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The Mahakam River is the most important traffic route in the central region of East-Kalimantan. Between the spring in the mountains and the delta along the coast, the river measures somewhere between 700 and 800 kilometers. In between several big rivers mouth in the Mahakam River. Big ships use the big river system until the highlands, where rapids eventually make any progress impossible; from the (...)

Complete darkness... Slowly I made my way on my feet which were slippery because of the mudd. The steps of the ladder were a little safety; it were just shallow holes in a block of wood. The ladder leaned to the house dangerously, at least in my opinion. The last step have access to a small room, lit by a small light. I moved along several sitting people. What should I do? Singing, high singing s (...)

Who follows the Mahakam upstream, will enter the original habitat of the traditional Dayak of Kaltim. However many of them have converted to Christianity, the Dayak along the middle-Mahakam have kept their old religion and used for the biggest part. The Bahau are mainly Catholic, but they also have kept most of their traditions. The Benuaq and Tunjung have been influenced by the kaharingan religio (...)

The upperstream part of the Mahakam is cut off from the coastal area by big rapids, just a little upstream from Long Bagun. Somewhere else on Borneo, you can see the same kind of closed areas, but the rapids are less strong or they can be crossed with boats - like in Sarawak - which are motorized. Only Apokayan is more isolated than the upperstream part of the Mahakam. The first European whic (...)

Leopard capes, hugeearrings and head decoration with beads... This dress is what the Dayak wore at the Erau festival in Tenggarong. The fierce Kenyah Dayak, which life more upstream, didn't create the impression that they brought all this to favour the tourists. By the way, there weren't much tourists at the moment in the capital of the district Kutai in East-Kalimantan. The only white ones - besi (...)

The downstream part of the Mahakam, between the villages of Tenggarong and Long Iram, can be reached easily from the sea. Here you can meet the islamic past of Kaltim as well as the traditional way of life of the Dayak. Tenggarong, the former capical of the sultanate of Kutai, is the governmental center of the district (kabupaten) Kutai. The biggest attraction of the city is the Mulawa (...)

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