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Friendly Fantail Rhipidura albolimbata occurs throughout the mountains of New Guinea. Copyright © Dubi Shapiro

West Papua birding breaks

Our birding breaks have been designed with the occupied, regionally living bird-watcher in mind, who wants to make the most of a midweek's birding escape to West Papua. These trips provide an excellent introduction to New Guinea birding. So whether you simply seek a first taste of Papuan birding, or foster more ambitious plans for multiple visits in order to gradually come to grips with West Papua's scattered and difficult-to-get-to endemics, our short bird-watching vacations cater to both these interests.

Arfak montane specialties

The ballerina display of the adult male Western Parotia Parotia sefilata on its meticulously cleared ground court has to be witnessed to be believed. This amazing bird-of-paradise is but one of 54 bird species endemic to West Papua where it occurs at mid-elevations in the Arfak, Tamrau and Wandammen Mountains. Copyright © Jan Vertelman

6 days/5 nights
In search of so-called 'Vogelkop' endemics, we basically follow in the footsteps of the great Italian collectors D’Albertis and Beccari, who first explored the Hattam-country only a few kilometers away from our base in the Arfak Mountains at 1,600 m elevation on the mid-slopes of majestic Mount Indon.


Geelvink Islands endemics

Numfor Paradise Kingfisher Tanysiptera carolinae occurs only on Numfor Island in western New Guinea's fabled Geelvink or Cenderawasih Bay and hence is a West Papua endemic. Copyright © Aniket Sardana

5 days/4 nights
No less than 17 endemic bird species, including two fabulous paradise kingfishers, plus heaps of highly distinct yet almost 'forgotten' endemic subspecies await us on this birding adventure covering the islands of Biak and Numfor in West Papua's fabled Geelvink or Cenderawasih Bay.


Northern lowlands

The adult male Twelve-wired Bird-of-paradise Seleucidis melanoleucus could be one of the highlights around our secluded Muaib jungle camp near Jayapura. Copyright © Roland Hilgartner

6 days/5 nights
This birding break carries us to pristine alluvial lowland forests just west of the Cyclops Mountains near Jayapura, home to a rich and colorful lowland forest avifauna that includes a man-sized cassowary, two megapodes, seven dazzling forest kingfishers, a profusion of parrots, the world's largest pigeon, and a whopping six species of bird-of-paradise.


Waitanta endemics

Wilson's Bird-of-paradise Diphyllodes respublica occurs only on the Raja Ampat islands of Waigeo and Batanta and has often been claimed by seasoned world birders to be the best bird roaming the face of our planet! Copyright © Dubi Shapiro

6 days/5 nights
Every self-respecting world birder is bound to at least once in a lifetime undertake the pilgrimage to Waitanta’s avian delights. The Wilson's and Red Bird-of-paradise here surely are contenders for the title of most beautiful bird in the world. But best of all perhaps, just by joining this birding adventure of a lifetime, you actively help protecting an entire river catchment containing a spectacular component of Earth's living diversity.


    Why go birding in West Papua with Papua Expeditions?
  • Genuine birders catering for birders: we just know what the discerning bird-watcher wants.
  • Expert bird identification and interpretation by great guides, keen on sharing an intimate knowledge, amassed over years of practical field experience.
  • Our unrivaled digital sound library of West Papuan birds, now exceeding 5,000 tracks, maximizes the outlook of coming to grips with the most elusive of species through sparing and cautious playback in the field.
  • Extensively researched, top quality birding itineraries, maximizing time in the field: we take you off the beaten track to pristine hotspots we know inside out!
  • Very small groups for better birding: minimum 4 and maximum 6 participants plus 2 expedition leaders.
  • Small company means attention to people and detail.

Thank you very much for an excellent week on Waigeo. We all enjoyed it a great deal. You have a very good team and run the trip remarkably well considering the fairly difficult logistics. It was fantastic to see such an interesting and new variety of birds and we were lucky to be in the hands of an expert spotter and knowledgeable guide, though you did both miss the cuscus at the base of that tree ;-)
Well done for providing lots of tasty food throughout and an endless supply of lime juice.
Dr. Ivo Elliot, UK