New Guinea is one of the world’s largest tropical islands, surpassed in size only by Greenland, and is blessed with an incredible avifauna, including some of the planet’s most outlandish birds. The Indonesian half of the island, the province of West Papua (Irian Jaya), is a destination few birders have visited, with large expanses of pristine habitat, from towering snow-capped peaks to huge tracts of humid lowland forest. Of particular importance to birders are several distinct mountain ranges, some of them quite isolated. This isolation has led to the evolution of a diverse and unusually interesting avifauna with numerous endemics, a significant number of which being restricted to West Papua and its offshore islands; our pioneering tour is designed to see as many of these restricted-range and endemic species as possible.
The attraction of West Papua for many is the fact that it remains relatively under-developed and primitive, and affords the intrepid birder a glance into cultures from a bygone era, having barely emerged beyond the stone-age! This does mean however that this tour is not for the faint-hearted and we will be camping in rustic conditions in remote areas during much of the tour. This is a small price to pay for the opportunity to see some of the most spectacular and mythical birds on the planet, including Collared Brushturkey (Brown-collared Talegalla), Snow Mountain Quail, Papuan Eagle, Claret-breasted Fruit Dove, Victoria and Western Crowned Pigeon, Spice Imperial Pigeon, Palm Cockatoo, Pesquet’s Parrot, Salvadori’s Fig Parrot, Yellow-capped Pygmy Parrot, Modest Tiger Parrot, Black Lory, New Guinea Woodcock, Archbold’s Nightjar, Barred and Mountain Owlet-Nightjars, Crested and Tit Berrypeckers, Greater Ground Robin, Smoky and Green-backed Robins, Papuan Logrunner, Vogelkop Scrubwren, Spotted and Blue Jewel-Babbler, Arfak Honeyeater, Belford’s, Short-bearded and Vogelkop Melidectes, Lorentz’s Whistler, Pale-billed, Black-billed, Black and Brown Sicklebills, King-of-Saxony, Red, Wilson’s, Magnificent and Twelve-wired Bird-of-paradise, Loria’s and Crested Satinbirds, Splendid and Arfak Astrapias, Western Parotia, Long-tailed Paradigalla, Vogelkop and MacGregor’s Bowerbirds and Western Alpine Mannikin (Snow Mountain Munia) to name but a few!
To see this suite of incredible birds you will journey with us to the spectacular Arfak Mountains; the northern lowlands bordering the Cyclops Mountains, the mysterious Snow Mountains including the upper Ibele Valley and finally the island of Biak, brimming with endemics. For those dedicated birders with a sense of adventure and a desire to see birds that few birders have ever seen, this remains one of the most incredible destinations on the planet. This strange land, is sure to expose you to the avian wonders of remote West Papua, and we greatly look forward to having you aboard what is sure to be an incredible adventure!
Collared Brushturkey (Brown-collared Talegalla), Snow Mountain Quail, Papuan Eagle, Claret-breasted Fruit Dove, Victoria & Western Crowned Pigeons, Spice Imperial Pigeon, Palm Cockatoo, Pesquet’s Parrot, Salvadori’s Fig Parrot, Yellow-capped Pygmy Parrot, Modest Tiger Parrot, Black Lory, New Guinea Woodcock, Archbold’s Nightjar, Barred & Mountain Owlet-Nightjars, Crested and Tit Berrypeckers, Greater Ground Robin, Smoky and Green-backed Robins, Papuan Logrunner, Vogelkop Scrubwren, Spotted & Blue Jewel-Babblers, Arfak Honeyeater, Belford’s, Short-bearded & Vogelkop Melidectes, Lorentz’s Whistler, Pale-billed, Black-billed, Black & Brown Sicklebills, King-of-Saxony, Red, Wilson’s, Magnificent & Twelve-wired Bird-of-paradise, Loria’s & Crested Satinbirds, Splendid & Arfak Astrapias, Western Parotia, Long-tailed Paradigalla, Vogelkop & MacGregor’s Bowerbirds, Western Alpine Mannikin (Snow Mountain Munia)
lowland and montane rainforest, savanna, grasslands, wetlands
weather is unpredictable and somewhat dependent on local topography. While mostly dry and sunny, it can be rather hot and humid in the lowlands. At higher elevations, temperatures are pleasant during the day, but can get very cool at night.
This tour is designed to be an intensive, fast paced birding experience. At times we will experience physical difficulty when walking up very steep, slippery trails or on bumpy drives over poor road conditions. This tour is not suitable for people with physical or medical limitations; nor is this tour suitable for the casual birder.
What our clients say about tours to Indonesia
One of the best tours I’ve had so far with Rockjumper.
I have been on birding trips for many years, but this is the first time with Rockjumper. The trip was easily the best birding trip I have ever been on. In particular, both David and Glen made life so easy and their birding knowledge was remarkable. Other members of the group were very easy to…
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.
David Erterius was a really fantastic guide, like all the Rockjumper guides have been. He certainly maintained the high bar set by all my Rockjumper guides. He was organised and friendly and was onto birds in near-mythical speed. I didn’t have any problems on the tour, but if I did, I would be confident that he…
As expected, I had a fabulous time on the Sulawesi and Halmahera trip. It was everything I wanted – amazing birds, fantastic guide, great tour participants, highly organised logistics and wonderful forests. I particularly appreciated that for one morning the group was split into two so some participants had the chance to head part-way back…
David was notable in his high level of enthusiasm, how careful he is with identifications and how quick he is at spotting things. Our group was quite mixed in age and skills, and David was patient with members whose eyesight was not so good, and quick to get a spotting scope onto even difficult forest birds. I’d happily travel elsewhere with him and is every bit of what I could hope for in a guide. The overall group felt well run and there was always a plan B if one was needed. David’s knowledge and sense of humor also made him fun to travel with.
Rich Lindie is a very skilled and enthusiastic guide, and has an outstanding talent for locating birds (during the day and in the dark!). He is also an enjoyable person to be on tour with, and is never short of conversation.
The ultimate birding trip: stunning destinations, endemics galore, cruising through the Raja Ampats and Maluku on a lovely wooden boat with wonderful crew and great food, gorgeous sunsets, awesome snorkelling and two of the best Rockjumper guides – Keith and Glen Valentine. And to top it off, Wilson’s Bird-of-Paradise!!!!!!!!!
This was a fabulous tour! Living on the Seahorse and going ashore each day to explore, in many cases, remote and under-birded locations was a truly exciting and wonderful experience. In addition, it was a fabulous and memorable experience to have Glen and Keith Valentine as leaders. They teamed seamlessly and ensured that everyone had…
Glen Valentine and Adam Walleyn were superb guides — honestly, they saw birds before they appeared! The local guides were outstanding and the logistics and accommodations were exceptional given our locations.
David Ertrius is above all patient, with the birds, with the participants and the local guides. He very modestly shares his incredible knowledge of the birds.
Glen and Keith Valentine worked seamlessly together to make this one of the best Rockjumper trips! The logistics went well, local guides were great, and the boat was quite comfortable and offered good food and variety. Best of all, the birds were plentiful and everyone got lifers galore. The bros Valentine did everything possible to…
David Erterius is an excellent birder and a great tour leader. Unfailing enthusiasm while birding, and a great manner during non-birding time. The combination of the birders and the guides made this probably the most enjoyable trip I have been on.