Indonesia is full of wonders, especially with its diverse cultures. But, did you know that West Papua is one of the most diverse cultures and traditional provinces in Indonesia? When talking about them, you got many things you need to know about west Papua Indonesia. But let’s talk about the Baliem Festival, one of the most famous local traditions in west Papua you can see.
Baliem Valley Festival
There are many tribes and traditions that you can find in West Papua. However, the Baliem valley festival is one of the famous ones. It is pretty known because it is not limited to local people. Tourists from everywhere can come to watch or join the festival with great cautions and permit. the festival is also a way to promote west Papuan art and cultural heritage.
So, what is it? Baliem is an art and cultural festival which mostly displays the traditional Dani and Lani tribe dance or sing. Three tribes contribute to the festival to reenact their battle in the old days. The things you need to know about west Papua Indonesia is that the Baliem festival di not kill or hurt people during its performance.
It is also worth noting that the festival is held for three days every year. It can be around august 8 – 10 or 8 -11. It is in the West Papua interior, Baliem valley. All activities will be on the open space arena that is enough for about 1000 warriors and dancers. The space should be around 400 m by 250 m, which is very large to avoid an incident.
It is advised to ask for a permit and goes with travel agencies. Tourists also need to report an itinerary to the police before going straight to the interior. One of the things you need to know about west Papua Indonesia is that the travel takes about one and half hours to reach the location if you start from Wamena.
One of the main points of the festival is the mock wars. It meant to reenact the olden battle between the three tribes in the areas. The mock wars followed a traditional music instrument called Pikon. The mock wars themselves are pretty intents. Ther are spears and arrows that cross for entertainment purposes.
After the intense battle, the festival also includes the competitive games of bow and arrow. The competition participants are mostly the children of the Puradan, Sikoko, etc. There are also other games, such as javelins and craftmanship manufacturing.
The things you need to know about west Papua Indonesia is that tourists can join the competition. Even better, the audience can also join the feast with the traditional cooking. You will taste the unique cuisine as well as witness the use of earth oven fires cooking.
As one of the annual and world-known west Papuan traditional festivals, it is open for tourists to watch or join. It is located in the interior part of west Papua, which needs a proper permit to pass. But all of the hard work will go away as you witness the astounding tribe mock wars, competition, and try the unique taste of west Papuan traditional cuisines.