Papua, formerly known as Irian Jaya, is in the easternmost of Indonesia. It is half of New Guinea, the world’s largest and highest tropical island, on the west of Papua New Guinea, an independent country. Papua of Indonesia is the last final frontier of tourism here, being limited in infrastructure and also limited information available on it. Traveling here is like exploring the unknown and can be challenging but it thrills many adventure seekers.
Most travelers come here for the remote highlands that are still filled with indigenous tribes and ancient rites like the popular Baliem Valley, trekking through tribal villages and also for the exotic jungle of Lorentz National Park which has the highest mountain of Indonesia, the Puncak Jaya (Cartensz Pyramid). The flora and fauna found here are a myriad of species that are similar to those found in Australia but well adapted to the mountainous rainforest of Papua.
To the west of Papua, lies the Maluku Islands, also known as Moluccas or Spice Islands, which is to the east of Sulawesi. Wedged in between these two large area, these many tiny islands are largely unexplored and very much on the list as off the beaten tracks of Indonesia travel. The gateway here is via Ambon, its largest city with airport. Most travelers come here to experience the interesting historical and cultural sites, snorkeling and diving off the coasts and also hiking and trekking.
Papua and Maluku Islands Travel Map
Maluku Islands -> Raja Ampat -> Sorong -> Jayapura -> Baliem Valley -> Lorent National Park -> Jayapura
Places to Visit