Baliem Valley Festival


Expedition: Wamena Highland Show, Korowai and Asmat

06.08.18 - 22.08.18


(17 days/ 16 nights) from/ to Denpasar, Bali

EUR 4.990,-- per person in 1/2 double room/tent

EUR   650,--  Single Supplement


Special tour to Papua including a visit to the colorful Baliem Cultural Festival in the Highlands of the Baliem Valley.

Three highlights in one tour! Special expedition to West Papua, including a visit to the colorful Baliem Cultural Festival in the highlands of Wamena. The Highland Show in the Baliem Valley has become internationally popular in recent years and more and more visitors are coming every year. For three days, groups from all the highland regions gather in Wamena to present their unique clan cultures and to compete in several ancient disciplines.

From Wamena we directly continue to the Korowai forest nomads. Until today, the Korowai live very traditionally in tree houses up to 40 meters height, hidden deep in the forest of West Papua. The Korowai are one of the most original tribes in Papua and visiting them is a very special experience. As they live deep inside the forest, daily trekking is needed. This is the physically most demanding part of our journey.

From the Korowai area it takes about one day by boat to reach Asmat. The people of Asmat are world famous for their craftsmanship and imposing men houses. We plan one big ceremony where a full village will be involved - a spectacle almost no visitor is able to see!

From the Asmat, we will fly out to Timika by charter plane.

No Papua fan should miss this expedition!






Planned itinerary:



Arrival in Denpasar/Bali (international flights can be booked on request). Transfer to our partner hotel "Ida". Rest of day no program. Later at night, transfer to airport.




In the early morning, around 01:45 am, flight with Garuda Indonesia to Jayapura/Papua. Arrival at 7.30 am. Our local agent will welcome you and assist with the check-in for the flight to Wamena. After arrival in Wamena you have lunch and visit the local market. Transfer to The Baliem Valley Resort, dinner at the Resort.




Transfer to the festival showground in Wosilimo/ Kurulu district. Big opening ceremony

Planned program (09.00 - 16.00):

1. Performance tribal war

2. Competitive games between children from Puradan

3. Competitive games between children from Sikoko

4. Attraction of the day: Feast with traditional cooking 

5. Performance of traditional dances

6. Competition in archery

7. Competition in javelin

8. Competition in manufacturing traditional craftsmanship

9. Competition in playing the traditional jaw harp

In the afternoon back to the Resort.





Transfer to the festival showground in Wosilimo/ Kurulu district.

Planned program (09.00 – 16.00):

1. Performance tribal war

2. Performance of traditional dances

3. Competition in manufacturing traditional craftsmanship

4. Competition pig race

5. Competition in javelin

6. Competition in archery

7. Attraction of the day: Feast with traditional cooking

8. Competition in playing the traditional jaw harp

9. Competitive games between children from Puradan

10. Competitive games between children from Sikoko

 In the afternoon back to the Resort.






In the morning, there is a transfer to airport. Then, you take the regular flight to Yahokimo (Dekai), located at the upper reaches of Brazza River (about a 35minute flight). After arrival, there is a visit to the local market and the opportunity for the last shopping for the tour. After lunch at a local restaurant, we drive to the harbor (about 28km/ ca. 1 hour). At the harbor our motor log boat including crew awaits us. Today we plan to go downstream for 2 hours until we reach the village of Patipi Dibawa. Here we will raise our first tent camp right down by the river. This short stage gives us an impression of what awaits us during the next few days: jungle landscapes in their most pristine form!







In the morning we have an early breakfast before we continue to go downstream in our longboat. Down the Brazza River, we pass amazing, untouched forest landscapes. Hornbills, flying foxes and other birds often startle when our boat appears. Around noon we will reach the mouth of the mighty Siret River. After our lunch break, we continue upstream on the Siret River to the Korowai settlement MABUL. Going upstream, the Siret River changes its face; the current gets stronger, sand banks appear, big tree trunks often block parts of the way, fewer and fewer local boats appear. Depending on the water level, our boat trip may take around 8 hours. Under the best circumstances, we will reach Mabul in the afternoon. Mabul is a small settlement of Korowai people who the Indonesian government persuaded to leave behind their nomadic lifestyle in the forest and settle down. We will use this settlement as the starting point of our trekking into the Korowai corridor. After we set up our tents and kitchen, we will start recruiting our porters for the next days. With a little bit of luck, we can set up our tents inside an empty stilt house.




After breakfast we meet our escort team. Our entire luggage and our food for the next days will be carried by our porters. We leave Mabul in Eastern direction. Only some 50 meters and we are standing in thick forest, which we will not leave for the next days. Today, we approximately need 5 hours until we reach our first destination: a fantastic jungle settlement with several tree houses, MANOPTEROPO. The traditionally dressed Korowai give us a friendly welcome. Tent camp next to the tree houses.




Today, we will follow several Korowai families into the sago forest. Here, we will experience a spectacle from another world. The forest nomads chop a huge sago palm with their stone axes, open the trunk, and start smashing the sago pulp. This sago pulp is further processed by women who wash it in washing installments that date back to ancient times – built only from leaves, branches and rotan. The pure sago is the staple food for all jungle dwellers. Photography enthusiasts will never forget this day! In the afternoon we are back at the tree houses, where our cook starts preparing our next real jungle dinner: maybe we will have papaya vegetables, sago larvas, and plantains! The kitchen will surprise us every day with new exotic dishes. 




