Travelling to Papua New Guinea? Need Vaccinations?
Just north of the Australian Coast lies one of the last tropical islands that can truly be called unexplored. Papua New Guinea is wild, mountainous, blanketed with virgin rainforest, and dotted with seething volcanoes and ragged cliffs sloping down into the sea. Sounds extraordinary, doesn’t it? If your idea of excitement is walking the path less-trodden, then Papua New Guinea will not disappoint.
Flora and Fauna of PNG
Although Papua New Guinea and Australia share a common history, dating back tens of millions of years, Australia has dried out while PNG has a very wet, rainforest climate and a very mountainous topography. Here, you’ll find Kangaroos that climb the rainforest canopy, huge flightless birds, such as the Cassowary, and delight in the outrageous courtship display of the Bird of Paradise. Much of the flora and fauna on Papua New Guinea is unique in the world.
So are the diverse tribal cultures you’ll find here. Many extraordinary adventures lie in store for the avid explorer who is prepared to trek along rough jungle roads to stay in rainforest villages to meet the very friendly Papuans, learn their culture, and even witness a “Sing- Sing”, a traditional folklore festival in which warriors don flamboyant headdresses and chant to pounding drums. Head to the Highland town of Tari to meet traditional “Huli” wigmen. A world-class diving destination, Papua New Guinea has many unspoiled coral reefs, and World War II wrecks sunken near Rabaul, Milne Bay and Madang. You will probably find yourself on one of PNG’s lovely beaches at some point during your vacation…Idler’s Beach near Port Moresby is great for swimming and just relaxing, but you’ll need an umbrella since there’s not much shade.
Papua New Guinea has so much to explore…Nature Parks, Rivers, Waterfalls, Museums and Gardens! Try to find time for the National Orchid Garden at Port Moresby, Varirata National Park and Rouna Falls (which are close by each other), but for the seriously-fit trekker, there’s the “Kokoda”Trail, (96 km..) through high mountainous terrain up to Northern “Oro” Province, widely considered to be the world’s most challenging and rewarding hiking experience. (note: this hike can take from 5 to 12 days)
What Vaccinations do I need for Travel to Papua New Guinea?
Make sure that you are up-to-date with your routine vaccinations before heading off. The following vaccinations are recommended for most travellers to Papua New Guinea.
In addition, depending upon your itinerary, where you are travelling, length of travel and your occupational and lifestyle risks, you may also require vaccinations for the following:
Have a look at our pricing table for information about the cost of the travel vaccinations required for Papua New Guinea. If you are travelling around in the region, have a look at the vaccination requirements for the other countries that you intend to visit as recommendations differ from country to country.
Malaria in Papua New Guinea
PNG has a tropical rainforest climate and there is always a risk of Malaria. Please talk to us during your visit about taking the proper medication to prevent contracting Malaria. Prevent being bitten through the use of insecticides and by wearing protective clothing.
Food and Drink in Papua New Guinea
Simply said, the cuisine here is not the main tourist attraction, particularly in the villages where the fare at local restaurants or “kai bars” mostly consists of chicken and rice. Visitors tend to rely on their lodges or hotels for dining, and in Port Moresby you will find the best restaurants. Some tourists purchase fresh-caught fish/seafood and bring it back to their lodge to have it cooked. Local dishes might include fresh pineapple, papaya, or coconut. If you do buy from street vendors, be sure that whatever fruit or vegetables you buy can be peeled.
Drinking Water in Papua New Guinea
Drink bottled water all at times during your stay, and use bottled water also for brushing your teeth. Avoid ice cubes unless you know that they are made from purified water.
Travelling around Papua New Guinea
There are few paved roadways in PNG, and because of the terrain, it is not advisable for visitors to attempt driving into the mountains. Around the Capital, there are taxis, although they are rather expensive. Most travel is done by air, through regular services or by air charter. To reach the Islands, or otherwise inaccessible places on the coast, there are cruises and excursions available.
Health Care in Papua New Guinea
There are main hospitals in the Capital and in the Highlands. Any public consultation clinics or private doctors may be used in the event of illness, and these require immediate payment. We do recommend that you ensure your travel and private health insurance covers you and is up-to-date before your departure for Papua, New Guinea.