indonesia travel magazine

Baliem Valley Wamena, Papua

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Baliem Valley is a valley in the mountains Jayawijaya. Baliem valley at an altitude of 1600 meters above sea level surrounded by mountains with beautiful scenery and unspoiled. Temperatures can reach 10-15 degrees Celsius at night.

This valley is also known as grand Baliem valley is home to the Dani Wosilimo located in the village, 27 km from Wamena, Papua. Besides Dani some other parts of coexistence in this valley that Yali Tribe and Lani tribes.

Valley is about 80 km long by 20 km in width and lies at an altitude of about 1.600 to 1.700 m, with a population of about 100,000 inhabitants.

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The discovery of the Baliem Valley and the unexpected presence of a large population of farm discovered by zoologist Richard Archbold third expedition to New Guinea in 1938 On June 21, an Air Reconnaissance flight south of Hollandia (now Jayapura) expedition found what is called ‘Grand Valley’. Gradually the valley since then it has been opened for tourism is limited by the Baliem Festival.

Activity

By trekking, you can witness traditional ceremonies, traditional markets and the way of life of the Dani. There are a very limited number of restaurants inside the Baliem Valley. Tour tour guide can bargain with the Dani people to provide you with simple meals. It’s strongly advised that visitors bring their own meals and snacks during trekking through and around Baliem Valley. Meals and snacks can be bought at grocery stores in Wamena.

 

Baliem Valley Festival

Baliem Valley Festival was originally a tribal war event Dani, Lani and Yali tribe as a symbol of fertility and prosperity. A festival that is the scene of a power struggle between tribes and has been going on for generations, but certainly safe for you to enjoy.

In this lush Baliem valley is a vast open ground where the Baliem Festival is held each year. More than a thousand people flock to see the mock war held by the Dani and  the surrounding tribes.

 

The captivating Baliem Festival is held on August around 10 – 17 August every year. At the Festival, traditional dances, pig races, staged tribal wars and races are held. Today, the Baliem Festival is one of the main reasons tourists visit Papua. It’s a magical fiesta, say most who have experienced it.

Baliem Valley Festival takes place over three days and is held each August to coincide with the celebrations in Indonesia’s independence. Initially the first held in 1989 that the special thing of this festival begins with a trigger war scenario.

How to get there:

The only access to the Baliem Valley is by flying to the town of Wamena. There are a number of carriers from Jayapura to Wamena: (For more info, ask the officers at Sentani Airport Information Center). Trigana Air Services provide daily flights into and out of Wamena. Spot the Trigana Air Service Offices at Sentani Airport terminal and Wamena Airport terminal.

Others are MAF, AMA, Yajasi, Manunggal Air; while the Indonesian Army (TNI) has Hercules aircrafts.

From Wamena into the interior of the Baliem valley you can rent a car or travel by public bus.

Tips:

Foreigners must obtain a travel permit, known as Surat Keterangan Jalan to get  access into the interior of Papua. You can obtain the Surat Keterangan Jalan at major police stations, such as at Jayapura, Merauka, Timika, Biak, Nabire, Monokwari and other major cities.

The permit will depend on your request, lasting from 1 week to 1 month or longer. Prepare copies of your passport, recent photograph and list of places you wish to visit. It is easy to obtain the Surat Keterangan Jalan, because the officers are friendly and helpful.

  • Ask your travel agent to arrange the Surat Keterangan Jalan.
  • A Guide is needed to explore the valley
  • Don’t forget to bring a copy of your Surat Keterangan Jalan
  • The best time to visit is between March and August
  • If you travel during the rainy season, prepare yourself with cold weather gear
  • Ask your guide about Do’s and Don’ts in the Baliem Valley

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