Day 1 - Saturday, Jun. 4, 2013 Depart
Day 2 - Sunday, Jun. 5, 2013 En Route
Day 3 - Monday, Jun. 6, 2013 Port Moresby
Welcome to Papua New Guinea. Upon arrival clear Immigration and Customs (if you have not already done so, obtain your PNG visa on arrival) and proceed into the arrival area. You will then be met by a representative of Asia Transpacific Journeys and/or your tour leader, who will be holding a sign with your names or Asia Transpacific Journeys on it. Transfer to your nearby hotel with the remainder of the day free at your leisure.
Airways Hotel is Papua New Guineas' leading hotel, and one of the most unique airport hotels in the world. Nestled into the mountainside in its own botanical gardens with stunning views from crystal clear waters of Bootless Bay to the majestic mountains of the Owen Stanley Ranges, it is just 2 minutes from Jacksons International Airport.
Your tour leader will be handling all your services including internal flight coupons for the duration of your stay in Papua New Guinea. Should you have questions or concerns during your time on the group trip please refer to your tour leader, she is there to assist. Overnight at the Airways Hotel & Apartments - Port Moresby. Meals Provided: L D
Day 4 - Tuesday, Jun. 7, 2013 Port Moresby / Mt. Hagen
This morning, our group will be transferred to our onward flight to Mt. Hagen.
Fly Port Moresby to Mt. Hagen. Economy Class
Upon arrival enjoy a half-day tour of the surrounding villages. This location provides spectacular views of the Hagen Range, Mt. Giluwe, Sepik Divide, Baiyer Gap and Wahgi Valley.
Overnight at the Highlander Hotel - Mt. Hagen. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 5 - Wednesday, Jun. 8, 2013 Mt Hagen / Waghi Sing Sing / Mt Hagen
Early this morning depart Mt. Hagen by road to the traditional village of Nondugi where time has seemingly stood still. This drive will take approximately 2 hours but is subject to change based on the road condition. Here you will spend the day witnessing the fabulous Waghi Sing Sing.
Experience this very obscure, supremely authentic village sing-sing, whereby different groups, dazzling in their wildly flamboyant costumes, plumage and make-up, compete for prestige in a splash of color and a chorus of song.
Sing-sings are a psychedelic smorgasbord of ritualized ancient theater paraded to vocal accompaniment. The chanting of each tribe is alternately haunting, happy or warlike, and ranges from dizzying whoops to subtle, wind-like murmurs. Participants take exceptional pride in representing their tribe’s unique garb and rituals. Far from being a staged event for tourists, sing-sing competitions have a long tradition, and jealous losers have in the past been known to wage actual war on the winning tribe. The tribes present at this sing-sing are barely post-Stone Age. They cultivate yam and taro, search for edible fruits and animals in the forest, and live in symbiosis with their livestock (women are known to suckle piglets). There will be plenty of opportunities for cultural interaction. Late this evening return to Mt. Hagen for a much needed night's rest.Overni ght at the Highlander Hotel - Mt. Hagen. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 6 - Thursday, Jun. 9, 2013 Mt Hagen
Today enjoy another day exploring Mt. Hagen. Please note that if the group wants to return for another day to participate in the Waghi Sing Sing, this can be arranged. Overnight at the Highlander Hotel - Mt. Hagen. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 7 - Friday, Jun. 10, 2013 Mt Hagen / Timbunke / Sepik River
This morning, we will transfer to an airstrip for our charter flight to Sepik.
Fly Mt. Hagen to Timbunke Charter Flight
Upon arrival, transfer to the Sepik Spirit a comfortable air-conditioned live-aboard vessel that has been recently converted in to a hotel and permanently stationed at Kaminimbit Village, located in the Middle Sepik where most of the population lives.
During the next few days, the Sepik Spirit will be our base as we explore this remote region. This is one of the greatest travel adventures to be had in the world, a voyage of discovery into the mystical world of the Sepik Province. Access traditional villages where the spirit world and the peoples’ everyday life merge in a fascinating mixture of ceremonies, carvings and haus tamberans (spirit houses).
Each village has its own haus tamberan, decorated with monumental masks and many carved objects. These objects embody local history and myths, offering fascinating anthropological insights. You’ll see tribal art galore, now famous the world over. Here you may obtain it straight from the source; it’s possible to purchase elaborately carved hooks, ancestral figures, hand drums, baskets, bilums, gourds and many other interesting items.
