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A New Guinea Island Odyssey

East New Britain's Rabaul & Gazelle Peninsula, New Ireland & The Idylic Duke of York Islands

Explore 3 groups of New Guinea Islands Also highlights of Port Moresby

  10 Days / 9 Nights Small Group Tour Guaranteed Departure 
AUD6,755  p.p 

TWIN SHARE

Single Supplement AUD590 P.P.

 Saturday 21st to Monday 30th September 2024  
      Saturday 20th to Monday 29th September 2025

Tour Package includes All Meals, Accommodation, Guides, Sightseeing, Entry Fees to all activities, Porterage, Transfers, Land & Water Transport.  An Experienced Australian Tour Leader & Knowledgeable Local Guides.

*Price ALSO includes all 3 Domestic Flights.                                       

We are the only tour company that does this for you !

 Agri-tourism -  Birds of Paradise - Colonial Era Intrigue & Characters  - Malagan Mask Carving - Delicious Foods & Fruits - Exotic Eels - Lelet Plateau Trek -  New Britain's WW2 Military Relics - German Colonial  History - Tambu Shell Money - Bainings & Tolai Tubuan Customs - Rabaul's Volcano Climb  - Kokoda Track - Varirata National Park - Sogeri Plateau - Duke of York Isles with Wild Dolphins, Turtles & Dugongs - German Colonial  History - Seafood Beach BBQs with Friendly Locals  

Rabaul Volcao Climb Edit
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EXCLUSIONS : The price does not include international airfares, visa costs, alcoholic and soft  drinks or any meals not included in the itinerary. NOTE : Flynn's Tours will advise on the most suitable air route for your International travel and how to process your visitor visa in an efficient manner. 

Flynn's Tours is the only Tour operator serving Papua New Guinea that includes the cost of all domestic airfares in your Package. 

 * For this tour a price cap of AUD1,265 included in the total package price should cover the cost of the 3 Domestic Flights. Following consultation any excess to this price cap will be billed to the client. Papua New Guinea is a developing country with a mountainous mainland surrounded by many remote islands. The regional centres are for the most part un-connected by road. Travellers normally book with only 2 nationally owned airlines that provide the only reliable air service. Airfares are expensive and without experience they are difficult for outsiders, even travel agents to book without the risking the smooth running of the most extensive and interesting  small group tours of PNG. Flynn's Tours experienced staff remove the risk and with all tour participants booked in a group booking we can provide the lowest prices possible and manage your bookings for you and allow you to enjoy your holiday without frustration and disappointment 

Day By Day Itinerary:

Arrive this morning from your international departure point. Australians can depart from Sydney, Cairns or from Brisbane Airport departing at 10.40 am arriving at Jacksons Airport, Port Moresby at 1.50 pm. Upon arrival we will visit the Port Moresby Nature Park. Spread over 30 acres the park is home to over 250 native animals and birds along with hundreds of plant species, many of which are rarely seen outside of PNG. The Nature Park has won a number of international awards for its works. We will spend the evening in comfortable accommodation in Port Moresby where you will be briefed the tour that you will enjoy for the next 19 days with some of the rarest and authentic experiences a global traveller could wish for. Early arrivals can enjoy early check-in at the Hotel.

Day 1 – Port Moresby – Thursday 14th September 2023
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Sanctuary Hotel Resort and Spa - Port Moresby 
Day 2 – Port Moresby & Kokopo – Sunday 24th September 2023

After an early breakfast we drive up to the Varirata National Park’s forests on the lookout for Birds of Paradise. We enjoy beautiful views of the Laloki River as we drive further  up to the Sogeri Plateau and the foothills of the Owen Stanley Ranges  to the start of the Kokoda Track at Ower's Corner. On the return journey we briefly visit the Bomana War Cemetery where those who died in the fighting in Papua New Guinea are buried, their graves brought in by the Australian Army Graves Service from burial grounds in the areas where the fighting had taken place. Those tour participants continuing to the New Guinea Islands transit to Jacksons Airport in the early afternoon to checkin for 3.15 pm flight to Tokua Airport - Kokopo/Rabaul in East New Britain.

Upon arrival at in East New Britain we checkin to our accommodation and enjoy coastal views and a delicious evening meal.

Rapopo Plantation Resort  in Kokopo
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Day 3 – Lukim Kokopo & The Gazelle Tour– Monday 25th Sept.

