The Hidden Treasure of Pogapa

The occupants of this village, the Moni tribe, lives in harmony along with nature and are gratefully blessed with fertile soil. They plant taro, one of the earliest cultivated plant similar to yams, which is their main source of food. Coffee is also one of the plants they manage traditionally.

Being the village with the only airstrip, Pogapa is the starting point to the other remote villages located in the mountains. Plane rides take 45 minutes and it is the one and only to reach Pogapa. The trek of Pogapa and other villages around it gives you the chance to see how the locals go on with their daily routines. Along with the scenery, enjoy the fresh air fabricated by the thick rainforest.

Set your plan to come here. Meet the people of Pogapa and see their daily activities; from their food processing in the kitchen to the traditional market. Enjoy spectacular view of mountains around and feel the real inner peace while you are here.

Guide Tips on Visiting Timika

When it comes to Timika City, it is no longer unfamiliar with the city built alongside the world’s largest mining company from the United States, Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc., which mines copper, gold and silver ore miles away in the mountains. The complexity of Grasberg mine situated right in the heart of the mineral zone is one of the largest coppers and gold extraction in the world.

In addition, there have been more supplementary copper and gold noted around the hills of Jayawijaya. Not only that, the city is also popular with estuaries, beaches, snowy mountain peaks, and recreational hunting/fishing.

The city of Timika is surrounded by tropical rainforests, where the air temperature can feel hot and humid, but also balanced by heavy rainfalls making the air cooler and more pleasant. However, there is a slight change of atmosphere when stepping foot in this small city into another district, Kuala Kencana. From a not so advanced small town into an area so elite and conceptual.

The Kuala Kencana area has a smooth and wide paved road, a small meadow in the middle of the roundabouts with lit streetlights at night, even having a statue with fountains in the middle of the city the locals consider sightseeing. The residential area looks American-style houses with a fairly large lawn and the distance between the houses is quite spacious.

As the capital of Mimika Regency, Timika is surrounded by several districts, including:

  • East Mimika
  • Middle East Mimika
  • Far East Mimika
  • West Mimika
  • Far West Mimika
  • Middle West Mimika
  • New Mimika
  • Kuala Kencana
  • Tembagapura
  • Agimuga
  • Jila
  • Jita

History of Timika

Timika is inseparable from the history of Mimika Regency which was originally a sub-district from the Fakfak Regency which later became the Autonomous District in 1999. The area is around 20,093 km2 with high and low topography.

Mimika is inhabited by seven indigenous tribes, of which two large tribes including Amungme inhabit the mountainous and Kamoro region in the coastal region. The other five tribes are still in kinship originating from other regions but have long lived in Mimika Regency, namely the Dani / Lani, Damal, Mee, Nduga and Moni tribes.

Ways of getting to Timika

  • Airplane

The only way to reach Timika by air is landing at Moses Kilangin Airport which is managed by PT Airfast Aviation Facility Company (AVCO) for PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) activities. Airlines serving the Timika route are Garuda Indonesia, Sriwijaya Airlines and Airfast. Airfast is the company’s airline specialized PTFI’s employees, consultants or guests to travel.

  • Ship

The sea route to Timika is reachable through Makassar or Manado with the fastest time, two to three weeks. There are two ports in Timika, namely Pomako Port which is located 66 km from Timika for public use and Amamapare Port specifically for PTFI. From the port, small boats are available to navigate the rivers of rural areas, such as Kamoros, Pikapu, Jaramay and Mimika

Climate in Timika

The climate in Timika is classified as tropical with an average annual temperature of 25.9°C. The average annual rainfall is 3340 mm, a lot of rainfall in Timika Jaya, even in the driest month.

Regional Languages in Timika

Although there are seven tribes that wander Timika, the language used are the two large tribes of the indigenous people, namely the tribes of Amungme and Kamoro. Generally, migrants still use Indonesian for daily communication. Other than that, accents may vary along with the many tribes and culture populating Timika.

Do’s and Don’ts

  • Be friendly and smile
  • Try not to wear flashy/expensive items such as jewelry etc.
  • Regularly check your wallets, phones and hold on to your bag when walking through a crowded area
  • Keep Indonesian cash on you at all times
  • Remember to always have identification on you
  • Be cautious when going into the streets at nighttime
  • Do not excessively act on something you think is peculiar
  • If you get into a situation of dealing with street merchants that start insisting on selling you products you don’t really need, feel free to reject their offers by saying tidak, meaning “no”
  • Prepare anti-mosquito lotions or get yourself vaccinated with antimalarial vaccine
  • Bring antiseptic practical

As long as you keep things lowkey and stay away from problematic situations, you will remain safe. You should trust your intuition and try to get out of the situations which could possibly become dangerous for you. In the end, we will only tell you one more thing and it refers to basic words s. Terima kasih is the Indonesian phrase for “thank you”. Keep that in mind

Traditional Foods in Papua Indonesia

Papua is the most eastern part of Indonesia. It is extremely rich in culture and natural resources. Most of their nature still lies untouched and play a huge part in their lifestyle. You can see this through their food. Their cuisines are tightly woven with their surrounding nature. These Traditional Food in Papua Indonesia will tell you the kind of food that they usually eat. You will see that most of their food contain sago from the sago trees that are grown all over the region. But there are so much more that you should know about which you will find here.

