Join Jim and his wife, Dia, for a remarkable trip to beautiful Indonesia. The photography on this photo tour is extremely diverse and nothing like anywhere else on the planet. You will photograph wild orangutans in Kalimantan, the Indonesian state of Borneo, and komodo dragons -- the largest lizards in the world -- on a remote island in the Java Sea. This is truly a land that has been forgotten by time. Add to the mix the exotic island of Bali with its unique and magical culture of dance, mask making, mysticism, beautiful people, and ancient Hindu temples, and you can see why this tour offers an incredible opportunity for outstanding photography. Your photographic skills will be challenged at every turn, and the rewards are pictures that will be among your favorites from all your travels.
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DAY 1, July 8 - 10, Friday - Sunday. Depart North America and cross the International Dateline to arrive in Jakarta on Sunday, July 10. If you are flying from Europe or the Middle East, you will have to check the airline schedule so you arrive in Jakarta on July 10. Rest and overnight at the Sheraton Airport Hotel on July 10.
DAYS 2 - 4, July 11 - 13, Monday - Wednesday. We take a short flight from Jakarta to Pangkalan Bun airport in Kalimantan, the Indonesian state of Borneo. We meet our local guide and then transfer our boat. Onboard, crossing the Kumai River takes approximately 15 minutes to the main river Seikonyer. We travel upriver about 2 hours to reach the Tanjung Putting National Park, the home to wild orangutans. Lunch will be served by our own cook on the boat. At 16.30, we continue our tour to look for Proboscis monkeys in trees that line the river. Dinner and overnight at a jungle lodge. For the next two days, we spend time at Camp Leaky and the surrounding jungle and have close encounters with wild orangs. There are feeding platforms that they visit daily, and in addition we will have a chance to spot them in nearby trees and on the ground. We will also be able to see a vast array of exotic birds, gibbons, monitor lizards, butterflies, and more. Overnight Rimba Orangutan Eco Lodge.
DAY 5, July 14, Thursday. This morning we are up for some early morning photography and then we return to Pangkalan Bun for the return flight to Jakarta. We then connect to the 1hr 50min flight to Denpasar, Bali. We transfer to our beautiful hotel and enjoy a romantic dinner by the pool surrounding by lush vegetation and fragrant flowers. Overnight Kamandalu Resort and Spa, Ubud (5 star).
DAY 6, July 15, Friday. Today we photograph two stunning Balinese dancers in the Monkey Temple, a stone-carved temple in the jungle with twin dragons flanking the young girls. Their costumes are classically beautiful and exotic, and the environment is right out of an Indiana Jones movie. When that photo session is finished, we spend time in the monkey forest to take pictures of long tailed macaques with plenty of mothers and babies. Following lunch, we drive to the famous rice terraces for graphic compositions of the contoured fields that took many generations to create. Overnight Kamandalu Resort and Spa.
DAY 7, July 16, Saturday. After breakfast we head to the largest and most important temple of Bali, Besakih, for beautiful morning light on the impressive facade. There are stunning doors and religious art to photograph as well as people. In the afternoon, we visit the 9th century elephant cave with its unique stone carvings, ancient temple, and giant trees. Some of the centuries-old carvings are covered in green moss which gives a unique look to this historic site. This evening we will attend a traditional Balinese dance performance. Overnight Kamandalu Resort and Spa.
DAY 8, July 17, Sunday. This morning is at leisure for you to shop, take pictures on your own, optional river rafting, or explore some of the island's handicraft outlets. After lunch, we drive to the central highlands of the island and photograph sunset at the classic Ulun Danu Beratan Temple. It is an icon shot of Bali as well as a religious sanctuary. Overnight Kamandalu Resort and Spa.
DAY 9, July 18, Monday. After breakfast we drive to a nearby waterfall and take classic pictures of young boys jumping off the falls. It's a lot of fun and it makes for amazing pictures. They will do it several times for us to make sure everyone gets the best shots. You'll want to use the fastest frame rate on your camera to capture the action. Next we visit the Bali bird park where you can get remarkable shots of exotic birds. In the late afternoon, we photograph a dance company Jim has hired to perform the Kecek Fire Dance for our group. At any point in the dancing, Jim can ask the dancers to freeze so we can get perfect images without worrying about blurring the motion of the dancers. Overnight Kamandalu Resort and Spa.
DAYS 10 - 12, July 19 - 21, Tuesday - Thursday. Today we take a short flight from Denpasar to Komodo Airport in West Flores, about 500 miles east of Bali. Here we board our boat that will be our home and mode of transportation for the next three days to explore Komodo Island and photograph the world's largest lizard, the komodo dragon. Having close encounters (but not too close!) with the dragons is like going back in time millions of years to the Jurassic Period when dinosaurs ruled the earth. In addition to the dragons, we will explore nearby islands such as Rinca and enjoy the scenery of Komodo National Park.
Day 13, July 22, Friday. We head back to Komodo airport and take our return flight to Bali. You could connect with an evening international flight home, or Jim suggests overnighting in Bali to make sure you don't miss the international flight the following day. You'll be rested and ready for the long flight home. Due to changeable airline schedules in Indonesia, we can't guarantee the arrival time back in Bali from Komodo. You will return home knowing you've had amazing experiences on this tour and taken award-winning pictures for sure!
TOUR COST: $5950. Includes all lodging based on double occupancy, all meals in Borneo, all meals aboard the boat in Komodo National Park, welcome dinner in Jakarta, all breakfasts in Bali, all dinners in Bali, all entrance fees, all model fees, all ground transportation, all transfers from airport to hotel, river cruising in Borneo, and boat excursion in Komodo National Park.
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: $750 (to have your own room)
Not included: International airfare, Indonesia visa fee, departure taxes in Indonesia, all lunches in Bali, domestic flights within Indonesia
Domestic airfare (Jakarta to Pangkalan Bun round trip; one way Jakarta to Denpasar, Bali; Denpasar to West Flores round trip) totals approximately $700. Price can change due to currency fluctuations and airline price changes.