Friday, April 19, 2024

Sorong City Sightseeing and Birdwatching Tour

Sorong city is the main gate to Raja Ampat islands - a popular destination in Indonesia for marine tourism. A lot of tourists who like swimming and snorkeling fly to and leave from Sorong city every day. They spend one or two weeks in Waigeo, Mansuar, Kri, Gam, Arborek, Batanta and Misool islands.

So far most visitors think that Sorong city is only a transit point or transportational hub. As a matter of fact, there are interesting sites which tourists can go, to see and enjoy the natural beauty of the region or to see the wealth of the biodiversity of its flora and fauna.  For Sorong tours, here are some of the attractions:

In e-bird, this bird is called Blue-fronted Fig Parrot (Cyclopsitta gulielmitertii) 
This bird was named after William III - King of the Netherlands (1849-1890)

In field guidebook Birds of New Guinea by Thane K. Pratt and Bruce Beehler, the above parrot is called Orange-breasted Fig - Parrot (Cyclopsitta gulielmitertii). In Greek mythology, Cyclop was a race of one-eyed giants. Psitta is parrot family. Gulielmi means William and tertii or tertius means the third. So, the bird is named after William III - the King of the Netherlands who ruled his country from 1849 to 1890.  

Most of the land in the suburb of Sorong is still covered by tropical rainforest. It is the habitat of a lot of species of colorful birds and butterflies. They can be watched when visitors take 1 or 2 days sightseeing and birdwatching tour. 

sorong city tour
Sightseeing Tour in Sorong city

Taking this tour, the participant will be taken to forest area in the hills and coastal areas to watch such birds as Pinon Imperial Pigeon, White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Orange-fronted Fruit Dove, Yellow-faced Myna, Helmetted Friarbird, Sahul Sunbird, Brown-backed Honeyeater, and a lot more. 

Mangrove Tiger butterfly (Danaus affinis mytilene)
Mangrove Tiger Butterfly

Birdwatching and sightseeing activity is easy because participants will walk along the roadside and boardwalk. 

During the wildlife watching activity, spotting scope will be provided to enhance the watching experience of each participant. 

Visitors can bring camera to take pictures of flowers, birds and butterflies that exist in the surrounding areas.

Love Hill of Sorong city
Sightseeing Tour in Sorong city

In addition to exploring the surrounding nature, during the Sorong tours, we will also see unique or historical architectural design of houses or buildings in the city. One of them is the Catholic Church of Christ the King in Kampung Baru area. Its design is inspired by the 'nest' structure of Vogelkop Bowerbird (Amblyornis inornatus). 

cathedral church of Christ the King on Sorong city
The Design of the Catholic Church of Christ the King was inspired by the structure of the "nest" of Vogelkop Bowerbird.

For tour package and cost, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by whatsapp to: +6281332245180 or email to: peace4wp@gmail.com. 


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Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Birding in Raja Ampat, Tambrauw, and Sorong of Southwest Papua, Indonesia

I often guide tourists to watch birds and wild animals in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat regency; Sausapor and Klabili in Tambrauw regency; Malagufuk and Mangrove forest in Sorong regency. These are important birding sites in Papua Barat Daya Province of Indonesia that can easily be reached from Sorong city. 

I usually start the birding trip by meeting my clients at the airport of Sorong city and then organize their transfer by 4wd car to Sausapor town in Tambrauw regency. We usually spend around 2 days and 2 nights exploring the coastal area and the forest to look for such birds as Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Oriental Pratincole, Little-ringed Plover, Black-nap

ed Tern, Gray Crow, Blyth's Hornbill, Hooded Butcherbird, Black Butcherbird, Palm Cockatoo, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Slender-billed Cuckoo Dove, Helmetted Friarbird, Brown Oriole, Red-cheeked Parrot, Yellow-faced Myna, Lesser Birds of Paradise, Western-crowned Pigeon, King Bird of Paradise, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Long-tailed Honeybuzzard. There are several birding sites at the outskirts of Sausapor town that we can visit.

