp will be set up.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 7Keboboh Cave

Day 7Keboboh Cave

  • Exploration of the Keboboh cave in the morning, which offers multiple entrances, particular fauna (cave insects, snakes, amphibians, etc.), strange concretions and rocks with astonishing shapes, sculpted by water. You will also pass an old camp of swallows’ nest hunters.

    In the afternoon, opportunity to explore other caves in the surrounding area, along an impressive cliff of karst peaks.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 8Sungai Cave

Day 8Sungai Cave

  • Today, you continue your journey up the Marang, sometimes with acrobatic passages for the canoeists, to Gua Sungai (or “river cave”). Exploration of this pretty cavity crossed by a (small) underground river, full of pools, gours, cave fish, etc. You then return to the canoes. The river narrows, dead trees hinder progress, rocks emerge. Depending on the flow, you will have to walk on a track (which does not always follow the river), or stay in the canoes. Majestic passages under the limestone peaks, omnipresent forest (in a cathedral), sometimes it is a canyon… At the end of the river, we see that it comes out of a cave. This is the bivouac location, Gua Tebo.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 9Tebo Cave

Day 9Tebo Cave

  • Incursion into Gua Tebo, swimming up the underground river (depending on the flow of the river). This river comes from the other side of the Marang Mountains. It is also possible to climb a karst peak.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 10Shy orangutans

Day 10Shy orangutans

  • Orangutans victims of deforestation have come to take refuge in the area you explored yesterday. With an excellent tracker, you set off to discover a vast depression located east of Tebo. Along the way, caves, swamps, tall grass… It is in the trees that the shy orangutans nest. The meeting is not guaranteed, but the ride is superb. You also tour a karst depression. The mountains that dominate it are impressive.

    In the afternoon, return by canoe to Gua Tangkorak. Access to the cave by a short easy walk. It is a large gallery, decorated with numerous concretions. A side gallery descends towards a second entrance, which leads to a ceramic piece stuck high up in the clay. In the entrance, there are some prehistoric paintings (the cave was excavated by archaeologists in 2003).

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Tent camping

Day 11Return to civilization

Day 11Return to civilization

  • A large part of the day is devoted to returning, by canoe, to civilization. Arriving at Hambur Batu, you are happy to board vehicles, which take you to a Dayak village: Miau Baru. En route, visit the Kongbeng peak, which dominates an ocean of oil palm trees, and offers a surprising underground network. Climbing a peak, not easy to climb, offers an extraordinary panorama. Dayak music and dances in the evening. Night in the community house, decorated with polychrome wood paintings.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Community house

Day 12Dayak civilisation

Day 12Dayak civilisation

  • Miau Baru is a traditional village populated by Dayak people from Apo Kayan. 40 years ago, these tribes decided to leave central Borneo to settle as close as possible to modern civilization. Many thought they had no future in Miau Baru, but the Dayaks knew how to preserve their traditions, which they present to you this morning during an immersion in their culture. Transfer to Merapun in the afternoon, where you board motorized canoes again towards the small Dayak village of Merabu.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Guest house

Day 13Beloyot & Harto Cave

Day 13Beloyot & Harto Cave

  • At the start of the morning, you begin a walk of around 3 hours towards the Beloyot caves (formerly Harto), in the middle of one of the largest intact limestone forests in the world. Gua Beloyot is very interesting because it contains numerous cave paintings over 30,000 years old. If you have an eye, you will also discover some unknown sculptures and fossils.

    Return to Merabu in the afternoon.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Guest house

Day 14Nyadeng Peak

Day 14Nyadeng Peak

  • Possibility to explore the village of Merabu (which has had an exemplary policy in refusing deforestation and oil palms) or to climb the peak of Nyadeng, which offers a beautiful view of the region.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Guest house

Samarinda

Day 15Samarinda

Day 15Samarinda

  • Return by canoe to Merapun, then transfer to Samarinda.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Hôtel 3-4*

Day 16Buffer day

Day 16Buffer day

  • If you have had no setbacks throughout your trip, the day is devoted to visiting the surroundings of Samarinda: the Dayak knife museum – the famous “mandaus”, which were used in the past to cut knives. heads (30 min drive); you also head to the traditional village of Pampang, where Kayan Dayaks introduce you to their vibrant culture. Dayak art, represented by tattooing and characterized by fluid geometry whose influence dates back to the Dong Son era, mainly depicts scenes of daily life. Women with long ears are also the last witnesses of a culture that tends to dissipate.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Included

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Hôtel 3-4*

Day 17See you soon in Borneo

Day 17See you soon in Borneo

  • Free time until transfer to the airport. Flight to Jakarta. Citilink / Samarinda – Jakarta / 3:40 p.m. – 4:50 p.m.

    Connecting flight to France.

    Turkish Airlines / Jakarta – Istanbul – Paris / 9:00 p.m. – 4:00 a.m. & 7:00 a.m. – 9:40 a.m.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Hotel

Accommodation: On board

Day 18Arrived in France

Day 18Arrived in France

  • Arrival in Paris early in the morning.

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