When it comes to providing exciting tropical dive holidays, Walindi Plantation Resort, MV Febrina and now MV Oceania are all firm favourites amongst discerning, travelling divers.
And it’s no wonder. If you’re curious and appreciate diversity both below and above the water line, reach for the real remote because Papua New Guinea is definitely for you! Even if your visit is primarily for underwater adventure, you’ll find that PNG is a wonderland rich in anthropological marvels and fascinating natural history.
Gaining independence in 1975, Papua New Guinea is the world’s third largest island country. Made up of 600 islands, its people speak over 800 languages, some of which are spoken by less than 1000 people. Located in the Ring of Fire, ancient volcanic activity is evident from two of the country’s highest peaks, Mt Hagan and Mt Giluwe, but today 67 active volcanoes continue to reshape the country.
PNG is in fact home to the third largest expanse of tropical rainforest on our planet providing wondrous ecosystems and environments. Within these habitats are an extraordinary range of topside endemic creatures including the Hooded Pitohui, a poisonous bird whose body contains the same toxin as the Poison Dart Frog due to its food source, the Chorisine Beetle.
Underwater, there’s a magical mix of tropical reef environments, pelagic encounters, war-time wrecks and is often surprising. Endemic marine species are also abundant, including a particular type of black coral, cone shell, epaulette shark, hound shark, guitar fish, stingaree and wasp fish. Plus there are various endemic dragonets, clingfish, gobies, coral blennies, jawfish and cardinalfish.
And between Walindi Plantation Resort, MV Febrina and MV Oceania guests are offered varying itineraries to suit their interests, curated from the operators’ knowledge of seasons and tides as well as creatures and their life cycles or migrations.
New websites for Walindi Resort, MV Febrina and MV Oceania are live. Dive in and immerse yourself in the itinerary options and dates available and you’ll soon realise the fascinating destination warrants several trips to cover all the must see diving areas including: Walindi, Kimbe Bay, Witu Islands, Fathers Reef, Kavieng, Rabaul, Hanover, South Coast New Britain, Alotau, Greater Milne Bay.
Ask Walindi, MV Febrina and MV Oceania’s reservations teams for their recommendations and plan to keep returning!
Underwater Tour Partner, X-Ray International Dive Magazine has published a number of excellent PNG feature articles in the past decade all of which are excellent reading:
Be sure to download and save the colourful PDFs of each article or go all out and download the magazine issues. Why not subscribe while you’re at – the articles and topics are superb plus the downloadable magazine is free!
And if you can possibly manage it, combine your dive trip with a cultural festival, some of which are listed below.
But one things for sure!
Go lukum quicktaim!
PNG Cultural Festivals
July: National Mask Festival, Kokopo. Promoting the unique masks and culture of East New Britain, the Mask Festival offers an extravaganza of cultural dancing, ritual performance, story-telling and exchange – with a variety of arts and crafts also on display.
August. Hagan Show, Mt Hagan. Western Province. Renowned as one of PNG’s finest and most popular cultural events, the Hagen Show draws tribes from all over the Western Highlands Province and neighbouring areas. This large sing-sing features traditional dances, singing, ritual performance and feasting.
August: Sepik River Crocodile Festival, Ambunti, East Sepik
September: Goroka Show, Eastern Highlands. Considered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, the Goroka Show is a spectacle of sights, sounds and colour that combine to offer PNG’s largest cultural event. With a history that dates back to the 1950s, this massive sing-sing draws over 100 tribes and showcases tribal music, dance, and culture.
November: Karimui Show, Simbu Province,
November: Kenu and Kundu Festival showcasing warriors in their war canoes, Alotau, Milne Bay.
Map from theworldatlas.com