Lesser Birds of Paradise, Willie Wagtail, Moustached Treeswift
Some birds in Tambrauw regency

Butterfly Watching in Sansapore Pacific Park

Not only birds that we can see in the forest and coastal areas around Sausapor town. We could also watch butterflies and see various kinds of flowers such as zinnia, beach hibiscus, red hibiscus, Barringtonia asiatica, orchids and etc. Sansapore Pacific Park Beach Resort is a good base for visitors who love butterflying in the area. Some butterflies that we could watch in Sausapor town include Great Eggfly (Hipolimnas bolina), Dark Tiger (Tirumala hamata), Blue Mountain Swallowtail (Papilio ulysses) God Art's butterfly (Cyrestis acilia), Common Green Birdwing (Ornithoptera priamus) and a lot more. 

Sansapore Pacific Park in Tambrauw regency
Some Flowers at Sansapore Pacific Park
Great Eggfly butterfly (Hipolimnas bolina), Dark Tiger Butterfly (Tirumala hamata), Godart's Map butterfly (Cyrestis acilia)
Butterflies in Sansapore Pacific Park
Beach Resort of Sausapor town - Tambrauw regency

The next destination for birding in Tambrauw is Klabili village which is a great site for watching Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, King Bird of Paradise, Twelve-wired Bird of Paradise, Lowland Peltop, and Rufous-bellied Kookaburra,Frilled Monarch, Papuan Frogmouth, Marbled Frogmouth, Common Paradise Kingfisher, Palm Cockatoo, New Guinea Vulturine Parrot, Papuan Babbler, Golden Myna, Helmetted Friarbird, and a lot more.  

birding in Klabili village
Wildlife watching in Klabili village of Tambrauw regency

In Waigeo island of Raja Ampat, our targets include Red Bird of Paradise, Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Spice Imperial Pigeon, Pinon's Imperial Pigeon, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Radjah Shelduck, Eclectus Parrot, Beach Kingfisher, White-eyebrow Wagtail or Willie Wagtail, Pacific Reef Heron, Crested Tern, Whimbrel, Osprey, and a lot more. 

I also organize excursions to islands and beach near Kabui bay to look for birds such as Coconut Lorikeet, Sahul Sunbird, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Lesser Frigatebird, Moustached Treeswift, Metallic Starling, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Beach Kingfisher and Pacific Swallow. Birding at the beach is relaxing. 

Visitors can also enjoy snorkeling during the excursion. My preferred choice is Lesser Urai Island or the beach of Gam island that faces Kabui bay. 

boat excursion to Lesser Urai island in Kabui bay
Birding Tour in Raja Ampat

It is not only birds that we photograph during the tour in Raja Ampat but also butterflies and flowers. Every time I see beautiful flowers such as plumeria, hibiscus, passion flower and orchid, I will stop and aim my camera at the flowers to take pictures of them. There are a few orchids that I have seen both in the forest and flower gardens of the homestays and resorts. 

Dendrobium orchid
Rainforest Orchid in Waigeo, perhaps, Dendrobium lanceolatum

Another rainforest orchid that I used to see in Raja Ampat was Grammathophyllum scriptum. It was not in the jungle but at the flower garden of a beach resort.

Grammatophyllum scriptum
Tawa-tawa Orchid Flower in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat

In Sorong city, the usual birding sites are Mangrove forest, Love hill and Batu Lubang areas. There we can watch birds such as Orange-bellied Fruit Dove, Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Brown-backed Honeyeater, Orange-fronted Fruit Dove, Shining Flycatcher, Sacred Kingfisher, Orange-breasted Fig Parrot, Golden Monarch, and a lot more. There are introduced species that we may see such as Spotted Dove, Scaly-breasted Munia and Yellow-vented Bulbul. Sorong city is a good site for any visitors who want to enjoy an outdoor activity before leaving for Raja Ampat or flying back to their home.

birding walk in Indonesia
Birding and sightseeing in Sorong city

It is also the main entry point for visitors who want to spend their holiday in this Southwest Papua province enjoying swimming and snorkeling at the beach of Raja Ampat and Tambrauw as well as rainforest birdwatching and wildlife watching tour in Sorong and Waigeo. 

Flying Routes

Visitors who are interested in taking this tour need to fly to Sorong city. There are daily flights from major cities in Indonesia such as Jakarta, Surabaya, Denpasar and Makassar to Sorong served by domestic airlines Garuda, Lion Air, Batik Air. 

flight route to Sorong city
Flying routes to Sorong city

Visitors can enjoy their holiday by combining Manado city and Sorong city as their travel destination. 

If you are interested in taking a holiday tour in Sorong city and its surroundings (Raja Ampat, and Tambrauw) and want me to organize your tour, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by whatsapp to +6281332245180 or by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com. 

