2013 was only the 100th anniversary of the first recorded climb of Papua's 3rd highest mountain - Gunung Trikora.

Adventure Alternative are offering a rare chance to climb to the top of this remote and little known 4,750 m non-technical peak.

The scheduled climb will either begin or end with the annual Baliem Valley tribal highlands festival – this is when all the various highlands tribes come together for a big party in Wamena – a photographers dream!

A short film of the highlights of previous years' festivals is below.

This is also an area where there have been reported sightings of the rare species of wild New Guinea Singing Dogs (NGSD). It was in a similar area in mid 2012 that Tom Hewitt photographed what may be a wild NGSD and our local guides have reported seeing wild dogs whilst on the trail up to Mt Trikora. For further details on the possible NGSD sighting in 2012 see our blog and on the More Info Page on the right hand menu.



Total 14 days in country:

Arrive in Jayapura, expedition commences (1 day)
Internal Flight to Wamena & Final Preperations (1 day)
Drive & Trek from Wamena to Lake Habbema (1 day)
Climb Mt Trikora (5 days)
Trek out via mountain villages (2 days)
Baliem Valley Tribal Festival (2 days) [can be extended on request]
Internal flight from Wamena to Jayapura (1 day)
Depart Jayapura or add-on trips (1 day)

DayElevationTravel TimeInfo
1Arrive in Jayapura, capital of Papua Indonesia, after international flight. Probably via Jakarta or Bali. We will stay overnight here in simple local guesthouse and sleep off some of our jet lag.
2Fly Jayapura to Wamena. A short 45 minute flight over unbroken rainforest brings us to the fabled Baliem Valley. Here we will meet our guides and porters, visit a local market for last minute supplies and spend the night in a local hotel. After our flight, today will also be a fairly relaxed and flexible programme to further assist us in recovering from the international flight & jet lag and also to get to know the team.
3Drive Wamena to Lake Habbema. Today we will transfer to Lake Habbema at 3,300 m by 4 x 4. We then begin the first stage of our trek. After 2-3 hours walking we will establish camp close to the lake shore.
4After breakfast we continue our trek with around 5-6 hours of walking up through valley with gradual ascent. By afternoon we will establish camp and enjoy our surroundings.
5Today we continue on up the valley for around 5-6 hours until we get to a big cave at base of Trikora where we spend one night.
6Cave camp to the mountain Base Camp We trek further up the mountain flank to establish our base camp. We will have one or two nights depending on the weather to give the best chance of successful summit. The climbing on these days is testing with steep drops but non technical, it will be done slowly.
7Summit Day. Today we will set off from our base camp for the climb up to the summit of Mount Trikora. After enjoying the summit we will descend to base camp or even all the way down to Cave camp if conditions are good.
8Spare Summit Day If weather conditions allowed us to summit on the previous day then today can be spent relaxing or perhaps making our way back down toward the valley, setting up up camp en route. If the weather had not been suitable the day before, this will be our second opportunity to push on to the summit from base camp.
9Trikora Mountain to Mountain Village From the previous camp we will reach the first village on out route back – expect 6-7 hours today through wonderful wild scenery – the elusive and only once ever photographed New Guinea Singing Dog is known to inhabit this area.
10First to second mountain Village We continue our trek down to the next village, this may take around 5-6 hours. If we had a successful first summit day then we may be a little ahead of schedule and may therefore get back to Wamena today.
11Second Mountain Village to Wamena We complete the short last leg of our trek into Wamena, check into hotel and enjoy the start of the festival.
12Today we will get involved in the Wamena mountain festival. All the various visiting tribes will be 'meeting and greeting' each other and it will be a wonderful meeting of cultures and celebration of traditional lifestyles.
13Fly Wamena to Jayapura. Today we will bid farewell to our team of local guides, cooks and porters and take the short rainforest flight back to Papua Indonesia's capital, Jayapura.
14International flight home or Continue to additional trip extensions elsewhere in West Papua, possible options to follow.


