Friday, July 24, 2009

Orangutans (Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia)

We started the day with a trip to an Orangutan sanctuary about an hour from Kota Kinabalu. This place takes in orphaned Orangs and raises them for a few years. They then either relocate them to the larger sanctuary in Sepilok or release them into the wild. We really enjoyed the Orangutans. They are hilarious primates, and goof off a bit with eachother as well as their handlers.

Around mid-day, we decided to head out to an island off shore in the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park. The national park is a collection of about 5 main islands that are immediately off shore. The islands have several coral reefs and a population of some monkeys, monitor lizards, boars, and even some anteaters. We had to wait about 20 minutes for our driver to take us to the pier since all of the drivers were off praying. After his return, we were taken to the Jesselton Point Pier for a boat transfer to Pulau (island) Manukan. Manukan is one of the busier islands and seemed to be bustling with Chinese tourists. Of all the fellow travelers that we have encountered, the Chinese have the least amount of (western standard) etiquette, and the Indians always seem to screw stuff up or keep people waiting. The Chinese on this island were no exception, and we had some eye-rolling moments. They travel in groups and just kind of stampede you. It is actually pretty funny. We really enjoyed the tropical island, and the beach was surprisingly top notch. The snorkeling was fun, though we were a bit spoiled by Indonesian waters.

Tonight, we decided to eat like locals. First, we hit the night market for some street food. Kristin ate a corn on the cob and a strange shell stuffed with a potato mix. I ordered some chicken on a stick (satay) and a strange gooey green ball that ended up being a dessert type dish. After that, we stopped by a huge Chinese live sea food market and the selection blew our minds. It was like going to an aquarium where you can eat everything. Sharks, coconut crabs, tiger prawns, huge groupers, this place had it all. We decided that it was beyond our means, so we took some pictures and then left. We stopped by a few food stalls and eventually found our way to a shopping mall where we purchased some fresh fruit drinks. Delicious. We ended up eating at a malaysian-latin fusion restaurant that had 7 ringet (2 US) drinks. For dessert, we stopped by a boutique donut store.

A beach on the way to the Orangs. Beaches are much better than
we expected here.

A snake, fun

Orang Utan means person of the forest

They are indigenous to Borneo and very endangered

This one was showing off a bit

and making funny noises

Nice hair-do

Having a mid-day snack

They drink water off of their hands

Hanging out

This is my favorite picture. You can get really close because
there are no barriers or anything between you and the guys


Some of their mannerisms are so human like

Its okay bud


They really seem to have a great time

I am putting alot of these up because I know some 'monkey' lovers
read the site

He stood like this for about 2 minutes

Classic monkey pose

A dance number

Having a bottle

You got some stuff on your lip bud

Boat ride to Manukan

This is what the islands look like

Trees and beaches, you can see KK in the background. It was
not a clear enough day to see Mount Kinabalu

The beach

The pier, and Kristin's arm

I could see this guy staring at me the entire time that I laid out.
I think it was move in day because every time I glanced over, he was
shoveling sand out of his home.

Not a bad place to enjoy some ice cream

Lots of fish in the water

Kristin and I spent about 5 minutes checking out this creature and
his awesome crib.

Birds on a sign

I spotted this guy showing a little too much sass

Sunset over the South China Sea

The night market, an island, a boat, and just a sliver of moon

We took this picture looking into our hotel, shooting our own reflection
around dusk. It was Kristin's great idea. Fun picture.

Swam with this fella earlier today

The last of my chicken at the night market

A strange green dessert thing

Trust us, we won't. HUGE crab.

These are tiger prawns

The edible aquarium

I found these shoes at the mall. The lady laughed when I asked for
them in an american size 10.

Latin-Malay Nachos

Happy hour - heres to my positions back in funny world

Oh noes

What a terrific donut selection

See you guys tomorrow


  1. I think I died and went to monkey heaven(sanctuary)!!!!!!!! I absolutely loved it. This is what i see on Animal much did that one orangutan pay for his lips.?(lol). Talk about seafood and eating it, enjoyed the pics of seafood aquarium...U look like u both had fun!!

  2. Guys, the hair do on the monkeys look like me. The ears and fingers look so human, specially when the human hand was feeding the monkey his bottle. I will be missing the show each day, but anxious to hug your necks soon. Love Gram

  3. The dude with pic yet!

  4. Impressive display of sass. However, I know of a certain pic of a someone showing even more sass.


  5. HI Kristin & Justin! WOW!! What an amazing trip despite the mosquitos, sinus problems, and surreal pop culture experience. The diving pictures are incredible and bring back so many memories.

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