Bougainville Island is the most eastern part of Papua New Guinea and is located just north from its closest neighbours the Solomon Islands. Bougainville was closed to visitors for many years due to political unrest. The island is rugged, basic in terms of development, yet rich in a natural, untouched beauty. It is the perfect destination for anyone wanting a true off-the-beaten track adventure. As you embark on a Bougainville tour you will find yourself surrounded by untouched nature – thick rainforest, countless rivers, pristine reefs, turquoise lagoons and even three volcanoes. It is also worth mentioning that you will be met with big smiles by the locals everywhere you go!
We recently did a Bougainville tour that started in Buka located in the north of Bougainville. Buka Town is only a short banana boat ride across the channel from the main island. From there you have the following choices of transport – 4WD Troop Carriers or open back trucks, packed to the rim with people traveling between Buka, Arawa and Buin. The road is rough, unsealed and follows along the coast most of the way… but that is part of the fun. Although the drive takes a few hours time flies as you pass many villages, river crossings, the odd WWII wreck on the side of the road and the untouched nature.
Whilst in the Arawa area we traveled to a nearby island called Pok Pok. Pok Pok island is a short boat ride south from Arawa and a haven for giant clams. The reef surrounding the island and the rainforest are amazing and once you get out to the outer shelf of the reef it is a heaven for snorkeling and potentially scuba diving. It is also an as yet undiscovered surf location with a number of reef breaks in the area.
A Bougainville tour would not be complete without visiting Panguna Mine. Panguna Mine used to be a gold mine and the centre of where the conflict started. The mine is now closed, however you can still envision what it must have been like whilst there. It is actually the largest artificial hole in the world and used to be one of the biggest open mines. Panguna certainly makes an impression!
Today Bougainville is ready to welcome visitors. There is no sign of any conflict and the locals are friendly and eager to share their culture with visitors. Travel to Bougainville and discover new snorkeling spots, surf uncrowded breaks, trek some volcanoes, find some WWII wrecks scattered in the jungle or just soak in the atmosphere that awaits you there. What are you waiting for? Bougainville awaits…
Port Moresby one day, islands and volcanoes the next… Welcome to Papua New Guinea.
We recently traveled to Papua New Guinea to attend Lukim PNG Nau, an annual tourism fair hosted by the Tourism Promotion Authority of PNG and the Tour Operators Association. During the event travel agents from all over the world had the opportunity to learn about the various products on offer and to meet local tour operators. For some it was their first opportunity to experience PNG. While in Port Moresby all tourism expo participants stayed at The Stanley Hotel, one of the capital’s latest properties. Impressive would be an understatement.
Lukim PNG Nau was held in Port Moresby and attended by participants from Australia, Japan, the UK and USA as well as Europe and China, the newest market for the Tourism Promotion Authority.
After a couple of days in Port Moresby we set off on a Rabaul adventure tour that would include diving, snorkeling, island visits, cultural performances and visiting WWII sights. Flying Air Niugini we took the route via Buka, the interim capital of the island of Bougainville. The views from the plane when landing were stunning and enticed to come back for a longer visit. After landing at Tokua Airport in Rabaul-Kokopo we transferred to our boat to head out to one of the islands off the coast. After a snorkel in the pristine waters we took a tour of Simpson Harbour and came face to face with Mt. Tavurvur. Mt. Tavurvur is an active volcano that erupted only a couple of years ago (Aug. 2014) and standing next to it you can feel it is a sleeping power. It was great to be back in Rabaul!
Over the next two days our Rabaul adventure tour consisted of many highlights. It is difficult to pinpoint the best part of the trip as there were so many. It is hard to bypass swimming with dolphins, probably one of the most amazing experiences we’ve ever had. Then there was the diving, which was also great. The Rabaul region offers many superb dive locations. Pristine waters, reef walls, wrecks, abundant marine life – Rabaul has it all. We were lucky enough to dive a ship wreck. Sitting at around 20-25m the ship rests on, literally, the reef’s edge overlooking a big drop. How it stays up is baffling? At the end of each day we came back to our accommodation and enjoyed freshly caught seafood with cold beer – life is beautiful.
