Monday, May 31, 2010

Beach and forest clean up campaign in Manokwari Papua

Eco-tourism in Manokwari city is a campaign that I am doing right now. I was born and grew up in this city which was only a very small town thirty years ago. Manokwari bay was beautiful. Of course it is still beautiful right now. Three islands in the Dorey bay are still surrounded by coral reefs. Most of them are now facing destruction from irresponsible fishing practices and run off of garbage thrown out to the sea by the city dwellers.
Every time I bring tourists to Mansinam island or Raimuti island, I always tell the local villagers not to throw their domestic wastes to the sea. It is better for them to dig a hole next to their houses where they can bury organic wastes. A fisherman in Arfai whose boat we rent said that he has begun informing the people living a long the beach of Arfai not to throw garbage to the sea. The Papuan who live there are happy to see western tourists swimming and snorkeling in the island.

I also promote forest clean up campaign in the tropical rainforest of the Table Mountain of Manokwari. Well, I once met some of the university students whose dormitory is located near the forest one month ago. I told them that I often bring foreign tourists to Table Mountain for bird and butterfly watching. Usually after traveling around the forest, we visit the Japanese war memorial monument to take a break there. While taking a rest, I and Paul, a friend of mine, pick up plastic garbage scattered around the monument. The students like the idea. The next time I visited the monument again, I saw the garbage had been burnt, perhaps, by the student. Actually I don't like the idea of burning plastic but there is no processing plant in this city which can recycle such waste. So, burning is considered the easiest solution to clean up the area.
With more tourists come to Manokwari, I am very optimistic that the citizens in this city will be aware about how important the marine environment and tropical rainforest are not only for foreign tourists but  also most importantly for our own life.
There are a lot of things that we need to do to clean up the Dorey bay of Manokwari from plastics and the presence of tourists in this city will attract the attention of both the citizens and the government to be good hosts for them. Clean environment is the keyword that we need to introduce to every ear of the city dwellers in order to preserve Manokwari's nature. by Charles Roring

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Watching Butterfly in the Table Mountain of Manokwari of West Papua

I, Katja and Paul went to Table Mountain on 26 May 2010. Because we wanted to watch butterfly, we woke up early. At around 6 a.m we were on top of the mountain hiking along the road. The air was fresh and the view of Manokwari city looked calm. When the sun light hit the surface of the green leaves and the flowers, various colors of ornamental butterflies came out of their hiding places and began flying around. It was wonderful to see a lot of butterflies.  One even landed on the tip of my shorts. We did not need binoculars to watch them. Butterfly watching in Manokwari's Table Mountain is my favorite activity. Butterflies were just everywhere, big and small, black, white, yellow, and brown.
We walked to Japanese war memorial. It has a little open area provided by local government to Japanese government to build a monument for honoring the Japanese soldiers who died during the the Pacific War. There, I and Paul picked up some garbage scattered around the monument which had been thrown by people who visited place. That's what we usually do to keep the surroundings of the monument clean. Katja (the German tourist) also helped us. We put all the wastes at the left side of the gate and Paul burnt them.
 We took a rest for around 30 minutes there before continuing our trip to see more butterflies and other unique vegetation of tropical rainforest. Because Table Mountain is located near the Manokwari city and not too high from the sea surface, we can see a lot of insects and birds in it.
 As we were descending the mountain Kompleks Missi where my house was, Katja stopped for a while and picked up a large dry leaf of Sukun tree (bread tree). She asked me to take a picture of her standing with the leaf. She said that in Europe, there are no leaves with such size. She was amazed by the leave. In the tropical rainforest of Papua, we can see a lot of unique plants that always attract tourists' attention.
The best time for bird watching and butterfly watching is from 6 a.m and 11 a.m. We can actually do it all day but I think morning and before sunset are the best times for admiring and appreciating the nature. If you are interested in hiking in the Table Mountain of Manokwari, you can contact me - Charles Roring - by email to:
Also read: A Visit to Mansinam Island and A Meeting with Peter Rumbruren

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A visit to Mansinam Island and A meeting with Peter Rumbruren

