July 17, 2007

Monkeys and Martinis

The mysterious jungles of Borneo are home to cheeky troops of Orangutans, bizarre outbursts of Rafflesia flowers and a very nice place for cocktails.

The first two days of our adventure into Sabah to capture images of habitats and wild creatures has been flavoured with truly exotic encounters and true five-star service. Our home base has been the Rasa Ria, a Shangri-La hotel based just north of Kota Kinabalu along the beach. The sand is very very white, the food is amazing and the service is exactly what you want from a great hotel.

This resort is a little unique by offering support for a nature reserve and orangutan rehabilitation program. Just a few minutes from the pool you can enter a regenerated section of forest and see the orangutans swing from trees. Every time I leave the comfort of my ocean view room and head for the restaurant I know that my indulgent dining experience is benefiting the wild animals too.

We have journeyed a little further as well, deep into the Tambunan forest in search of the rafflesia. In fact we journeyed further than we planned, but were lucky enough to actually find this rare bloom. No one was left behind, so the day ended with success and another fabulous set of images for our band of talented, and charity minded, photographers.

> Rasa Ria near Kota Kinabalu

> The Borneo Charity Photo Challenge

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