The indigenous people of this province are Melanesians with black skins and curly hair. They generally have a root crop subsistence agriculture based on sweet potatoes and taros. The people of Papua obtain their starch from the sago palm which gives and extremely generous yield for remarkably little effort. Feral and domesticated pigs on the island is originally came from Southeast Asia was an event which has had vast cultural and ritual significance for its people. Pigs are often treated as members of the family and are sometimes suckled by women. While many other people of the world were still hunters and gatherers, Papua people had begun to garden. After fairly recently, many of them lived with a simple Stone Age Culture wearing little clothing and decorating their bodies with paintings, shells, pig tusks, feathers and skins. There is a plethora of language in the province, perhaps some 250 in all, each representing a tribal group which mixes little with the others. Some of the more remote groups still have virtually no contact with the outside world. THE FLORA AND FAUNA Papua Island may have the richest wildlife and concentration of plant life in all of Indonesia, or perhaps the world. No other islands in the archipelago can match its various kind of Birds of Paradise, Parrot families, pigeons and Flightless Cassowary. This province is also home of 150 species of lizards, 30,000 species of beetles, 200 frogs and 800 spiders. A high percentage of the island’s 100 snake species are poisonous, including all 17 species of sea snakes. There are altogether some 2,700 species of orchids found in Papua Province, 600 species that are medicinal importance and over 124 endemic genera. The lush vegetation of the province is in fact a deceptive cover over poor soils badly leached by heavy rain and containing no rich volcanic materials. Mangroves and Nipah Palms ensnare the brackish estuaries of the coast. BALIEM VALLEY The Baliem Valley, set in the central highland and the most visited part of the island, especially in recent years. The highlights of sightseeing are Dani Market in WAMENA Town, WAUMA Village and, which can be easily reach on foot or by car from Wamena. Farther out are AIKIMA, with its 250 years old mummy, SUROBA, JIWIKA and neighbouring villages. With 2 hours climbing, you can see the salt spring where the Dani women make salt in primitive way fashion for centuries. Outer adventures are southward to KURIMA area, where the Dani and Yali Tribes’ way of life mixed into a unique combination. Situated on 1550 M above the sea level, the temperatures of the highland are ranged from 26 degrees Celsius at the day time and 12 degrees at night. WAMENA The main town of Baliem Valley is Wamena, the capital of Jayawijaya District. The town is a neat and an ideal base to explore nearby native villages and the countryside. There is no land road connect the region to the province’s capital. It makes the town is expensive as everything of needs should be flown from Jayapura, where the most goods arrive from western Indonesia.
1. Wamena, Sinakma, Wesaput and surrounding In the morning drive from the resort to the big native market in front of the town. Here you can meet hundrets of Dani who sell their agrarian products every day. Traditional arts and crafts like stoneaxes, grassnets, arrows and bows are sold, too. Drive to the local market near the Wamena bridge. Again many interesting photo motivs. Visit to the water power station at the upper course of the beautiful Wamena-River. Here we have lunch break surrounded by wonderful nature. Drive on to the powerful Baliem-River near Wesaput, where a big suspension bridge has to be crossed due to the traditional Dani hamlets on the other side of the river that we want to visit. Before we drive back to the Resort you have the possibility to make some small purchases in Wamena. 65,– 44,– 2. Saltspring, Kurulu-Mummy, traditional Dani hamlet In the morning one hour drive to Jiwika in the central Baliem-Valley. Start of an one hour long walking-tour uphill (about 300 heightmeters) trough a beautiful mountain-rainforest to the traditional saltspring of a Dani clan. Native women in traditional costumes accompany us. They will demonstrate the old technics of the salt production. After the relegation we have lunch on the mountains base. After lunch we walk to the close Kurulu hamlet, where a very old mummy of the famous Dugum clan can be admired. Afterwards the women show us how the brought brine is processed. In the neighbourhood we see more picturesque hamlets. Everywhere the friendly natives offer their arts and crafts, weapons and curiosities. In the afternoon drive back to the Resort. 97,– 52,– 3. Traditional pig-cooking-party All day long traditional pig-festival in an old Dani-hamlet within the Resorts´ area or in the Jiwika region. Many dressed up clanmembers in traditional costumes celebrate the party with us. A pig-festival with the hot stones and the earth pits is probably the most interesting thing to see on a travel to Irian Jaya. Photograhs and movie makers will totally be satisfied to day. The unique of such an event can hardly be described by words. You have to see it with your own eyes. Lunch will be inside the hamlet. Of course there is also the opportunity for each guest to eat out of the traditional earth pit. The fresh pig meat and the sweet potatoes taste delicious. Back to the Resort in the late afternoon. 205,– 98,–
Drive to the Habema lake and Sekan Mountain
(Possibility of this tour is depending on the extreme weather conditions!) This tour should start early in the morning. Depending on the weather (rain!) the street through the high mountain rainforest can make a lot of problems. About three hours driving from the Resort up to the lake in a height of 3.200 meters (90 km). During the drive we pass many different vegetations of New Guinea. (…) The great jungle trees are overgrown with moss, braids and climbing plants. A very unique flora. The Habema lake lies in the middle of a wide swamp, surrounded by a big amount of different plants such as orchids. When the weather is good one has a great few on the peak of the Mount Trikora (4.750m). Lunch next to the lake. Walking tours are possible. When the sun is shining there is even the possibility to have a swim in the lake (beach). In the afternoon back to the Resort. 165,– 92,– 5. Trekking Sekan Mountain In the morning one hour long waking-tour directly to the top of the Sekan Mountain, the Resorts´ north border. Huge slabs build the peak region. Here one has a wonderful view over the southern Baliem-Valley and the Siepkosi-Valley with the Resort. Passing a beautiful vegetation with an innumerable number of flowers, orchids, carnivorous plants, mosses etc we walk back to the Resort where we have lunch in the restaurant. In the afternoon easy walking along the Resorts´ eastern border, passing lonely Dani places and cultivated farm land. Partly wonderful view into neighbourhood valleys. In the late afternoon we reach the Resort. 45,– 29,–