  • Sago Martabak

Stuffed pancake is called as martabak in Indonesia. In most parts of Indonesia, the commonly stuffed pancake is often filled with all sorts of meat or sweet fillings such as chocolate or milk. As for the one in Papua, sago is the main ingredient for it. Sago is grinded until is soft and then fried. After that, it is mixed with some brown sugar, which makes it sweet. This traditional food actually originated from Fakfak regency in Papua.

  • Papeda

This next traditional food from Papua is called as Papeda. It uses sago as its main component as well. However, the sago is made into a porridge consistency. The dish is transparent and sticky like glue. The taste of this dish is bland because you will need to eat it with other kinds of dish. Papeda is usually eaten with a fish soup. You eat Papeda with a bamboo stick to roll it up. You don’t have to chew Papeda, you can just swallow it instantly. Chewing will only make it all sticky in your mouth.

  • Petatas

Petatas is one of the traditional foods originating from Papua. This food is also known as sweet potato for the people of Papua, specifically for those living in mountainous areas where it grows making it a daily staple food. People in Papua make petatas as food that is used because the land in the island does not need to be planted with rice, so most people plant petatas for their daily food needs. In addition, the people of Papua also do not need to buy rice at high prices. This is because the rice obtained is shipping from outside Papua, so the shipping costs become expensive. Petatas also contain good nutrition with rice, so petatas can produce rice that is worth it.

  • Sago Grub Satay

Sago grub satay is a dish commonly found in Papua. It may take certain kind of people to like this dish as it’s quite different than others. The sago grubs are collected from the sago trees. They must be the kind of trees that are already old and weathered. The sago grubs are then placed on bamboo sticks to be roasted or grilled. This food is often eaten by the people in Papua as snacks.

  • Ikan Bungkus

Ikan Bungkus literally means wrapped fish. In this dish, a fish is cooked inside a taro leaf. They don’t leave out the special herbs and spices from Papua though. The most prominent taste from this food is its saltiness. The salt is an important part of it because it helps to get rid of any sap that is released from the taro leaf. The fish is grilled slowly with a small fire. It may take some time for the fish to fully cooked. Once it’s done, the wrapped fish is then served to people while it is warm.

  • Aunu Senebre

Aunu Senebre is mostly made with anchovies. The anchovies are fried with rice and then mixed with taro leaves that are already cut up into smaller pieces. The taro leaves make this dish tasty. Grated coconut is added too. For some people, this dish might feel a bit too dry. But they can just eat it with Papeda. The chewy texture of Papeda will balance out any dryness from this dish. It’s also a great way to eat two traditional Papua dishes at once.

  • Lontar Cake

The next traditional food in Papua is called Lontar cake. It’s actually a very popular food in Papua.This cake is similar to the milk pies that are sold in Bali. But Lontar cake is made in a different way. The cake is molded using a ceramic plate. The size of the cake is determined by it. If the ceramic plate is huge, then the cake would also be big. Other than that, this cake is often served during special occasions such as Christmas or Eid.

  • Manokwari Grilled Fish

This is another traditional dish that contains fish. It originated from Manokwari, a town in West Papua. The fish that is used in this dish is the mackerel tuna. What makes this dish special is the chili that comes with it. It can only be eaten in Papua. Unlike other grilled fish in Indonesia, it’s not slathered in sweet soy sauce. The fish is very spicy from the chili.

  • Ant’s Nest

No, this dish is not about an actual ant’s nest. The name actually refers to a kind of plant that can only be found in the forest of Papua. It’s an extremely unique plant that resembles the intricacies of an ant’s nest, thus the name. This traditional food is often in high demand by people outside of Papua because of its many healthy properties. It is usually used as medicine in Papua. There are also cakes that are made of the ant’s nest.

  • Sago Slabs

Those who live in Papua often make this traditional food to eat for themselves. So it can be hard to find it in sold in shops. It is also best eaten while it is hot. The sago is molded into rectangles and then roasted with fire. The color of the sago slabs is usually brownish red. The slabs are very hard so it can be quite difficult to bite it. This food lasts a long time because it doesn’t contain water that could attract microbes or mold.

