Kokoda History Treks led by an expert Australian guide - unforgettable 8-day experience from $3795.
Our Kokoda History Treks follow the footsteps of the brave as they fought one of the most desperate series of battles across the Owen Stanley Ranges from Kokoda to the doorstep of Port Moresby at Imita Ridge.
They are led by experienced Adventure Kokoda trek leaders with a detailed knowledge of the wartime history of the Kokoda campaign. They understand the Principles of War; the strategy of the Kokoda campaign; and the tactics of each battle which they will explain at each site.
The route follows the original 138 km wartime trail which is shorter than our 10-day Kokoda Premium Campaign Treks as it does not include the battle areas defended by the 53rd and 2/16th Australian Battalions on the eastern side of the Yodda Valley.
Our Kokoda History treks cover all the major battle sites at Imita Ridge, Ioribaiwa Ridge, Brigade Hill, Templeton's Crossing, Eora Creek, Isurava, Deniki and Kokoda where you will receive detailed historical presentations.
- All transportation
- All accommodation
- All trek fees
- Mosquito-proof tents
Dates & Availability for Kokoda History Trek
FAQs about this trek
NO! PNG trek guides are masters of their environment however their knowledge of the Kokoda campaign and their presentation skills do not rate at this stage of their development.
Adventure Kokoda organises PNG led Kokoda treks for groups who are looking for a physical challenge in preference to learning about the wartime history of the Kokoda campaign.
Whilst our PNG leaders have been well trained in expedition leadership and are the best in the business they do not have the knowledge of the military history of the Kokoda campaign or the presentation skills to conduct battlesite briefings.
Trekkers meeting PNG support crew on arrival at Kokoda airfield
If you trek from Owers Corner to Kokoda via the wartime trail you follow the footsteps of our young Diggers as they advanced across the Owen Stanley Ranges to meet the Japanese 144th South Sea Islands Regiment.
If you trek from Kokoda to Owers Corner via the wartime trail you follow the route of the Australian withdrawal in the face of overwhelming Japanese odds back to the last line of defence on Imita Ridge.
There is no 'best' way to trek Kokoda. The experience is just as powerful in either direction (that is the opinion of Charlie Lynn who has trekked 61 times from Kokoda to Owers Corner and 29 times from Owers Corner to Kokoda).
The difference is the experience and knowledge of your trek leader. If your trek leader has a detailed understanding of the history of the Kokoda campaign you will get maximum value from your trek. If they don't you will be disappointed and will soon realise the savings you made from going 'cheap' are a false economy in more ways than one.
The distance across the Kokoda Trail between Owers Corner and Kokoda as the crow flies is 96 km. However if you were to strap a Garmin 64st GPS to the leg of the crow and get him to trek it via the wartime trail the actual distance is 143.7 km - you would also climb a total of 6748 metres.
The trek across Kokoda is the toughest physical challenge most people will encounter.
The decision as to whether to carry your own backpack is important because it can mean the difference between enjoying the experience or suffering and having to withdraw from the trek.
Some trekkers in the past have stubbornly refused to engage a personal carrier because they want to do it like ‘the diggers did it!’
If this is your rationale we suggest you purchase a pair of hobnail leather boots, carry a canvas backpack with webbing pouches; travel with a half-blanket which you will willingly share with up to six other trekkers; borrow a rifle and ammunition; sleep outside your tent and leave your underwear and toiletries at the hotel in Port Moresby!
For those who are young, confident and physically fit it will not be a problem. But for those who lead a sedentary lifestyle; who might be carrying an extra kilo or two; who might be harbouring some self-doubt about their ability to burden themselves with extra weight; or who do not maintain a daily regime of physical training it will be a struggle – you will find the track does not make concessions to anybody! It is therefore important that you do an honest assessment of your physical capabilities.
If you are physically fit, are an experienced extreme conditions trekker, and have prepared yourself with a strenuous training program then you should be able to carry your own pack. On the other hand if you have any doubts about your ability then you should consider engaging a personal carrier for yourself or sharing one with a mate.
If you engage your own Personal Carrier prior to your trek we provide them with a trek uniform and purchase additional food and camping gear for them before we leave Port Moresby – there is none available along the track.
