A rare and beautiful beast, the orang-utan is an endangered species with the last few remaining wild specimens living out their days in the Borneo and Sumatran rainforests. For many people, just one holiday on their single trip travel insurance to a sanctuary offers a once in a lifetime opportunity but others, travelling on their backpacker travel insurance are looking to go that one step further and work with the gentle giants.
The Borneo sanctuary has been running for over 25 years and cares for animals who are too weak to survive in the wild. With a central rehabilitation unit, the sanctuary is surrounded by acres and acres of wooded reserve land, entry to which is by permit only. Animals successfully treated at the centre are returned to live in the forest reserve around the unit. However, despite returning to the semi-wild, many orang-utans return to the centre to be fed, giving tourists a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with the creatures. Being close enough to watch the magnificent giants swing through the trees and feed close at hand is an experience that makes a single trip travel insurance policy worth every penny.
However, while trips to the Borneo sanctuary are available to the public, the opportunity to volunteer alongside the animals is very rare. Despite the close proximity to the animals, tourists are not allowed to have any contact with either the orang-utans in the wild, or those staying in the sanctuary itself. This is due to the orang-utans being very susceptible to diseases easily transmitted from humans and with the species hanging in the balance, every precaution must be taken. But those travelling on backpacker travel insurance are able to volunteer at alternative projects nearby, working with other wild animals and occasionally, for the lucky few who time it right, the Great Orang-utan Project announces vacancies to get up close to the red-haired beauties.