From time to time we are presented with special moment. My trip to West Papua in Indonesia was one of those moments. After some four hours flight from Jakarta, we landed at Rendani Airport in Manokwari the capital of West Papua, at the western end of New Guinea. I was privileged to visit West Papua one of the world’s few remaining unspoiled places. It was a place where time stood still.
Manokwari reminded me of the Caribbean. It was a place where the people are warn and welcoming. I believed this was a place where the locals were genuinely interested in me. All in all I looked like them however I wasn’t one of them.
My skin color and my short hair style fascinated them, most importantly they wanted to be photographed with me all the time.
Highlights in Manokwari.
Manokwari a major tourist area, it is colorful. There is a market with all local products. The town is best known for trekking, beautiful sandy beach and myriad of islands.
Flight to Manokwari to Anggi West Papua a journey of a life time
My son is a commercial pilot with Susi Air so one of the highlights of my stay in Manokwari was to fly with him. To begin with, our first flight took us to Anggi. a 30 minutes flight over impenetrable jungle, honey colored rivers and hazardous sharp-edged mountains with a strip of land as runway.
The districts in Anggi are home to a few locals due to the location they relied on small planes for transport.
Flight to Merdey West Papua
Our flight from Manokwari to Merdey was just over one hour and we flew over amazing landscape, jungle, waterfalls and mountains. When we landed in Merdey, my son and his co-pilot told me that I will be left behind because the next leg of the flight was full. I will therefore be picked up on their return journey.
In reality I was excited nonetheless scared. I did not speak the language and apart from the airport chief and the police officer no-one else spoke English. With over two hundred separate languages, no need to say how incredibly difficult it was to get acquainted. I was determinate not to miss out on such an opportunity.
It was amazing to see how far a smile, a curious attitude and lot of respect would go. My presence intrigued them, standing in the middle of their village I looked like them however I seemed different.
Full day flying in West Papua
As you can see, I have had a wonderful time. At the end of the day, travelling to Manokwari, Anggi and Merdey, was an amazing opportunity particularly meeting the locals.