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Bukit Lawang Village


Located in Northern Sumatra next to the Bohorok River, Bukit Lawang is a small but bustling tourist village. The closest city is Medan, 90km northwest. There are many ways to reach Bukit Lawang, check out; getting here.

Bukit Lawang lies on the egde of the Gunung Leuser National Park. The national park covers an areas of 7,929 km2 and hosts a number of endangered species such as the Sumatran Orangutan, Sumatran Elephant, Sumatran Tiger and many others.  


During the 1970's Bukit Lawang was famous for their orangutan rehabiliation project. Set up by a Swiss organisation the project was desiged to rehabilitate captive orangutans and teach them with the necessary skills to survive in the wild. 

First, the orangutans were quarantined, and given time to readjust to their new natural surroundings. Once released back into the jungle, the orangitans ere monitored and given additional food from the feeding station. In the years following this project, Bukit Lawang became the most famous destination in Sumatra to see orangutans. 

Once the need to rehabilitate captive orangutans had gone, the project was closed and the feeding centre also stopped.

Nowadays it is still common to sbe able to see these semi-wild orangutans which were saved by the Sumatra Orangutan Conservation Programme (SOCP)


Thankfully, the young-generation now are helping shape the future of this important tourist village. Through hard-work and dedication, Bukit Lawang tourism is becoming more sustainable and eco-friendly as more people begin to realise the important of preserving this wonderful rainforest.

Facilities in Bukit Lawang

Bukit Lawang is a small village and it is easy to get around everywhere by foot, it is not common for tourists to rent motorbikes, although it is possible.

There is a large choice of accommodation both in the town, and in the quieter surrounding village areas. You can find a variety of more luxurious hotels or more authentic homestays and guesthouses. If you need help organising accommodation, please check out our suggestions

Please be aware; there are a variety of money exchange businesses which offer exchanges at a slightly higher rate, but there is no ATM in Bukit Lawang.  

To access an ATM you can go by tuk-tuk or motorbike to Bohorok, located a short 15 minute drive from Bukit Lawang.

What to do in Bukit Lawang

The main reason that draws people to Bukit Lawang is to trek in the Gunung Leuser National Park and see the Sumatran orangutan. This is a fantastic reason to visit! However, there are also a lot of other activities to enjoy here, some require a guide, while others don't.

  1. Village Life Tour

  2. White water rafting on the Wampu river

  3. Visit the Bat cave and enjoy the scenery at Landak river

  4. Visit Tangkahan, famous for their elephant conservation and hot springs

  5. Indonesian cooking class

  6. Hike to see the world's biggest flower; rafflesia (seasonal- contact us for availability)

  7. Live music every Saturday night

  8. Friday local market Bukit Lawang

  9. Sunday local market Bohorok

  10.  Saturday film night at Eco Lodge 

  11. Carving and Jewellery workshops

  12. Learn about the ecosystem and eco-farming

  13. Clothes and craft shopping 

Want to know more about the Gunung Leuser National Park.

Map of Bukit Lawang, Sumatra
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