Fantastic wildlife also abounds in this area, so keep an eye out for crocodiles and myriad bird species, such as egrets, brahminee kites, pied herons, whistling kites, jacanas, cormorants, kingfishers and the incomparable bird of paradise. Overnight on board the Sepik Spirit - Sepik River. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 8 - Saturday, Jun. 11, 2013 - Sepik River
Today we will enjoy exploring remote villages and this unique area. The full day will be spent exploring the many waterways of the Sepik and its tributaries including visits to traditional Sepik Villages. The Sepik River is one of the largest rivers in the world - in terms of flow. Steeped in mystery, the people of the Sepik area have fascinated anthropologists like Margaret Mead since the area was first visited. Part of the mystery and attraction of the Sepik peoples is their amazing carvings, now famous the world over.
Overnight on board the Sepik Spirit - Sepik River. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 9 - Sunday, Jun. 12, 2013 Sepik River / Karawari
This morning we'll disembark and board our charter plane for our flight to Karawari.
Fly Timbunke to Karawari Airstrip; Charter Flight
The Karawari Lodge stands majestically on a lone ridge amidst a vast expanse of dense tropical lowland rainforest, extending beyond the horizon for what seems like a thousand miles in every direction. We are in 'Arambak' country here, one of the most remote and unspoiled areas of Papua New Guinea, with the Karawari River just 300 feet below, our only way in or out. This tropical lowland rainforest is one of the earth's most complex of habitats, housing an immense variety of flora and fauna along with a unique culture.
After getting settled we'll enjoy lunch, followed by an afternoon visit to the village of Kundiman where we will witness typical village life, including the making of sago.
Return to the lodge's majestic open-air dining room in time for a gourmet meal before retiring to your cottage for the evening. Overnight at the Karawari Lodge – Karawari. Meals Provided: B L D
Day 10 - Monday, Jun. 13, 2013 Karawari
Today we will enjoy a day excursion along the jungle-fringed waterways of the Karawari River where boatmen, standing upright, paddle their slender dugout canoes with sculpted silhouettes of crocodile masks. Village life including carved totems, drums, woodcarvings and different expressions of art are also experienced. See bountiful bird life along the rivers and nearby lakes. Excursions will enhance your understanding of traditional village culture in the Sepik region. Overnight at the Karawari Lodge – Karawari; Meals Provided: B L D
Day 11 - Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2013 Karawari / Tari
This morning after breakfast, we will transfer to the airport for our onward charter flight to Tari.
Fly Karawari to Tari; Charter Flight
Upon arrival, transfer to the stunningly situated Ambua Lodge. Located at a cool 7,000 feet, this lodge, built in the style of the local Huli compounds, will be our home for the next three nights. An inspired mix of local architecture, spectacular views and modest luxury, Ambua’s 40 bungalows are surrounded by walking trails, waterfalls and orchids, and offer expansive views across the Tari Valley. Here the Huli Wigmen tribe—famous for their face paint and elaborate human hair wigs—live much as they have for millennia, in high lush valleys nestled between towering limestone peaks. Thirteen species of birds-of-paradise inhabit the area, orchids flourish in the cloud forest and waterfalls thunder a short walk from the lodge. This afternoon enjoy guided nature hikes, fantastic birding and relaxation enjoying the beautiful surrounds of the lodge. Overnight at the Ambua Lodge – Tari; Meals Provided: B L D
Day 12 - Wednesday, Jun. 15, 2013 Tari
Enjoy another day exploring more of the Lodge's beautiful surroundings including visits to Huli villages, nature walks and birding. Overnight at the Ambua Lodge – Tari; Meals Provided: B L D
Day 13 - Thursday, June 16, 2013 Tari
Continue enjoying the beauty of Tari. Overnight at the Ambua Lodge – Tari; Meals Provided: B L D
Day 14 - Friday, June 17, 2013 Tari/Port Mosby
This morning, we will transfer to the airstrip for our flight back to Port Moresby.
Fly Tari to Port Moresby; Economy Class
Upon arrival, take a city tour, visiting the National Museum, the lovely Botanical Gardens, and Papua New Guinea Arts, a gallery filled with an extensive display of art from all parts of the country. Lunch will be at our hotel. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner at the hotel restaurant.
Overnight at the Airways Motel & Apartments - Port Moresby; Meals Provided: B L D
Day 15 - Saturday, Jun. 18, 2013 Depart
Transfer to the airport for flights home, or begin a private custom extension to other great locales in the Asia/Pacific region. Meals Provided: B