Trip to West Papua
Hi all…I have to say that Athan and his team delivered everything that was promised and even above our expectations. The Koroway trip was organized the safest possible way. We felt ourselves as very valuable parcels that have to be treated with best possible care and accuracy – the food was good (prepared by a cook Telly), we always had a dry place to sleep and even had bathing places prepared for us all over the way.
We had an experienced with our guide, who is leading the Koroway tours for more then 20 years, and has a best knowledge about the rain forest and tribes living there.
Athan also was very helpful, when we finished the trip and stayed in Jayapura. We asked him to organize a short diving trip, and he did that in one day for a very reasonable price.
What can I recommend: if you plan to visit Koroway tribes, do that now, as people are moving from the forest to the nearby villages and in next 10 years tree houses will be on the pictures only. Take with you rubber shoes – they are the best for walking in the mud. And chose Jefalgi tours as tour operator – effective and honest company. Thanks – Daiva, Lituania.
Papua – Irian Jaya: Amazing Trip!
I had an amazing trip to Papua (15 days: Koroway area & Baliem Valley) at the end of July 2014 and I’m happy to say THANKS to Athan (Jefalgi Papua Tours, just google it and you’ll find it) who organized everything perfectly.
We had a very competent guide (Thony) in Koroway area and a very good guide as well in Baliem Valley (Herriman).
I also met Athan directly as he picked us up at Jayapura airport upon arrival and he was our guide when we visited Jayapura during the last day of our tour. Athan is friendly and reliable and he really cared about us being happy and satisfied about our tour/trekking. He was also super-fast in replying to my emails before the trip started.
Trekking in the Koroway area is hard as you’ll walk in a hot and humid jungle, in the mud and often on single logs. We slept in tents (brand new ones provided). You’ll drink the water from the river (after our cook boiled it) and you’ll wash yourself into rivers. But the trip is really worth it, it’s amazing: you get to know a far away culture, still primitive. Koroway people live up on tree houses and we joined a family to see how they collect sago from sago palms.
Then we visited Baliem Valley: we trekked up and down valleys and mountains. We crossed beautiful suspension bridges and we met people from the Dani tribe. We slept in Dani houses (Honai). We also saw Baliem Festival in August, it’s very nice as you can experience how Papuan tribes used to dress in the past and how they fought.
Be prepared, it’s not easy but you’ll enjoy it!!!
We also went to Raja Ampat where we had 3 diving days. It’s simply beautiful above and under the water. We could see beautiful corals, lots of fish, nudibranchs, sharks, pigmy sea horses, turtles, shrimps…
This was a wonderful trip … I’ve not enough words to describe it! Federica, Italy
Koroway Adventure & Baliem Valley
I traveled with Jefalgi to the Koroway people and to Baliem valley in July 2015.
I wanted to go somewhere off the beaten track and found out about the Koroway people after some research. Further googling revealed that it was difficult to get there with very few tour operators – with Jefalgi the only one I found that was recommended online. The e-mail conversations with Athan was easy and he provided good and timely answers to all and any requests.
I arrived in Sentani the day before the trip was due to start and had an extra day to adjust to the time difference. Athan and his driver picked me up at the hotel on the following morning for the short drive to the airport. We left the excess luggage in Sentani before we jumped on the plane to Dekai.
We were met by our tour guide, Olfrid, upon arrival in Dekai. I guess it was easy for him to spot us as we were a head taller than everyone else on the plane…One night on a simple hotel in Dekai before we jumped on a speed boat to take us into the Koroway territory. After 8 hours/180 kilometers on the meandring rivers we arrived at Mabul where we spent one night in a local villagers house.
We spent in total 5 nights in the jungle with the Koroway people. The hikes between the villages where on swampy trails walking on logs – hence proper high rubberboots are strongly recommended unless you walk barefoot as the locals. In order to preserve the Koroway way of life it is recommended to not bring too many Western conveniences as gifts, but in stead bring tobacco and cigarettes that are consumed instantly. After our trek through the jungle we took the same way out through Mabul and Dekai before jumping on a plane to Baliem Valley.
We spent three nights in Baliem Valley where the highlight was the culture festival where all the local tribes get together for a massive roleplay and performance. On our second day we were supposed to do a hike to some villages but unfortunately our tour guide got sick and we had to cut it short. In stead we went to see the mummy in the afternoon, which basically is a tourist trap intended to make money for the local family.
I strongly recommend Jefalgi as the trip they arranged was very professional and convenient. The professionalism also made me feel safe and secure in my dealings with Athan beforehand. Rickard – Swiss