Papua New Guinea is one of the world's most mysterious, secret and unexplored places. This island-state in the southwest Pacific Ocean, north of Australia and east of Indonesia, is the perfect place for those who want to travel as primitive as possible and to as remote places as possible. A trip to Papua New Guinea is a journey to a completely different world. It is a trip back in time, a trip to the perhaps best example of how our planet looked a long, long time ago.
The vast majority who travel to Papua New Guinea will arrive in the capital, Port Moresby. Be aware, crime rates are notoriously high here (and sadly also in other places in Papua New Guinea). Port Moresby does not have a lot to offer - it may be better advised to hurry out to the great adventure that awaits in the different parts Papua New Guinea.
Papua New Guinea - where the journey is an adventure itself
To hurry is perhaps an exaggeration when it comes to a trip in Papua New Guinea. Nothing at all is served on a silver platter for a traveller, and nothing is easy and straightforward - This though, is exactly why some travellers will find Papua New Guinea interesting and exciting! In Papua New Guinea one must be prepared for an almost total lack of tourist facilities and infrastructure, and the journey itself and much of the practical things en route is a large part of the experience.
Flora and fauna of Papua New Guinea
Wildlife is spectacular and there live almost as many species of as in Australia, although Papua New Guinea is nine times smaller. In some ways Papua New Guinea is a kind of biological mini version of Australia, but where Australia throughout time has been predominantly dry and flat, Papua New Guinea has been wet and mountainous, with volcanoes, rocky cliffs and rainforest; You can find kangaroos in both countries, but where they in Australia jump around in the flat and desert outback, their cousins in Papua New Guinea are living in the trees.
The highlights in Papua New Guinea
A trip to Papua New Guinea should definitely include a visit to the Kokoda Track, which is a 96 km long adventurous trail, through jungle, over rocks, demanding hills and slippery, wet steps. The Kokoda track offers historical landmarks from WWII where the Australian, American and Japanese soldiers fought - against each other and against the terrain. It is recommended to do as the majority of other travellers: Go in a group, and only on a small part of the track.
For an insight on the local culture, you should visit the village of Tari where you can meet the traditional Huli-people. Also visit the provinces of Central, Oro and Milne Bay. Here, you will find wonderful coral reefs and jungle-clad mountains. When it comes to diving and snorkelling one of the special attractions here are the many ships and wrecks from World War II. Places to see these are in Tufi, Alotau and Samarai Island!
Canoes, cricket and lots of 'free' love!
Travel north, across the Solomon Sea, to the fantastic Trobriand Islands. Here you may be lucky enough to encounter the exotic Milamala Festival and its characteristics: 'free' love, cricket and the root called yams, which is used for many things around here. If you are travelling to this part of Papua New Guinea at the right time of year, you can enjoy yourself with the entertaining Milne Bay Kundu & Canoe Festival, whose main attraction is the sight of local 'warriors' who paddles in ocean going canoes - it’s pretty wild!