This morning we embark on our Flynn’s Tours “Lukim Kokopo Tour” that includes a scenic tour of the Gazelle Peninsula. You will observe cocoa, copra and palm oil cultivation undertaken in the rich volcanic soil, noting the area’s significant contribution to the national economy. Kokopo, named Herbertshohe in the earliest colonial period, was from 1884 to 1910 the capital of the German New Guinea colonial empire. You will visit the historic German cemetery, the cathedral at Vunapope Catholic mission and the Kokopo Lookout. View the beachside landing site at Kabakaul from where Australian military forces advanced in 1914 to capture the German wireless station at Bita Paka. This battle was Australia’s first major military engagement of the First World War. Bita Paka War Cemetary is now the resting place of over one thousand Australian and Allied soldiers who met their fate during World War 2, when “Fortress Rabaul” became the South Pacific headquarters and staging post for the Japanese Imperial Forces. It was occupied by 100,000 Japanese soldiers. Closer to Kokopo we visit the Agmark cocoa fermentary where the method of processing cocoa for export to the world’s chocolate makers is explained by the fermentary management. We enjoy a hearty Asian style lunch at the Ralum Country Club. Enjoy stunning views and stand on “Emma’s Steps” and hear stories about the achievements and exploits of Queen Emma Coe. We visit the Kokopo Museum which houses an impressive range of war relics along with an informative display of colonial, military and natural history. The afternoon ends at the  laid back beach atmosphere at Kulau Lodge Beach Resort for a hearty meal a good nights rest.

Kulau Lodge Beach Resort - Rabaul
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Day 4 – Volcano Climb & History Galore  – Tuesday 26th September

Be ready to enjoy spectacular views on an early morning climb of the active volcano, Mt Tavurvur. While the climb is challenging, it’s not beyond most people’s capability to reach the top. Flynn’s Tours has had an octogenarian comfortably complete the ascent. You can take in further views of Rabaul’s picturesque harbour and its six volcanoes from the Vulcanological Observatory on Tunnel Hill. An informative talk delivered by an onsite vulcanologist will enlighten you of the workings of volcanoes, lava, magma and related geological, geophysical and geochemical phenomena.  You will tour the area of current volcano activity and clamber around Mount Tavurvur. See the hot springs, sulphurous steam points and the megapode egg hunters who burrow metres into the black sand emerging with the prized eggs. Megapodes do not incubate their eggs with their body heat as other birds do, but bury them. Their eggs are unique in having a large yolk, making up 50-70% of the egg weight. The birds here are burrow-nesters which use geothermal heat. Some species vary their incubation strategy, such as building mounds to bury them in, depending on the local environment. We travel around the remains of old Rabaul town (including its airport) which resembles a lunar landscape, following its burial in volcanic ash during the dramatic eruptions of 1994. Prior to the burial of Rabaul town it was revered as “the Pearl of the South Pacific”. East New Britain’s commercial hub has been re-established in a modernised Kokopo over the past 30 years. Rabaul was also badly damaged during an earlier eruption on 6 June 1937, five years before the occupation by Japanese military. We visit Matupit Island whose people and settlement survived the worst of the 1994 volcanic eruption despite their location immediately beneath it. Visit old Rabaul Township and see the resulting destruction caused by the 1994 volcanic explosions. Discover the pre-European settlement history and recent colonial occupations by German, Japanese and Australian administrations at the New Guinea Club and Rabaul Historical Display. Explore the Japanese military command bunker of Admiral Yamamoto where maps of the surrounding area are etched into the bunkers ceiling at head height. Tonight we again relax in idyllic surroundings at Kulau Beach Lodge, Kabakada Village in Talia Bay on the North Coast Road.               

Kulau Lodge Beach Resort - Rabaul
Day 5 – Ramble Around Rabaul  & Duke of York Islands Sea Adventure
Wednesday  27th September
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Learn about the key roles this island played during the 2 world wars. Spend the early morning relaxing along the palm tree fringed beachfront. Enjoying a tropical breakfast will hold you in good stead for another interesting morning exploring and learning about the many people and cultures that have shaped this part of New Britain Island. We travel back through Rabaul where we will visit the tranquil memorial gardens of the Chinese cemetery where your guide will explain aspects of the historically long association the Chinese have had with East New Britain. We climb around the large barges of the Japanese Imperial forces that are still housed in even larger tunnels hewn into the soft volcanic cliff faces on the shores of Blanche Bay. Take in the panoramic views around the bay that is home to the WW2 Japanese hospital tunnels.

