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Your Guide to Diving Papua New Guinea

All of Undercurrent's information on diving Papua New Guinea, including articles, reader reports, Chapbook sections, ...

Diving Papua New Guinea Overview

This land just north of Australia -- PNG as it is often known - offers some of the world's best tropical diving. It's a vast area comprising several islands including New Ireland and New Britain in the Bismark Sea. While there are several PNG dive resorts with excellent diving, it's a dream destination for liveaboards and PNG has several well-regarded diving liveaboards to choose from. In the north at Hansa Bay, near the mouth of the Sepic River, there's a fleet of Japanese freighters sunk during the Pacific War. In the "fjordland" area, there's Tufi near where unique critters abound. Muck diving is great for macro photographers, and there are plenty of sites with big fish, big coral, and brilliant coral. It's also a naturalist's paradise with beautiful topography: volcanoes, steaming jungles, butterflies as big as birds and walking-stick insects a foot long, and splendid Birds of Paradise. Most rain comes in heavy afternoon downpours. Take a week to stay in fine lodges like Karawari or Tari to visit indigenous, still primitive cultures, among the most interesting on the planet. Port Moresby is an unsafe city, although the big hotels are fine, as is a cab trip to the superb giant crafts market. Loloata Island Resort, with great diving, is 25 minutes from the airport and they'll arrange round-trip transportation. It's been redeveloped but should be open by the end of 2018. A malaria prophylaxis such as Malarone is still essential in PNG. English gets you by everywhere.

Papua New Guinea Seasonal Dive Planner

PNG is a very mountainous country, and its weather is dependent on local topography. Heat and humidity are reasonable considerations. Only in the Highlands does it get cool at night. The driest time of year is May through October, but it rains considerably even then. During the rest of the year, plankton blooms are more common. Although Walindi Plantation Resort (New Britain) accommodates guests year-round, January, February, and March are the wettest months. Some boats beat the rainy weather by moving to the other side of the mountains at Kandrian, miraculously transporting to a dry climate. It's a bit of a steam for the crew, but for guests, it's a quick flight over the mountains by Twin Otter. The water temperature is a wonderfully warm 84°F (29°C), and the nights are T-shirt comfortable. The heaviest rains occur in the New Ireland (Rabaul) between January and April. The weather can be as different near Port Moresby as it is between the fjordland area (Tufi) and Madang to the north.

Featured Links from Our Sponsors
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Best of PNG
Best of PNG
The PNG diving and land tour specialists. No-one knows PNG above and below better. Resorts, liveaboards, festivals, villages, flight deals.
Reef & Rainforest, Let our experience be your guide -- Reef and Rainforest
Reef & Rainforest
is an agency for travelers that scuba dive. Want biodiversity, critters, tribal villages, birds of paradise? We specialize in Papua New Guinea.

Diving Papua New Guinea Reader Reports and Feature Articles

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Latest Reader Reports from Papua New Guinea

from the serious divers who read Undercurrent

All Reader Reports from Papua New Guinea

All 10,000+
Walindi Plantation Resort Report in Papua New Guinea/New Britain
"A difficult place to reach and get out of"
filed Jul 20, 2023 by John Morgan (Experience: Over 1000 dives)
4 stars

I’ve been diving since 1983. In that time I’ve got 1500 dives and countless trips under my belt. This one was without a doubt the most ... ... Read more Photos available

Walindi Plantation Resort Report in Papua New Guinea/Kimbe Bay
"Walindi Resport on New Britain Island, Papua New Guinea, has it down"
filed Jul 18, 2023 by Rick Morgan (Experience: 501-1000 dives, 4 reports, Reviewer )
5 stars

Walindi is one of a handful of SCUBA-focused resorts in PNG (others include Tufi, on the “mainland” of PNG, and Tawali in Milne Bay, on... ... Read more

MV Oceania Report in Papua New Guinea/Kimbe Bay
"Excellent 10-days on Oceania Liveaboard across Kimbe Bay, PNG"
filed Jul 18, 2023 by Rick Morgan (Experience: 501-1000 dives, 4 reports, Reviewer )
5 stars

Really, very few surprises. Travel to PNG is challenging--allow an extra day each way, or better yet, spend time diving at Walindi, wh... ... Read more Photos available

MV Oceania/Walindi Report in Papua New Guinea/New Britian LiveAboard
"Combo of Dives from Walindi and MV Oceania"
filed Nov 30, 2022 by Jeffrey F Tonn (Experience: Over 1000 dives, 6 reports, Reviewer )
5 stars

We started our diving at Walindi with 8 dives from their day boats. The first dive was super-fishy, with very healthy coral- a great om... ... Read more

Walindi Plantation Resort Report in Papua New Guinea/Bismarck Sea, New Britain isle
"A great resort for divers"
filed Nov 23, 2022 by Steven Moore (Experience: 501-1000 dives, 6 reports, Reviewer )
4 stars

We’ve talked for years about staying at Walendi Plantation, but the lengthy travel always discouraged the trip. This year, the visit ... ... Read more

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Complete Articles Available to Undercurrent Online Members; Some Publicly Available as Indicated

