In 2013 I traversed across East Timor from the north coast to the south coast. I walked almost all on roads of varying standards, carrying all my gear including food and a tent. It took 12 days, including a side trip to Mt Ramelau, the highest peak in East Timor. I camped some of the time and the rest of the time stayed in guesthouses.
The East Timorese were very curious about what I was doing and seemed to accept my explanation, but I still wonder what they really thought! I was received graciously wherever I went, and people were very helpful. At no time did I feel threatened. I became used to the stares, and still remember an entire school of children standing stock-still watching me pass by.
East Timor is a fascinating country at a crossroads in its development. Just by going there you are helping out. Highly recommended.
(I met one of the Ecodiscovery guides at Hatubuilico, they were in the process of guiding clients on a cross country trek like mine, a bit more off the beaten track but with local support).