Edit Blog Post
Published: March 14th 2016
One of the things this area of Papua is known for is the elusive Bird Of Paradise.
We needed to escape the heat and noise of the city so decided we'd take a walk in the surrounding countryside to see if we could spot one. We'd also read about a Pagoda giving good views of Sorong and the ocean beyond but no information as to how to get to it.
After much asking around in our hotel and getting nowhere we got the information we needed from the odd job man! He could speak better English than the receptionist!
He told us it was a two kilometres walk so must get a bus. He couldn't believe we were actually going to walk.
It turned out his directions were spot on and we found the hill taking us up to the Pagoda with no trouble. Admittedly it was a very steep hill from the main road but I doubt the bus would have taken us up there anyway.
We arrived at the Pagoda, drenched in sweat ( oh nice!) Only to find it was under repair and closed to the public. Work men were on the top throwing
View from the Pagoda
The islands of Raja Ampat in the distance
roof tiles down any old where. We were approached and asked where we were going. To see the Pagoda of course! Stupid question - there was nothing else around. We were asked to sign the visitors book, pay 10,000 IRP ( 50p) each then a quick call to the workmen to stop and we were ushered up the steps to the temple at one side. After the usual photos we climbed down and the men were allowed to continue working! Can you imagine that happening in England??!!
From here a path wound up higher so we decided to follow it in the hopes we may finally get to spot a bird of Paradise. Also it was nice to be away from the road noise and dust! Sadly we did not get to see any birds but we did meet many friendly locals who greeted us warmly.
Now I know some of you have joked about us not getting eaten as this part of the world is known for cannibalism but honestly the people couldn't have been friendlier. One man gathering firewood wanted to know all about us and our names. He was called Harry. I had felt a little
bit wary as we spproached him as there was no one else around anywhere but I needn't have worried. Just after leaving him we came across a wild pig wandering about, I did consider going back and asking Harry to protect us but the pig wandered off the path and didn't seem bothered by us. Sadly we didn't get the camera out in time.
We re- traced our steps and ended up back on the busy main road, another ten minute walk and we arrived back at our favourite air conned cafe, sank into a chair exhausted and ordered French fries! The temperature out there had been over 30 degrees.
And still we haven't seen a bird of paradise.
Oh well, tomorrow we leave for Makassar on Suluwesi
Tot: 3.663s; Tpl: 0.045s; cc: 15; qc: 83; dbt: 0.0618s; 3; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.5mb