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PNGTPA Highlights Re-Opening of Cruise Tourism Papua New Guinea

The re-opening of cruise borders in Papua New Guinea welcomed the arrival of its first maiden cruise ship in Alotau, on Friday 7th October 2022, by the stunning Pacific Encounter. The cruise ship had a total of 2400 cruise tourists on board that arrived from Carins Australia, with Alotau being its first port of call in PNG waters.

The cruise ship was escorted into the wharf area by traditional war canoes then followed by local sing-sing groups that danced and sang to the cruise tourists as they disembarked to go on their pre-booked tours or independent tours. The Milne Bay Tourism Bureau also had Volunteer Youth Ambassadors (VYA) on the ground ready and waiting to assist any tourist that needed a guide to tour the town.

The official welcome ceremony was held at the wharf area to commemorate the cruise ship’s arrival. It was attended by the Captain Roger Bilton of Pacific Encounter and his crew who were received by PNG dignitaries; the Minister for Tourism Arts and Culture Hon.Henry Isi Lenord,TPA CEO Mr Eric Mossman Uvovo,Deputy Controller -NCC Dr.Daoni ,Deputy Governor Milne Bay Mr.Lelena Metoa and witnessed by other cruise stakeholders in Milne Bay Province.

The cruise ship spent approximately 8hours in Alotau town, before leaving for Kiriwina at 6:30pm later that day. The sight of cruise tourists in town brought back relief, but mostly excitement amongst the local people as this gave them hope and confidence in the restart and continuity of cruise tourism. 

Pacific Encounter brought to Alotau 2400 cruise passengers, with more than 600 passengers disembarking for shore excursion tours with various tour operators. Pacific Encounter continued onto Kiriwina-Rabaul-Conflict Islands and back to Australia following the end of the 7-night itinerary to PNG.

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