Sunday, January 28, 2018

Exploring Rainforest and Coral Reef of Manokwari

White Orchid in Arfak mountains
Tropical rainforest of Manokwari can be seen in Arfak mountains. It is the natural habitat of a lot of species of plants such as catappa, banana and mango trees in the coastal region to wild orchids, rhododendron, passion flowers, dahlia, lily, canna flowers, and myrmecophyte in mid-montane and higher montane forest of Arfak range. There are also a lot of species of mushrooms on the forest floor particularly during rainy season.
Glowing Mushrooms in Arfak mountains
One unique mushroom that visitor can see in Arfak mountains is the one that glows in the dark. While watching the glowing mushroom, visitors may also see fireflies with their glowing light flying in trees and shrub pants.
There is a believe that fairies like to play among the glowing mushrooms at nights. The glowing mushrooms are seen as the symbol of hope in the darkness of the night. When someone visits the mushrooms and makes a wish or small prayer, fairies who listen to the prayer will work the universe to help him or her to realize the dream. However, the wish has to to be in line with the will of nature that demands harmony.
A favorite site for tourists who like nature is Susnguakti forest. It is located in the eastern region of Arfak mountains approximately one hour ride from Manokwari city. There, visitors can also watch Lesser Birds of Paradise (Paradisaea minor), King Bird of Paradise (Cicinnurus regius) and Cuscus Possum. The usual duration for exploring the bio-diversity of Susnguakti forest is 3 days.
Coral reef in Manokwari
After exploring the forest, visitors can continue their exploration of nature by enjoying snorkeling in the coral reef of Manokwari. There are several coral reef areas that can be explored by visitors. Visitors need to bring snorkeling mask, flippers/ fins and an underwater camera to take picture of fish, sea-star, table coral, and a lot more.
Booking: Please, contact Charles Roring by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp: +6281332245180

Friday, January 26, 2018

Lesser Birds of Paradise of Arfak Mountains

Lesser Birds of Paradise in Arfak Mountains
Lesser Birds of Paradise (Paradisaea minor) is a very beautiful bird that lives in lower montane forest of Arfak mountains. Tourists who want to watch the birds can go to Susnguakti forest located in the eastern region of the range. There is a basecamp that has been prepared by local guides for visitors. Visitors can spend one or two nights to watch the birds, see butterflies and exotic plants that exist in the forest. The trails to the basecamp are quite steep. But we have prepared steps and railings made of bamboo to make sure that visitors could walk safely to the destinations.
We provide plates, glasses, spoons and forks as well as cooking and boiling pans in the jungle so that we can prepare and cook food for everybody who participates in the rainforest tour.
As a tourist guide, I have organized numerous tours to Arfak mountains for visitors who are nature lovers. They spend between 3 to 5 days in the forest to see the bio-diversity of the rainforest.
Your trip to the mountains can be combined with snorkeling trip in Manokwari where you can see coral reef and fish. For more info, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by e-mail to: peace4wp@gmail.com or whatsapp: +6281332245180
Also read:
Birding Tour in Susnguakti Forest
Watching Lesser and King Bird of Paradise

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Wildlife in Arfak Mountains

Lesser B.O.P
Susnguakti is the name of a tropical rainforest area in the eastern region of Arfak mountains. It is the natural habitat of several species of birds of paradise such as Lesser Birds of Paradise (Paradisaea minor), King Bird of Paradise (Cicinnurus regius), and Magnificent Riflebird (Ptiloris magnificus). There are also other birds in the forest such as Blyth's hornbill, Dwarf Cassowary, Hooded Butcherbird, Papuan Lorikeet and Common Paradise Kingfisher.
Susnguakti forest of Arfak range is home for wild pigs, deer, bandicoot, cucus possum, soa-soa lizards, snakes, spiders, butterflies, moth, beetles, fireflies and etc.
For plants, there are bamboo trees, fern, ficus tree, palm tree, rattan, lianas, and a lot of creeping plants, and orchid flowers that live in the forest.
To see plants, watch birds and wild animals in Susnguakti forest, tourists usually spend 3 days/ 2 nights camping and hiking with local guides.
We have prepared tents, simple shelters, cooking and eating utensils in the forest.
Cruiser Butterfly
How to go there?
  1. Fly from your country to one of the big cities in Indonesia such as Jakarta, Surabaya, Denpasar or Manado.
  2. After that take a domestic flight served by Sriwijaya Air, Batik Air, or Garuda to Manokwari city.
  3. I will be happy to meet you at the airport and organize your trip to the area. 
Vogelkop Dragon Lizard
What you need to bring and wear
  • Flashlight/ torch 
  •  Binoculars and camera
  •  Anti insect cream/ lotion 
  •  Hiking/ sport shoes 
  •  Short and long pants/ jeans + t-shirts
Because we are going to watch wild animals in the forest, there is no guarantee, that we will be able to see them. Sometimes we are lucky and sometimes we are not. Our adventure in the forest to watch wildlife is usually carried out early in the mornings, in the afternoons before sunset, and at nights.
For night walks, we may see cuscus possum, vogelkop dragon lizard, bandicoot, and snake.
For morning walks, we may see Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise and Magnificent Riflebirds as well as other birds that like to eat fruits, nectar of wild flowers of trees around our basecamp.
Booking: Please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or text message to my whatsapp number: +6281332245180.

