Places to see
Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea is a thriving cosmopolitan city set in the tropics with a population of almost half-a-million people.
People from the country's 19 provinces work and live together along with a large expatriate population from many countries.
Port Moresby is the connecting hub for traveling in and out of the country.
You can arrange full-day and half-day tours escorted tours through all of the major hotel. Interesting places to visit include:
'The new National Parliament is far more than just a building or even just a parliament. It is for Papua New Guinea, a symbol of political independence . . . . Its sweeping lines impress, while signifying essential aspects and parts of our nation'.
The Hon Timothy Bonga, Speaker of the House
The design of Parliament House was inspired by Papua New Guinea's ‘worthy traditions of art and architecture’ and was to be developed ‘using solid local materials’ so that ‘the substance of the Parliament will also be of the country’. The building itself was to be a ‘monumental manifestation of national identity to display national pride and progress to Papua New Guinea citizens and the international community’.
The building rises from a reflecting pool and is an explicit transformation of the architectural traditions of Melanesian spirit and meeting houses.
The Parliament chamber and two administrative buildings are covered by a roof representing a ‘travelling Spearhead’ to symbolise the nation's commitment to progress and development. It is aesthetically powerful and one that the outer world associates with Papua New Guinea.
The Parliamentary dining room is a round building with a small roof pinnacle. This circular form is characteristic of men's meeting houses in the Highlands, and the pinnacle is a feature typical of the Chimbu region. Because Highlanders are noted for their elaborate feasts and extensive exchanges it is appropriate that the members' dining rooms and other entertainment facilities are located in this Highland unit.
To enrich the basic design plan, the Parliament House was embellished with decorative elements that make explicit reference to the diverse artistic traditions of the nation's nineteen provinces and the rich resources of the country.
The Parliament House also contains the largest display of contemporary art works in the country. They have been executed by Papua New Guinea's first generation of village artists as well as by more recent high school affiliates to the National Arts School. Although these works display a great variety of styles, they either depict images of Papua New Guinea's changing society or the myths and legends of traditional life ( ‘taim bipo’ in Tok Pisin).
Source: Papua New Guinea's New Parliament House: A Contested National Symbol. Pamela C. Rosi 1986
National Museum and Art Gallery
Located on Independence Hill close to Parliament House the National Museum and Art Gallery has one of the finest collections of 'Primtive Art' in the world. The main exhibit contains towering house polies from Sepik Haus Tambarans. Most of the larger carvings come from Sepik River areas. There are also pieces from other parts of the coutry such as Malagan masks from New Ireland. A walk through the museum will expose you to nearly all the handicrafts that are wrought in Papua New Guinea, from string bags or 'bilums' to the large sailing craft that are still used buy the people of the Trobriand Islands. There is a also an excellent natural history collection that should not be missed.
The museum has a small but interesting gift shop with a small collection of books.
They have recently established a 'war museum' section and the Ford Trimotor we lifted out of Lake Myola in 1979 has been relocated to the site.
Port Moresby Nature Park
Port Moresby Nature Park (formally the National Capital Botanical Gardens) is PNG's only combined botanical and zoological parks and gardens dedicated to the promotion of PNG's flora and fauna.
The park is home to many native orchids and plant species as well as a large collection of native animal species such as cassowaries, crocodiles, reptiles, tree kangaroos, wallabies, and bird species including the bird of paradise.
Thousands of tropical plant species including palms, gingers and heliconias and native timber tree species are found within the grounds which also include three main picnic areas available for hire. The Park is home to over 11,000 orchids, many of which are native to PNG.
We recommend taking a guided tour through the park - the guides are well-trained, friendly and informative.
At the end of your tour you can relax at their cafe and peruse their gift shop.
For more detailed information on what to see during your stay visit the PNG Tourism website at http://www.tpa.papuanewguinea.travel/