The village of Agats, Irian Jaya, is the capital of the Asmat region on the Aswet Estuery of West Papua Province, Indonesia. The land of Asmat is located both within and adjacent to Lorentz National Park and World Heritage Site, the largest protected area in the Asia-Pacific region. The total Asmat population is estimated to be around 70,000. The term "Asmat" is used to refer both to the people and the region they inhabit.
The Asmat have one of the most well-known woodcarving traditions in the Pacific, and their art is sought by collectors worldwide.
Cruise Season – Jan - Dec
Currency – Rupiah (IDR)
Language – Asmat & Asmat-Kamuro
Population - 70,000
Religion - Indigenous beliefs & Christianity
The streets of Agats are raised boardwalks. This is because of the extraordinary tides and its location. The boardwalks allow for very slow motorcycles and pedestrian traffic but at a very slow pace. Like a lot of other Papuan willages, Cruise Passengers can expect to find curious places like markets, shops, a mosque, churches and tribal monuments to wander amongst. There is a Bank (of sorts) and an ATM but you cannot guarantee that either will be open or working.
Places to see are the Museum Kebudayaan dan Kemajuan Asmat, which has a very good collection of Asmat art and artefacts, from bis poles and skulls to full-body dance outfits. It would be advisable to recruit and English speaking tour guide as very little is interpretated.