Tuesday, 18 Muharram 1441 / 17 September 2019

Tuesday, 18 Muharram 1441 / 17 September 2019

Italian Ambassador pleased to be invited to Baliem Valley Festival

Senin 08 Aug 2016 16:22 WIB

Red: Julkifli Marbun

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Foto: Republika/Raisan Al Farisi

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, WAMENA -- Italian Ambassador to Indonesia Vittorio Sandalli has expressed happiness on being invited to attend the Baliem Valley Cultural Festival being organized in Walesi Sub-district, on August 8-10, 2016.

"This festival is very important, so we feel honored on being invited to witness Papua's culture in Indonesia," he informed Antara, here, Monday.

Sandalli said he had gained knowledge of Indonesia's cultural plurality from the festival.

In addition to Ambassador Sandalli, the festival is being attended by Ambassador of Switzerland to Indonesia Yvonne Baumann, Armenian diplomat Vardan Sargsyan, Hungarian Ambassador to Indonesia Judit Nemeth Pach, Bulgarian Ambassador to Indonesia Sergey Michev, Mexican Ambassador to Indonesia Federico Salas, and Indian diplomat Rohit Babbar.

The Baliem Valley, once dubbed "Shangrila," is incredibly lush and fertile and is surrounded on all sides by towering peaks measuring 2.5 thousand to three thousand meters in height.

Farming activities have been carried out in the valley for nine thousand years, but it was only discovered by westerners in 1938, according to information on the www.papua-adventure.com website.

Three main tribes inhabit the Baliem Valley: the Dani in the main valley, the Lani to the west, and the Yali in the south-east. Each tribe has a distinct culture.

A sure and interesting way to distinguish between the tribes is from the Koteka, or penis gourd, sported by the male members. The men of each tribe tend to the growing of the gourds, with the three tribes each cultivating a different style. The Dani use a long, thin Koteka; the Lani sport a medium-sized, wide cannon-like gourd; and the Yali wear the longest of all.

The festival offers a unique ambience. By attending the massive Baliem Valley Festival, visitors will have the rare opportunity to learn and experience firsthand the different traditions of each tribe participating in the festival without having to undertake the difficult trek to their villages deep in the hinterland of West Papua.

The Dani, Lani, and Yali tribes come to the festival, both to participate and also to witness the activities.

After attending the festival, visitors can go on a sightseeing tour to the Dani Market in Wamena and visit the traditional Wauma Village that can be reached by car from Wamena.

In Aikima, there is a famous 250-year-old mummified village chief. Moreover, after a two-hour trek, visitors can reach the salt springs, where the Dani women have, for centuries, made salt using a simple method.

sumber : Antara
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