The cost of a Personal Carrier is between $660 - $790 per person, depending on the trek type/duration. The cost will be displayed when completing the online Booking Form.
If you decide to engage one after you arrive an additional $150 surcharge will apply to cover the additional costs we have to incur as short notice.
From time to time we have trekkers who realise they cannot carry their backpack after the second or third day - we then have to try and recruit additional carriers along the trail. This is a difficult exercise in the middle of the Owen Stanley Ranges as we are not able to arrange for additional food, uniforms or camping gear for the additional carriers. It’s also unfair as our PNG trek guides and carriers, who already work hard under extreme conditions, don’t appreciate having the size of their meals reduced whenever we have to engage additional personal carriers during the trek.
A Personal Carrier will carry your backpack and act as your ‘trek caddy’ for the duration of your trek – he will often catch you before you fall; will assist you over the most difficult sections of the trail; assist you with packing up and setting up and proudly introduce you to his family in his village.
Yes he does.
The VHF radio net along the Kokoda Trail has improved however there is only one channel and it is sometimes difficult to break into the chatter. The system does not have a base station with a 24/7 listening watch which could be critical in an emergency.
Professional operators are equipped with satellite phones for use in emergencies.
Trek Operators who do not have a satellite phone with an active account fall into the 'dodgy' category - unfortunately they exist and the only protection trekkers have is the old caveat emptor of 'Let the buyer beware'.
Meet the Trek Leaders
In 2015 Charlie was inducted as an Officer of the Logohu by the Government of Papua New Guinea in their New Years Honours and Awards list 'for service to the bilateral relations between Papua New Guinea and Australia and especially in the development of the Kokoda Trail and its honoured place in the history of both nations' over the past 25 years.'
Chad is a decorated Vietnam veteran - he was awarded the Military Medal for bravery in action. Chad first joined the 8th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (8 RAR) as a tracking dog handler. He was promoted through the ranks to Sergeant while serving with 8 RAR and served with the Battalion in Malaysia and South Vietnam.
Rowan is a pioneer of the Kokoda Trail. He first trekked it 30 years ago when he served with the PNG Defence Force. He is fluent in the local language 'Tok Pisin'. Rowan is a military historian and is acknowledged as the most eminent authority on the strategy and tactics of the Kokoda campaign.
Over the past 34 years Captain Reg Yates has explored most of the WW11 battlesites in PNG. He is fluent in Tok Pisin and is well respected by village elders along the Kokoda Trail.
Simon joined the Australian Navy a Cadet Midshipmen in 1973 and carved out an outstanding career spanning 33 years. He specialised in maritime surface ship operations and spent the majority of his career at sea.
Rod is currently serving as a Sergeant in the Royal Australian Artillery at Kapooka. He has served in the Sinai Peninsula and Iraq and has a deep understanding of the wartime history of the Kokoda campaign. He is also a competitive ultra-marathon athlete.
Prior to John joining Adventure Kokoda he used to wrestle crocodiles with Steve Irwin. John is a qualified para-medic and expert bushman. He has a deep emotional commitment to Kokoda and the veterans he has met over the years. He is a keen student of the Kokoda campaign.
Peter served in the Army Reserve for 7 years and has two grandfathers who served in both World Wars - one being a highly decorated soldier. Peter recently graduated with a MPhil in Military History with the Australian Defence Force Academy and is now studying for his PhD.
Bernie is a Kokoda tragic. He first trekked with Kokoda to honour his father who served in New Guinea during the war. He has since trekked it 43 times. Bernie has transposed his success in business to his passion for leading treks across the Kokoda Trail.
Dave began exploring Australia as soon as he was old enough to escape Sydney. He was born in the city but his heart was in the bush. There are few places in Australia that Dave hasn’t trekked on foot or explored in off-road vehicles. He even took to the sea as a crew member on the Tall Ship HMAS Bounty during the Bicentenary in 1988.
Peter Morrison is an unassuming young Australian. He first trekked with Adventure Kokoda almost a decade ago and developed a strong desire to learn more about the campaign and the people he met along the trail. Peter is a professional boxer and former NSW Welterweight Champion.
Tracie is the General Manager and engine room of Adventure Kokoda - she is on-call 24/7 and will look after your every need and concern from the moment you book your trek until you arrive back in Australia.