Frequently Asked Questions
A minimum of 8 people is required for our surfing, fishing and diving charters, with a maximum of 10. To guarantee the sole use of the boat with less than 10 guests on-board, contact us for more information on the surcharge.
Our surf schedule is based on set dates of 9-night charters from late October to mid-April. Diving and fishing charter lengths can be flexible, depending on the itinerary.
Diving is $60 per dive. You must let us know prior to arrival that you wish to dive, as we need to confirm your dive certification, insurance and dive gear sizes. Due to the remote nature of our operations, and our protection and indemnity insurance, we are required to provide qualified guides and you are required to dive to depths within your certification.
- Beers, soft drinks and wine (charged at local prices)
- Diving (AUD $60 per dive)
- Professional photo package (ask on-board for rates)
- Internet access – Vsat Wifi access for AUD $150 for the 9-night charter or casual use at AUD $30 per day.
Alternatively, you may choose to utilise the services of Marine Adventures Melanesia (MAM) and have them manage all travel arrangements on your behalf.
With many years of experience working in PNG, MAM can assist in organising both international and PNG domestic flights, giving you peace of mind so you can relax and simply look forward to your holiday. In addition, they can also manage your PNG Tourist Visas. Send MAM an email with your trip dates, and they’ll organise the rest. email@example.com
Children are welcome on the PNG Explorer. Contact us for child rates.
There is plenty to do and see in New Ireland and the rest of PNG aside from surfing, such as diving, snorkelling, kayaking, fishing, bird watching, island culture and traditions, World War II tours, and general tourism. The PNG Explorer is also available for scientific research surveying, as a support vessel for large ships, and for government and health patrols. Contact us for more information and a quotation.
Each dish is freshly made, inspired by local cuisine and palatable for Western taste buds. Any special dietary requirements or allergies can be catered for, just let us know by completing the guest profile form.
The water supply on-board is produced by our on-board desalinisation plant. This supply is also filtered and UV treated from source to tap. We provide each guest with a 1.5L insulated stainless steel water bottle to use whilst on-board. Refill this bottle daily with ice and water to ensure you keep hydrated in the tropics.
Help yourself to tea, coffee and juice. We love a good coffee and showcase the best of PNG, so maintain your habit and kick start your day with a latte.
We provide soft-drinks, beer and wine for sale. If you prefer a specific soft drink as a mixer for the strong stuff, then let us know in advance.
Yes, we encourage guests to go and meet the locals and see how they live, school and work. It’s a fantastic insight into this amazing Melanesian lifestyle and culture. The locals are very hospitable to guests and are more than happy to share stories. Equally, they are as interested in your life, so if you’re open to it, be prepared to talk about yourself!
It’s a nice gesture to bring things for the locals on the islands that we visit. We always recommend books for the schools, and people often bring up pre-loved clothing, which is always appreciated.
There have been a few incidents in PNG recently, which are justifiably likely to deter potential tourists. Most of these incidents occur on mainland PNG in the major populated centres of Port Moresby, Lae and the Highlands. Kavieng is situated in the Islands region of PNG, which is regarded as a relatively safe destination. To get to Kavieng you will transit through Port Moresby, but you need not leave the airport if you are concerned. Once you arrive in Kavieng, you are in our care. We will be there to meet you at the airport and drop you off again.
As with travelling to any foreign country, we ask that you use your common sense. Be mindful of your belongings and note that it’s best not to walk around alone. Crime is mostly petty theft, and unfortunately, domestic violence is more common than we’d like to think. So, while it’s important to be on your guard and respect the local culture, don’t be afraid to have a chat, a laugh and be friendly with locals.
The tropical climate is hot and humid, with an average air and water temperature between 27-30oC. December to March is the wet season, although there is rainfall year-round. Equatorial sun can be intense, especially in the water, even if it’s overcast. Prepare to cover up and wear plenty of sun protection (including your eyes). Hydration is key, so always remember to drink plenty of water.
Clothes that are loose and light with long sleeves are great for sun protection and as mosquito barriers in the evenings. For women especially, it is respectful to dress modestly, so knee length shorts or skirts are appropriate. T-shirts or rash shirts for the water and reef booties are recommended.
As in many equatorial countries, Malaria is endemic in PNG. A good preventative measure is to wear insect repellent and long-sleeved shirts and trousers, particularly when walking through villages. Since the vessel is air-conditioned and we anchor at a reasonable distance from land, the risk is minimised whilst onboard. However, we suggest that you speak with your doctor about anti-malarial medication and other vaccinations specifically recommended for PNG.
A small medical kit with antibiotic cream, ear and eye drops, plasters and antihistamine tablets is useful. Coral cuts or scrapes can take much longer to heal in the tropics and are prone to infection, so you may want to talk to your doctor about a suitable antibiotic. The most important thing is to keep cuts clean and protected. Please ensure you bring any personal medication you may need. We have an extensive first aid kit onboard and your hosts are senior first aiders, our crew is also first aid trained.
