Untamed and unspoiled, the islands of Papua New Guinea (PNG) are not your classic beach paradise. But, pristine beaches and world class dive sites, combined with wild jungles and active volcanoes are an invitation to adventure. Globe Trekker Zay Harding rises to the challenge of a truly unique and unforgettable experience.
Arriving in Port Moresby, Zay heads off to palm fringed Manus Island, whose tranquil setting belies its strategic importance during WW2. Next off, he hits PNG’s largest island: New Britain. Its landscape dotted with stunning volcanoes, it’s strewn with WW2 military debris – a poignant testament to the defeat of the Japanese army by the Allied Forces. He explores a rumbling string of cones and craters carpeted with virgin tropical rainforest.
Stopping over in Rabaul, Zay soaks up the surreal “Mad Max” atmosphere of a town still blanketed in ash from the ominous Mount Tavurvur and kayaks with local Matupit Miners to harvest eggs laid in the volcanic ash by the Megapode bird, undeterred by a smoking caldera.
Next off, Zay dives beneath the surface to explore the islands’ crystal clear waters and WW2 bounty at Simpson Harbour, with its unbeatable repertoire of rusting ships, tanks, fighter planes, and artillery. He marvels at the thriving fish life and learns all about the exploits one time resident and Hollywood heart throb Errol Flynn. He also gets to meet modern day music maestro - George Telek - and chill out to the rhythms which embody PNG’s vibrant culture. Next day he follows in the footsteps of Australian soldiers on the Lark Force Wilderness Trek that traverses pristine jungle and rugged terrain.
Onto New Ireland, Zay scuba dives through pristine coral and kayaks his way along a string of small villages, meeting local communities, and taking in the breathtaking scenery along the way. Last off, he visits Bougainville where he enjoys the tranquillity of an island thus far untouched by tourism. He winds up his trip with a trek into the jungle in search of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto’s plane which crashed here in WW2. Yamamoto was the mastermind behind the WW2 Japanese campaign against the Allied Forces and the wreck of his plane symbolic of the warfare that once ravaged PNG.