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Saturday, March 16, 2024

Birdwatching in Minahasa Highland

Recently I visited Sonder, a small town in Minahasa highland. I was there for around 1 week. I did birding walks around the forest of the surrounding hills and rice fields, I also went to a mountain near the town. It was an interesting trip. 

Black-naped Oriole, Pale Blue Monarch, Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker
Some Birds in Minahasa Highland

I stayed at a homestay in Tounelet village and watched birds in the nearby forest. Most of the photograph of birds that I took were taken from the forest. I was surprised to see that there were a lot of species of birds that lived in that small forest. I saw Sooty-headed Bulbul, Sahul Sunbird, Black Sunbird, Grey-sided Flowerpecker, Yellow-sided Flowerpecker, Chestnut Munia, Eurasian Treesparrow, Black-naped Oriole, Pale Blue Monarch, Sulawesi Blue Flycatcher, Grey-cheeked Green Pigeon, Barred Rail, Cattle Egret, Black-crowned White-eye, Sulawesi Hanging Parrot, Sulawesi Swiftlet, White-nest Swiftlet, and Slender-billed Crow.

birdwatching trip in Sonder of North Sulawesi
Yellow-billed Malkoha, Collared Kingfisher, Warbling White-eye, and Hair-crested Drongo

In the rice field area, I saw White-breasted Woodswallow, Collared Kingfisher, Cattle Egret, White-browed Crake, Grey Wagtail, Chestnut Munia, Collared Kingfisher, and Scaly-breasted Munia. 

Another interesting birdwatching site in Minahasa higland is Mount Lengkoan. I saw some unique birds there including White-faced Cuckoo Dove, Black-faced Munia,  Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker, Crimson Sunbird, Sultan's Cuckoo Dove, and Warbling White-eye, Collared Kingfisher, and Hair-crested Drongo (which James Eaton's Birds of Indonesian Archipelago names it, White-eyed Spangled Drongo). 

Blanchard's Ghost, Manado Yellow Tiger and Blanchard's Wood Nymph Butterflies

In addition to birds, I also saw various species of butterflies including the Helena Birdwing, Blanchard's Ghost, and Blandchard's Wood Nymph (Ideopsis vitrea) butterflies that like to feed on nectar of flowers in the mornings. 

Bamboo Orchid (Arundina graminifolia)
Bamboo Orchid

Sonder town

Sonder is a small town in Minahasa regency. It is a nice destination for nature lovers who are interested in seeing mountains, farmlands, ricefields, hotsprings, and forests while watching birds, butterflies and other wildlife in the region. 

Sonder town
Sonder town in Minahasa highland of North Sulawesi, Indonesia

How to get to Minahasa?

Manado city is the main gate to visit Minahasa.

  • It is very easy to visit Minahasa. First, you need to fly from your country to Singapore. After that you could take a direct flight by Scoot Air to Manado city
  • If you fly to Jakarta, Surabaya, or Denpasar, you could continue your trip by taking domestic airline to fly to Manado city.
  • There is also daily flight between Sorong city and Manado city.

traveling to Minahasa
Flying Route to Manado City
Minahasa highland map
Sonder is a small town in the highland of Minahasa

I could meet you at the airport and organize your trip to Minahasa or other regencies in North Sulawesi.

If you are interested in taking a nature tour in Indonesia by combining West Papua and North Sulawesi regions and want me to organize your trip, you could contact me by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180. 

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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Birding in Sausapor, Klabili and Sorong City

I have just completed a birding tour for two Australian birdwatchers in Sausapor town, Klabili village of Tambrauw regency, and Sorong city. We spent 4 days/ 3 nights exploring tropical rainforest of the region where we saw a lot of species of birds. Some of them include Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, Black Lory, Palm Cockatoo, Hooded Pitta and South Papuan Pitta. 

wompoo fruit dove, catbird, new guinea vulturine parrot
Birds in Tambrauw regency

In Sausapor town, we went deeper into the forest by using 4WD car. There, we saw Blyth's Hornbill, Black-capped Lory, Red-cheeked Parrot, Helmetted Friarbird, Brown Oriole, Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Mimic Meliphaga, Golden Myna, Yellow-faced Myna, Rusty Pitohui, White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Hooded Butcherbird, Orange-bellied Fruit Dove, Torresian Crow, Lesser Black Coucal, Singing Starling, Pinon Imperial Pigeon, Spangled Drongo, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra, and a lot more. The recommended forests around Sausapor were the one along the Sausapor - Werur road and the one in hydroelectric powerplant. 

