We take a bus to the small town of Sandakan where we spend the night before visiting the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.
The centre opened in 1964 and is the first rehabilitation project for rescued orangutans. The orangutans are orphaned due to mass deforestation from logging or palm oil sites, the illegal pet trade and the hunting. The rescued orangutans are then trained to survive in the wild with the aim of releasing them back into natural habitat. The sanctuary sits within a 4,294 ha (10,610 acres) forest reserve and the orangutans are free to venture into the forest whenever they are ready.