Jul 122011

Papuan tribesmen perform with traditional drums known as ‘tibas’ during the Lake Sentani festival in Indonesia’s eastern Papua province. AFP Photo/Romeo Gacad

For decades, the only foreign visitors to venture into Papua were gold-diggers, anthropologists, missionaries and soldiers fighting imperial wars.

But the vast, western half of New Guinea island is slowly opening its doors to tourists as a “hidden paradise,” a land of ancient tribal cultures, glittering reefs, soaring glaciers and teeming wildlife.

Recreational travelers number a few thousand a year at most: people like Sarah Gabel, a 29-year-old American who says she is “captivated by people who live in harmony with nature.” Continue reading »

Jul 062011

Indonesia, owns incredible natural resources. Not surprisingly, this country is also known as the ’emerald of the equator’.

Call it, Komodo National Park, which is currently one of 28 nominations of 7 Wonders of Nature.

However, it turns out, in addition to the Komodo National Park, there are many beautiful and wonderful regions in Indonesia.

Ary Suhandi, Director of Indecon, a nonprofit organization that focuses on developing ecotourism destinations in Indonesia points out that in addition to the Komodo National Park, Indonesia actually has many places that also have the wonders of nature.  Continue reading »

Apr 282011

Jakarta (ANTARA News) – Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan said his ministry remains committed to keeping Papua`s primary forest regions intact and not letting them be exploited by forest concession holders.

The minister made the statement in a media dialogue on forestry policies held by ANTARA News Agency here on Tuesday.

He said there had been requests for opening the forest regions in Papua for non-forestry activities but the government was resolved to keep intact the 7.3 million hectares of primary forests in the province.  Continue reading »

Apr 252011

Baliem Valley by tripmakerbd.com

Birds of paradise sang our praises as my bride and I scrambled down an overgrown cliff at the southern end of Baliem Valley in Irian Jaya, using branches as handrails in a moment of our honeymoon that felt less romantic than heart-stoppingly uncertain. Suddenly there was nothing to hold on to except a sheer rock face. The path had narrowed into a ledge that accommodated only one foot at a time and took a sharp turn around the far side of the rock, apparently straight over the edge. About 240 m below us was the tiny missionary village of Tangma, nestled between a pristine river gorge and a grassy airstrip where a Cessna waited to return us to our hotel 30 km away.   Continue reading »