Papua New Guinea is one of the mega-diverse regions of the Earth in Oceania that occupies the eastern half of New Guinea. The country has an incredibly diverse geographical location. Travelers should exercise a high degree of caution due to the level of serious crime.
Papua New Guinea requires a visa and a passport valid for six months to enter the country. Tourists are advised to obtain a permit before leaving. Be sure to carry a return ticket and proof that you have sufficient funds to enter the country. Visitors can also get their visas upon arrival at Jackson International Airport in Port Moresby. Be careful and prepare sufficiently for an extended stay at airports, as frequent delays are common in domestic and international flight schedules.
With inferior public order, a tense situation remains in the mountainous areas around Bougainville Island and the cities of Lae and Port Morseby. The center of Bougainville, around the old mine of Panguna, is a forbidden area, and tourists are advised not to enter it. Traveling alone in these areas increases the possibility of criminal attacks and sexual harassment. Travelers are advised to be vigilant, especially when arriving at night or in the morning. Try to dress conservatively in public. Local transportation on public buses is not recommended, as they are unreliable due to low maintenance and are a common target for offenders.
Papua Guinea places a high value on its local laws and customs. The country does not provide for dual nationality. Homosexual acts and adultery are illegal, and punishment can include long-term imprisonment.
To begin your exploration of Papua, take a cruise around the island. Many visitors make their vacation a cruise experience. The Sepik Spirit is a great cruise that takes visitors on three or six-night cruises along the Sepik River. It is a great way to explore life along the rivers, which has remained relatively unchanged for centuries.
Papua New Guinea is often called an underwater photographer’s paradise. Some of the most famous underwater photographs have been taken in dives around the island. Under the water, you can see all kinds of corals, including impressive coral walls and gardens, as well as seagrass beds and numerous wrecks from World War II. The waters around Papua New Guinea are warm, and this makes diving available all year round. The beautiful coral reefs in the area are full of the most colorful fish in the world! It is worth learning the sport of diving when visiting this lush island.
Many people come to Papua New Guinea to enjoy jungle walks through the formidable nature. Whatever your skill level, there is a hike or a trek to match on the island. In the Highlands, you can climb high mountains with beautiful views and several volcanoes. You can also take several days and go through the jungle with your private guide. Be sure to keep your eyes open for World War II artifacts, which are hidden all over the island.
If you like wildlife, you will want to take a day to do some birding. The island is the only place where you can see the bird of paradise, and there are almost forty different species of these extraordinarily colorful birds. If you are new to birding, you can take guided tours of some of the rainforests to find the best places to see the colorful birds on the island.
For an extreme island adventure, enjoy rafting down some of the rivers in Papua New Guinea. There are rapids for all skill levels and many companies that will help you get the adrenaline rush of an exciting river trip – another way to see some of the colorful flora and fauna of the island!
When visiting New Guinea, be sure to take time to experience the local culture of the natives. While the island people are continually facing the challenges of modernization, there are many subsistence farms in the highlands that still depend on the culture that has been part of their lives for hundreds of years. There are over a thousand different cultures on the island for you to explore as a diverse island. To find your next adventure, head to the exotic embrace of Papua New Guinea.