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Watching The Bird of Paradise. In Paradise

14 November 2010 1,305 views No Comment

Every world traveller knows Raja Ampat, the islands in West Papua that is famous for its beautiful coral and fish species diversity. It’s almost a certainty for every tourist to witness the underwater natural beauty. Not surprisingly, many people refer to Raja Ampat as a paradise diving lovers.

In fact, the beauty is not only underwater. The beauty above the sea of Raja Ampat must also be sampled. Take my words. If you visit Raja Ampat, spend some time to come to the Village Sawinggrai, District Meos Mansar, Raja Ampat, West Papua. In this village you get a chance to see the agile birds of paradise, named Cendrawasih, a bird that became mascot of Papua, in their natural habitat.

There are four types of cendrawasih in Sawinggrai, namely red cendrawasih (Paradisaea rubra), cendrawasih split rattan (Cicinnurus magnificus), cendrawasih kecil(Paradisaea minor), and cendrawasih besar(Paradisaea Apoda). Of the four species, the red paradise is the mascot in this village.

The dancing cendrawasih is a very interesting moment to be seen. This is actually the mating ritual of cendrawasih. The males will gather to compete in showing their beauty feathers to attract females for marriage.

The dancing moment in Sawinggrai is usually done in the morning from 6:30 am to 7:30 am and in the afternoon, at 4:30 pm to 6:00 pm.

To enjoy the attractions of dancing cendrawasih, you must be willing to walk for about 30 minutes to climb Mount Manjai in Sawinggrai. A wooden hut has been prepared on the location. From there you can see the birds of paradise dancing on a big tree beautifully with naked eyes. These birds will dance more energetic if there are female cendrawasih bird in the vicinity.

However, if you visited Sawinggrai at the wrong time, you should forget to see birds of paradise dance attractions. December to mid February are the season for them to spawn.

But worry not, there are still more fun to do in Sawinggrai like playing with the fish at the pier or even snorkeling.

If you intend to visit Sawinggrai, you can use the boat from Sorong to the capital of Raja Ampat: Waisai. There are two choices, using fast ships with a travel time of about 2 hours, or using the local governments pilot ships with a travel time of about 4 hours. After that the trip continued by longboat to Sawinggraiin about 2.5 hours.

It’s worth the trip. It really is.

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