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West Papua, formerly known as Irian Jaya, is the Indonesian-controlled half of the Papua island (New Guinea). Just a couple of degrees below the equator, it is a country of striking contrasts and amazing cultural diversity. The Central Highlands only came into contact with the rest of the world in the 1950s and remain one of the last truly traditional areas of the world.
The main destination for travellers to West Papua is the Baliem Valley in the Central Highlands.
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