Although I have visited Bako National Park, my previous trip was four years ago. Therefore, when an opportunity arose for me to revisit, I signed up in a heartbeat.
This side tour was offered to media delegates who were invited to provide coverage for the Sarawak Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF).
Bako National Park, which covers an area of merely 27.27 square kilometres, is one of Sarawak’s smallest national parks, yet it is the oldest in the state, established in 1957.
Situated at the tip of the Muara Tebas peninsula at the mouth of Sungai Bako and Sungai Kuching (rivers), a fruitful tour of Bako National Park on the speedboat very much depends on the tide and weather.
With seven types of eco-systems within Bako National Park, there is certainly plenty to see. In general, what you can find here are similar to those available at Kuching Wetlands National Park, yes, including the Irrawaddy dolphins.
In fact, way more dolphins were seen at Bako National Park than during our Santubong River Cruise at Kuching Wetlands National Park the day before. I couldn’t stop ooh-ing and aah-ing.
What makes Bako National Park distinctive is probably its sea stacks, especially the one that looks like a cobra about to strike, rising from the waters off Teluk Assam.
There are currently ten trails available for hiking, that pose different levels of challenges. As with any expedition into the jungle, do equip yourself with organic mosquito repellent, sunscreen, and quick-dry clothing in case of rain.
Among the wildlife that can be spotted while hiking are three species of monkeys: proboscis, long-tailed macaque and silvery lutung; monitor lizards, flying lemur, as well as the Bornean bearded pig.
The smaller the group of hikers, the better the chance of spotting wildlife. Even so, visitors are advised to keep their voices as low as possible, so as not to disrupt the environment for the animals.
During our visit, we came across a sleeping proboscis monkey. What a precious sight it was! We also managed to get a close up view of the Bornean bearded pig.
Do remember to keep food and drinks out of sight, especially when you encounter long-tailed macaque monkeys near the park headquarters, as they might snatch these out of your hand and scare the living daylights out of you.
Bako National Park is also a firefly colony amongst the api-api mangrove trees. To see fireflies, a night visit should be arranged.
While Bako National Park is popular among day-trippers, accommodation is available for guests who wish to stay the night here, for an extended visit.
General rule of the thumb is to bring out what you have brought in; take only memories, leave only footprints.
For more information, contact Sarawak Forestry at:
Tel: +6082-610088 (General Line) 1-800-88-2526 (Toll Free Line)
Fax: (+6) 082 610099
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