Islands of the Frizzy Haired

Those are not my words but of a sixteenth century Portuguese explorer when he first sighted these islands. Ilhas dos Papuas means ‘islands of the frizzy haired’. A Spanish explorer later added the New Guinea part because he found the people resembling those of Guinea in Africa. In any case, we are in Papua New Guinea. After six months we’re finally in a new country and so far so good.

We sailed for two days and two nights and arrived in New Ireland, PNG, where we spent a day anchored in Irish Cove. A beautiful spot, perfect to take a rest and get ready for the final overnight sail to Rabaul in New Britain. Rabaul used to be the capital of New Britain but was evacuated when the surrounding volcanoes (there are not 1, not 2, but 6 of them!) started heating up. The eruption of 1994 covered the town in a heavy layer of ash and everyone relocated to nearby Kokopo, on the other side of the bay. Today there is still the harbour, yacht club, some shops and a market in Rabaul, but most businesses and people stayed in Kokopo.

A new country also usually means a few days of paperwork to sort out. We had already arranged a visa in advance through the PNG consulate in Honiara and that made things much easier. All we had to do was go to Customs to clear in and they stamped our passports and then the Quarantine and Health officials met us at the yacht club to complete the remaining paperwork. Easy peasy and much cheaper than the Solomons.

Next on the program was topping up our provisions and wow do they have some good shops here. Definitely a step up from the Solomons. One of the supermarkets in Kokopo even had an escalator, something we hadn’t seen in a long time!

6X8A1502

a visitor during our two day sail from the Solomons to PNG


6X8A1516

sunset at sea


6X8A1549

land ho!


6X8A1582

approaching New Ireland, PNG


6X8A1587

Irish Cove


6X8A1594

great spot for a rest before the final overnight sail to Rabaul


6X8A1626

leaving Irish Cove


6X8A1638

approaching Rabaul, surrounded by volcanoes


6X8A1639

volcano crater


6X8A1640

sunrise over Rabaul


6X8A1642

another active volcano


6X8A1715

view from the cockpit in Rabaul


6X8A1717

one of the many fishing boats in Rabaul


IMG_4238

plenty of green beans at the market


IMG_4239

Rabaul market


IMG_4275

one of the supermarkets in Kokopo


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Rehua anchored in front of the yacht club in Rabaul


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Rabaul yacht club , volcanic ash everywhere


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

shopping delivery to the yacht club, great service!


6X8A1730

Kokopo anchorage on the other side of the bay


6X8A1733

sunset over the volcanoes

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s