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Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea: Undiscovered Exploration
Papua New Guinea is one of the least-explored countries on earth. Come discover this nation’s secret story as you join experts on an educational adventure through this mysterious land.
Program No. 3228RJ
Length
14 days
Starts at
10,625
Flights start at
FREE
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14 days
13 nights
30 meals
11 B 9 L 10 D
Getting There
See travel details and required documents
DAY
1
In Transit to Program, Fly to Papua New Guinea via Brisbane
In Flight
DAY
2
Cross International Dateline
In Flight
DAY
3
Arrive Brisbane, Fly to Port Moresby, PNG, Fly to Mt. Hagen.
Mount Hagen
D
Rondon Ridge

Activity note: Approximately three (3) hour flight from Brisbane, Australia to Port Moresby. The flight is one (1) hour from Port Moresby to Mt. Hagen.

Afternoon: Arrive at Port Moresby, PNG at 12:55 PM. Upon arrival in Port Moresby, we will go through customs and immigration. There will be time at this point before our connecting flight to Mt. Hagen for those who wish to store any excess baggage in Port Moresby. Any stored excess luggage will to be retrieved when we return to Port Moresby the afternoon of October 24. Check in to Air Niugini Flight to Mt. Hagen. Flight departs at 3:00 PM. Upon arrival in Mt. Hagen, we will transfer via minivan for an hour scenic drive to Rondon Ridge Lodge; check-in upon arrival at lodge. After check-in, there will be introductions and short overview to the lodge.

Dinner: At the lodge; plated table service. Meats, fish, vegetables, and tropical fruits are served Australian style plus coffee, tea and water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure to rest and relax from the long journey.

DAY
4
Orientation, the Melpa People, Intro to the Highlands
Mount Hagen
B,L,D
Rondon Ridge

Activity note: Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: At Rondon Ridge Lodge, there is a buffet with fresh fruit, cereal, milk, toast available. Eggs can be made to order daily. Served with coffee, juice and tea.

Morning: Orientation: The Group Leader will review the up-to-date program schedule and any changes, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures including contact numbers for key staff, and answer any questions you may have. Travel and transfers for field trips will be via motorcoach, bus, and/or van depending on local conditions and schedules at the time of the program. Scheduled free time is reserved for your personal independent exploration. Please be aware that program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. After orientation, your group leader will present a class on Cultural Travel in Papua New Guinea: A Road Scholar's Introduction.

Lunch: At Rondon Ridge Lodge, plated.

Afternoon: After lunch, there will be a discussion on The Melpa People. We will then transfer via bus with a local expert to a local village for an introduction to the highlands area.

Dinner: At Rondon Ridge Lodge, plated.

Evening: View the educational documentary, "First Contact". In the 1930s, Australian miners made their first trek into the New Guinea highlands. This was the first contact between white people and highlanders. Compelling footage of the initial meetings is combined with interviews of the surviving brothers and highlanders who recall the impressions and shock of those long ago events.

DAY
5
Fly to Karawari, Village Visit
Karawari
B,L,D
Karawari Lodge

Activity note: Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads. The charter flight from Mt. Hagen to Karawari is approximately one (1) hour. Riverboat transfer to Karawari Lodge. If you are susceptible to motion sickness, consider an appropriate remedy.

Breakfast: At Rondon Ridge Lodge, plated.

Morning: This morning, pack, settle bills, and check out of Rondon Ridge. We transfer via bus to Mt. Hagen where we will board our charter flight to Karawari. After arriving at the Karawari airstrip, we will transfer by riverboat to Karawari Lodge and check in.

Lunch: At Karawari Lodge, plated.

Afternoon: After lunch, we will embark with a local expert on a half day excursion starting with a nature walk along a path that follows the river bank to Yimas Village where we visit inside a traditional Sepik House, and meet the family. We then visit Kundiman village for a sago extraction demonstration, sago being the river people’s staple diet. Sago is an edible starch that is obtained from a palm. After our return, there will be a short briefing on following day's schedule followed by no-host social hour.

Dinner: At the lodge, plated.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Transfer to Sepik Spirit, Village Visit
Sepik River
B,L,D
Sepik Spirit

Activity note: Activities along the Sepik River are heavily dependent on the river level and conditions. At times we will travel by jet boat. Due to distances traveled, jet boat transport can be long and tiring. Noise levels can be high, making conversation difficult if not impossible. Wear ear plugs if the noise bothers you. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: At Karawari Lodge, plated.

