Day 71 of 164 Days Around the World Cruise
George Town, the capital city of Penang Island, Malaysia, is a vibrant city that blends modernity with history. The city has a rich cultural heritage that has been shaped by its unique location at the crossroads of trade routes. In recent years, George Town has become a popular tourist destination due to its UNESCO World Heritage Site status, which was awarded in 2008.
One of the most popular attractions in George Town is the Bukit Merah Orang Utan Island Foundation. This non-profit organization is dedicated to the conservation of orangutans, a species of great ape that is native to Malaysia and Indonesia. The foundation operates a sanctuary on an island in Bukit Merah Lake, where visitors can observe these intelligent creatures in their natural habitat.
The Bukit Merah Orang Utan Island Foundation was established in 2000 as a joint venture between the Perak State Government, the Taiping Municipal Council, and a private company. The aim of the foundation is to rescue and rehabilitate orangutans that have been orphaned or injured as a result of human activity. The foundation also works to raise awareness of the importance of orangutan conservation and to educate the public about these amazing creatures.
The sanctuary on Orang Utan Island is home to around 20 orangutans, as well as a number of other animals, including macaques, gibbons, and sun bears. Visitors to the island can take a guided tour, during which they will learn about the work of the foundation and observe the orangutans in their natural habitat. The sanctuary also features a canopy walk, which offers breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding rainforest.
The Bukit Merah Orang Utan Island Foundation also operates a research center, where scientists study the behavior and ecology of orangutans. The foundation collaborates with a number of international research institutions, and the findings of their studies are used to inform orangutan conservation efforts around the world.
Visiting the Bukit Merah Orang Utan Island Foundation is a unique and rewarding experience. Not only will visitors have the opportunity to observe these fascinating creatures up close, but they will also be supporting an important conservation effort. The foundation relies on donations and the support of visitors to continue its vital work, so by visiting the sanctuary, visitors can help to ensure the survival of one of the world's most endangered species.