Diving Papua New Guinea Articles - Liveaboards

Available to the Public
Little Cayman, Cocos, Palau, PNG . . ., great liveaboard picks, and a sailfish slaughter in Guam, 6/15
A New App for Coral Sea Diving, 4/14
Walindi Plantation and MV FeBrina, PNG, machetes, bare butts and cannibals are part of the package, 10/12
Bonaire, Fiji, Galapagos, Roatan, great examples of customer service - - and one resort to avoid, 9/11
Tawali and Spirit of Niugini, Papua New Guinea, choose the liveaboard over the resort, 3/09
The Finest Dive Boat in Papua New Guinea? Not Yet, 8/08
Star Dancer, Paradise Sport, — pick a ship: two top PNG live-aboards, 3/05
Paradise Sport, 3/05
Star Dancer, Papua New Guinea, quarter inch critters, thirty foot monsters, 4/03
Papua New Guinea Liveaboard Options, 4/03
Mike Ball's New Paradise Sport, Checking out the Muck in New Guinea, 10/98
The Telita and PNG, The saga of Bob Halstead’s pioneer boat, 1/98
The Chertan in PNG, 11/95
Papua New Guinea, 5/95
Golden Dawn, Coral Sea, 3/95
M.V. Febrina, M.V. Tiata; Papua New Guinea, Magical Mystery Tours, 11/93
Two Other PNG Liveaboards, 11/93

Diving Papua New Guinea Articles - Land Based

Available to the Public
Belize, Little Cayman, the Conflict Islands, bedbugs, tiny bunks, and an unknown gem, 2/20
Pirates of Papua New Guinea, 10/18
Tufi Dive Resort, Papua New Guinea, everything’s nice - - during the wet season, that is, 1/10
One of PNG’s Last Great Cultural Events, 1/10
Kiribati, Yeah; Kri, Nay, important updates for dive travelers, 5/06
Tawali Resort, PNG, 3/05
Haus Poroman Lodge, Mt. Hagen, PNG, 4/03
PNG Choices, 10/98
While in PNG, Forget Port Moresby, a diver’s alternative, 10/98
Worldwide Diving, With an IRS Subsidy, Barracuda watching in PNG, 2/98
Papua, New Guinea, An Unparalleled Adventure, Diving Or Not, 8/87

Papua New Guinea Sections from Our Travelin' Diver's Chapbooks

Reader Reports filed for that year

Papua New Guinea Liveaboards

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For Public

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Land Based Dive Resorts in Papua New Guinea

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For Public

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2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005
2004 2003 2002 2001        

Editor's Book Picks for Scuba Diving Papua New Guinea

The books below are my favorites about diving in this part of the world All books are available at a significant discount from; just follow the links. -- BD

Reef Creature Identification: Tropical Pacific Reef Creature Identification: Tropical Pacific
by Paul Humann and Ned Deloach

Paul Humann and Ned Deloach have done it again, releasing a definitive identification guide to 1600 extraordinary reef creatures of the Tropical Pacific. with this 500+ page softbound guide, you get upwards of 2000 exceptional photos of shrimp and crabs and stars and worms and lobsters and nudibranchs and slugs and squid and bivalves . . . well, all those invertebrates that move along the reefs of this region without fining, so it seems. There are several photos of some creatures to help you identify them during different life stages, and about ten percent of the book is descriptive copy so you can tie down your identification. Even if you have no plans to go to the tropical Pacific, just to thumb through the pages, gawk at the complexity and uniqueness of these animals, and read a thumbnail sketch will give any serious diver vicarious thrills for endless hours.

Click here to buy it at Amazon.

Reef Fish ID Reef Fish Identification: Tropical Pacific
by Gerald Allen, Rodger Steene, Paul Humann, & Ned Deloach

At last, here's a comprehensive fish ID guide covering the reefs of the Pacific and Indian Oceans. The generous 500-page text, displaying 2,500 underwater photographs of 2,000 species, identifies the myriad fishes that inhabit the warm tropical seas between Thailand and Tahiti. The concise text accompanying each species portrait includes the fish's common, scientific and family names, size, description, visually distinctive features, preferred habitat, typical behavior, depth range, and geographical distribution. This is an essential book for every diver traveling westward. 6x9 inches.

Click here to buy it at Amazon.

Dive Sites of the Great Barrier Reef Dive Sites of the Great Barrier Reef
by Neville Coleman.

With 2900 reefs in 220,000 square miles, the enormous Great Barrier Reef has incredible dives -- and some very ordinary ones. If you're contemplating a trip, Neville Coleman's Dive Sites of the Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea will help you ensure you pick the best. This 176 page book, with good maps and scores of colorful photos, describes the significant sites, the topography and the critters, then rates and ranks them so you can pick the best. Don't even consider a trip to Australia without consulting this. $24.95

Indo-Pacific Coral Reef Field Guide
by Gerald R. Allen, Roger Steene.

I was trying to pack light for a change. Surely the Solomon Sea would have good identification books aboard. Not so; the only book on the boat belonged to a fellow passenger. It was one that I had not seen before, the Indo-Pacific Coral Reef Field Guide, by two of the best fish guys around, Gerry Allen and Roger Steene. The problem was this fellow passenger kept it in a plastic baggie most of the trip and I had to beg to see it. Great book, good traveling size, and it covers everything from fish, shells, marine plants, mammals, corals, and invertebrates to sea birds and more. Now I've got my own, and it won't do you any good to beg me to borrow it. This is one of two books that I will not travel to the Pacific without. Good for travel to the Red Sea, East Africa, Seychelles, Mauritius, Maldives, Andaman Sea, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Australia, Micronesia, Polynesia, and Hawaii, it has 1,800 color illustrations in a 6x8 1/2 paperback format with 378 pages. $39.95.

Diving Southeast Asia There's a Cockroach in My Regulator
by Undercurrent

The Best of Undercurrent: Bizarre and Brilliant True Diving Tales from Thirty Years of Undercurrent.

Shipping now is our brand new, 240-page book filled with the best of the unusual, the entertaining, and the jaw dropping stories Undercurrent has published. They’re true, often unbelievable, and always fascinating. We’re offering it to you now for the special price of just $14.95.

Click here to order.

You might find some other books of interest in our Editor's Book Picks section.


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