Tour DetailsDestination: Papua New Guinea
Dates: Summer 2013
Mt. Hagen Show Cultural Tour to Papua New Guinea – Co-ed
Number of days: 13
Itinerary dates: August 10 – 22, 2013
Tour Leader: Beth Whitman
* New, lower pricing! We’ve worked a deal with our in-country operator and have lowered the cost with no changes to the itinerary.
WanderTours Giving Program – A portion of your tour cost will go toward supporting a program in PNG that will help a local community.
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* Experience the Mt. Hagen SingSing which attracts approximately 75 tribes from around the country
* Watch a pre-show event where a small number of tribes prepare for the Hagen Show
* Boat down the impressive Sepik River, known for its vast bird life including Birds of Paradise
* Experience a homestay in a small village along the Sepik River
* Visit the Tari area, the famed home of the Huli Wigmen
* Every tour participant on a tour with a departure date in 2013 will receive a free Donner Bag from Overland Equipment in their color choice. See details here.
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Register now via PayPal by clicking on the Register Now button. You do not need a PayPal account.
The adventure starts in Port Moresby on August 10, 2013. Nearly all flights arrive via Brisbane, Cairns or Tokyo.
August 10, 2013 (Meals: D)
On this first day, you’ll be welcomed upon landing at the Port Moresby Airport and head to the hotel. Depending on arrival times, there may be a chance for the group to have a brief tour of Port Moresby including the Botanical Gardens, Parliament Haus, a village on stilts and local galleries. Overnight at Hideaway Hotel or similar in Port Moresby.
August 11, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
Following breakfast, the group will head to the airport for the flight to Wewak, where you will be met by a local guide and taken to the hotel. This is going to be the starting point for the tour of the Sepik region. Overnight at In Wewak Boutique Hotel in Wewak.
August 12, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
Today you’ll enjoy an early breakfast and travel around 4 hours to Pagwi by road, stopping at roadside markets along the way. You’ll then travel by motorized canoe to a nearby village where you will enjoy a welcoming singsing by the local tribespeople. The group will then continue onward to Kanganamun where there may be another singsing as well as a visit to the village’s haus tambaran (spirit house). Overnight at homestay in Kanganamun.
NOTE - This accommodation is quite basic and likely will consist of a thin mattress on matted floors, an outside pit toilet and bucket baths. Meals will also be simple (taro, sago and chicken). There is no electricity in this community and a mosquito net is a must.
HIGHLIGHT! Arriving in the rural Sepik region and meandering through the many waterways will be a highlight in and of itself. Numerous tribes reside in this region and while canoeing along the Sepik River and its tributaries you’ll see many of the local people who still maintain a traditional lifestyle including crocodile hunting.
August 13, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
On this day, you’ll have a half day together with the community at Kanganamun Village where we’ll visit their haus tambaran. Following lunch, the group will proceed to Yajaim Village and on to Palimbe, while experiencing the peacefulness of the Sepik River. During the journey, you’ll witness an authentic singsing and also see how the locals cook sago (a plant starch), carve wood, paint with typical materials and weave baskets. Watching these kinds of activities will provide you with insight into exactly how the people in this area live. You’ll also see many different kinds of birds that inhabit the area. Overnight at homestay inKanganamun.
HIGHLIGHT! These villages located on the banks of the river are known for their wide variety of carvings and crafts. You’ll have a chance to meet and visit with the carvers and bring home some authentic souvenirs from this very remote area.
August 14, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
On this day, you will have an early breakfast and then set out to Terence, Urther Maringe and Aibom villages. As you head down the river, you’ll see locals fishing in dugout canoes. You’ll also see more bird and wildlife (possibly crocodiles) alongside the riverbank. You will continue on along the waterway passing Kambige Village, where you’ll stop for a brief time prior to continuing on to Chambri Lake and back to Pagwi. Here the group will board the bus and return to Wewak. Overnight at In Wewak Boutique Hotel in Wewak.
August 15, 2013 (Meals: B, D)
In the early morning, you’ll go to the airport for the flight to Port Moresby and then onward to Mt. Hagen. The group will be met by a local guide and taken to a beautiful lodge in the mountains. In the evening, there will be a special courting ceremony demonstration with young men and women. Dinner and overnight at private lodge in the Mt. Hagen area.
August 16, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
The group will depart in the morning to a local village for an extraordinary mini-singsing. This private event includes roughly 10 tribal groups who will also be taking part in the Mt. Hagen show. Viewing them in a smaller venue is a very special opportunity to photograph them up close while they are adorn themselves with paint, bird feathers and other materials.
The performers will be donning typical (yet completely different) outfits that will include plumes of birds of paradise, pigs’ tusks, shells and spectacular body paintings. During this mini-show, you will see a courting ceremony, a demonstration of traditional fighting utilizing bows and arrows, a marriage ceremony and then you will get to taste traditionally prepared food baked in an underground oven (mumu).
