Our Guides


Ecolodges Indonesia has received some concerns from some of our clients regarding the performance of Guides employed by the Company.  We take these concerns seriously. One concern was the complications of moving terminals at Jakarta and Surabaya airports and this has resulted in a new category of Accompanying person – see (d) below

The quality and skills of its Guides is important to Ecolodges Indonesia to ensure that the needs and aspirations of its guests and tourists are well catered for. In this regard the Company has developed and is implementing a company Guide training and accreditation system for all its Guides.

Our Guides can be categorised as follows:

  • International Guides who work with us in specialist fields such as birding and art tours. These guides have a proven track record of taking tours all over the world.
  • Local Lodge Guides employed by Ecolodges Indonesia.
  • Local guides, not staff of Ecolodges Indonesia, who are used in specific areas when the demand is high.
  • Accompanying persons, who are used as a service to those guests who would like to be met by a company staff member at airports other than Ngurah Rai, Bali (eg Jakarta or Surabaya) and who will accompany them to their first lodge to be handed over to a local guide. If requested this person can accompany them the whole tour to other lodges.

Both types (b) and (c) are required to undertake a company training course for guiding developed by investors who have experience in this area. This course accredits the level of experience and expertise of our guides and assigns them into three levels, whose key characteristics are listed below.

Level 1. Fluent in Bahasa Indonesia, can communicate in basic English, knows our airport pick up and lodge transfer procedure.  Ensures that guests’ needs are met and able to provide commentary on points of interest and relevant photographic opportunities.

Level 2. As per Level 1, and can communicate well in English, conversant in the lodge welcome procedure and can apply first-aid practice. Must also have knowledge in one of our specialist interpretation areas, such as local bird species, give a talk on the life cycles of three mammals of their area, know how to look after binoculars and be able to handle difficult situations with respect.

Level 3. As per Level 2, and must be able to communicate fluently in English, have specialist knowledge in at least one of our interpretative areas, such as birds, butterflies, primates and other mammals, and local culture.

We hope this clarifies the ongoing development of the Company’s Guides as they play a crucial and most important role in assisting and ensuring our many guests have a wonderful holiday experience.



Guides of Ecosafari Indonesia



Local Lodges Guides

Patrise Tiba is the head of our Guide section at the Kelimutu Crater Lakes Eco Lodge. He was born and educated in Flores, is married to a local girl and lives in the village of Moni. He has a Diploma in Education gained in 2005 and worked in local schools and seminaries. Patrise joined Ecolodges Indonesia in 2014 and is now employed by our Tours and travel section Ecosafari Indonesia. Like most of our staff, he has learnt on the job and has shown a talent for Guest relations and guiding. He is currently a Level 2 Guide and is hoping to lift to Level 3 through a more detailed knowledge of birds.”

Hariyono Update


Local Lodge Guides

Heriono (fondly know as Heri) was born and educated to secondary school level in Lampung, South Sumatra. He became interested in birds as a “bird smuggler” but luckily joined ECOLODGES INDONESIA in 2007 to work at our Satwa Sumatra elephant Eco Lodge. The management rapidly learnt of his birding knowledge and convinced him to become a Guide for our guests. He became so successful in this role that now he is often booked well in advance by both small and large groups. He has also been used as a Bird Guide Trainer taking course at both Satwa and our Rimba Orangutan Eco Lodge. Heri is available for specialist Birding Groups.

Update Foto Ucok

Ucok Hakim

Local Lodge Guides

Ucok Hakim was born in Kumai, Central Kalimantan (Borneo) and was educated in Pangkalan Bun where attended primary and secondary school. In his spare time, he studied and qualified in Accountancy. He joined Ecolodges Indonesia in 2006 as restaurant staff but worked his way up and is now Assistant Manager. During this process, he came to love and study the wildlife in The Tandjung Puting National park and soon became an expert guide. Now Ucok or Hakim is a member of The Guides Association and well known throughout the world (see Reports on Trip Advisor and other websites) through the groups has guided and helped through Ecosafari Indonesia. He is the Head of our Guides at The Rimba Lodge and is used extensively by primate and birding groups.

Partner Guides


Carol and Detlef Davies

International Guides

Carol and Detlef Davies who own and manage a successful birding company out of Keri Keri, New Zealand.   Detlef  was born in UK, is a solicitor with a passion for birds and from the early 1970s became a keen active birder joining local societies and traveling widely birding in more than 90 countries keeping meticulous notes. He also has a keen interest in mammals, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies, dragon flies and has become a prolific photographer. In 2003 he and Carol emigrated to New Zealand and commenced taking bird tours.