The currency in PNG is the Kina (PGK), which normally fluctuates around 2.15 PGK to 1 AUD. We recommend that you organize some Kina for your holiday, as you may be interested in buying locally produced handicrafts and jewellery. We recommend that you organize small denominations of your money (i.e. 2, 5, and 10 Kina notes) to make it easier to pay for items on the island. On the Explorer, we accept cash (AUD $ or PGK) and credit cards for payment of on-board purchases such as alcohol, diving and merchandise.
No. There is nothing to pay on entry or exit from PNG.
Many passport holders can obtain their tourist visa on arrival – but this service is subject to change.
We recommend you organise your visa online through the PNG Immigration website. Most passport holders can apply for the ‘Easy Visitor Permit’ for 30 or 60 days. This application attracts a fee of US $50.
Prior to completing the application, please check you have at least six (6) months validity on your passport, and that you have booked your flights to and from PNG.
Marine Adventures Melanesia (MAM) can manage all travel arrangements on your behalf (including PNG Tourist Visas). With many years of experience working in PNG, MAM can assist in organising both international and PNG domestic flights, giving you peace of mind so you can relax and simply look forward to your holiday. Send MAM an email with your trip dates, and they’ll organise the rest. firstname.lastname@example.org
Travel insurance is mandatory for all those travelling on-board PNG Explorer. We recommend purchasing this cover as soon as you have booked your flights to PNG.
Your insurance should include:
- Emergency evacuation for medical treatment
- Dive insurance (if you are keen to dive whilst on-board)
- Travel delays
- Lost luggage
The PNG Explorer has VSAT internet and phone. The boat’s contact numbers are:
PNG Explorer 1: 07 3073 8786. PNG Explorer 2: 07 3073 8787
When calling from Australia there is no need for PNG country code – it’s like calling a Queensland number. When calling from overseas, use the country code +61
Feel free to pass these onto your loved ones to contact you in case of emergency. International roaming on most mobile phones will get coverage in cities and towns, including Kavieng. While you are out on charter on the PNG Explorer, this mobile phone signal will be limited, if at all.
If you have already booked your trip, contact us with this request. Due to the rotational schedules of our surf-guides, coaching may be an option.
We recommend you bring 2 boards, 3 at most. You could expect waves to be on average 2-4 feet, with bigger days from 4-6+ feet.
There are plenty of options from a first day beginner to the seasoned, barrel chasing pro. There are some really fun, soft wave options to enjoy.
If you’re chasing ‘Mavericks’ style waves; then PNG is not your recommended choice of surf destination. However, the ‘slab’ on bigger days can see 4-6 feet. Bare in mind that when it’s REALLY BIG you are a long way from home and surfing over coral reef. Therefore, we recommend that you always surf within your limits and improve! There is nothing better than coming home surfing better than when you left.
Yes, we have certain trips in the season that are non-sole use that are perfect for the solo surfer. Contact us to find out current available dates.
We offer fishing, snorkelling, kayaking and use of the SUP free of charge. Diving is an extra charge at $60 per dive. There are plenty of opportunities for island tours and excursions such as the WWII tour, drift snorkels, beach BBQ, river trips and the ‘betel-nut run’. These are at no extra charge to guests.
In the best months of April and May, August and September we schedule our dedicated black bass fishing charters. These trips will explore the river systems of New Britain and Oro Provinces and we would expect the prized black bass and spot-tail bass, along with a variety of other species from trevally, grouper and bream.
When we venture out into the blue water and around the undersea coral mounts, dogtooth tuna, yellow-fin tuna, Spanish mackerel, wahoo and trevally are common.
Yes, you will need to bring your own rod, reel and line, along with hooks and terminal tackle, soft plastics and lures. Contact us for our recommended list of what to bring specific to the charter you are joining.
Yes, if flying with Air Niugini from overseas into PNG you will qualify for their additional sporting goods allowance of an additional 10kg. You will get 23kg check in + 7kg baggage carry on + 10kg for sporting goods.
Most of the Air Niugini fleet can accommodate lengths of up to 2.7m. Read more on Air Niugini’s baggage info.
Yes, we do offer spear-fishing on-board. If you would like to organise a dedicated spear-fishing charter contact us for further information about available dates and a recommended itinerary in PNG.
If you are keen to spear fish on a surf charter, then you should bring your own spear gun. We direct the spearing to the blue-water and offshore reef areas away from local communities. This is due to spearing being one of the most common means of fishing for locals, so aside from maintaining good community relations, this places less pressure on their house reefs.
On a dedicated fishing charter, we will endeavour to release most of the fish caught. Fish that are kept will be those of legal size and regarded as good eating.
We often fish for dinner on non-fishing charters, but rest assured that no fish is wasted and we will share the catch with the local communities where we are anchored.
To be able to enjoy the incredible wreck and pristine wall dives in PNG you must have your dive certification and suitable dive insurance.
Yes, we will conduct a refresher of the diving basics and your first dive will be in calm water off the boat or beach.
If you are keen to try a dive or two whilst on a surf or other non-dive charter we can provide dive equipment on-board for your dive.
If you are joining a dedicated dive charter, we recommend that all guests bring their own gear (mask, BCD, reg set with gauges, dive computers and fins). We will provide tank, weights and air only.
Note: With Air Niugini you will get an additional 15kg baggage allowance when travelling with dive equipment.
All divers must dive within their certification limits.
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