Yesterday (20 May 2010), I went with Katja Zimmermann, a German tourist, to Mansinam island. It is located in the Dorey bay of Manokwari. Mansinam is an important island for Christians in West Papua. In 1855 German missionaries Ottow, his wife and Geisler landed on 5 February to preach Gospel to the indigenous people of Papua. Now most of the native population of Papua island are Christians. Katja and I did some snorkeling at the back of the island and then we went hiking along the coast to reach the Mansinam village that is located at the north of the island. After making mistakes in walking around in the forest back to the Manggewa - the starting point where we enjoyed snorkeling, we decided to walk along the beach to make sure that we would not get lost in the jungle for the second time.
Butterflies, birds, and wild flowers of the Mansinam island were very beautiful. Mansinam also has beautiful coral reef park at the southwestern region of the island and several shipwrecks that are potential to be the diving sites. It was nearly 3 p.m. when we arrived at the village. I asked a little boy named Leo to show me where the residence of Peter Rumbruren was. He is a Papuan artist whose carvings have become favorite souvenirs among tourists. Finally, we arrived in front of his house. I decided to take my wallet to give some money to the boy.
But Katja insisted that I must not give money to the boy. It would be considered as encouraging capitalism and damaging the spirit of eco-tourism. She said that Balinese children like to ask money from tourists. Instead of being creative children, they become beggars. I like Katja's idea. Based on her advice, we went to a kiosk around one hundred meters from Peter Rumbruren's house to buy some drinks. I gave Leo a bottle of orange juice. This boy supports the Netherlands for the World Cup football that is going to be held in South Africa.
We met Peter's daughter and asked if his father was around. She went to the back of the house calling his father. Peter was very happy to meet us. We had a one-hour conversation with topics about art, culture,  reactions from the church concerning his activities in making Korwar carvings. He also showed us his carvings and the interior of his traditional house that was full of various artworks. We took some photographs and drank fresh coconut juice. 
Peter is a prolific artist, his traditional Dorey hut is his art gallery. When I and Katja wrote our names on his guestbook, we could see that many tourists had visited this hut.
If you are interested in meeting him personally, you could find his house that is located at the back of the Lahai Roi church. It is not difficult to find it. You may ask the villagers and they will help you.
It was nice talking with Peter Rumbruren. It was around 4 p.m. when we left Mansinam island by Peter's boat. I hope this short story will give you an idea of how beautiful this tropical island for people who like Papua's nature. by Charles Roring
Also read: Watching Butterfly in the Table Mountain of Manokwari of West Papua

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Herbs to cure Malaria from Manokwari Rainforest

Several months ago (January, 2010), I accompanied three Russian tourists hiking in the Table Mountain of Manokwari. While we were walking we saw a plant whose vine hanging on a large tree. My friend, a local Papuan named Paul, called it "Tali Kuning" or "Yellow Rope." 
Tali Kuning is used to cure Malaria, a deadly disease which is common in West Papua and other tropical regions. When the Russians asked him how to use it, Paul explained that the Papuan usually boils the tali kuning as if they are boiling tea. The one who suffers Malaria needs to drink a glass of tali kuning tea three times a day for at least one week. Its taste is very bitter. It is considered as a very good herbal medicine for curing Malaria. by Charles Roring

Monday, May 10, 2010

Arfak Mountains of Manokwari

Arfak Mountains of Manokwari have been famous around the world as the perfect site for eco-tourism activities. Arfak mountain range stretches from the east to the west of the bird's head region of West Papua. Perhaps many of you have not seen how these mountains look like. Well, to help you get an idea of how these mountains look like, I have taken some pictures of the mountains and presented them for you here in this Manokwari Papua blog.

Various species of birds, mammals and reptiles can be found in Arfak mountains. If you want to go hiking in Arfak, there are a number of items that you need to bring, hiking shoes, sleeping bag, mosquito repellent lotion, matches to burn firewood, warm clothing, flashlight, food, first aid kit, and other equipment that are usually used during an adventure travel. Don't forget to bring your digital photo or video camera (including spare batteries). For bird watching and kuskus watching, and butterflying, bring telescope and binoculars. by Charles Roring

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Wooden Boats in Manokwari Bay

