Posted on July 21st, 2009 No comments
Papua New Guinea
The amount of time spent on each island on this magical tour of Papua and the area was just right. I especially enjoyed the free days for personal exploration. The festivities at the Bargam Cultural Show were fascinating and the contrasts of Mount Hagen were just captivating. I wish I had more time so I could continue and do a third week!
One of the most defining features about Papua New Guinea is its cultural diversity. Many countries across the globe pride themselves in being host to a multitude of cultures, but Papua New Guinea is in a league of its own.
This second largest island in the world—the first being Greenland—owes its assortment of cultures not to the influence of other nations, as is often the case with multicultural societies, but rather to its own geography. In the Highlands, where mountainous peaks and thick forests dominate the landscape, many local tribes of yore remained either unaware of or indifferent to each other’s presence, instead developing their own customs, language and traditions in isolation.
The Papua New Guinea of today is as diverse as that of centuries past, with a staggering 700 or more indigenous languages, an excess of 1,000 indigenous groups and several thousand distinct communities, all within the country’s meagre population of five and a half million. A tour to Papua New Guinea promises travellers the once-in-a-lifetime experience to mingle with not just one, but with many tribes, many of which retain the ancient practices, traditions and culture of their forefathers. However, since seashells have not been currency in Papua New Guinea since 1933, be sure to take your wallet with you on tour.
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