Trekking south Baliem-Gorge
6. Trekking south Baliem-Gorge In the morning we drive to the southern Baliem-Valley. The road ends in a village called Sogogmo, about 3 km before Kurima. Our walking tour along the powerful Baliem-River begins here. First of all a suspension bridge has to be crossed. After that the tour goes on through romantic Dani settlements with terraced fields and wild groves of sugar-cane . All the time we have a wonderful view over the river and the narrow valley. In the early afternoon we reach the church of Seinma where we have lunch surrounded be a beautiful landscape. Before we reach Kurima a suspension bridge has to be crossed again. And before we reach our bus some small side valleys have to be passed. Today one will find a lot of unique photo motives. In the late afternoon we reach the Resort. 94,– 51,–
Drive in the morning to the church of Siepkosi. Our easy walking tour into the Pugima-Valley starts here. On our way we reach a cave where the Yuan-River comes back to the surface. The wide and fertile Pugima-Valley is highly populated by Mountain-Papuas. In one of the farms we visit the valleys´ only pottery. Beautiful pottery is made here under very simple circumstances. Many objects have already found their way to the Resort´ inventory. In the early afternoon we reach the Baliem-River in the region of Wesaput, where we have lunch. Before we reach our bus a big suspension bridge has to be crossed. On our way back we pass Wamena where we have enough time for a short shopping .68,– 35,–
Drive to the Pass-Valley, Kotilola-Cave, Meagaima-Mummy
After breakfest we drive over Jiwika and Kurulu to the northern part of the Baliem-Valley. Few kilometers behind Kurulu we visit the famous Kotilola-Cave. The huge cave has partly broken down, a condition that allows a lush vegetation. Drive on northly to the market-place Uwosilomo where more photo motivs are waiting for us. From here we drive up the mountains to the Pass-Valley. Mountain forest along the way. Lunch break during our ride in a suitable surrounding. Small trips through the beautiful botany are possible. On our way back stop in Meagaima where a old chief-mummy can be seen in a small Dani-hamlet next to the Baliem-River (about 30 min walking). We reach the Resort in the late afternoon. 125,– 85,–
Drive to the Pyramid-Region in the north-western BaliemV.
Start in the morning. First of all we visit the big native market in Wamena. After that we dirve along the western side of the valley. Landscape in the west part is different compared to the east. the west is dominated by gras-savannas; often we pass high acacia woods near the river. All the time there is the possibility to make small photo stops. Small breaks in the bigger market places Elagaima and Kimbim. In the region of Pyramid a drive to the Magi-Mountain is planned (depends on weather- and streetcondition). Here we have a interesting view over the western Baliem-River. Lunch break in a suitable surrounding. The settlement of Pyramid in the northern Baliem-Valley was one of the first missionary stations in the early 50´s concerning the highlands of West-Papua. Later cosy drive back to the Resort. (180 kms altogether). 142,– 98,–
Voyage by boat on the Baliem-River
In the morning we drive to the north over Wamena until we reach the Assologaima region. With our bus and the big raft we can drive to the bank. Start of our voyage downstream until we reach the suspension bridge of Wesaput. The comfortable voyage passes beautiful fertile-woods and wild groves of sugar cane. All the time we see old, hidden Dani-hamlets in the shadows of big acacia-trees next to the river. We observe how Dani-women wash the sweet potaoes and sometimes we meet natives on their traditional one-tree-boats. In the afternoon we reach the suspension bridge of Wesaput where our car is waiting for us. We drive back to the Resort, after our raft ist savely tied on the cars´ roof . 205,– 108,–
Circuit along the Baliem-Gorge to the jungle in the south and over the Trikora- Mountains and the Resort (one our long charter flight)
After breakfast drive to the terminal of the missionary airline called AMA ( Allied Mission Aviation). Before the flight every person and luggage has to be weight. The whole circuit will take about one hour (depends on the weather). The flight along the wild Baliem-Gorge down to the huge jungle of the deepland is a phantastic experience your will never forget. On the return we flligh along the Trikora-Mountains and make a big loop over the Siepkosi-Valley where our Resort is located. For the flight a four-seated Cessna-plane or an eight-seated Pilatus-Porter is used. After our circuit we have lunch in the Igoo-hamlet which is very close (mouth of the Wamena-river and the Baliem-river). After lunch we drive back to the Resort.Cessna 4-seated 480,– 245,– Pilatus-Porter 8-seated 760,– 380,–
Born in the Netherlands on 23-04-1940 and passed away in Bali on 25-05-2015. Farelli was the pseudonym of a remarkable man who was infused with an obsessive desire to create things that did not yet exist. Born in the Netherlands in 1940 Dolf Versteegh left his home country in 1990 in order to start a new life on the Island of Bali. Without any formal education he reinvented himself as an architect, as a designer of furniture, as a sculptor and as a writer.
As a teenager Dolf spent only three years in High School but he kept studying history and the natural world all his life and during his last 25 years on Bali he revealed himself not only as versatile artist but also as a formidable scholar of biology.
Farelli was a prolific creator of web content and what he has left behind will remain standing as a great monument to his creative spirit, his ingenuity and his never-ending search for knowledge.