West-Papua is home to one of the most enigmatic families of birds in the whole world: the Bird-of-paradise! At this seldom visited site you'll get the opportunity to see around 20 different species of Bird-of-paradise in an incredible setting. To people that like adventure and, just like Sir David Attenborough, have always wanted to be standing in between dancing Bird-of-paradise, this is the ultimate dream destination.
Nature trip for the more experienced adventurers
Our West-Papua tour concentrates on the Birds-of-paradise and other exclusive species and families that live on the island. As one of the largest islands in the world, a combination of isolation and varied landscapes created a very rich ecological diversity with some of the most beautiful bird species on our planet. Since the island is located quite some distance from the inhabited world, West-Papua is one of the most exciting destinations on the planet!
On the schedule: Birds of Paradise, wildlife and so much more
Our adventure starts in Nimbokrang where we get to see a nice selection of Bird-of-paradise, restricted to lowland, and other species. We're thinking about local specialties like the Pale-billed Sicklebill, Twelve-wired and Lesser Bird-of-paradise or the rarely seen Blue-black Kingfisher. And maybe we'll catch up with a lingering Northern Cassowary, a Shovel-billed Kingfisher, Magnificent Riflebird or the Victoria Crowned Pigeon. On top of all that it is the place for 2 of the most beautiful bird species on our planet: the King Bird-of-paradise and Blue Jewell-babbler.
From here we travel west to the Bird’s Head Peninsula, to the Arfak Mountains, in West Papua, Indonesia. We fly to the tiny city of Manokwari and continue on to the small village of Sioubri in 4x4 pick-up trucks. We visit the lek territories of the Western Parotia and Magnificent Bird-of-paradise and stand a chance of seeing four more paradise birds: Arfak Astrapia, Long-tailed Paradigalla (rediscovered in 1989!), Buff-tailed and Black Sicklebills. Also on our list: different Owlet-nightjars (a strange cross between owls and nightjars), Papua Eagle (from the family of Harpy Eagles), the endemic White-striped Forest-rail and lots, lots more...
From here we travel to Sorong where we catch the boat to go to the Raja Ampat islands where we will visit the lekking territories of the Wilson's Bird-of-paradise, one of the most bizarre and rare birds of the trip. We will also visit the lekking arena of the Red Bird-of-paradise and we whilst there we might just spot the Western Crowned Pigeon. A great way to end the trip!
Experienced travel guides
Because historically there were no large mammals on the island, hunting birds (often with bow and arrow) was the only source of protein for the Papuan inhabitants. Hence the reason why many birds are very shy, proving a great challenge for ornithologists. That is why we send along two guides during this trip.
- Our own experienced guide. He looks after the good communication between the participants and the team and helps you in the field, guaranteeing the best observations.
- A local guide, who provides that little bit extra: a better contact with the local population, help in case of any unforeseen circumstances and of course tons of experience, will make this trip an unsurpassed success!
We will keep you posted
30 Jun 2018
Accommodation and transport
Nearly every night’s accommodation is of standard to basic quality. During the trip most of the accommodation will take place in guest houses and in the bigger cities we will stay in hotels of good quality. Transport is varied (minibus, ferry, 4x4, interior flights, etc.) Larger suitcases will be carried by porters, day rucksacks need to be carried yourself. International flights are included from Belgium or Netherlands. If you prefer to fly from any other airport, we can propose a flight schedule, and take into account the price difference. Do contact us for more information.
Hiking and nature study
Hiking in the low-country destination will be easy to moderate. A good condition and experience in bird watching abroad are a bonus!
Climate and clothing
Papua is a destination with lots of tropical rainforest. You need to be prepared for rainy conditions (wellington boots, umbrella, poncho, etc.) During the hike in the Arfak Mountains we also ascend to greater heights where you will also need warmer clothing. It can also be stifling hot. Participants must be prepared for varied weather conditions.
Although many birds are shy and the weather and lighting conditions are poor, sporadically the circumstances will allow photographing spectacular species. Among others from observation huts for Birds-of-paradise or Bowerbirds, good opportunities will arise. Those who want to photograph beautiful landscapes or funny insects will have plenty of opportunities to do so.