Mt Trikora & Papuan Tribal Festival cost £2,495.00

  • All accommodation and food on trip
  • All transfers and internal transport from Jayapura Airport to all locations on itinerary and back to Jayapura Airport
  • Internal Flights- Jayapura-Wamena & Back
  • Western Trip Leader
  • Local Guides, Cooks Porters and Staff
  • All group camping and cooking equipment
  • Puncak Trikora Climbing Permit
  • UK company back-up and logistics
  • International air fare from/to Jayapura; DJJ (~£800)
  • Indonesia Visa (UK-$25)
  • Personal Travel Insurance (~£50-100)
  • Vaccinations & Medications (£varies)
  • Additional drinks & Food in cities/towns


You do not need to be super-fit for this trip but you do need to have a good background health and fitness and be able to sustain a slow walking pace for many hours. This kind of fitness is best arrived at by simply doing long walks on mixed, undulating terrain, perhaps with a small pack of say 5kg. Of course any kind of execise will benefit your conditioning for the trip, especially cardio-vascular and aerobic exercise and perhaps some leg-strength and flexibility work if you feel you have any weakness there.

On the trip we will travel slowly but continuously and will only carry our small day-packs containing extra layers, snacks and water. Porters will carry our larger packs and the group equipment and food.

As well as fitness, another thing to consider is general health. We will spend a number of days in difficult and remote terrain with more restricted egress to medical facilities. You do therefore need to ensure that any background issues of medical conditions, musculo-sketetal problems, dental conditions etc are discussed with your medical professional and any neccessary steps taken to address any issues. In addition, any potential issues muyst be fully disclosed to ourselves and to your travel insurance provider.


We will be moving over varied terrain as we gain altitude. This area is far less frequented than trekking routes in places such as Kenya or Nepal. In many places it may appear that we are moving over terrain with little or no path at all! We will start in rainforested jungle and move up though slightly more sparse and stunted forest though to the rocky upper reaches of Mt Trikora. In some places on the upper parts of the climb there will be some low grade scrambling where we will move slowly and with care. In general you will not need to have experiece of this kind of terrain but it will be an advantage if you do not have a strong aversion to heights.

Kit List

  • 65-75Litre Main Rucksack
  • Strong, waterproof rucksack liner
  • 45Ltr Day Pack
  • Stuff sacks, waterproof, various sizes
  • Waterproof Rucksack Cover
  • Waterproof shell jacket (breathable)
  • Waterproof shell trousers (breathable)
  • Gaiters
  • Warm insulated jacket
  • Fleece / softshell jacket
  • Wool/microfleece top x1
  • Trekking Trousers x2 Sunthetic material eg Polyamide NOT 100% cotton (zip off legs are useful)
  • Trekking Shorts (optional)
  • Long sleeved Trekking Shirt or Polyester baselayer x1
  • Base layer top x2 (Synthetic material eg polyester)
  • Base Layer Leggings/tights x1
  • Long sleeved thermal top x1
  • Underwear x4
  • Warm hat to cover ears x1
  • Buff or Light Balaclava x1 (optional)
  • Wide brimmed Sun Hat or cap with neck veil x1
  • Sun glasses cat 2-3 UV polarising
  • Thermal liner gloves (optional)
  • Warm insulated Mitts or Gloves
  • Waterproof shell over-mitts (optional)
  • Thin liner socks x2 (optional)
  • Trekking socks x2
  • General socks x2
  • Trekking Boots
  • Crocs/Sandals/Flip flops
  • Travel and town clothes and shoes (these can be left in Wamena or Jayapura while we are trekking)
  • 2-3 season sleeping bag (comfort temperature approx -5 deg C)
  • Compression sack for sleeping bags
  • Silk / cotton sleeping bag liner (optional) Can use by its self in hotter areas
  • Thick closed cell foam mat x1
  • Inflating sleeping mat x1 (optional)
  • Sleeping mat repair kit
  • Walking Poles (optional)
  • Head torch (LED) & spare batteries
  • Watch with light and alarm
  • Camera, memory card & batteries (optional but recommended)
  • Solar charger (optional)
  • MP3 player (optional)
  • Gaffer/Duct Tape (small roll or wrap a few metres around water bottle)
  • Super glue
  • 4mm string/paracord ~2m
  • Needle + extra strong thread
  • Multitool/Penknife
  • 1 litre drinks bottles x2
  • Insulated mug
  • Spork or Knife Fork & Spoon
  • Lightweight plate & bowl
  • Toilet roll in zip lock plastic bag
  • Ear plugs (optional)
  • Passport & 2 photocopies
  • Insurance policy Number & emergency telephone number
  • Money, Credit/Debit Cards
  • Plane Ticket confirmation & numbers (where required)
  • Waterproof pouch for documents
  • Books, Cards, Games
  • Diary & Pencil (in zip lock bag)
  • Antibacterial hand gel ~100ml
  • Wet wipes (optional but advised)
  • Toothbrush with cover
  • Toothpaste (small/part used tube)
  • Roll on deodorant
  • Shaving gear & small mirror
  • Shower gel/shampoo ~100ml
  • Personal Medical Kit
  • Paracetamol
  • Ibuprofen
  • Antiseptic Wipes
  • Adhesive Plasters
  • Blister Plasters
  • Zinc Tape
  • Insect Repellent
  • Antihistamine tablets
  • Sunblock Cream
  • Water Purification Tablets
  • Rehydration Sachets
  • Personal Medication as required:
  • eg. Anti-Malarials, Asthma Inhalers, Insulin, Epi-Pen etc

