As a result of the remarkable biogeography of the region, our Highlights of the Eastern Indonesian archipelago provides very little overlap in bird species to our Highlights of Western Indonesia, with a phenomenal number of special and endemic birds. We begin by exploring the prime highland site of Lore Lindu National Park on the island of Sulawesi. Boasting over 70 endemic species, the exceptional range of highly desirable birds we will seek include the endemic Hylocitrea, now placed in its own monotypic family, the indescribable Purple-bearded Bee-eater, bizarre Geomalia, Fiery-browed Starling, Green-backed Kingfisher (one of many endemic kingfishers), Purple-winged Roller, Satanic Nightjar and the impressive Knobbed Hornbill.
We then wing our way to the nearby island of Halmahera, where we visit a lekking site for the highly sought-after Standardwing, surely one of the most bizarre birds-of-paradise! Here we also seek a mindboggling number of Mollucan endemics including the spectacular Ivory-breasted Pitta and Moluccan Owlet-nightjar. Moving further eastwards we again enter a completely new biological zone as we arrive in Sorong, on the extreme western tip of New Guinea. Here we bird the famous Vogelkop, a veritable feast of incredible highlights may include up to seven birds-of-paradise including Magnificent, King, Lesser and Twelve-wired as well as numerous pigeons (Wompoo, Superb and Pink-spotted Fruit Doves to name a few), parrots (including the localized Black Lory) and kingfishers (Red-breasted Paradise being one of the prime targets.) We conclude our tour on the Raja Ampat Island of Waigeo, famed for the best snorkeling in the world! Here our targets in this tropical island paradise include Red Bird-of-paradise, the incredible Western Crowned Pigeon, Palm Cockatoo, Lowland Peltops and much besides. And as a way of celebrating the finale of this remarkable tour we will visit the display ground of quite possibly the most beautiful bird on Earth – Wilson’s Bird-of-paradise!
Wilson’s, King & Red Birds-of-paradise, Glossy-mantled Manucode, Standardwing, Paradise-crow, Papuan Dwarf, Blue-and-white, Lilac, Yellow-billed, Green-backed, Hook-billed, Beach & Blue-black Kingfishers, Red-breasted Paradise & Common Paradise Kingfishers, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra, Scarlet‐breasted, Blue‐capped, Grey‐headed, Wompoo, Superb, Pink-spotted, Orange-fronted, Beautiful, Dwarf & Orange-bellied Fruit Doves, White‐bellied, Purple-tailed, Pinon’s, Zoe’s & Grey-headed Imperial Pigeons, Western Crowned Pigeon, Yellow-capped Pygmy Parrot, Moluccan & Great Hanging Parrots, Orange-breasted & Large Fig Parrots, Palm & White Cockatoos, Emperor Fairywren, Black Berrypecker, Pygmy Longbill, Southern Variable, Raja Ampat & Rusty Pitohuis, Lowland Peltops, Golden & Pale-blue Monarchs, Sulawesi & White-necked Mynas, Sulawesi Serpent Eagle, Sulawesi Hawk-Eagle, Barred Honey Buzzard, Yellow-sided, Crimson-crowned, Olive-crowned & Halmahera Flowerpeckers, Fiery-browed, Moluccan & Grosbeak Starlings, Ivory-backed Woodswallow, Golden-mantled Racket-tail, Malia, Black-billed Koel, Black Lory, Sulawesi Myzomela, Lemon‐bellied, Mountain, Streak-headed, Cream-throated & Black-crowned White‐eyes, Sulawesi Blue, Blue-fronted Blue & Turquoise Flycatchers, Sulawesi Cicadabird, Purple-winged Roller, Azure Dollarbird, Cinnabar, Papuan & Speckled Boobooks, Eastern Grass Owl, Great Eared & Satanic Nightjars, Wallace's & Moluccan Owlet-nightjars, Great Shortwing (Heinrichia), Pygmy, Halmahera, Golden & Cerulean Cuckooshrikes, Sulphur-vented, Island & Maroon-backed Whistlers, Rusty-bellied & Arafura Fantails, Citrine Canary-flycatcher, Dark-eared & White-eared Myza, Purple-bearded Bee-eater, Chestnut-backed (Sulawesi) Bush Warbler, Geomalia, Citrine, Red-flanked & Ornate Lorikeets, Hylocitrea, Sulawesi Thrush, Ivory-breasted, Papuan & North Molucccan Pittas, Eclectus & Great‐billed Parrots, Dusky Friarbird, Goliath Coucal, Long‐billed & Brown-headed Crows, Moustached Treeswift, Gurney’s Eagle, Yellow‐billed Malkoha, Sulawesi Pygmy & Ashy Woodpeckers, Spot-tailed & Dwarf Sparrowhawks
montane and lowland forests, flooded rice paddies & wetlands, islands, beaches, mangroves
mostly hot to humid with cooler nights and mornings in the highlands
Max Group Size
8 with 1 Rockjumper leader and 1 local leader
Tour Pace & Walking
moderate pace with long days. Some longer hikes, especially at Lore Lindu on Sulawesi. Optional early starts and late finishes to days due to night-birding options.
variable between rustic and excellent
Ease of Birding
moderate to challenging at times
Number of Species Expected
good to excellent
This was an adventure to be sure. The places we traveled were indeed remote and with the exception of larger cities like Ambon & Sorong inhabited by few people. This was my first trip to Indonesia and was an adventure to even get to Ambon. However, the Indonesian people must be the kindest most helpful people in the world. The boat was lovely and this amazing trip had so many interworking pieces -- moving from the Indo Seamore to the shore for the next adventure, disembarking at various kinds of dock, piers, rocks, etc, meeting up with our vehicles for rides up into the hills -- everything worked like clockwork. We saw so many fabulous birds thanks to our super guides, David Hoddinott and Lev Frid. The two guides were so helpful and informative; I would gladly travel with either of them or both in the future. However, I have to say that this trip was just about at the limit of my ability. I would never have seen the birds I did without the help of David & Lev and our various local guides and drivers. I think only Rockjumper could have pulled this tour off.
Expert guiding by Keith and Glen Valentine, aided by fabulous local talent, ensured we saw the maximum number of endemics and other birds and mammals. Perhaps more importantly, these two brothers enjoyed their time together and provided a warm, friendly and caring environment in which we all had a good time with lots of laughs, and looked out for each other to ensure everyone got on the birds and did not falter on a tough hike or challenging car ride.
Glen and Paul did a fantastic job on this tour. Glen is an excellent birder, guide and a wonderful personality. This is the second trip I have done with Glen and hope to join many more in the future.
David and Lev are exception leaders and worked very hard to find the birds and get everyone onto them. A remarkable trip.
My thanks to Keith and Glen Valentine for taking so much time in getting me on the birds. They are so patient and really nice.