Situated in the southwest Pacific Ocean, on the world’s second largest but highest tropical island, and also known as Western New Guinea, West Papua comprises one of New Guinea’s two official provinces. Whilst Papua New Guinea is its own independent country, West Papua forms part of Indonesia. Previously a Dutch colony, this half of the island is laden with an enormous biodiversity found within its tropical rainforests and wetlands. Southeast Asia’s largest national park Lorentz National Park is home to myriad bird and animal species, and endemic plant life. The tropical glaciers of this listed UNESCO World Heritage site are a highlight. Wasur National Park is also wondrous.
On an island that has over 250 languages, beyond West Papua’s capital Manokwari, inspirational culture and customs can found in Wamena’s surrounding villages. Further afield, the coastal city of Sorong serves as a gateway to travellers seeking to explore the world’s most enriching coral reef biodiversity in the Raja Ampat Islands. The diving there is superb. Stimulating experiences in a land that time forgot—West Papua.