The centre opened in 1964 as the first official orangutan rehabilitation project for rescued orphaned baby orangutans from logging sites, plantations, illegal hunting or kept as pets. The orphaned orangutans are trained to survive again in the wild and are released as soon as they are ready. The sanctuary is located within the Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve which covers an area of 4,294 ha (10,610 acres), much of which is virgin rainforest. Today around 60 to 80 orangutans are living free in the reserve. It has become one of Sabah's tourist attractions.
In October 2014 the centre opened a new section where visitors can view the nursery area where the younger Orangutans first learn to be outside and play on a large climbing frame. This consists of 2 large indoor seating areas (one with air conditioning and one with fans only) with a large window that overlooks the play area. There is no additional charge to enter this part of the centre.
Entry Costs (Malaysian/ Non-Malaysian nationals):
Adult- RM5/ RM30
Child- RM2/ RM15
Ticket is valid for the day of purchase, so you can attend both feeding times on the same ticket.
Camera Cost: RM10
Opening hours: Saturday to Thursday- 9am to 12pm and 2pm to 4pm. Fridays 9am-11am and 2pm to 4pm.
Orangutan feeding times: 10am and 3pm. It is recommended to arrive 30 minutes before feeding time.
Facilities: Souvenir shop, information center showing a video 6 times a day, cafe and toilets.
Getting there: Many organised tours leave from around Sabah at varying prices. Public bus #14 departs from Sandakan taking approximately 45–60 minutes, costing RM5. The Kota Kinabalu to Sandakan bus can also drop you at junction Jalan Sepilok, around 2.5 km from the Center. Journey approximately 6 hours from KK.
Taxis are usually available outside the centre (RM40 to Sandakan).
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