Later this morning we travel by boat across the St. Georges Channel to the Duke of York Islands and their picturesque lagoons. This idyllic paradise is made up of a dozen or so islands set among a mesmerizingly, forever changing backdrop of colourful tropical landscapes. The natural beauty is interspersed with scenes of village life as the happy villagers go about living beside the tranquil waters they share with an abundance of marine life. The welcoming host of Corey’s Eco Sea Lodge will ensure that your traditional village style accommodation is comfortable, secure and restful as where we are based is a largely uninhabited island called Ulu. We will dine on plentiful amounts of delicious and freshly harvested fruit, vegetables and fish. Relax whilst birdwatching on the many enchanting jungle trails or beachcomb at your leisure. Learn from hands-on agricultural demonstrations of cocoa, coconut and native garden cultivation and harvesting.  

Corey's Coral Retreat - Duke of York Islands 

Day 6 – Kabakon  to Kavieng, New Ireland  – Thurs 28th September

We will visit Kabakon “the garden” Island and the aclaimed Pangpang “sand” Island. The natural beauty is interspersed with the scenes of happy villagers on Karrawara Island who go about living beside the tranquil waters they share with an abundance of marine life. Be enthralled with the playful dolphins and mysterious dugongs. In 1902, the 25-year-old German health reformer, August Engelhardt, who practiced sun worship and a strict coconut diet, retreated from Bavarian university life to Kabakon Island in the Duke of York Islands, which he purchased from his mother country with an inheritance. The first few years were idyllic. Engelhardt established a coconut plantation and called his followers to join him in this brave new world. They called themselves Sonnenorden and practised sun worship and nudity and lived off coconuts. But it didn’t last. Learn out why! We make our way from the islands by boat to the mainland on East New Britain staying at the beachside resort at Kokopo 

 Rapopo Plantation Resort - Kokopo
Day 7 – New Ireland Is Calling - Friday 29th September 2023

This morning we transit to Tokua Airport on East New Britain island for the morning flight to Kavieng airport on the island province of New Ireland . Departing  from  Kavieng we take a drive around this laid back town that is the regional headquarters for New Ireland Province. Heading down the Boluminski Highway we visit the village of Laraibina, famous for it's Eels, a unique species of freshwater eels found in the rivers and streams of the New Ireland province in Papua New Guinea. These eels possess a distinct pattern of vibrant colors, including shades of blue, green, and yellow, which make them visually striking. They are known for their elusive nature and are considered an important cultural symbol in the region, representing strength and resilience in local folklore and traditions.

We will visit the Malagan Mask Gallery in the village of Langenia where master carver, Fabian Paino works with his team of carvers. We may be lucky enough to view a performance by the Tatanua Dance Group.  Malagan is an art where the dead are remembered through the various depictions that are carved on Malagan masks. The Malagan masks have a symbolic meaning as the dead must be remembered through the masks and ceremonies. 

We travel further along the scenic coastline until we arrive at Dalum Village Guesthouse we we will rest for the night. We chill out with the locals, floating on rubber tubes down the river that runs through Dalum Village.

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Dalum Guesthouse - Central New Ireland 

Day 8 - Central New Ireland– Saturday 30th September 2023

This morning a trek up from the coast along jungle paths to the Lelet Plateau enjoying panoramic views out to Tabar Island. The Lelet Plateau in Central New Ireland, embodies the harmonious coexistence of agriculture, communal activities, and cultural traditions. The fertile land, coupled with the strong community bonds, forms the essence of life in these villages, creating a vibrant and self-sustaining ecosystem.  The fertile land supports a variety of crops, including sweet potatoes, taro, yams, bananas, and a range of other vegetables. Farmers employ traditional techniques passed down through generations, cultivating small plots using manual tools. They rely on the abundant rainfall and favorable climate to nurture their crops. Farming activities are often communal, with villagers working together during planting and harvesting seasons, fostering a sense of community and cooperation. In addition to horticulture, the Lelet Plateau villagers engage in various activities to support their livelihoods. Livestock rearing, such as raising pigs and poultry, is common, providing a source of food, trade, and ceremonial significance. 

On our return to Kavieng we will visit a Palm Oil plantation and processing mill to learn more about this controversial plant and it's place in New Ireland's economy and daily life of the New Irelanders.

We will enjoy a last refreshing dip in the river at Fissoa before we arrive in Kavieng to enjoy a sumptuous meal with a local family before resting for the night at a comfortable guesthouse.