Also read: Camping and Birdwatching in Arfak Mountains

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Short Tour in Manokwari

On a water taxi in Dore bay of Manokwari
Last week I guided a Portuguese tourist, Mr. Peixoto, on a short trip around Manokwari. I met him at the airport and by a chartered car, we had a tour to several important places in Manokwari. We stopped for a while at Mansinam Beach Hotel where he had his lunch. He was with a travel agent from Central Sulawesi. After that we went to Mansinam island by water taxi. It took around 15 minutes to reach the island. We visited the Gospel Landing Monument where 3 German evangelists Carl Wilhelm Ottow, his Wife and Johan Gottlob Geissler. They landed on the island on 5 February 1855 to preach Christianity to the indigenous Papuan people.
Mansinam island
When we were inside of the monument, we took some pictures and saw relief painting on the background wall of the monument. The relief depicts the long journey of German Missionaries from the Netherlands to Mansinam island. We also had a short walking tour around the village of the island where we met some children who were playing a plastic ball. They were very enthusiastic when they knew that the tourist was from Portugal. It was the country where Christiano Ronaldo came from.
After visiting Mansinam, we returned to mainland and continued out trip to
Pasir Putih Beach
Pasir Putih Beach. There he had the opportunity to taste rujak - a spicy fruit salad that is very popular "snack" at the beach.
We headed to Anggori where we tasted durian fruit. It smells like hell but it tastes like heaven.  Mr. Peixoto tried some durian but he said he did not like it very much. We stopped for a while at Catholic Church of St. Thomas Aquinas in Amban area and then at the front gate of Univeristas Papua. It was a stated owned university.
The clouds in the sky was getting darker. Soon it would rain. So, we decided to conclude our short tour in Manokwari by going to Swissbel Hotel where this Portuguese visitor would stay for one night. We still had dinner at a cafe in town before saying good bye to one another. It was a short but memorable trip.
If you are interested in taking a short tour around Manokwari and need a tour guide, you can contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or send text by whatsapp to my number: +6281332245180.

Anggi Lakes of Arfak Mountains

Lake Anggi Giji in Arfak range of Manokwari
I returned from Anggi Lakes yesterday. I spent two days traveling along the lakes to see their beautiful landscapes, meet local villagers and take pictures of colorful flowers. There were two big lakes in Arfak Mountains, i.e. Anggi-Giji (meaning lake man) and Anggi Gida (meaning lake woman). There were tens of villages along the shores of the lakes. The villagers planted spring onion, mustard, cabbage, carrot, shallot, and other kinds of vegetables around their houses. Fruits such as "Dutch tomato," passion fruits could also be seen in the gardens of the villagers. The villagers sold their agricultural produce to Manokwari city or Ransiki town. Since the cost of ttansportation was quite expensive, villagers could not earn a lot of profit.
Landscape view of Anggi Lake in Arfak Mountains
In addition to vegetables and fruits, we could see a lot of varieties of flowers in the region. Some that I could identify were Rhododendron konori, Rhododendron laetum, canna, dahlia, lily, terrestrial orchid, and passion flowers.
As a matter of fact, Arfak mountains have got numerous species of flower plants that are very potential to be cultivated for their essential oils. Unfortunately, the extraction of essential oils need expertize and sophisticated equipment which the indigenous people do not have.
Dahlia Flower
Because of their beautiful sceneries and high bio-diversity of flower plants in the mountains, Anggi lakes are very potential to be developed as eco-tourism destination.

How to get there?
  • It is easy to visit Anggi Lakes. First, fly from your country to major cities in Indonesia such as Jakarta or Surabaya or Manado. 
  • After that, take a domestic flight to Manokwari city
  • I could meet you at the airport or at the hotel where you stay and organize your trip to the lakes.
Booking
Please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or send text to my whatsapp: +6281332245180.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Camping in Rainforest of Arfak Mountains

In my previous post about Rainforest Tour near Manokwari City, I mentioned Susnguakti Forest. It is a tropical rainforest in lower montane area of Arfak range. It has been a recommended site for visitors who like hiking, camping, and wildlife watching.
We have prepared camping site with shelter that can be used by visitors who want to stay for a few nights in the forest. We provide tents, mattrasses, pillows, cooking and eating utensils for visitors who want to explore the wealth of biodivesity of tropical rainforest in the region.
Tents that we provide for tourists
There are birds, butterflies, lizard, and a lot of unique plants that live in Susnguakti forest. At night, fireflies, and moth like to visit our basecamp. Various kinds of sounds from insects, birds and frogs make our nights in the jungle full of natural music. In the mornings, we can hear the sounds of male birds of paradise that call their female birds from nearby trees.
King Bird of Paradise (Cicinnurus regius)
Visitors usually spend 3 days/ 2 nights in hiking and camping in Arfak mountains and additional 1 day snorkeling and swimming in Manokwari coastal area.

Rainforest near Manokwari City of West Papua

Cendrawasih bay as seen from Susnguakti Forest
Manokwari has become a must see destination among visitors who want to explore the bio-diversity of tropical rainforest. There is a forest area in the eastern region of Arfak mountains that I am now developing as tourist destination. Its name is Susnguakti forest. It is categorized as lower montane forest and is the natural habitat of soa-soa lizard, wild pigs, cuscus possum, butterflies, grasshopper, spiders and birds such as Common Paradise Kingfisher, Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Hooded Butcherbird and a lot more.
Lesser Birds of Paradise
Susnguakti Forest is located in the south of Manokwari regency, just one hour ride from the city. Simple accommodation for visitors has been built for tourists. Basecamp, mattrasses, cooking and eating utensils are available. However, because this ecotour activities are consentrated in the forest, all of the facilities that visitors use are still in basic condition. Staying in the jungle is not the same as staying in the hotel of a city.
This rainforest tour is suitable for tourists who want to watch paradise birds, and other animals that live in the forest as well as the unique vegetation that we see in tropical jungle.
To watch cuscus possum, visitors need to do night walk in the jungle accompanied by a local guide. He will immitate the sound of female cuscus to attract the male one. Cuscus possums usually comes out of their hiding places to find food and mating.
Cuscus Possum in Susnguakti Forest of Arfak Mountains

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