Morning: This morning, pack and settle bills, before we check-out of Karawari Lodge. We will transfer by riverboat to the floating lodge, Sepik Spirit, based at Kaminimbit I. Inspired by the architecture of the "haus tambaran" or spirit house, the MV Sepik Spirit has a truly unique design. Upon arrival, check in and time to relax and enjoy the scenery on the main Sepik river.

Lunch: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Afternoon: We will embark via jet boat with a local expert on a field trip to Kaminimbit I, Kaminimbit II and Kororua in the middle Sepik. Note all jet boat cruises to the different areas could take approximately 2 and a half hours one way, depending on river traffic. If the river traffic is not too busy, it will take less time. There will be a discussion on the day’s experiences, a briefing on the next day’s activities, and a talk on various aspects of the culture, art and village life. There will be a discussion on the day’s experiences, a briefing on the next day’s activities, and a talk on various aspects of the culture, art and village life. Upon our return, there will be time for a class led by your group leader.

Dinner: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Evening: An educational documentary will be shown nightly while aboard the Sepik River.

DAY
7
Village Visits
Sepik River
B,L,D
Sepik Spirit

Activity note: Activities along the Sepik River are heavily dependent on the river level and conditions. At times we will travel by jet boat. Due to distances traveled, jet boat transport can be long and tiring. Noise levels can be high, making conversation difficult if not impossible. Wear ear plugs if the noise bothers you. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Morning: After breakfast, begin your voyage of discovery with a local expert into the mystical world of the Sepik with a slow jet boat cruise to the Upper Middle Sepik. Visit Palembie, Yentchen and Kangaman to study the cultures, art forms, traditions and daily life in this area. The Sepik River is one of the largest rivers in the world - in terms of flow. Steeped in mystery, the peoples of the Sepik area have fascinated anthropologists like Margaret Mead since the area was first visited. Part of the mystery and attraction of the Sepik people is their amazing carvings, now famous the world over.

Lunch: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated, or boxed lunch ( the type of lunch is dependent upon where we visit-all subject to the river levels and local conditions)

Afternoon: Your village visits continue before returning to the Sepik Spirit for a class led by your group leader.

Dinner: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Evening: An educational documentary will be shown nightly while aboard the Sepik River.

DAY
8
Village Visits
Sepik River
B,L,D
Sepik Spirit

Activity note: Activities along the Sepik River are heavily dependent on the river level and conditions. At times we will travel by jet boat. Due to distances traveled, jet boat transport can be long and tiring. Noise levels can be high, making conversation difficult if not impossible. Wear ear plugs if the noise bothers you. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Morning: Continue your journey of exploration to the Chambri Lakes. In this region are rarely visited villages where the spirit world and the people’s everyday life merge in a fascinating mixture of ceremonies, carving and haus tambarans. Visit Aibom, Wombon and Krimbit villages in the area.

Lunch: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated, or boxed lunch ( the type of lunch is dependent upon where we visit-all subject to the river levels and local conditions)

Afternoon: Field Trip continues before returning to the Sepik Spirit. Class: The Arts of Papua New Guinea: The Huli People before a Briefing on Next Day's Activities.

Dinner: Aboard the Sepik Spirit, plated.

Evening: An educational documentary will be shown nightly while aboard the Sepik River.

DAY
9
Fly to Tari, Huli Wigmen, Sun Worshippers
Tari
B,L,D
Ambua Lodge

Activity note: Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads. The charter flight from the Sepik River to Tari is approximately one (1) hour.

Breakfast: Aboard the Sepik Spirit

Morning: We will have an early morning check-out and departure to the airstrip for our charter flight to Tari. Upon our arrival in Tari, we will board a bus with a local expert and head to nearby Akau. Tari is home to one of the most immediately recognizable cultures in Papua New Guinea - the "Huli Wigmen". A proud, flamboyant tribe known for their ornate ceremonial "wigs. Meet the Huli men and visit the Huli Wigman School. Learn about their initiation rites, wig growing and other aspects of their colorful culture. Then visit the Sun Worshippers – a clan whose ancestors worshipped the sun – to witness the ceremony, hear their stories and learn about the history of this very different clan.

Lunch: Boxed lunch.

