Kerumutan Forest Reserve is a Wildlife Reserve spanning over 1.3million hectares of lowland forests, and inhabited by hundreds of species of flora and fauna. The grand Kampar River runs along its border, lined with thick mangrove trees.
The reserve’s boundaries are the Kampar River, the Indragiri River, the East Coast of Sumatra, and Jalan Lintas Timur Sumatera, the Cross East Sumatra Highway. The forest extends across two regencies, Pelalawan and Indragiri Hulu, in the Riau Province, in the central part of Sumatra.
In addition to migrants from other parts of Sumatra, Java and the Malay coast, the area around the forest is inhabited by certain indigenous people, such as the Duanu Tribe and the Petalangan Tribe. Government census puts the population of the Kerumutan Forest Reserve at about 27,000 persons.
The forest consists of three main types of soil, and is therefore divided into three areas: Kawasan Inti, or Core Region, covering about 93,000 hectares, Peat Protected Areas, currently covering 52,000 hectares, but which may potentially be expanded, and the Non-Core Regions, a group of preserved forest ecosystems, covering 1,178,000 hectares. Despite being a National Reserve, much of this area has been designated towards industrial plantation development and the landscape is actively being drained and cleared.
To get to Pelalawan, one must first make way to Pekanbaru, capital of the Riau province. The SSK II International airport serves the International destinations of Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, Dumai, Rengat and locally, and domestically, Jakarta, Padang, Medan, Batam and Tanjung Pinang.
From Pekanbaru, you can hire a car to take you to Pangkalan Kerinci, the Capital of Pelalawan. It is approximately 70 km away, or 1.5 hours. Kerumutan Forest Reserve is located in the Village of Kerumutan, Pelalawan. This is about 2 hours away by road, across rocky terrain, or alternatively, you could hire a car direct from Pekanbaru, which will take approximately 4 hours by road, followed by an hour by speedboat.