Sorong/Waigeo-Manokwari/Arfak-Jayapura/Nimbokrang Birding Trip
Duration: 15 – 29 September 2022
Day 1/15 Sept 2022: Arrival Sorong – Waigeo Island
The tours begin with your arrival in Sorong and then will be transferred directly to Waigeo island with a fast and comfortable express boat. on Waigeo island you will stay 3 nights in a comfortable resort with a great view both from the beach to the forest. This island located in the Raja Ampat archipelago arguably boasts the most-wanted birds on the tour. The display sites of both Red Bird-of-paradise and the awe-inspiring Wilson’s Bird-of-paradise will be visited during our days on the island. To make it even better, these sites are easy to reach after short 10-minute walks.
Day 2/16 September 2022: Waigeo Island
Just a few of many species that we might encounter include Blyth’s Hornbill, Eclectus Parrot, Emperor Fairywren, Orange-fronted Fruit Dove, and Papuan Drongo. We need to wake up 30 minutes early at 4.30 for breakfast. At 05.00 am we visit the hide of Wilson’s Bird of Paradise until lunch. From our resort, it takes around 15 to 20 minutes to drive to the stop point and we continue to walk around 5 to 10 minutes to the hide. The afternoon schedule will be followed.
Day 3/17 September 2022: Waigeo Island
In addition to the aforementioned ‘BoPs, the lowlands of this island offer a huge list of birds, including the localized Raja Ampat Pitohui, the incredible Western Crowned Pigeon, Great-billed and Moluccan King- Parrots, Claret-breasted, Orange-bellied, and Dwarf Fruit-Doves, Palm Cockatoo, Coconut Lorikeet, Yellow-faced Myna, Papuan Pitta, elusive White-eared Catbird, Brown-headed Crow, New Guinea Friarbird, and Golden Monarch and the Waigeo Cuscus. Our morning will start just like yesterday and after all preparation, we step up to the Red Bird of Paradise hide. From the resort, we will drive around 20 minutes to the stop point and walk for 30 minutes to the hide. You can enjoy the bird playing until lunchtime and we go back. The afternoon schedule will be followed.
Day 4/ 18 September 2022: Waigeo Island – Sorong
We still have one more chance to do birding in the morning before sailing to Sorong. We can start birding earlier in the morning around the village until before lunch. After returning to Sorong by express boat, we shall have another afternoon birding into the lowland forests in Sorong with a slew of different lowland forest specialties. Some truly breathtaking birds are possibilities for this afternoon’s excursion: Blue-black Kingfisher will be a major target this afternoon before we depart for the Arfaks tomorrow morning.
Day 5/ 19 September 2022: Sorong – Manokwari – Arfak
After a flight to Manokwari, and a drive with 4WD for around 2 hours, we will arrive at what is arguably the premier birding site on this side of New Guinea, the Arfak Mountains, situated on the northeast of the Bird’s Head (Vogelkop) Peninsula. This part of the island has a rich set of endemics all its own, plus a huge variety of widespread forest species. Five nights will be spent in a guesthouse at an elevation of 5250ft/1600m, and we will do birding in a range of elevations above and below here.
Days 6-9/20-23 September 2022: Arfak Mountain
With so much to see here, we will spend four full days birding the various forests, gardens and other secondary habitats that flank the mountains, and hold many of the tour’s standout birds. We will visit the display grounds of Magnificent Bird-of-Paradise, Western Parotia, and the bower of the Vogelkop Bowerbird, one of the great architects of the bird world, with an extraordinarily large and decorative bower that far outshines the dour bird itself!
While these may arguably be the most famous targets in the mountains, the list of other birds is both extensive and tantalizing, and includes the likes of Vogelkop Superb BoP, Long-tailed Paradigalla, Black Sicklebill, Black-billed Sicklebill, Glossy Mantled Manucode, Green-backed Robin, Crinkle-collared Manucode and Spotted Jewel-Babbler. If we extremely lucky we might catch up with Masked Bowerbird, Vulturine Parrot, or the New Guinea Harpy Eagle.
The nights will be spent at a community guesthouse. Sometimes owlet-nightjars, Feline Owlet-Nightar, Papuan Frogmouth, and Papuan Boobook can be found by daylight.
Day 10/24 September 2022: Arfak – Manokwari
After another full day in the Arfaks chasing the last of the best birds of the mountains we return to Manokwari where we overnight in a comfortable city hotel.
Day 11/ 25 September 2022: Manokwari – Jayapura – Nimbokrang
After taking a morning flight to Sentani, we head for Nimbokrang, and the lowland forests of the north for a three-night stay. In the afternoon we may stake out a clearing that is an excellent site for raptors, pigeons, and the bounty of parrots that grace the Papuan lowlands
Day 12-13/26 – 27 September 2022: Nimbokrang
This lowland site may be hot and sweaty, but it is loaded with special birds – a major theme on this tour! King Bird-of-paradise, Twelve-wired Bird-of-paradise, Hook-billed, Shovel-billed and Blue–black Kingfishers are just some of the birds on offer, though all of these species require a combination of luck and effort.
Day 14/28 September 2022: Nimbokrang – Sentani
After a long day in the lowland jungles of Nimbokrang, we return to Setanti for another night of hot water and a little luxury. But before that, in the morning we will do birding in the area we went to for a couple of days before once again until lunchtime and we go back.
Day 15/29 September 2022: Sentani Jayapura – Next destination
Transfer Out After long days of birding tours finally, it’s time to say goodbye. You will have your flight back to your home town. End of the trip.
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