Travel and Tourism - Papua New Guinea - February 2013
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Papua New Guinea (PNG) is situated in the eastern part of the world’s second-largest island, New Guinea, and is home to an incredible array of biodiversity. It is also one of the world’s most diverse countries in linguistic terms, with hundreds of culturally different tribes speaking more than 800 native languages. As a result, tribal identities and traditions remain fundamental to the fabric of Papuan life.
Tourism has been on the rise in PNG, most notably since 2005, due to increased promotion by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority (PNGTPA). However, facilities for tourists continue to be fairly limited and in urgent need of upgrade and development, particularly in terms of transport and accommodation. The Papuan government has a number of policies in place to support the development of tourism and the state-owned PNGTPA has implemented several strategies to raise awareness of PNG and its remarkably diverse tourism offerings.
As a result, PNG is expected to become better known as a tourism destination over the next decade, especially among the growing adventure market who are on the lookout for the next remote location in which to ‘try something new’ – diving, surfing, trekking all offer opportunities for niche-market growth. The colourful population and landscape have caught the eye of several travel magazines in recent years, further raising awareness of the destination. Conde Nast Traveller recently featured PNG as an ‘unusual destination’, describing it as a ‘land of mystery’.
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