Kalaro Guesthouse - Kavieng, New Ireland Province
Day 9 – New Ireland to Port Moresby  – Sunday 1st October 2023

The most famous cultural system of New Ireland is "Malagan", a Nalik word for an ancient and revered set of practices and ceremonies practised throughout much of the main island. During the colonial era, significant quantities of Malagan masks were collected by European administrators and can be seen in museums all over Europe.

This morning we catch the early flight to Port Moresby

Sanctuary Hotel Resort and Spa - Port Moresby 
Day 10 – Port Moresby & Home – Monday 2nd October 2023

.Today you can fly home with direct Air Niugini flights to Cairns, Sydney, Singapore & Manila. Travellers flying to Brisbane can depart from Jackson's Airport in Port Moresby on a Qantas flight at 1.35 pm.

A range of carriers provide flights to other destinations.

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Did you know?

Sago is extracted from Metroxylon Palms by splitting the stem lengthwise and removing the pith which is then crushed and kneaded to release the starch before being washed and strained to extract the starch from the fibrous residue. The raw starch is suspended in water and then collected in a settling container.

 

In 1902, the 25-year-old German health reformer, August Engelhardt, who practiced sun worship and a strict coconut diet, retreated from Bavarian university life to Kabakon Island in the Duke of York Islands, which he purchased from his mother country with an inheritance. The first few years were idyllic. Engelhardt established a coconut plantation and called his followers to join him in this brave new world. They called themselves Sonnenorden and practised sun worship and nudity and lived off coconuts. But it didn’t last. The alien living conditions took their toll and several died. Others turned their back on him. Engelhardt, known by the local islanders as Mr Coconut, was eventually left alone, gripped by malaria and went insane. He died on the island aged 46 in 1919.

 

The Tubuan Society of the local Tolai people who have strict laws and taboos.

Learn of the Ingiet stone carvings associated with the powerful Ingiet sorcerers and the secret men’s society, outlawed by the German administration in 1905. Early missionaries and travellers to New Britain found it to be the only area in the Pacific region they had come across where the locals had a true money currency of a standard value. The Europeans were intrigued by the local monetary system and the way in which Tambu was intricately woven into the very texture of social life. It still plays its role in Tolai society today, maintaining its cultural significance, particularly as part of the bride price or gift giving to the father of the would be bride.

 

The Rabaul Caldera was created about 1400 years ago with an explosion which erupted 11 cubic kilometres of rock. This massive outpouring of gas, lava, rocks and ash produced the largest volcanic dry fog in recorded history. A mysterious cloud that blocked sunlight for 12 to 18 months over Europe, China and the Middle East in 536 AD is linked to this mighty eruption.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Queen Emma Coe was a Polynesian Princess and daughter of an American sailor and Samoan mother who in the late 19th century brought commerce to East New Britain, through her savvy business sense and huge land holdings, upon which she grew an abundance of copra and cocoa. The steps are 140 years old, built in 1882 to grace Queen Emma’s famous bungalow Gunantambu. They were climbed by Governors, Ambassadors and Officers representing German Kaiser, American President and kings of England, France and other European nations along with assorted bishops and world-renowned scientists, explorers, anthropologists and adventurers. Gunantambu gatherings were famous throughout the South Seas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Marquis de Ray, whose real name was Charles Guillain, was a French adventurer who attempted to establish a colony in the New Ireland Province of Papua New Guinea in the late 19th century.

Born in France in 1825, de Ray harbored ambitions of founding a utopian settlement in the Pacific.In 1878, de Ray acquired a large tract of land in New Ireland, which he named "Franceville." He proclaimed himself the Marquis de Ray and began recruiting French settlers to join his colony. Promising fertile land and a prosperous future, de Ray managed to attract around 200 individuals to embark on this venture.

However, the expedition turned into a disaster. The settlers faced numerous hardships, including disease, scarcity of resources, and conflicts with local indigenous populations. The dream of a flourishing French colony quickly crumbled, and de Ray's leadership was called into question.

As conditions worsened, some settlers managed to escape the island, and others perished. Eventually, de Ray was arrested and brought back to France to face charges of fraud and deception. He was sentenced to imprisonment and died in 1895.The ill-fated endeavor of the Marquis de Ray in New Ireland Province serves as a cautionary tale of colonial ambitions gone awry. It highlights the challenges and complexities involved in establishing new settlements in unfamiliar territories, particularly when undertaken without adequate planning, resources, and respect for the local population

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