Carol was born and brought up in Scotland and is  a biomedical scientist having a BSc Honours in Chemistry and Biology along with other postgraduate qualifications. In Scotland she worked for the Citizen’s Advice Bureau specilising in social policy for the elderly and disabled.  She was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship which took her to New Zealand where she met Detlef. She shares his passion for birds.


Benny Mambrasar

Local Guides

Benny Mambrasar, associate tour leader and guide, is a landowner and native of Saporkren, Raja Ampat. A hunter, farmer and logger previously, he is intimately familiar with the forests and bird life of the Raja Ampat regency and has been working as a local guide there since 2011. He began working with Papua Bird Club/Magnificus Expeditions in 2015 as a local guide to the excellent bird-viewing sites on his land. Recognizing in him an honesty, keenness to learn, and appreciation for the value of conserving his forest and wildlife, Shita invited him to become her associate. Benny is now improving his knowledge of Papua’s bird life and honing his tour leading skills while assisting Shita on tours, and will soon be ready to lead tours independently.


Valentina Shita Prativi

Local Guides

Valentina Shita Prativi, the owner and chief agent and tour leader of Papua Bird Club (now operating as Magnificus Expeditions), has been a leader in ecotourism-based conservation and community development in West Papua for 12 years. Though born and raised in Jakarta, she has been completely accepted by many Papuan communities as one of their own through her respect for them and her dedication to their present and future well-being and happiness. As well as her independent work as Magnificus Expeditions, she has also worked with Conservation International as the manager of their Birds Head Seascape program. She is widely respected in both the community development and conservation communities for her expert knowledge of the avifauna of Papua and her dedication to the indigenous Papuans, and is considered to be the preeminent bird tour leader in West Papua. She has worked with the BBC, National Geographic, Netflix, leading scientists and bird enthusiasts from the US and Canada, the UK, Germany, Japan, Thailand, Australia, and many other countries.

The Instructors


Meryl Wilson

Meryl Wilson is one of the Founders of Ecolodges Indonesia and has lived in Indonesia since 1981 based in Java and Bali but visiting many parts of this wonderful archipelago nation. Of the six lodges, Meryl designed three with unique eco features using prevailing wind direction, rain water, solar energy and reed bed recycling techniques. She has a thorough knowledge of many of the cultural aspects of societies around our lodges in Flores. Meryl works mainly water colours and pencil. She painted all the 101 Butterflies and their life cycle stages in her book “101 Butterflies of Lowland Indonesia”. She was a key member of the first Art Tour held at The Kelimutu Crater Lakes Eco Lodge.

Leonie Norton image

Leonie Norton

Botanical Artist, Educator & Author

Leonie is a practicing and exhibiting professional botanical artist, one of Australia’s most highly qualified botanical educators and a leading artist in her field. She is an international tutor of high regard and demand and is the author of ‘Women of Flowers: Botanical Art in Australia from the 1830s – 1960s’, the only published book on women’s Australian Botanical Art .

Her paintings are in private and public collections, both in Australia and overseas, including the prestigious Hunt Institute of Botanical Documentation in the USA. She teaches regular courses, and workshops throughout Australia and in New Zealand, Fiji, Canada and the UK and has also taught botanical art field techniques at Macquarie University. In addition, she is an International External Examiner for Botanical Art Certificate courses in the USA and has also been involved in selection and judging for Australian botanical art exhibitions.

Leonie exhibits annually at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens, the Botanical Art Society of Australia exhibition and the Canberra Botanic exhibition. She is past President of the Botanical Art Society of Australia, and remains an active member. She is a regular contributor to Australia Artist Magazine, Artists’ Palette, Back to Basics and Drawing & Inspiration publications and also give talks to various organizations on Botanical Art.


Alexandra Robb

Alexandra Robb is an artist and environmental educator from London. She works with The London Wildlife Trust (www.wildlondon.org.uk) managing a small nature reserve in suburban Twickenham. She spent time Bali as an artist-in-residence at The Green School near Ubud for 5 weeks in 2011. Alex first fell In love with Indonesia in 1997, when she joined a scientific expedition to Komodo Island and Flores. On her way through she stayed at The Udayana Kingfisher Eco Lodge and has been coming back ever since. Alex has stayed at all the Lodges of Ecolodges Indonesia and has pioneered a successful Art Tour based at The Kelimutu Crater Lakes Eco Lodge in May 2013, which included painting, sketching and printmaking components.