The group will also visit a cultural center where ancient objects such as skeletons and spirit stones are exhibited. These are maintained by the tribal chief and his 5 wives. Dinner and overnight at private lodge in the Mt. Hagen area.
HIGHLIGHT! The mini-show is an extraordinary chance to observe the tribes practicing for the Mt. Hagen singsing. You will see them painting their bodies and faces, donning their feathers and adding various adornments to their outfits. You’ll then watch the actual performance in the main showgrounds. The tribespeople are really friendly and welcome having their photographs taken. You will have the opportunity to observe the show up close, mix with the performers and take plenty of photos.
August 17, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
Following breakfast, the group will leave for the Mt. Hagen Show. Weather depending, the group will depart early enough to see the singsing from the beginning (performers preparing for the show) to finish (final singing and dancing).
This day will be a full one as you watch performers from around the country. Be prepared to see about 75 very different tribes. Late in the day, the group will return to the lodge. Dinner and overnight at private lodge in the Mt. Hagen area.
HIGHLIGHT! This particular show is unlike anything you will ever experience. Ever. You’ll have the opportunity to wander among these 75 tribes while they are singing and dancing (all tribes simultaneously) and while each group tries to outshine the others.
August 18, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
Following breakfast, the group will either return to the Mt. Hagen singsing for an additional half-day of performances or, if the show is during this same weekend, attend the Enga show. In either case, there will be lots of things to experience and photograph on this day. In the afternoon, the group will return to the lodge to take it easy and recover from a lively couple of festival days. Dinner and overnight at private lodge in the Mt. Hagen area.
August 19, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
After breakfast, the group will make the drive to Tari, home to the famous Huli Wigmen. The drive will take about 8 hours along rough terrain. Upon arrival, you’ll settle in and enjoy dinner. Overnight at Mo Ha Inn Guesthouse in Tari.
August 20, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
Today will be an amazing day that includes a full day tour of Tari and some local villages. This area is still relatively untouched and the people here practice a very traditional lifestyle. You’ll learn from the local guide about how this community differs from others in PNG and you’ll get to see their rich culture, witness ceremonies and visit a fortune teller. Dinner and overnight at Mo Ha Inn Guesthouse in Tari.
August 21, 2013 (Meals: B, L, D)
After breakfast, the group will head to the Tari airport to fly onward to Port Moresby. The group will enjoy a final lunch together at a local restaurant and then have some time for last-minute souvenir shopping at local craft stores. Dinner and overnight at Hideaway Hotel or similar in Port Moresby.
August 22, 2013 (Meals: B)
After breakfast, you’ll transfer to the Port Moresby airport to catch your international flight.
** Itinerary subject to change without notice.
* New, lower pricing! We’ve worked a deal with our in-country operator and have lowered the cost with no changes to the itinerary!
**PLUS – if you and one or more friends book one of our international tours on or before May 15, you’ll both receive a 5% discount on land costs. See details and restrictions here.
In-country flights: approximately $900 – $1,100
Single supplement: $1,350
Interested in sharing? We do our best to pair up same-sex travelers so as to avoid the single supplement. However, priority is given to the first deposits received. If you’re interested in sharing – PLEASE send in deposit as soon as possible in order to take advantage of this benefit. (Why a single supplement charge? See this FAQ page for an explanation.)
Final payment due no later than June 10, 2013.
Price includes: Accommodation, most meals, land transportation, local guides and entry into all showgrounds and singsings.
Price does not include: Flights to and from Papua New Guinea, in-country flights (charged separately), evacuation insurance (highly recommended), purchases of personal nature such as artifacts, souvenirs, tips and beverages.
We recommend World Nomads for travel and/or evacuation insurance.
NOTE: Roundtrip flights from the U.S. start at about $1,800. A search on the major travel search engines may be up to 4 times that cost. For best pricing, please contact us for the name of our travel agent.
This unique journey is restricted to 10 people because of the limited availability of lodging.
In Mt. Hagen, tour participants will have to share a room due to limited availability at our exclusive lodge.
This tour requires a $1,000 deposit.
Minimum required: 5 people
For deposit and payments, please make payable and mail check to:
PO Box 16102
Seattle, WA 98116
For questions, please contact Beth at:
info (at) wandertours (dot) com
It’s easy to register by making your deposit of $1,000! Simply click on the Register Now button below and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you add your debit or credit card information. You do not need a PayPal account to do this. Subsequent payments may be made through PayPal by sending to: beth (at) wandertours (dot) com.
Papua New Guinea Packing List: Provided upon registration.
Beth Whitman imagined visiting Papua New Guinea for 30 years. Soon after exploring the country herself, she was certain that others were eager to discover this amazing country but, like her, weren’t sure how to do it on their own. So, she organized these tours so that others could realize their desire to visit this fascinating island nation.
Beth is the author of the Wanderlust and Lipstick guides including The Essential Guide for Women Traveling Solo, For Women Traveling to India and is the publisher of Traveling with Kids. She is also the publisher and founder of Wanderlust and Lipstick and WanderTours.