Afternoon: Transfer to Ambua Lodge, check in and time to get settled. In the late afternoon, there will be a discussion with a local Huli woman regarding the role of woman in the Huli Tribe. No host social hour before dinner in the lodge.

Dinner: At Ambua Lodge, plated.

Evening: Tonight's Educational Documentary - "Attenborough in Paradise": David Attenborough fulfills a childhood dream as he visits the forests of New Guinea to witness the courtship displays of the Birds of Paradise – spectacular footage!

DAY
10
Birding, Huli Village, Class
Tari
B,L,D
Ambua Lodge

Activity note: Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: At Ambua Lodge.

Morning: For those interested, there will be an opportunity to wake up early for bird-watching. You will take a short bus trip search for the elusive Bird of Paradise before returning to the lodge for breakfast. After breakfast, we will depart on bus with a local expert to the village of Lirako for traditional bilum making, pandanus umbrellas, pandanus liner for baby in bilum and pig ropes and observe other aspects of the Huli women’s village life.

Lunch: Boxed lunch

Afternoon: Upon our return, there will be a class led by your group leader. No host social hour before dinner in the lodge.

Dinner: At Ambua Lodge, plated.

Evening: Educational video viewing this evening of "The Mendi" - A study of the Mendi tribe from the Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea.

DAY
11
Birding, Huli Village
Tari
B,L,D
Ambua Lodge

Activity note: Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails or dirt roads.

Breakfast: At Ambua Lodge

Morning: For those interested, there will be an opportunity to wake up early for bird-watching before breakfast. br> We will transfer via bus with a local expert to attend a spirit dance ceremony where 4-6 men perform a special spiritual dance for the Sun.

Lunch: Boxed lunch.

Afternoon: We will return to the lodge after lunch. Free time. You might want to take this opportunity to take a nature walk to the waterfalls. The front desk staff can assist you with information. No host social hour before dinner in the lodge.

Dinner: At Ambua Lodge, plated.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for our flight tomorrow to Port Moresby.

DAY
12
Fly to Port Moresby, Overview of Port Moresby
Port Moresby
B,L,D
Airways Hotel

Activity note: The drive from Ambua Lodge to Tari Airport is approximately 1 hour. The flight from Tari to Port Moresby is one and half hours. Getting on/off the bus. Walking up to 2 miles on varied terrain including uneven trails and paved sidewalks.

Breakfast: At Ambua Lodge

Morning: Midmorning, Check-out of Lodge and depart via bus to Tari Airport for flight to Port Moresby. Arrive Port Moresby at 12:30 pm and transfer to lunch.

Lunch: At a Port Moresby restaurant, plated.

Afternoon: After lunch, we will travel via bus with a local expert for a field trip of Port Moresby and Surrounds. We will visit the National Museum whose displays cover the geography, fauna, culture, ethnography and history of Papua New Guinea. We will drive by Parliament House enroute to the Nature Park. The main building is in the style of a Maprik, or Sepik-style, haus tambaran, while the attached, circular cafeteria building follows Highland design principles. With a local expert, explore Port Moresby Nature Park, Papua New Guinea's leading botanical and native zoological parks and gardens. Over 150 animals are on display including multiple species of tree kangaroos, cassowaries, birds of paradise, parrots, pigeons, reptiles, wallabies and more. Transfer to Airways Hotel and Check-in.

Dinner: Vue Restaurant at Airways Hotel, plated.

Evening: At leisure to relax, rest, and prepare for tomorrow's departure.

DAY
13
Fly to Brisbane,Overnight Brisbane
Brisbane
B
Mercure Hotel Brisbane

Activity note: The flight from Port Moresby to Brisbane is approximate three (3) hours. Getting on and off buses.

Breakfast: Vue Restaurant, Airways Hotel

Morning: Check-out of hotel and depart for airport.

Lunch: Lunch on your own at the airport.

Afternoon: Fly to Brisbane, Australia (meal is generally served onboard). Arrive late afternoon, transfer to hotel and check in to Mercure Brisbane.

Dinner: Dinner will be on your own. The Mercure is located along the beautiful Brisbane river, in the heat of the city. A river ferry runs until 12:00 am should you will to go and try a restaurant along the river. Also, two blocks away is Queen Street Mall and the Central Business District which offers a variety of meal options. The front desk or concierge can provide more information.

Evening: On your own to see and do what interests you most in beautiful Brisbane.

DAY
14
Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Breakfast: At Quays Restaurant, Mercure Hotel This concludes our program.