We will spend a second day with the friendly forest nomads. Maybe today they will show us how to repair a tree house in extreme heights, or how to make and use bows and arrows – the most important weapons here. Or we will join the Korowai on a journey into the forest to seek food. They are true hunters and gatherers: in a few hours their nets are filled with spiders, larvas, locusts and other exotic animals. They even shoot flying foxes from the trees. And again, we can look forward to another exotic dinner!




Today, we say goodbye to our friendly hosts. Back in Mabul we still have time to take a look at the local craftsmanship and perhaps, to bring some of these artefacts back home with us. For example a fantastic bone knife, is a perfect souvenir for every visitor, and the truest proof that somebody has really been to the stone ages!




In the morning, we leave Mabul and follow the river downstream. After some 2 hours we again pass the mouth of Brazza River, but this time we continue along the Siret towards Asmat. Downstream the strong current makes our journey much quicker. Shortly after we pass Brazza, we reach Binam/Suator, the first bigger settlement with a small kiosk. Here we need to fill up our petrol, and it is also time for lunch in a small warung or locally operated food stall. After lunch, we continue to Wowi, a typical Citak settlement, right across the mouth of the powerful Wildemann River. Wowi is also the home of our boatman. We will build our tents next to his house and will use his kitchen place for our dinner. A small tour through the settlement gives a very good insight into the lives of the people here.




Today, we spend to whole day in our boat until we reach KAIMO, the first typical Asmat settlement. Our tents and kitchen will be set up inside the traditional men’s house (Jeu). Spending the night in this impressive house with its traditional and iconic ancestor poles and fireplaces is a unique experience in and of itself.





We continue by boat until we reach AMBOREB, a larger Asmat settlement with three mighty men’s houses and a settlement known for its Asmat craftsmanship. After our arrival the residents bring all of their art treasures to the men’s house, opening an ad-hoc bazaar. Visitors often have a good chance to find interesting objects for low prices that cannot be found in the official stores in bigger towns. After lunch in Amboreb we continue to WARSE (about 4 hours). Here, we will set up our tents in one of the three big men’s houses of the village. There should be time for a short walk to the other men’s houses where further craftsmanship can be found.




In the morning we go through a narrow river channel, right through the mangrove forest. This is a spectacular journey, as our boat goes past the thick jungle. Around 10am we will reach Agats, the “capital city” of Asmat. Here we will stay in Hotel Anggrek, a small, clean, and quiet hotel. As all the other buildings in Agats, also Hotel Anggrek is built on wooden stilts. In the afternoon we will visit the very interesting Asmat museum, which collected a large amount of unique Asmat artifacts. The collection gives a very good overview on the different Asmat cultures and styles of craftsmanship. Agats is a town without cars and during our short tour through the center; we will be surprised how many people are nonetheless living here.




In the early morning we leave Agats Harbor for a quick boat ride to the airfield of Ewer. Here, our flight charter awaits us. The type of aircraft will most likely be a Cessna Caravan. Flight time to Timika is approximately 45 minutes. If no charter plane is available, we go to Timika by speedboat (6 hours). After arrival in Timika, we provide the direct transfer to our Hotel Komoro Tame. Dinner will be served in the hotel.




In the morning, farewell from our crew from Wamena. They will have to fly back via Jayapura to Wamena on the same day. We provide transfer to Timika airport for the flight to Bali. Transfer to Hotel Ida. Rest of day no program.




Transfer to airport for your next destination.



Level of difficulty***


Minimum participants: 6 persons (maximum 14 persons)


Important notice:
Due to not foreseeable schedule variances during the BALIEM CUTURE FESTIVAL (weather etc.) the itinerary might change on short notice. However, all program points will remain valid.




Price inclusions:  
- Inner-Indonesian flights with Garuda Indonesia (Denpasar - Jayapura / Timika - Denpasar)  
- Flights in Papua with Trigana Air (Jayapura - Wamena - Dekai)  
- Charter flight for the whole group (Ewer - Timika) or speedboat  
- Flights for the crew (Timika - Jayapura - Wamena)  
- International tour guide (German and English speaking)  
- Crew from Wamena (cook etc.)  
- Motor long boat including crew for the whole group  
- Meals full board  
- Program as itinerary  
- Travel permit (Surat Jalan)  
- Equipment (tents, cooking, etc. / NO sleeping bag/mattress)  
- Transfers  
- 2x Overnights Hotel Ida, Kuta/Bali (incl breakfast)  
- 3x Overnights THE BALIEM VALLEY RESORT (full board)  
- 1x Overnight Hotel Anggrek, Agats  
- 1x Overnight Hotel Komoro Tame, Timika  
Not included:  
- International flight (can be booked on request)  
- All airport taxes  
- Sleeping bags, sleeping mattress for nights in tent  
- Meals on Bali   
- Beverages in hotels + restaurants  
- Private expenses during the tour   
Important notice:  
- Passport has to be valid minimum 6 months at date of entry Indonesia  
- Please check with your embassy if you need a visa for Indonesia and about the procedure  
- When entering Papua, every visitor has to bring a passport copy and two passport pictures for the travel permit  
- A checklist on what equipment to bring will be send after booking confirmation.  


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Tel.: +49 6051-61388
Fax: +49 6051-69115

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