Rabu, 02 September 2009

Baliem Valley

Once you read or give it a deeper study to Danis way of life, dont be surprise that you may find your eye lifting or forehead wrinkling. Why? Because the Dani is uniquely amazing.

The Dani men and women sleep separately in different honai (Danis traditional house). The men sleep grouped in one honai, while the women and children slumber in another honai. As descended from their ancestor, sex is taboo for the women after giving birth, for 2 or 5 years, as the result the Dani 

generated healthier kids since the women focus on babysitting the kids during the most important phase of growth. This situation makes the men vulnerable to polygamy, its a true fact of life that the Dani men are allowed to have more than 1 wife or as many as he can afford. A man should give 4-5 pigs to the girls parent he wants to marry. For Dani men, his social status are initiated by the number of wives and pigs he has. 

Another remarkable custom of Dani is that women will amputate their finger when their relatives die, hence doesnt be surprise when you see women with missing finger.

To enhance the quality of your experience in Baliem Valley, guide is essential since there are no clear maps or signage initiated for visitor. The guide will help to lead the track, communicate with the local people and in advance, the guide will inform the tourist about local dos and donts.

Flying might be the only way to access the Baliem Valley through Wamena. Here are some alternatives on carrier from Jayapura to Wamena: (For further 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.
  • MAF
  • AMA
  • Yajasi
  • Manunggal Air
  • Hercules carrier provide by Indonesian army (TNI)

To access Baliem Valley, you can rent car or public bus from Wamena.

For those who are adventurer and cultural observer in heart, stay and mingle with the Baliem Valley people is possible, just make sure your guide booked it before your visit. Go Show? Affordable.

If the first alternative is way too extreme, you can stay at hotels at Wamena:

  • Wamena Hotel at Jl. Homhom 61
  • Srikandi Hotel at Jl. Irian 16
  • Pondok Wisata Putri Dani at Jl. Irian 40
  • Nayak Hotel at Jl. Gatot Subroto 63
  • Hotel Syah Rial Makmur at Jl. Gatot Subroto 45
  • Hotel Anggrek at Jalan Ambon 1
  • Baliem Pilamo Hotel at Jalan Trikora
  • Baliem Valley Resort (3 star resort),

Would you mind if we say ON FOOT? Healthy foot and fit body? Absolutely. Through trekking, you can witness traditional ceremonies, traditional markets and the people of Dani.

There is no restaurant inside the Baliem- Valley, a guide could bargain the Dani people to provide simple meals. Its stoutly advised, that the visitor bring their own meals and snack during the trekking. Meals and snacks can be found in grocery store at Wamena

  • Souvenir can be easily found on the valley and buy the crafts directly from the Dani people.
  • Stone blade is a major favorite for the tourist
  • Sekan: rattan bracelate
  • Noken: made from trees bark
  • Head and arm necklace
  • Jogal: grass skirt
  • And other head decorations

  • The captivating Baliem Fiesta is held on August around 10 - 17 August every year. The festival performs traditional dances, pig races, ancestral fighting and races. Today, Baliem Fiesta is one of the main reasons why tourists visit Papua. Its a magical Fiesta says most of the tourist.
  • Join the large and busy local market at Sinatma.
  • Spotting mummies at Kurulu Village.

  • Guide is needed to explore the valley
  • Dont forget to bring the copy of your Surat Keterangan Jalan
  • Best time to visit is between March and August
  • If you travel during the rainy season, be prepared with cold weather equipment
  • Ask your guide about Dos and Donts in the Baliem Valley

Foreigner must obtain a travel permit letter or known as Surat Keterangan Jalan to get the access into the interior part of Papua. You can obtain the Surat Keterangan Jalan at main town police station such as Jayapura, Merauka, Timika, Biak, Nabire, Monokwari and other main city. The permit of lasts will depend on your request, from 1 week until 1 month or even longer. Please prepare copies of your passport, recent photograph and list of places you wish to visit. Its easy to get the Surat Keterangan Jalan, because the officers are friendly and helpful.

You can ask your travel agent to arrange the Surat Keterangan Jalan.

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