Dorey bay of Manokwari is the center of marine activities for seafarers. They can be fishermen, merchants or passengers waiting for wooden boats. As a boat enthusiast, I like taking pictures of the boats in this bay. Boats are important marine vehicles that function as means of transportation for the villagers living along the coastal villages of West Papua province.
These boats transport goods and people to villages in places as far as Numfoor island and Wondama regency. One of the boats that interest me most is a passenger wooden boat that was designed and constructed to look like the modern steel vessels operated by PELNI, a state owned passenger liner in Indonesia. Although they are different in sizes and materials. Both of them play the same role - transporting passengers.
If PELNI ships transport passengers and cargoes throughout the Indonesian archipelago, this passenger wooden boat transports people and goods to Oransbari, Ransiki, Windesi and perhaps Wasior town around the Cendrawasih or Geelvinkbaai.
If you visit Manokwari, I suggest that you take a short trip to Anggrem area of the city to see the beauty of the bay and the daily activities of the people living near the beach with their boats and canoes as their marine crafts. by Charles Roring
Also read:
Manokwari bay in the afternoon
Wooden boats in the Dorey bay of Manokwari

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Butterfly Watching in Manokwari's Table Mountain

This afternoon I and my friend Paul went to the Table Mountain of Manokwari. We walked through this tropical rainforest of West Papua to see butterflies and other animals that we might see in the jungle. I brought my digital camera, Sony Cybershot DSC W30. Butterfly watching or butterflying could be done in the mornings at around 8 to 10 or in the afternoon before sunset.
Personally, I don't know the names of the butterflies, but I was amazed to see the photographs of the butterflies and the worms that I took during that afternoon's nature walk
There were butterflies that attach their bodies under the leaves of the plants and there were those that attach their bodies on the green leaves of the tropical vegetation. They looked beautiful. There were also big size butterflies such as Swallowtail Blue Mountain (Papilio ulysses) or the Birdwing Butterfly Ornitopthera priamus, The Silkh Owl (Taenaris catops) and Cruiser Butterfly (Vindula arsinoe). Unfortunately, I was not able to take pictures of them.
If you are a butterfly enthusiast and are interested in visiting Manokwari for watching the butterflies in the Table Mountain and other places in this region, please contact me - Charles Roring through my email I will be happy to be your travel guide in this city.
There are several places in West Papua that are good for watching butterflies in their natural habitats. The ones that I have seen while guiding
Butterfly and Flower Art Merchandise:
Please, support our efforts in promoting the protection of tropical rainforest and coral reef environments by ordering the following products.  The money that we get from selling the merchandise will be allocated for the campaign works on the preservation of jungle and marine environment.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Manokwari bay in the afternoon

In my previous article, I wrote about Manokwari bay early in the morning. Now I am writing about the bay which is called Dore or Dorey bay in the afternoon. Different from the morning time where the waters of the bay look peaceful and calm, the scenery of Dorey bay of Manokwari city in the afternoon looks busy.
Fishermen and seafarer were busy working with their canoes and wooden boats. In Anggrem area of Manokwari, traditional wooden boats were loading goods to be delivered to coastal villages along the Cendrawasih bay (Geelvinkbaai).
These wooden boats are another tourist attraction which travelers can see while visiting Manokwari city, the capital of West Papua province in the Republic of Indonesia.
Next to the busy wooden jetty, and wooden boats, Papuan were also busy feeding their pigs at the pigpens that had been constructed along the beach of Anggrem area. These pigpens were basic wooden platform above sea water. I just knew that there were pigpens there. As the travel writer of this blog, I am planning to promote Anggrem as another tourist attractions where we can see how the Papuan live and work to survive from the dynamic and rapidly growing economic activities of Manokwari city.
 Dorey bay is one of the most beautiful bays in the world. Here travelers can see and experience the beauty of Manokwari city, a tropical city with all of its dynamics. Some coral islands in the Dorey bay are perfect sites for scuba diving especially for the coral reefs and shipwrecks. At the south of the bay the blue Arfak mountain has become the natural habitat for bower bird, birds of paradise and hundreds of orchids while at the north of the bay, the Table Mountain with its hiking trails provide wonderful attractions for tourists who want to explore the caves and watch the bats as well as the goliath cockatoo and hornbills. If you are interested in visiting Manokwari city to see the beauty of the Dorey bay as a tourist and need a travel guide, please, do not hesitate to contact me Charles Roring

Manokwari bay early in the morning

The photographs of Manokwari city in the morning were taken yesterday. It was early in the morning when the ship harbor (haven) of Manokwari was empty. There were four cargo ships berthing along the pier. There were no activities, I like walking and jogging along the Panoramaweg (Brawijaya street) to keep my body healthy. Yesterday, I decided to continue walking to the harbor.