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Brit Couple Stranded In Beautiful Indonesian Village During Lockdown

Brit Couple Stranded In Beautiful Indonesian Village During Lockdown

The pair are managing to live quite cheaply until lockdown restrictions are over

Claire Reid

Claire Reid

A British couple have ended up stranded in an Indonesian village due to the coronavirus and now spend their days watching wild orangutans. I can think of worse ways to spend the past few months.

Jeff Yip, 37, and Zuzana Barancova, 36, spent two years saving up to take a trip of a lifetime exploring South East Asia.

However, they ended up trapped in Sumatra, Indonesia, when they visited the village Bukit Lawang to see the wild orangutans in March.

The Staffordshire-based couple had planned to begin their journey home on 12 April, but the pandemic meant their flight was cancelled - so the pair have been staying a £5 per night guest house while waiting for the flight regulations to change.

Jeff, who works as a technical operator and Zuzana, an import administrator, were originally planning to visit Java and Bali before returning to the UK in June, but saw their plans fall apart when the coronavirus outbreak hit.


Jeff said: "It's normally hot and sunny, and there is no lockdown, so we try to go on walks on most days.

"We have seen plenty of wildlife during our walks - a variety of monkeys, huge monitor lizards, tiny and huge frogs and even a snake once or twice.

"The best encounter we had was when we went down to the river, a few metres from our guesthouse, and saw a young orangutan across the river.

"His mother arrived shortly afterwards with another surprise - a few week old baby orangutan.


"Sometimes we just chill on our terrace and catch up with friends back home while we watch the macaques run around from roof to roof."

The couple had planned to fly from Indonesia to Bali and Java and then return to the UK.

Jeff added: "We worked really hard to save for this trip, working extra shifts, being careful with our expenditure and cutting back on luxuries.


"We found out about the virus in January when we were in Thailand - one of our friends from the UK posted something on his Facebook about 'coronavirus' - we had to google what it was.

"The more we travelled, the more we saw the virus in the news and on social media - the number of tourists also dropped as we travelled to more countries."

They decided to sit tight on the island of Sumatra and wait until the UK lockdown is over, and couldn't be more happy with the decision.


Jeff said: "It's been great - we would've returned to the UK with nowhere to live and job uncertainty with the lockdown in place.

"We also feel a little better protected from the virus here - there may not be a lockdown but it's not possible to travel between cities and no one can visit Bukit Lawang from outside the local area."

You can see more of their adventures on Jeff's blog here.

Featured Image Credit: Storytrender

Topics: World News, UK News, Coronavirus