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Special cultural tour

Coastal and Highlands Tribes Escorted Tour. 11 nights. 7- 18 September 2017. Culminates at the Goroka Festival. $3195. click here

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9-night Spirit of Niugini cruise: Milne Bay, and southern islands, 18th to 27th September 2017 from $2640 click here

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COASTAL AND HIGHLANDS TRIBES TOUR 11 nights - $3195

September 7th to 18th.

Highlights: Rabaul, Kokopo and Duke of York Islands for three nights, Mt Hagen for 2 nights with its amazing birdlife and the Melpa people, Asaro Mudmen village stay and private Sing-Sings  culminating at the spectacular Goroka Highlands Cultural show, the biggest and best Sing-Sing of the year.

This is an escorted tour, escorted by Best of PNG’s owner and professional photographer Christopher Bartlett. We meet at Port Moresby airport (pre-tour accommodation ca be arranged) and fly to Rabaul and transfer to our beachfront accommodation at Rapopo Plantation Resort. The following day we spend a full day visiting the Duke of York islands, snorkelling, seeing village life, and having a beach BBQ.The day after we go on a full day tour of the world war two historical sites (Yamamoto's bunker, underground hispital, storage tunnels, the old airfield, the submarine base and lookout) as well as the hot springs and Mt. Tarvurvur, the volcano dominating the town. 

The following day we fly to Mt Hagen for two nights to discover Western Highlands culture and have a full day looking for Birds of Paradise. With luck we may see half-adozen-species. Next up is the Asaro valley, a four-hour coach ride away along the  winding and picturesque Highlands Highway, where we will have three days of cultural activities with the Asaro Mudmen including a simulation of a bride price negotiation, the festivities at the hand over of the dowry, how to make a “mumu” (an earth pit hot stone oven), bow and arrow shooting, a mud mask making demonstration, swimming in the Asaro River, visiting the vegetable and coffee gardens, a sacrificial site, and a cave hide-out. We also see three different Sing-Sing performances. Accommodation for three nights is in a lodge built by the Asaro in their village. The Asaro village guest house has twin and double rooms, 24-hour electricity, male and female “long drop” toilets, and three rainwater showers. Water can be heated for showers. On the Friday we are dropped off in the late afternoon at our accommodation in Goroka.

The climax of the trip is on the Saturday and Sunday with up to 150 tribes gathering in a large field for the Goroka Festival. In the adjacent field there is a very interesting agricultural fair showcasing cash crops that grow well locally to encourage the locals to farm on a greater scale. There is also a stage with a music concert and a number of food stalls. Large numbers of locals attend; this is still an event for the locals and tens of thousands turn out, compared to less than 400 tourist attendees. On Saturday and Sunday morning, from 9 AM, you can wander round the field freely, taking photos and video, talking as the tribes file into the field. Once all the tribes are in, the main gates are opened to the locals around midday. Here your meals are not included, but there are food stalls around the grounds, you can go to the supermarket and use the basic kitchen, there is a canteen on site if you pre-order meals, and we have use of a minibus with driver to take us into the centre (a 15-minute walk) to have dinner in one of the restaurants there.  The NSI has single bedrooms with male and female toilets and showers.

On the Monday morning we are transferred to the airport for our flight back to Port Moresby.$3195 USD per person sharing. Includes all meals except at Goroka, and includes internal flights, show entry, transfers, Sing Sings.

Single occupancy supplement : $350 USD