birdwatching in Sausapor
Birdwatching in Tambrauw regency of the Province of Papua Barat Daya 

We stayed 2 nights at Sansapore Pacific Park which is a beach accommodation that is suitable for visitors who like snorkeling and wildlife watching in the forest. 

hooded pitta
Hooded Pitta

Southern-Papuan Pitta
South Papuan Pitta

In Klabili village, we saw Papuan Babbler, Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, New Guinea Vulturine Parrot (Merlin app. calls it Pesquet's Parrot), Shining Flycatcher, Papuan Pitta, Hooded Pitta, Papuan Frogmouth, Marbled Frogmouth, Pinon's Imperial Pigeon, Black Lory, Coconut Lorikeet, Palm Cockatoo, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Eclectus Parrot, Large Fig Parrot, and Frilled Monarch. The forest in Klabili consisted of two parts, the lowland forest and the lower montane forest which are the habitat of Twelve-wired Bird of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Yellow-capped Pygmy Parrot, Western-crowned Pigeon, Papua Dwarf Kingfisher, Sooty Thicket Fantail, Moluccan King-Parrot and etc. 

We stayed one night at the homestay that belongs to a villager. It was a basic accommodation but comfortable enough for birdwatching visitors who explore the forest in remote area.

Sorong City has got some interesting places for birdwatching. We went to Mangrove forest where we saw Brown-backed Honeyeater, Blue-fronted Fig Parrot, Striated Heron, Sahul Sunbird, Willie Wagtail, and Orange-fronted Fruit Dove.

tourist attraction in Indonesia
Blue-fronted Fig Parrot

In my previous trip to a forest in Sorong regency, I guided two British ladies. We explored the forest in the mornings, afternoons and at nights. We saw a lot of species of birds including Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Purple-tailed Imperial Pigeon, Black Lory, Black-sided Robin, Spot-winged Monarch, and Ivory-billed Coucal, Glossy-mantled Manucode, Common Paradise Kingfisher. One of the ladies suffered pains on her hip and back. She experienced it when taking a speedboat trip to Piaynemo on Raja Ampat. It was a bumpy ride because of waves.  I had to give massage treatments in several sessions at nights to relieve the pains. I massaged the lower back area, the gluteus and adductor muscles and leg muscles. I used kutus-kutus oil that I warmed up with my palm. The treatment could ease the pain and relieve the tight muscles. 

The rainforest areas from Sorong to Sausapor are great destination for wildlife watching. Visitors who are interested in visiting these places can go as single traveler or in a small group from two, three, to four people to share the cost of paying transportation, accommodation, guides and villagers who work to support the tour. 

If you are interested in taking the tour, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180.


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Thursday, February 8, 2024

Birdwatching and Wildlife-watching Tour to Sausapor town, Klabili village of Tambrauw Regency and Waigeo Island of Raja Ampat

For the past few months I have been running birdwatching, and wildlife-watching tours from Sorong city to Sausapor town, Klabili village and Waigeo island of Tambrauw regency with a duration of around 7 to 8 days. This tour is suitable for visitors who are traveling in group of 2 to 4 people so that they could share the cost of transportation, accommodation and guiding service. 

Tropical Birds of New Guinea
Birding in Tambrauw regency of West Papua

Sausapor is a coastal town that faces the blue water of Pacific Ocean. I takes around 4 hours by 4WD car from Sorong city to Sausapor. There is a nice beach resort there. Its name is Sansapore Pacific Park. The frontyard and backyard of the resort is a great place for watching seabirds as well as coastal birds such as Common Sandpiper, Lesser Frigatebird, Little-ringed Plover, Oriental Pratincole, Eclectus Parrot, Coconut Lorikeet, Palm Cockatoo, Blyth's Hornbill, Mimic Meliphaga, and a lot more. I and my clients usually spend two nights at Sansapore Pacific Park. Early in the morning at around 04:00, we wake up to make preparation and have tea or coffee as well as some biscuits and then do birding to find Lesser Birds of Paradise and King Bird of Paradise, Glossy-mantled Manucode, as well as White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Sahul Sunbird, Olive-crowned Flowerpecker, Magnificent Riflebird, Hooded Butcherbird, Black Butcherbird, Black-capped Lory, Pinon's Imperial Pigeon, Zoe's Imperial Pigeon, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Double-eyed Fig Parrot, Helmetted Friarbird, Rainbow Bee-eater, Brown Oriole, Golden Myna and a lot more. 

