Jayapura, Lombok - Stein Travel
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Jayapura

This is often the first stop for travellers to Papua, and as testament to its remoteness many of the visiting westerners are thought to be either mine workers or missionaries. Although the wilds of Papua are a quick trail away this town has reasons to stay. Beautiful beaches and bays stretch below thick jungle hills. Some of these contain remnants of WWII landing crafts and it is said some of the caves retain Japanese skeletons. The nicest swimming beach is Base G with aqua water and a palmed shoreline. Nightly arrays of seafood tents are erected where eaters can pick their favourite fish to barbecue. The mix of Indonesian immigrants and Papuan locals get along well here despite being somewhat locked in conflict elsewhere in Papua. The city is deeply religious and a normal greeting often asks visitors to describe their faith. It also means there is a lack of nightlife although one pool hall serves expensive beer and free karaoke. There are a number of mid-range hotels and the posh Swiss-Belhotel for the high-class. Papua New Guinea is a gunshot away and visas and transport can be arranged in Jayapura.

Information & Facts

Language

Bahasa Indonesia is the official language, but many dialects are spoken. English is widely understood in Jakarta and tourist resorts.

Money

Rupiah (IDR) is the official currency and is divided into 100 sen. Foreign currency can easily be exchanged at banks, hotels and money changers in major tourist destinations; US dollars is the most accepted currency. Cash often yields a better exchange rate than travellers cheques, which are not always accepted. It is recommended that travellers cheques also be in US dollars. Most major credit cards are accepted at hotels, restaurants and stores catering to the tourist trade. ATMs are available in main centres. Small change is often unavailable so keep small denomination notes and coins for items like bus fares, temple donations and cool drinks.

Time

Indonesia spans three time zones. GMT +7 (West, including Java and Sumatra), GMT +8 (Central, including Bali, Sulawesi and Lombok), GMT +9 (East, including Irian Jaya).

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