  • Cheating Praw

The name is odd but there’s a reason for it. This traditional food contains a huge prawn with claws that resemble crabs’ claws. So a prawn must have cheated with a crab to create this massive prawn. The meat of this prawn is soft and sweet, similar to that of a lobster. It is often served with all kinds of sauces in Papua. It’s a very fulfilling dish and you can eat it in any way you want.

  • Saksak

Saksak is basically sago dumplings. The texture is slippery and jelly-like. The ingredients are sugar, tapioca and mashed bananas. They are mixed together and wrapped up in banana leaves. Then, they are steamed for a couple of minutes and served when ready Saksak is not that sweet. The only sweetness will come from the bananas as the sago doesn’t offer a striking flavour.

  • Mumu

The main part of the traditional Mumu dish is the meat. Other than that, so many vegetables, spices and salt are added. They never leave out the coconut milk, of course. All of those things are then wrapped neatly inside banana leaves. Then, they are placed inside a ground oven that is heated with very hot stones. People then eat this food with their hands. They share the food with family and friends. In case you ever visit Papua, you should definitely try out all this food. It will be an unforgettable experience to savour the food while surrounded by the beauty of Papua’s nature. You’ll create a deep connection with the communities through their food as well.

  • Tambelo

Papua is not strange in the matter of extreme culinary, Tambelo is a kind of worm living inside the rotten branches of trees. Similar to squid’s tentacles at a glance, its mushy texture might make the insides of your mouth contempt. You might get a hold of yourself first before you attempt to engulf this unusual cuisine. Sipping it vigorously is the way to consume it, and it is believed to enriched with protein causing increased sperm count to man. It is known to be a regular snack of the Kamoro Tribe living in Agats.


Traditional Medicines of Papua

THello, fellow climbers! Before you visit Papua and take a shot at reaching Carstensz Summit, there is no wrong in knowing the secrets within the natures of Papua. The rainforest is enriched with many plants containing natural components that can be used as medicine. Some of them are listed below:

  1. Itchy Leaf

For those of you readers originating from Papua or Maluku, of course you are familiar with this particular plant. Laportea ducumana or more known by the locals with the name “daun gatal”, is one of the traditional plants capable of curing headaches, sore muscles, malaria and many more. How to use it is quite simple; by rubbing it on the part of your body in pain. The itchiness feeling will come and after 10 minutes, the rubbed part of your body will feel warm and fresh once again. You can find this plant in local flee markets of Papua. Are you interested on relieving your body after the climb to Carstensz? Looks like this plant will help you lose tension and pain in your body after an exhausting ascent.

  • Mayana

Mayana or Acalypha wilkesiana Muell, Arg., usually grows in yards of homes or in an area with little sunlight and soil from dry to soggy. Mayana is known to effectively cure diarrhea, laryngitis, fever and also increase blood supply. The parts of the plant that are usually used are the leaves and the stem. How to use it is to boil the plant with water and rub the water onto the body.

  • Betel Nut

Without this plant, Papua wouldn’t be the same. You can almost catch this plant being sold at every corners and side of every road in Papua. Betel nut or its scientific name, Areca catechu L. normally growing at yards of homes at tropical areas. Part of the nut used is the fruit and the not yet ripe seed. This nut is used as a stimulant or psychotropic known to bring fresh and lightness into the human body. The nut is peeled and then chewed along with its seed. Betel leaf is usually added with its lime then chewed until it forms a red mixed with saliva.

  • Betel Leaf

            Piper betle L or betel leaf is one of the traditional medicines that can’t be separated from the betel nut in the Papuan tradition. Normally, people will chew the nut and the leaf at the same time. Aside from the nut, the leaf also has many curing components able to relieve eye pains and toothaches. Its utilization is simply by boiled/pounded and put in onto the part where the pain is.

  • Sambiloto

Sambiloto (Andrographis paniculata (Burm,f.) Wall. Ex Nees) can grow exuberantly on friable and damp soil, from lowland regions to highland regions as high as 700 masl. Local people of Papua especially at Sarmi Regency uses sambiloto to cure malaria. The way to utilize this plant is to boil 10-15 strands of sambiloto until its boiling, then drinking the boliled water twice a day until cured. Aside from that, boiled water of sambiloto is used for anti-inflammation, smoothen bladder control (diuretics), febrifuge (antipyretic), stomachache medicine, lower blood pressure, and is believed to cure typhus.

  • Anthill

Anthill (Myrmecodia spp.) is a plant already well known throughout Indonesia. Its components are always carried by many people to where they originate as a souvenir. The part used is its tuber. How to use this plant is sliced transversely or pollinated, boil it then drank. Anthill can be used to cure many diseases such as inflammation, sore muscles, cancer and diabetes.