Why Us

  • We offer small scale, authentic expeditions, which can also be tailormade
  • We employ fully salaried local staff within a local subsidary companies around the world to ensure that revenue is retained in the host nation
  • All our guides and staff are professionally trained and have years of proven experience
  • We have built up partnerships with local guides and communities which are mutually beneficial and exist on a fair and open basis so that the host country and its people may fully benefit from tourism without being exploited
  • We are passionate about responsible tourism and our company supports sustainable development worldwide in a real way
  • Adventure Alternative underwrites the charity Moving Mountains
  • Adventure Alternative financially supports a tree-planting project in Borneo funded by Moving Mountains Trust, who are currently providing over £10,000 per year to the forest enrichment programme in the area where the Penan live
  • Financial security is guaranteed as we are ABTO bonded members of AITO
  • We are members on Interhealth which gives you access to pre-trip health information and on-site assistance by phone in the event of an emergency

Extra Info


At 4,750 m high and nestled West of the fabled Baliem Valley, Trikora is an accessible mountain by Papuan standards but still requires high respect and good levels of fitness. Expect to trek for 8 days at altitude and spend the pre accent night in a cave. Weather can be bad enough to require at least two attempts on summit morning so a spare day is included.

The trek will start in the Baliem Valley and take in the spectacular 3,300 m Lake Habbema and pass through traditional Dani tribal villages en route. Often the trails will be no more than very muddy pig and hunting trails with many slippery logs! We finish with a wonderful feast in our guides family house back in Wamena before we return to the capital or to the next Papuan destination.


The trip will be led by Adventure Alternative Borneo director Tom Hewitt. Originally from the UK, Tom has led a life of travel and adventure before settling in Borneo. Tom is very knowledgeable about the environments and people of rainforests and mountains of south east Asia and passionate about their protection. He has worked in rainforest protection and enrichment projects and has been able to practice what he preaches in setting up and running the Lupa Masa eco camp close to Poring Springs in the North East of Borneo. Tom speaks basic Malay and Indonesian and is well respected by local communities for the responsible and ethical stance that his activities follow.


The exact dates will be confirmed when the Tribal Festival dates have been set and confirmed.

The festival normally takes place around the 8th of August, lasting for 4 to 5 days. Therefore we will need to be arriving on our international flights into Jayapura no later than around 29th of July.

For more information and advice on flight options see our More Info page to the right enitiled "Before You Leave for Papua"


If you have a small group or couple who are interested in a private expedition to Mt Trikora or just to attend the Baliem Tribal Festival please do contact us for options on a bespoke package, tailored to your needs.


Lip Salve
Throat Lozenges
Latex gloves
Crepe Bandage
Hydrocortisone Cream
Prochlorperazine tablets (for sickness/nausea)
Ciprofloxacin tablets (general antibiotic; prescription required)
Acetazolamide tablets (altitude prophylactic; prescription required)

Note: you must check with your GP for your personal suitability to all medicines and their possible side effects and interactions. Please inform us of the details of all regular medication that you intend to use though the course of your trip and any relevant allergies and medical history related to them. You also need to check the requirements and regulations of the airline and all countries visited in relation to medications. For example; laws governing transport of some pain control medication and the need keep insulin at a suitable temperature, ie not in the cargo hold.


Choose a date from the drop down box below and pay only £250 deposit to secure your place when you book now. 

Tours from only pp book
Key Information
  • Duration 13 days
  • Numbers min4-max10
  • Altitude 4750m
  • Distance
  • Challenge Moderate
  • Comfort Camps/Hotel
Indonesia information
More Information