Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas and Sarina BrattonOrion Expedition Cruises announces a world-first association with renowned primatologist Dr. Galdikas and her Borneo-based Orangutan Foundation International, enabling Orion II guests firsthand access to visit Camp Leakey, the orangutan preserve seen in the recent IMAX film “Born to be Wild”.

“This is something out of the ordinary and exclusive to Orion,” said Sarina Bratton, founder and managing director of Orion Expedition Cruises. “I am very excited to be able to take our guests to this remarkable destination in a responsible, controlled manner, and to help contribute to a positive future of an endangered species suffering from reduced natural habitat and poaching. Orion’s core beliefs and environmental practices are very much in harmony with Dr. Galdikas’ conservation efforts. It excites me to see this come to fruition and I am confident that our guests will enthusiastically embrace the program.”

With four decades of experience, Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas, a scientist, conservationist and educator, is the world’s leading authority on the orangutan.  Studying and working closely with the orangutans of Indonesian Borneo in their natural habitat, like Jane Goodall and Diane Fossey before her, Dr. Galdikas was mentored and inspired by Professor Louis Leakey, the famed paleoanthropologist.

Orion II’s first Borneo season features eight voyages, with three that include a visit to Camp Leakey, departing September 30, December 29, 2011 & January 8, 2012.  Exclusive experiences for guests aboard the Orion sailings to Camp Leakey include:

Opportunities to travel with Dr. Galdikas onboard Orion II, as she joins all or part of the Camp Leakey voyages as a guest lecturer.

Personally escorted group visits by Dr. Galdikas to the Orion Feeding Station, the Infant Care Centre & Rehabilitation area. (Orion Expedition Cruises donated funds for an orangutan feeding station at Camp Leakey that will be accessed exclusively by Orion II guests.)

Orion Expedition Cruises will purchase an Orangutan Adoption Kit for each guest onboard sailing on any 2011/2012 sailing to Camp Leakey.

Camp Leakey – Faces in the Forest - Voyage of Discovery

2011 Departures - September 30 & December 29
2012 Departure - January 8

The Orion II itinerary travels showcases undiscovered jewels along the southern and western coastlines of Borneo - from isolated tropical islands to diverse National Parks. The landmark Camp Leakey in Tanjung Puting National Park will be a highlight, allowing guests a first-hand experience at the orangutan rehabilitation and feeding center. Guests will also visit Tanjung Datu, Gunung Palung and Bako National Parks to examine the island’s complexity of ecosystems.

2011 Borneo Expedition 10-night fares begin from US $6,930 per person for an Ocean View Suite/Category B, with Junior Suites from $9,605 per person and Penthouse Suites with balcony at $13,940 per person. Expedition fares per person include accommodation, all meals, landings, port charges, gratuities and selected activities ashore.