Merauke, island of New Guinea (Indonesia)

What to See in New Guinea Island (Indonesia)

Sorong, New Guinea island (Indonesia)

According to EHUACOM, Sorong is a port city in the very west of the island of New Guinea, it was built when oil fields were discovered nearby. The city is not very developed in terms of tourism, mainly oil industry workers and Japanese traders live here.

2 km from Sorong is Cape Cassowary, which was named so because of the cassowary trees growing here. This place is known among vacationers for its white sand beach.

From Sorong you can get to Wai Island. In coastal waters at a depth of 24 meters lies a sunken American bomber from the Second World War. This place is perfect for night diving. Airplane overgrown with soft corals and constantly patrolled by stingrays, you can also see octopuses, stone fish, eels, carpet sharks.

Timika, island of New Guinea (Indonesia)

Timika is located off the southern coast of New Guinea. This is a small city that was built for the workers of the copper mine that was opened here. Timika has an airport. From here, hikers and rock climbers go to Mount Punkak Jaya.

Mount Punkak Jaya is located 100 km north of the city. This is the highest point of New Guinea, its height is 4884 m, in addition, it is the highest island peak on earth. The mountain is covered with glaciers and surrounded by dense forests, so the routes here are not for beginners. In order to climb the mountain or walk along one of the routes, you must obtain permission for this. The routes here are considered to be some of the most exciting trekking routes in New Guinea.

The journey starts from Timika. From here, the climbers will be taken by helicopter to the village of Singha (3900 m), from where the ascent begins. The trekking route starts at an altitude of 2000 m from tropical rainforests, then you get to the Kembalo Plateau, which is at an altitude of 3500 m. Large ferns grow here, they reach a height of 4 meters and create a feeling as if you are in Jurassic Park. The next region is the Snowy Peaks, through these mountains there is a single passage called the New Zealand Way, which will lead you to the Merenthal Valley, over which Punkak Jaya rises. Here, at an altitude of 4,200 m, there is a climbing base.

Wamena, island of New Guinea (Indonesia)

Wamena is located in the central mountainous part of the island of New Guinea. The airport is located here, where tourists from other cities of Indonesia arrive in order to travel through the nearby Baliem Valley.

The Baliem valley is located at an altitude of 1550 m above sea level, its length is 72 km, and its width varies from 16 to 32 km. The starting point for exploring the valley is the village of Sogokmo. While traveling you can get acquainted with the local tribes – Dani, Yali and Lani. They are interesting because they still live in the conditions of the “Stone Age”. The Baliem valley is isolated from the rest of the world by high mountains (about 3000 m), as well as impenetrable swamps, so civilization did not affect these places. Local women wear skirts made of grass and go bare-chested, men are practically undressed, they have only a “koteka” covering their male “dignity”, their bodies are painted with ornaments. About 250,000 representatives of these tribes live in the valley. Of the local villages, the most interesting is the village of Jivika, where the mummy of one of the leaders, whose age is 250 years old, is kept. Higher in the mountains there are salt springs, where you can see how local women extract salt in the ancient way.

Every year in August or September, a festival takes place in this region. On it, representatives of the tribes living in the Baliem valley bring their tools, handicrafts and products of their craftsmen. This is the best way to get to know the culture of the region and also to see how these tribes differ.

Merauke, island of New Guinea (Indonesia)

Merauke is located on the south coast of New Guinea. This clean little town is the starting point for trips to the nearby Wasur National Park and the Asmat Region, one of the few truly unexplored areas in the world.

Vasur National Park covers an area of 4260 sq. km. and adjoins the border with Papua New Guinea. The park has swamps, traditional villages. It is home to many bird species, 74 of which are endemic. Of the animals, 27 species are also endemic but difficult to see. The best time to visit the park is during the dry season from July to December, while during the wet season you can often only reach a couple of villages.

170 km north of Merauke there are fairly accessible areas near the villages of Muting and Sunai Bian, which can be an alternative to the Baliem valley, as less explored. Tropical forests, traditional villages and animal life of this area will not leave you indifferent. Foreigners are not allowed to visit these areas on their own, but tours can be easily arranged at Merauke.

The Asmat region is an array of unfathomable dimensions with mangrove forests and rivers, with high tides. This region is one of the few in the world that is still truly unexplored. The locals are famous for woodcarving and headhunting in the past. They lead a semi-nomadic lifestyle that is entirely dictated by the rivers. All transportation is carried out along them, and rivers are also the main source of food. Travel to this region is organized by travel agencies in Merauk and Jayapura, but it requires serious preparation and is quite expensive.

Merauke, island of New Guinea (Indonesia)