Papua New Guinea, historically known as Irian Jaya, is the world’s second biggest island. Indonesia and Papua New Guinea both have half of the territory. The island’s western half is then divided between the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua. West Papua Tour is the more popular tourist destination of the two.
Raja Ampat, located just off the coast of Sorong, is quickly becoming a popular tourist destination. Divers have long been drawn to the area because of the beautiful scenery and biologically varied coral reefs. However, because of the difficulties of traveling to the location, the number of tourists is currently a trickle rather than a flood. If Sorong Airport ever opens up to foreign flights, this will undoubtedly alter.
To the east is the province of Papua, which is centered on Jayapura, the provincial capital. Few tourists frequent this area, and those who do tend to gravitate toward the highlands. The topography between coastal Jayapura and Wamena is so difficult to cross that native Papuans distinguish themselves as belonging to either the coastal or highland districts. Papua tour between these two places has only been possible since World War II.
Papua Tour: Infrastructure and Transportation
It is incredibly tough to travel around Papua. The island is massive, with harsh terrain. Traveling by boat or plane is the most convenient, and in many cases, the only, way to get from one area to another. Unfortunately, Papua’s air safety is inadequate, and plane crashes are all too common. Papua is an exceedingly expensive tourist destination due to its inadequate infrastructure and vast distances.
The most convenient and fastest way to get to Papua is to fly. Both Garuda Indonesia and Lion Air fly to Jayapura and Sorong, with a stopover at Makassar. Keep in mind that Papua is one of Indonesia’s two special provinces owing to political volatility. You must register with the police within 24 hours after arriving in a city if you are a foreigner. This is true in both Papua and West Papua provinces.
Raja Ampat has some of the best diving and topside vistas of any dive location on the planet. On a single dive, Dr. Gerald Allen counted 273 different fish species. A Grand Komodo liveaboard tour is for you if you’re looking for exotic water species like the elusive wobbegong shark or Birds of Paradise. Water temperature is between 24 and 29 degrees Celsius. 10 – 30 m visibility (seasonal). Diving is available all year.
Triton bay is still in the middle of nowhere, far from the population. In the bay, there are numerous little islands. Rock art cliffs dot the landscape as you fly over the mainland. This location has exceptional fish biomass. The ridges are covered in soft coral gardens. Hard coral growth is also in outstanding condition. There are both pelagics and creatures in this area, and the Papua diving is very good to excellent.
Come to Manokwari for incredible WWII wreck diving, including the P-40 (a Curtiss Tomahawk fighter), Cross Wreck, and the Japanese cargo Shinwa Maru, as well as the usual abundance of wonderful species, including robust and abundant hard and soft corals. Dive profiles are available down to 30 meters.