We finished off our Rabaul visit with a historical tour of old Rabaul Town (Rabaul was destroyed during the major eruption in 1994), the hot springs, a few significant WWII sites including Gen. Yamamoto’s bunker and the volcano observatory. The bonus came when it turned out we would witness a Baining Fire Dance, the traditional performance of the Baining People.
Rabaul is a wonderful destination and offers something for even the most picky of travelers. There are nice hotels, but also budget accommodation options, plenty of activities, friendly people, tropical setting and it never gets cold. With frequent flight connections Rabaul is the place for you if you are looking for a short or longer getaway.
The Papua New Guinea surf season is just around the corner and we are getting ready for our first trip. After getting spoiled with amazing conditions last year the expectations are no less for this year’s trip.
Last year we were were joined on our Papua New Guinea surf adventure by Linton Fafie from Next Level Surf Coaching. Linton, a former junior pro, devoted his time to help everyone improve their surfing. The coaching consisted of daily in-water tuition, movement exercises as well as video analysis. We hope to have Linton with us again for one of our upcoming trips to Vanimo or Kavieng.
Join us on a surf adventure to Papua New Guinea. PNG offers an ideal setting for all level of surfers, with a selection of lefts and rights, consistent waves, awesome diving, culture and limited numbers. Surf all day, dive in between and relax on the beach with a cold beer at the end of the day.
The PNG surf season runs from November to April. Surfing in Papua New Guinea you are guaranteed no crowds, with plenty of fun waves on offer, not to mention the tropical warm water and exotic setting.
Contact us to find out more information about our surf getaways to Papua New Guinea.
We live in one of the most beautiful parts of Australia. Uninterrupted vistas of lush green forests, cascading waterfalls, crater lakes, rivers flowing through ancient rainforest, mountain peaks and rugged gorges… Welcome to the Wet Tropics in Far North Queensland.
The Wet Tropics Region stretches for 450km along the northeast coast of Australia. It was inscribed as a World Heritage Property on December 9th, 1988. In Tropical North Queensland we are lucky to have two World Heritage areas side by side: The Wet Tropics and the Great Barrier Reef. Some visitors are surprised at how green and lush the area is as they view Australia mainly as a desert with a few big cities. What they find here stretches far beyond their expectations.
The oldest rainforest in the world
World Heritage Sites are listed because their conservation and preservation is very important for the whole world. The Wet Tropics rainforests descended from the forests of Gondwana, a landmass that formed around 300 million years ago which Australia was part of. About 180 million years ago Gondwana started to break up into continents we know today and slowly drift apart. Australia maintained the longest contact with Gondwana and its ancient rainforests.
The remaining pockets of Far North Queensland rainforests are the oldest surviving rainforests in the world. Through the millions of years they managed to withstand dramatic climate changes and significant cooling that the world went through. Hence they represent a major stage of the earth’s evolutionary history.
Entering the Wet Tropics you enter a living museum, almost a complete record of the evolution of flora on earth. Being a hotspot for biodiversity you will find the world’s highest concentration of primitive flowering plants here. One of them, the rare Ribbonwood tree also known as “idiot fruit” is considered the “green dinosaur” as it goes back to the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth. It was thought to be extinct when the tree was accidentally rediscovered in 1971 in the stomachs of dead cattle that ate the fruit. This is how the fruit was discovered to be highly toxic.
Another “dinosaur” walking these forests is the cassowary, a large flightless bird whose evolution goes back to the time when Australia was still part of Gondwana. Found only in this part of the continent and parts of Papua New Guinea, the cassowary is considered endangered and is under protection today as it plays a major role in maintaining the rainforest.
Dwelling on the ground is the smallest and most primitive member of the macropod family Musky Rat-kangaroo and hiding high in the canopy the rare, endangered and elusive Bennett’s tree-kangaroo.