There is coral reef at the beach, so, in addition to birding, visitors can enjoy snorkeling to see various species of fish and other marine creatures such as sea star, parrotfish, wrasse, butterflyfish, anemonefish, and a lot more. 

birding trip to Sausapor town of West Papua
Sansapore Pacific Park Beach Resort

Sansapore Pacific Park has got flowers that attract butterflies such as Common-Green Birdwing, Great Eggfly, cruiser butterfly, Ulysses butterfly and etc. 

Frilled Monarch, Wompoo Fruit Dove, Lowland Peltop, Purple-tailed Imperial Pigeon
Frilled Monarch, Wompoo Fruit Dove, Lowland Peltop, Purple-tailed Imperial Pigeon
Klabili Village - After spending 2 nights in Sausapor, I and my clients who take this rainforest tour continue our trip to Klabili village. Our target birds to watch here include Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, Twelve-wired Bird of Paradise, Papuan Frogmouth, Marbled Frogmouth, Hooded Pitta, Papuan Pitta, Common Paradise Kingfisher, Azure Kingfisher, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Blue-black Kingfisher, Western-crowned Pigeon, Lowland Peltop, Large Fig Parrot, Long-tailed Honey-buzzard, Brahminy Kite, Variable Goshawk, Yellow-faced Myna, Black-sided Robin, Spot-winged Monarch, Moluccan King Parrot, Slender-billed Cuckoo-dove, Emperor Fairywren, Sooty Thicket Fantail, Northern Fantail and etc. I usually spend 2 days/1 night in Klabili village. However, the duration of stay can be extended to 3 days/2 nights depending on the request if my clients. 

Sorong City - This is now the capital of the newly formed Province of Papua Barat Daya (meaning Southwest Papua). Mangrove forest is the usual destination for birders who want to see Orange-breasted Fig Parrot - now called Blue-fronted Fig Parrot- (Cyclopsitta gulielmitertii), Orange-fronted Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus aurantiifrons). The forest is also the habitat of White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Sahul Sunbird, Olive-backed Sunbird, Azure Kingfisher, Sacred Kingfisher, Shining Flycatcher, and Willie Wagtail, and etc.

mangrove park of Sorong city
Mangrove Park of Sorong city

Waigeo Island of Raja Ampat - The next part of the tour is birding and wildlife watching in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat. We will cross the sea by fast ferry and then continue trip by car to a beach resort of the island. Waigeo is rich of avifauna. Some of the important targets are Red Bird of Paradise, Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Beach Kingfisher, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra, Glossy-mantled Manucode, Violet-necked Lory, Coconut Lorikeet, Great-billed Parrot, Spice Imperial Pigeon, Moustached Treeswift, and etc.

How to get to Sorong city?

  • Route 1: Please, fly from your country to Singapore. After that you could continue flying to Manado city by Scoot Air. There is daily flight between Manado city and Sorong city.
  • Route 2: Fly from your country to Denpasar Bali of Indonesia. After that, take a direct flight from Denpasar to Sorong city by Garuda Indonesia airlines.
  • Route 3: Fly from your country to Jakarta which is the capital of Indonesia. Continue your trip to Sorong city by one of the domestic airlines of Indonesia.
flight route Singapore, Manado, Sorong city
Flight Routes to Sorong City

If you are interested in visiting Sorong city, Tambrauw mountains and Raja Ampat for birdwatching, wildlife watching and snorkeling, and want me to organize your trip, please, contact me by e-mail to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180. 

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Merchandise

Please, support this blog by buying art drawings and illustrations of wild animals and plants in the form of prints on various products as follows:

Watercolour Sketch of Bird

Watercolour Sketch of Bird
Fruit Dove from Tropical Rainforest

Vector Art Drawing in Inkscape

Vector Art Drawing in Inkscape
Swimming with Whaleshark

Vector art illustration in Inkscape

Vector art illustration in Inkscape
Baby leatherback turtle was reaching for the sea

Drawing of Paradise Bird

Drawing of Paradise Bird
Lesser Birds of Paradise art print on classic T-shirt

Digital Drawing in Autodesk Sketchbook

Digital Drawing in Autodesk Sketchbook
A Couple of Red Bird of Paradise