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Exotic Alotau for Holiday seekers in PNG


by PETER S. KINJAP
If you are planning for an exotic holiday this year, join the Canoe (Kenu) & Kundu Festival in November 01st, 02nd and 03rd, a spectacular event showcasing the fascinating cultures of Milne Bay and surrounds.

The stunning traditional canoes and kundu drums used in the festival are a significant part of the lives of the people of Milne Bay. The 'war canoes' are especially crafted from special woods in the same way as those made by local ancestors and the colours and patterns reflect upon the tribe and the area the canoe comes from.

This cultural highlight comprises dozens of canoes, some with 40 plus warriors, adorned in traditional dress and paddling to the beat of island drums, leaving a powerful impression. Races are held amid much rivalry and celebrated with just as much revelry.

The dance performances are even more spectacular with brilliantly attired groups from all around Milne Bay. A festival not to be missed!

Those who find the event complimenting with other recreational activities can think of Alotau as a destination for cruises, snorkel or dive the waters of the Coral Triangle. Exploring tropical fjords in dugout outriggers and meeting generational witch doctors to experience passionate energies of PNG’s most exciting cultural festival.

Staying at Tufi sited on tropical fjords lined with jungles and coral reefs as well as stepping back in time and visit villages whose customs and lifestyle have changed little in thousands of years and getting up close with traditions thriving after hundreds of years.

Touching down at Alotau airport was once the Bob Gurney airstrip during the WW2.

Aioni Tours, a local tourism SME, provides the pickup at the airport and takes you to experience the village life, traditional basket weaving, traditional fire making, coconut climbing and husking, traditional cooking with clay pots and have the chance to see the last feasting zone during the period of cannibalism in the province.

Aioni Tours offers bush tracking and water falls; learn about traditional hunting methods used by the locals, survival in the jungle and bird watching to have a feel of the virgin tropical rain-forests.

Hang out with the locals for canoeing and local fishing and have the chance to learn the traditional fishing methods used by the locals living along the coastline for ages. Have the chance to paddle a traditional canoe which is used by the locals as a mode of transport.

Aioni Tour's five packages are:
1). For Alotau highlight tour, visit the sites below (4 hours) AU$80.00 per person
Bob Gurney air strip during the war, now used as the domestic airport.
John French memorial during world war 2 (1942). Central Memorial, Museum, Local Market, Craft market, Local community schools and Festival Village.

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