  • Red Fruit

Red fruit (Pandanus conoideus Lam.) are found in the middle of the mountains of Papua from Wamena, Jayapura, Nabire, to Manokwari. Traditionally, red fruit is used to prevent lack of stamina as well as preserving body’s fitness therefore it is safe from many kinds of diseases. Local people of Papua exploit this fruit’s components by mixing it with its vegetables or meats that are being cooked. Not only to preserve the body’s fitness, this red fruit can also help prevent cancer cells and tumors from spreading, smoothen blood circulation, therefore lowering hypertension or high blood pressure and preventing a risk of having a stroke. Other uses known is to lighten HIV/AIDS sufferer. Currently, red fruit have been processed modernly (its oil is taken) onto a bottle package. Many people visit Papua and buy the Red Fruit in packages as a souvenir.

  • Broken Bone Leaf

Broken leaf (Euphorbia tirucalli L.) can reach 6 m, having stem and branches containing white thick saps. Like its name, this plant is used by the locals to heal broken bones and to force out poison.  To cure broken bones, traditional curers exploit the whole plant by pounding it and mixed with pure coconut oil, while forcing out the poison is to rub the sap onto the part where it was bitten.

  • Jatropha

Jatropha (Jatropha curcas L.) is found in the yards of the local’s house and spread widely in Papua region. The part of the plant they usually use in traditional curing is the leaf. The leaves are usually used to cure swollen part of the body, rheumatism, and wounds. How to use it by heating it with a candle until withered, rub it with coconut oil, and then the love is stuck unto the part of the body where it is wounded or swollen (3 times a day)

Cat’s Mustache

This particular plant’s use is no longer undoubtedly. The cat’s mustache (Orthosiphon aristatus (Blume) Miq.) is usually easily found at the yards of locals’ home. This plant has a lot of benefits such as anti-diabetes, diuretics, rheumatism, coughing, back pains, obstipation, kidney stones. The way it is used traditionally, it is boiled and made into a drink.

Well.. do you have any of the diseases mentioned that can be cured by the many traditional medicines above?

Writer: Dimitra


Kamoro Woodcarving

People of Kamoro tribe live along the Coast of Arafuru Sea in the southern of central Papua. Their villages lay in tidal are along the coast. They independently fulfill their primary needs, especially food by gathering it from nature. This tribe lives in semi-nomadic fashion and gains their food through gathering and fishing.  Their area is abundantly blessed with kinds of food, such as sago palm, fish, and cassava. Men are responsible for gathering the food and women cooking it for their family.

Once in a few months, people of Kamoro move and settle temporary houses along river banks to gather food for their daily need or to sell it in the markets in Timika.  The region which belongs to Kamoro tribe is Kokonao, part of the District of Mimika Barat, in Regency of Mimika. This tribe comprises 40 villages with population of 180.000. Generally, men in Kamoro work on gathering food. However, few of them are wood carvers. In Kamoro local language, they are called maramowe. Wooden carving is made to be used as a part of traditional ceremony ornament or for sale. Maramowe handmade wood carving is cultural icon of Kamoro tribe.

Types of their work: yamate (shield), wemawe (sculpture), po (paddle), paru (bowl of sago), eme (drum), but the most sacred is mbitoro (totem of ancestor). They even carve their dugouts with special reliefs which have particular meanings. Every lineage of maramowe has their own typical carving motif, which other lineages are prohibited to copy. Disaster may happen if this rule is purposefully broken.

As a local tour operator based in Timika, Adventure Carstensz always escorts their clients to have a city tour, including visiting local tribe communities around the town. The aim of city tour is to introduce the city to the clients and to make them acknowledged of culture and fine art of Kamoro teribe.

The Indigenous Tribes of Papua

The Indigenous Tribes in Papua

Papua is the largest Indonesian province located in the eastern part of Indonesia. Papua used to cover the entire western part of Papua, but since 2003 it has been divided into two provinces, Papua and West Papua. Papua has an area of ​​808,105-squer km and is the second largest island in the world after Greenland and largest island in Indonesia. Continue reading The Indigenous Tribes of Papua

ITB Berlin International Tourism Exhibition 2013

Held from 5th to 10th of March 2013, ITB Berlin International Tourism Exhibition is known to be the largest tourism exhibition in the world. Over 10,500 participants from 187 countries, Indonesia had a chance to participate in the world’s most prestigious exhibition catching the eyes of 113,000 visitors in the field of tourism. Continue reading ITB Berlin International Tourism Exhibition 2013

The Tribe Living in Tree Houses

Papua is not only famous for flora and fauna, Papua is an island located in the east of Indonesia where there lived indigenous tribes having interesting and unique life. One of them is the original rural tribe of Papua who lives in a tree house as high as 50 meters, known as Korowai Tribe. Continue reading The Tribe Living in Tree Houses