In fact, there is a lot of wildlife to be seen in the Wet Tropics and many of the species of flora and fauna found here are endemic to this area meaning they do not live anywhere else. Discover this for yourself on a rainforest tour in Far North Queensland.
Where the rainforest meets the reef – Daintree Tour
When visiting Cairns one of the highlights is to take a day trip to the Daintree National Park. Experience the beautiful coastal drive, the lookouts, the rainforest and the many activities on offer. When on your Daintree tour experience a crocodile cruise with one of the local operators. Keep an eye out for yet another “dinosaur” local to this area, the Estuarine or Saltwater crocodile.
On a recent Cairns to Cooktown tour we stopped at the Daintree National Park and were extremely lucky to find a baby tree-kangaroo on our path, either lost or abandoned by its mum. As mum was nowhere to be seen we took the little guy and dropped him off at the Tourist Information Centre from where he was picked up by a caring lady with the right formula to feed a baby kangaroo and willingness to carry him in the “pouch” until Animal Rescue team arrive.
A visit to Daintree National Park and Cape Tribulation can be a day tour or extended trip along the Bloomfield to Cooktown, Lakefield National Park and Quinkan Gallery in Laura, combining the beautiful nature with Aboriginal and European history.
No Limit Adventures can tailor a tour based on your expectations.
Gliding effortlessly in the vast ocean wilderness, riding the currents from one reef to another, she scours the sandy bottom for tid-bits of algae to snack on before she surfaces, taking a few big gulps of air and then retreating down to nestle herself comfortably in amongst the soft corals of a shallow lagoon for a quick nap. The Green Sea Turtle is the most commonly encountered sea turtle at beaches and reefs around the world, and has a deep connection to many different cultures and peoples. In Chinese mythology, she represents wisdom. In New Zealand, Maori sailors would carve turtles into their maka (canoes) as a connection to their homeland, recognising that Green Sea Turtles will swim great distances to return to their breeding grounds. Hawaiian legends tell of Kauila, the mythical mother of all turtles, who would change herself into a girl to watch over children playing at Punalu’u Beach on the Big Island.
What is it about turtles that invoke such romantic, idealised images? Thousands of visitors from around the world come to the Great Barrier Reef each year, scuba diving and snorkelling, hoping to see a turtle. Catch some dive instructors in just their board shorts or bikinis, and chances are you’ll see a turtle incorporated in an elaborate tribal tattoo. Even visitors that watch from above-deck marvel and snap photos when the turtles come to the surface for a breath. What humans have learned about turtles, and what we still have to learn, is the driving force behind conservation efforts to ensure that this iconic species survives for future generations to enjoy. We know they’re old; the earliest sea turtle fossils date back 150 million years. We know they travel great distances, sometimes thousands of kilometers, between their breeding and feeding grounds, to mate and lay eggs. We know that females will lay 50 to 100 eggs in a carefully dug nest, cover the eggs with a layer of sand, and then abandon them, leaving them at the mercy of the sun and elements. And we know they’re disappearing.
Conservation biologists use the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List, where “endangered” is the second most severe conservation status for wild populations (following critically endangered) to describe species likely to become extinct; Green Sea Turtles are on that list, and for a variety of reasons. Large resorts and housing developments along desirable coastlines have meant a decline in breeding grounds. Introduced species such as dogs, cats, wild pigs, and foxes dig up nests around the world, and can destroy entire breeding seasons in certain areas. Green Sea Turtles’ shells, illegal to trade under the United Nation’s Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) are highly prized decorative ornaments around the world, with poachers getting huge payoffs for quality specimens.
But there is good news. As governments and conservation groups around the world rally to protect breeding habitats, ban indiscriminate fishing methods (of which Green Sea turtles are often by-catch), and crack down on poaching, populations have seen a decrease in the rate of decline; in some places, populations are even recovering. But more is needed to ensure these iconic creatures remain in the ocean‘s ecosystem, and not just as wood carvings, photographs and memories. To do your part, only travel with responsible reef operators and refrain from handling all wildlife, including turtles. Write to your elected officials asking for more protection of marine ecosystems. And lastly, decrease your use of plastic bags, which all species of turtle can mistake for food and die trying to eat.
