End-of-the-Tether Expeditions
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Borneo

Borneo. The name itself is synonymous with "untamed". A Borneo expedition with End-of-the-Tether is truly unforgettable. Our intimate knowledge of the territory and ongoing contact with the Tuai Rumahs (heads of longhouses) and Pengulus (regional chiefs) are crucial in rendering a unique travel experience for our expedition members.

The island has virtually no public transportation -- the road network is undeveloped because of the sparse population and rugged terrain. Most internal travel is undertaken by riverboat and, in the smaller tributaries, traditional longboat. For individual travellers and the uninitiated, trekking into the heart of Borneo is difficult, time consuming and expensive. Actually, the difficulty of navigating the territory is a boon to the resourceful traveller, as the deep interior of Borneo has rarely been visited by outsiders. End-of-the-Tether Expeditions guide you to the most remote, traditional longhouses to sense a way of life that has remained unchanged for generations. Hunting remains an essential part of survival, and potential participants should be comfortable eating wild game, such as boar and mousedeer.

Despite increased commercial activity in recent years, the natural beauty of Borneo has been admirably preserved. National parks in Mulu, Niah and Kinabalu are the highlights of Borneo's natural treasures. Scaling Mount Kinabalu -- the highest peak in Southeast Asia -- is a demanding but rewarding task. Of even greater delight is establishing personal contact with the Dayak tribes. We start by introducing our expedition members to the cultures of the more progressive Dayaks such as the Iban, Kenyah and Kayan.

 

As you become acclimatised to this very different lifestyle (and hygienic practices!), we take you deep into the heart of Borneo, to the most traditional Dayaks such as the Ukit and Penan.

 

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SUGGESTED BACKGROUND READING

Brooke [de Windt], The Hon. Margaret Lili Alice, H.H. The Ranee, My life in Sarawak (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 1987.

Evans, Ivor. Among Primitive Peoples in Borneo (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 1990.

Freeman, Derek. The Iban of Borneo (S Abdul Majeed), 1992.

Harrisson, Tom. Borneo Jungle (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 1990.

Harrisson, Tom. World Within: A Borneo Story (London: The Cresset Press), 1959.

Heimann, Judith. The Most Offending Soul Alive: Tom Harrisson and His Remarkable Life (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press), 1999.

O'Hanlon, Redmond. Into the Heart of Borneo (Vintage Books), 1987.

Smythies, Bertram. The Birds of Borneo (London: Oliver & Boyd), 1960.

SELECTED BORNEO LINKS

** Borneo conservation deal signed ** Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei reach a deal to protect one of the world most important ecological areas.

BBC: Borneo's head-hunters

BBC: Beheading: A Dayak ritual

Borneo Tattoos