Kutai National Park is a lowland national park located on the east coast of Borneo Island, in the East Kalimantan province of Indonesia. The park is located north of the Mahakam river and includes several lakes : Danau Maau, Danau Santan, Danau Besar and Danau Sirapan. It is adjacent to the towns of Bontang and Sangatta and 120 km north of the provincial capital Samarinda.
Kutai National Park covered an area of 198.629,00 hectares, lies on the geographical location between 116o58' - 117o36' East and 0o08' - 0o34' North, altitude 0 - 397 m above sea level, rainfall on average 1,543 mm/year.
Kutai National Park represents a number of principal vegetation types, including coastal/mangrove forest, freshwater swamp forest, kerangas forest, lowland flooding forest, ulin/meranti/kapur forest, and mixed Dipterocarpaceae forest. This park is also part of the largest relatively pristine ulin forest in Indonesia.
Among the plants that grow in this park are Mangrove (Bruguiera sp.), Cemara Laut (Casuarina equisetifolia), Simpur (Dillenia sp.), Meranti (Shorea sp.), Benuang (Octomeles sumatrana), Ulin (Eusideroxylon zwageri), Kapur (Dryobalanops sp.), 3 species of Rafflesia, and various orchid species.
An Ulin tree in Sangkimah has a height without branches of 45 m, a diameter of 225 cm or a circle of 706 cm, and a volume of 150 cm3. It is the highest and largest plant recorded in Indonesia.
As well as a variety of plants, this park also has a high animal diversity. Primate groups like Orangutan (Pongo satyrus), Mueller's Bornean Grey-gibbon (Hylobates muelleri), Proboscis Monkey (Nasalis larvatus), Long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis fascicularis), Maroon Leaf-monkey (Presbytis rubicunda rubicunda), White-fronted Leaf-monkey (P. frontata frontata), Pig-tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrina nemestrina), and Slow Loris (Nycticebus coucang borneanus), can be found in Teluk Kaba, Prevab-Mentoko and Sangkinah. Urgulate groups like Banteng (Bos javanicus Iowi), Sambar Deer (Cervus unicolor brokei), Barking Deer (Munciacus muntjak pleiharicus), and Lesser Malay Mouse-deer (Tragulus javanicus klossi) can be found throughout the park area.
Carnivore groups such as Sun Bear (Helarctor malayanus euryspilus) and Flat-headed Cat (Pardofelis planiceps) can be found in Teluk Kaba, Prevab-Mentoko and along the Bontang - Sangatta road.
Fowl groups that can be seen include the Lesser-adjutant Stork (Leptoptilos javanicus), White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster), Green-imperial Pigeon (Ducula aenea), Jungle-fowl (Gallus sp.), Hill myna (Gracula religiosa), and Oriental-darter (Anhinga melanogaster melanogaster).
The park is a part of the former 'Kutai Game Reserve' which has been protected since 1970s. However this status did not prevent the logging of a third of the forest in subsequent years and the following introduction of mining companies. In an attemp to prevent further deforestation, the Kutai National Park was established in 1982. Nevertheless, the great Borneo fires of 1982/1983 destroyed large sections of the forest, and the constant encroachment of people along the eastern boundary continues to reduce the true park area. Approximately only 30 % of the primary growth forest remains.
There are two main point for tourist access to the park, Sangkima is on the road between Sangatta and bontang and thus is accessible by car or bus. The area has a number of old formal national park buildings. There are a large loop walking track, with sections of elevated boardwalk to what was one of the largest trees known in the park. Given the ease of accessibility and being adjacent to the road, tis area of park is continually under pressure from the encroachment of people.
Prevab is the second tourist area, approximately 25 minutes boat ride up the Sangatta river from Kabo Pier (a boat ramp on the northern bank, on the western side of the town of Sangata). Access to the park is gained by road travel to Kabo Pier and the short river trip in a 'ketinting' (a traditional small boat for navigating rivers). The more remote nature of this section sees the jungle in fairly good condition with little disturbance of the area.
Declared by Ministry of Forestry No. 325/Kpts-II/1995. June 29, 1995.