Thanks to our Marine Conservation Partners Passions of Paradise – As part of our Marine Conservation Program we conduct important species counts on a variety of marine life – including Turtles, this data is then sent to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority to be used to help protect and conserve the Great Barrier Reef.
Remember: We have one planet; let’s take care of it, you can make a difference!
Travel to the last frontier of surfing – Papua New Guinea, one of the most remote and undiscovered surf destinations, with Vanimo being the premier surf spot. Stay in a beach front surf camp in traditional huts sleeping 3-4 people with a number of surf breaks available exclusively to the surf camp, the closest – a peeling right, straight out front from the camp. Most importantly you are guaranteed no crowds due to the surf management plan put in place by the Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea guaranteeing a limited number of 20 surfers per region, over 8 breaks. With a maximum of 12 surfers in camp this means that on most days you will be lucky to surf with any more than 4 people…
Surf Season: November – April
Level: Advanced beginners – experienced surfers. Short boards, mals, longboards and Stand Up Paddle boards.
Visa: a visa to PNG is obligatory and must be arranged prior to travel for Australian Citizens. Non-Australian Citizens may be able to purchase a visa on arrival. Please check prior to travel at: http://www.papuanewguinea.travel/passportvisainfo
This offer is valid exclusively to No Limit Adventure clients until the end of April 2015 pending availability of spaces
Prices subject to change at any time
Packages can be tailored according to individual requirements
Flight connections available via Sydney, Brisbane for Australian surfers with Air Niugini. For European surfers the best connections are via Jayapura, Singapore, Manila and Hong Kong with Air Niugini.
Prices start from AUD$1390/ person for a 7 night stay in PNG
Package inclusions: accommodation in a beachfront hut sleeping 3-4 people at Vanimo Surf Lodge, 1 night transit min. 3* accommodation in Port Moresby (based on twin-share. Single supp. $120 extra), 3 meals/ day while at surf camp, 1,5l of bottled water per day while at surf camp, airport transfers in Port Moresby & Vanimo, PNG Surfing Association Fees and local surf management fees, 1 x surf transfer per day to another spot, if conditions are not right at the local break
Package exclusions: International and domestic flights, extra accommodation in Port Moresby (if required), associated PNG Visa charges (if applicable), alcohol and soft drinks, extra activities and surf transfers, Personal Travel Insurance, excess baggage charges, costs of personal nature
Prices subject to change pending availability
No refunds within 7 days of tour commencement
Cancellations made within 7 – 14 days will incur 25% cancellation fee
Cancellations made 14 days or longer will incur $100 administration fee per person
No shows will incur 100% cancellation fee
No refunds or name changes permitted for flights once confirmed
NO LIMIT ADVENTURES Pty. Ltd.
Recognised Inbound Tour Operator for PNG and Wantok Specialist by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority
Official member of the Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea Inc.
Member of the Tour Operators Association of Papua New Guinea
NO LIMIT ADVENTURES Pty.Ltd.
Registered Wantok Specialist by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority
Official member of the Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea Inc.
Member of the Tour Operators Association of Papua New Guinea
Beachfront bungalow sleeping 3-4 persons, share bathrooms, generator run electricity in the mornings/ evenings, mosquito nets provided. (We recommend bringing own pillow case and sheet).
THE SURF BREAKS
Lido left – peeling left-hander located on the other side of the point and short walking distance from the surf camp (approx. 7 minutes). Generally holds more size than Lido Right. Reef break.
Lido right – peeling right hander located straight out from of the camp. Walk out of your bungalow and paddle out. It’s that close. Long reforming wave, with a barreling section. Reef break.
Yako Left – known and referred to as PNG Pipeline. Hollow, fast left-hander, breaking on shallow reef.
Others – other breaks also in close proximity to the camp including Loggers Point, a long right-hand break. Mainly reef breaks in the area.