- Snorkel wonderfully rich coral reefs as you sail on the Coral Discoverer, a comfortable small ship chartered exclusively for 12 days
- Visit traditional tribal villages, only recently in contact with the outside world and largely unspoiled by time
- With more than 800 different languages spoken on the island, discover tribal identities and customs that remain fundamental to the fabric of Papua life
London – Cairns
Depart London Heathrow on scheduled flight to Cairns (to be advised).
Arrive Cairns. On arrival transfer to your hotel in Cairns (to be advised) where one night is spent and where rooms are ready for immediate occupation.
Lunch under own arrangements. The remainder of the day will be at leisure to relax after the journey followed by a welcome dinner at the hotel.
A relaxing day at sea, passing through the Great Barrier Reef, offering us an opportunity to unwind in the warmth of the October sunshine, enjoy the introductory talks on Papua New Guinea from our expedition leader and guest lecturers before our arrival in Sewa Bay, or simply relax with a book on deck. Lunch and dinner on board.
This morning we wake up to the scenery of the China Strait as we approach the beautiful Sewa Bay in Papua New Guinea and visit the remote village of Moadewai with a traditional welcome. The experienced guest lecturers will interpret the traditional welcome dances prior to leading us on a tour. Lunch on board. Captain’s welcome drinks. Dinner on board.
Dobu & Fergusson Islands
Join the expedition staff on a walk to the Dei Dei Hot Springs where the people share the mythical and spiritual tales of these hot water and mud springs. Learn the history of the Kula Ring where Dobu Island was a pivotal link between the north and south Kula trade routes. Meet the local primary school children who will welcome us with a traditional dance performance. There will also be an opportunity to snorkel the bubbling spring reefs. Lunch and dinner on board.
Trobriand Islands & Kuiawa
Historically known as the ‘Islands of Love’, the Trobriands offer a glimpse of traditional culture largely unspoiled by outside influence. On the island of Kuiawa witness the traditional Trobriand dance performed by the locals in colourful costumes. Sail to Kitava to meet the local villagers. Lunch and dinner on board.
Maclaren Harbour & Tufi Fjords
Local guides will paddle us on traditional canoes at Maclaren Harbour to their village in the rainforest. Be welcomed by traditional dances and garden markets. Discover the scenic beauty of rarely visited Tufi Fjords featuring 25 individual canyons with sheer basalt cliffs, these are the only fjords in Papua New Guinea which offer a wealth of sightseeing opportunities. Soak up the spectacular views as we cruise close to the towering cliffs before boarding the tender, Xplorer, to travel ashore. Enjoy a leisurely swim and snorkel over colourful fringing reefs. Lunch and dinner on board.
Buna & Sanananda
The Battle of Buna saw some of the fiercest fighting between American, Australian and Japanese forces during the final stages of World War II. Walk through the jungle with the local villagers and discover the fascinating history.
After lunch, stopover at beautiful Sanananda to visit the War Museum which the villagers have built to honour both sides. Meet the local village people and enjoy their lovely gardens. Dinner on board.
Early this morning we will sail into Marobe Harbour which the American forces used as a staging post and supply base during World War II. Enjoy an early morning cruise in the Xplorer and zodiacs up to the nearby Mou river and view the stunning forest area. Meet the local villagers and experience a traditional Oro province welcome ceremony before visiting the local market. There may be an opportunity at high tide to travel through a small waterway into a stunning bay where we can visit another local village. Lunch and dinner on board.
Fly Islands & Lababia
Early morning water activities including snorkelling, scuba diving, glass bottom boat tours and kayaking at Fly Island to enjoy some of the best coral reefs in all of Papua New Guinea. Visit the picturesque village of Lababia, gateway to Papua New Guinea’s most important conservation areas, the Kamiali Wildlife Management Area. Lunch and dinner on board.
Dregerhafen & Tuam
Today we visit Dregerhafen, famous for Tami bowls and timber paddles. Head ashore to Tuam in the Siassi group of islands, which offer a mix of both mainland and Bismarck Archipelago cultures. Peruse prized trinkets and decorations which include dog’s teeth, spondyllus shells and wonderful balsa wood and sago bark headdresses. Witness the locals perform their traditional welcome dances and savour the warm village hospitality. Lunch and dinner on board.
Arrive late morning in Christmas bay and after meeting the local villagers enjoy various water activities. Lunch and dinner on board.
Sepik River & Volcanic Manam Island
Enter the mouth of the mighty Sepik River – one of the world’s great river systems. Cruise well up into the middle of the Sepik region, renowned for its unique artefacts. Visit the remote village of Bien where the locals are amongst the most primitive artists on earth and take the opportunity to purchase unique hand carvings. On departure for the great Sepik, pass the active volcano on Manam Island and enjoy the sunset. Lunch and dinner on board.
Today we explore Madang, our final destination, which sits on the peninsula surrounded by a number of picturesque islands and is famed for its diving, with excellent visibility and many World War II wrecks. Discover the town, including markets where there will be an opportunity to purchase a large selection of artefacts from the Sepik region. Also visit the World War II monument which honours the allied coast guards who protected Papua New Guinea. Disembark the Coral Discoverer and depart on a Charter flight to Cairns. On arrival transfer to the 5-star Pullman International Hotel, where one night is spent.
Lunch and dinner under own arrangements.
Cairns – London
Enter the magnificent Simpson Harbour early in the morning, passing the striking islands known as the ‘Beehives’. Depart on a charter flight to Cairns. Depart Cairns on a scheduled flight (to be advised) to London.