An adventurous trip, the dream of all the butterfly photographers, becoming true. Fit for everyone and at an affordable price: 15 days in the 3 most famous and different butterfly locations of West Papua, with my experience and the help of the best guides, to find massive Ornithoptera and incredibly coloured Delias, elusive Taenaris and flying jewels Hypochrysops.
A small group, simple but comfortable hotels (mostly with AC and WIFI), expert local guides, will allow us to enjoy one of the last butterfly heavens in all its beauty, with comfort and safety.
DAY 1 Arrive at Makassar Airport (Sulawesi Indonesia) and check in at the simple but modern and clean Ibis Budget Makassar Airport for rest and refresh. 1.40am flight to Jayapura, West Papua (3.20’ flight)
DAY 2 6.05am arrive at Jayapura Airport and connecting flight to Wamena at 07.45am (1 hour flight). Quick check in at Putri Dani Hotel and quick on the field. Afternoon back to the hotel, dinner in town.
DAY 3 7.00am breakfast and visit to Pass Valley, about 40 km from Wamena and a wonderful place for Delias. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
DAY 4 7.00am breakfast and visit to few locations around Wamena, looking again for Delias and other species. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
DAY 5 7.00am breakfast and again visit to Pass Valley, about 40 km from Wamena. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
LANDSCAPE AT BALIEM VALLEY (pic thanks to Øystein Lund Andersen) DELIAS FROM PASS VALLEY (Pic thanks to Hiro Takenouchi)
DAY 6 6.15am flight to Jayapura and connection to Manokwari at 9.45am. Arrive to Manokwari in 1.15 hour. Some personal item shopping in town and drive to Arfak mountains (1 hour good road, 1.30 hour dirt climbing road). Stop on the way to shot some butterfly at about 1.500 mt, arrive at our guest hous in the hearth of the rainforest at 5pm. Check in, dinner, possible moth trap activity.
Some species from Fakfak lowland forests https://flic.kr/s/aHsmodXRFf
DAY 7 Early wake up, breakfast and quick start to hunt for the many Ornitopthera in the beautiful flower garden of the place. We’ll spend all the day here, easy and fruitful. Lunch and dinner at the guest house. Possible night moth trap activity.
DAY 8 Some activity at the guest house, explorations along the road, the stream crossings and the birdwatching trail, home of some species of Birds of Paradise. Lunch and dinner at the guest house. Possible night moth trap.
DAY 9 Exploration deep along the main Arfak mountain road, visiting villages and river beds. We’ll try to reach, if weather and road conditions allow, the Danau Anggi area. Dinner at the guest house. Possible night moth trap.
DAY 10 Early morning check out, 3 hour transfer and back to lowland forest South of Manokwari, to hunt some good Papilionidae and Nymphalidae species. Afternoon drive back to Manokwari, check in at the Hotel Triton.
DAY 11 8.00am breakfast at the hotel and to the airport for the 11.30am flight to Fakfak (1 hour). Check in at the hotel. Rest. Dinner in town.
DAY 12 7am breakfast in town and transfer to lowland forest (45’/1 hour). Lunch on the field. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
Some species from Fakfak lowland forests https://flic.kr/s/aHsmodXRFf
DAY 13 7am breakfast in town and transfer to lowland forest, different location (45’/1 hour). Lunch on the field. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
BUTTERFLYING IN FAKFAK LOWLAND HILLS
DAY 14 7am breakfast in town and transfer to national park forest (45’). Lunch on the field. Afternoon back to the hotel. Dinner in town.
FAKAFAK TOWN KOKAS HOTEL SIMPLE BUT WITH WIFI AND AC
DAY 15 6.15am flight Fakfak-Sorong-Makassar. Arrive in Makassar at 9.20am.
West Papua butterfly tour – Oct 2019
INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS: Please note that we will fly to our meeting point in Makassar (Ujung Pandang).
DOMESTIC FLIGHTS: Flights from Jayapura to Wamena, Wamena to Jayapura, and Jayapura to Manokwari are included in the tour cost:
1st October: depart Jayapura 10:30, arrive Wamena 10:55
9th October: depart Wamena 06:15, arrive Jayapura 07:25
9th October: depart Jayapura 11:05, arrive Manokwari 12:25
TOUR COST: US$ XXXX per person, based on a group of 3, max 4 person plus me. Please note that if any of the participants decides to cancel their place on the tour, the cost to the remaining participants will increase accordingly. The tour cost INCLUDES domestic flights, 4×4 vehicle, driver, fuel, accommodation as stated, all meals, English-speaking butterfly guide, entrance fees.
ADDITIONAL EXPENSES: The tour cost EXCLUDES travel insurance, tourist visas, excursions not listed in the itinerary, camera & video fees, laundry, drinks, personal expenses, medical expenses, tips and gratuities.
ACCOMMODATION: At Wamena, Manokwari, Fakfak accommodation will be in 2/3 stars hotels. In the Arfak mountains accommodation will be in a basic guest house where room-sharing could be necessary. This is a remote area where accommodation will be basic, with few amenities, so be prepared for some discomfort. Single rooms will be provided in the other locations.
TRAVEL: Roads will be rough once we get up into the mountains, so be prepared for some discomfort. Walking should only be for fairly short distances, as the mud-puddling areas will be near bridges and fords. Forest trails will consist of infrequently used dirt tracks and walking trails that run between the various villages. Some tribes in Indonesia can be hostile, so do not wander away from the group without first consulting the local guide.
WEATHER: West Papua has a tropical wet climate. It is wet all year, but has the least rain between late August and early November. This tour is timed to coincide with a relatively dry period when butterflies are most likely to be encountered in fresh condition, and when many species should be found mud-puddling around the edges of shallow streams. Due to climate change, weather patterns and butterfly flight periods are becoming increasingly unpredictable so sightings of any particular species cannot be guaranteed.
COLLECTING: completely forbidden collect and export butterflies during this tour.
PHOTOGRAPHY: we will see many butterflies, sometimes close but often far on the canopy or feeding on flowers. My personal suggestion is to have not only a macro lens, (150/180mm) but also a long and sharp telephoto lens of at least 300mm.Important also to have enough batteries both for your camera and your flash, especially in Arfak electricity is available just for few hours after sunset.
ITINERARY: the itinerary could be changed according to weather conditions, delays in the flights or other inportant reasons.
CAR: Usually Toyota Hilux truck 4×4 for Arfak and Wamena. Normal large car for Fakfak.
OUTLINE ITINERARY: Please note that the present is only intended as a guide. The actual itinerary may be changed if necessary due local conditions.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: Your passport must be valid for a period of 6 months beyond the expected exit date. It is your responsibility to ensure that you obtain any necessary tourist visa prior to departure.
TRAVEL INSURANCE: This is compulsory and must include full medical and emergency repatriation cover.
LIABILITY: By joining this tour you accept that you travel entirely at your own risk and that you absolve ThaiButterflies.com from and against any and all liability financial or otherwise resulting from accident, injury, illness, theft, or from flight cancellations/delays or failure by the ground agent or local guide to provide requested services.
HEALTH/FITNESS: It is your responsibility to ensure that you are medically and mentally fit to participate in a tropical tour where conditions will be sometime basic and at times hard.
MENTAL APPROACH: Infrastructure is sometimes poor in this remote region, accommodation will be basic, and road and weather conditions may at times be unpleasant. It is therefore vital for your own enjoyment, and that of other participants, that you approach this trip with a very positive mental attitude and are willing to accept some discomfort.
A deposit of US$ XXXX must be transferred at the moment of the booking.
The balance payment of US$XXXX per person, must reach my bank account by 30th June at the very latest.