Giving to
Bryn Mawr

Katharine Houghton Hepburn Center

Papua New Guinea

Land of the Last Unknown

June 4 - 18, 2013

We invite you to join us on a trip to the world’s most exotic tribes, Papua New Guinea, a land as colorful and astonishing as its fabled bird of paradise. This trip features the fabulous Waghi Sing-Sing. At this remote village you will experience the dazzling costumes, plumage and make-up of this wonderful celebration. Our trip also includes an exploration of the might Sepik River – the Sepik people are famous for their complex ancestor cults, rich artistic tradition and their extraordinary ceremonial houses known as haus tambaran. Some of the last discoveries of human communities were made in papua New Guinea in the 18930’s – though some things have changed in the past 80 years, many have not, Join us on this exceptional journey to the Land of the Last Unknown.

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Preliminary Itinerary
(please click on location to reveal details)


Day 1 - Saturday, Jun. 4, 2013 Depart


Day 2 - Sunday, Jun. 5, 2013 En Route

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

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Price and Program Inclusions:

Group Land cost per person:$11,785.00
Group Internal air cost per person:$ 2,900.00
Single Supplement: $ 2,980.00
**Please note that there are no singles during the Sepik Spirit portion of this departure. Single Supplement cost does not include a single room on the Sepik Spirit.

**Your trip will feature your tour leader, Suzanne Noakes
Special note on luggage restrictions

To meet domestic flight weight regulations Air Niugini domestic flights limit the amount of total checked luggage to 16 kg (35 lbs) per person plus a small carry on bag or camera bag.

ALL other domestic/charter flights (including those in this itinerary) limit total checked luggage to ONLY 10 kg (22 lbs) per person plus a small carry on bag or camera bag of 5 kg (11lbs) per person! It is asked that you leave any excess luggage in Port Moresby with our ground staff, which will be available upon your return to Port Moresby.

Large luggage, whether hard or soft sided, is not allowed on any flight. We can assure you that Air Niugini rigorously enforces these restrictions. If you are in violation, you will unfortunately be required to re-pack on the spot. So please, pack light and pack small.


All meals as designated in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner); hotels as shown based on double occupancy; airport transfers as indicated; all transfers to and from hotels as indicated for planned activities and sightseeing tours–entrance fees, domestic permits; all applicable service charges and taxes (excluding some international or domestic airport departure taxes); predeparture materials including a customized Travel Guide containing destination information, travel tips, and cultural primer; limited travel insurance coverage including emergency medical evacuation coverage up to $75,000 per person, and in-country emergency medical expenses up to $2,500 per person.


Any item not specifically included in your program including all snacks, extra personal beverages & bottled water, etc. other than during designated meals, alcoholic beverages; passport and visa fees, video fees, excess baggage fees, laundry, phone calls, internet and any other items of a personal nature not specifically indicated; tips for your guide, ground staff, drivers, hotel porters and other service staff; ADDITIONAL INSURANCE OF ANY KIND, including trip cancellation/interruption/delay, air ticket cancelation, additional medical, and lost baggage insurance; any and all expenses resulting from delays arising beyond our direct control due to bad weather, trail, river, sea, and/or road conditions, sickness, civil unrest, government action; or any other transportation delays for any reason beyond our direct control; optional activities, free-day activities, including any additional stopover arrangements not specifically included in the itinerary. We can make additional arrangements for you. Extra charges will apply.


We highly recommend purchasing additional insurance, including trip cancellation. We recommend Travel Insurance Select (TIS). To be eligible for maximum benefits, you must purchase within 2 weeks of paying your initial deposit. Please contact the Alumnae Association for additional information


INTERNATIONAL AIR: There is no international air included in this trip cost.

INTERNAL AIR: Port Moresby - Mt. Hagen on preferred local airline carriers - Economy class. Mt. Hagen - Timbunke - Karawari Airstrip - Tari on charter flight. Tari - Port Moresby on preferred local airline carriers - Economy Class All airfare is subject to change until ticketed. We will always do our best to confirm the most desirable seats on internal and/or international air (if ticketed by ATJ). Confirmed seat assignments are never guaranteed and can be changed at the discretion of the airline. Often with minor schedule changes, seat assignments are cancelled by the airlines. Please feel free to contact the airlines on your own to check on your seat assignments If your itinerary includes airline tickets issued by ATJ you will be required to provide us with your first, middle and last names, as well as your birth date, exactly as it appears on your passport. Failure to provide us with the correct information may result in significant penalties and increased fares. In addition, ATJ will administer a $75 per person surcharge for any changes made after airline tickets have been booked.


VISA FEES ARE NOT INCLUDED in your trip cost. You are welcome to obtain the visa on your own or through our recommended service provider G3 Visas & Passports; (visit for links to their site and select 'Asia Transpacific Journeys Custom Traveler' to print all required forms). Following are requirements for your program for U.S. citizens (different regulations may apply for other nationalities). All visa information is subject to change.

Arrangements as outlined or confirm acceptable alternatives. Payment of your deposit indicates agreement to the attached Terms & Conditions (or view at and agreement to complete, sign and return our Application, Waiver and Release of Liability, which must be submitted to complete the sign up process. The sooner we receive your approval and deposit, the better your chances that we will be able to accommodate you on the above program at the estimated price.

Papua New Guinea - On arrival or pre-arranged. Papua New Guinea requires a visa, which can be pre-arranged or obtained on arrival. The fee to obtain the visa on arrival must be paid in local currency-kina (1 passport photo required). We recommend that you pre-arrange your visa.


The above is an ESTIMATE only. Actual availability and pricing have not yet been confirmed. Confirmation of arrangements will begin upon receipt of a $1,000 per person non-refundable deposit. If you would like to make your deposit online, please visit The deposit is applied toward your final balance due and is non-refundable unless we are unable to confirm your arrangements as outlined or confirm acceptable alternatives. Payment of your deposit indicates agreement to the attached Terms & Conditions (or view at and agreement to complete, sign and return our Application, Waiver and Release of Liability, which must be submitted to complete the sign up process.

Airfare and Land Payments:

Full airfare is due upon confirmation. Final balance is due 60 days prior to departure. If your departure date is within 60 days, full payment is due immediately. All deposits and payments can be made by personal/cashier's check, American Express, Visa or Mastercad.

  • From time of confirmation until 60 days before departure - cancellation fee is limited to your deposit or 25% of all land cost, which ever is greater.*
  • From 31 to 59 days prior to departure - cancellation fee is limited to your deposit or 50% of all land cost, which ever is greater.*
  • Less than 30 days prior to departure - 100% of land arrangements is non-refundable.

* There may be circumstances where non-refundable full payments or deposits have been made on your behalf for airfare, ship or other charters, hotel or other custom arrangements that will supersede the above policies.

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Faculty Study Leader

Suzanne Noakes

Australian Suzanne Noakes has been traveling in Melanesia for the last two decades, leading trips in Papua New Guinea for private groups, university alumni and conservation associations, and has developed a deep understanding of PNG's people, culture, language, flora and fauna.

Noakes owns a tourism policy company that lobbies overseas governments to alleviate poverty through tourism initiatives, and is pursuing her master's degree in this field. She sponsors such initiatives as the Karawari coconut soap press, teacher scholarships and improved water collection projects within the Milne Bay region.

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