Kavieng, the provincial capital of New Ireland Province is located on the Northern tip of the island of New Ireland, Just 2º South of the equator.
It is a dynamic, exciting young nation, where centuries old tradition intermeshes with everyday 21st century life. Kavieng is the quintessential South Pacific town; an outpost in a tropical paradise and the perfect place to dive PNG, relax on a beach or discover an amazing tropical world.
The scenery is stunning and contrasting -low lying coral islands surrounded by golden beaches and pretty fringing reefs and mountainous islands which drop sharply into the sea. Kavieng has a commanding position overlooking Nusa harbour and the islands. A limestone bluff in the centre of town was turned into bunkers during World WarII. Japanese gun emplacements and various other remnants of the war can still be explored.
Kavieng has a population of a about 3500, it is the administrative centre of the province and has most of the essential services found in a medium size country town, Airport, shipping wharves, banks (Westpac and Bank of South Pacific), Post Office, a small general hospital, fire brigade, Hotel, Lodge, guest houses, golf course and club.
The Dutch laid claim to discovering the area in the 1516. During successive centuries others came and left including the notorious British Pirates Dampier and Carteret, not far behind Christian missionaries and traders followed. Countless French, Dutch and British would be colonials died over the the decades in attempts to control this wild and remote area. The Germans in the late 1800's made Kavieng one of the most prosperous parts of their colony, New Guinea. Stories still abound about Baron Boluminski, who developed plantations along the tropical Boluminski highway.
World WarI ended all German aspirations in the area. Australia administered the region until the next batch of conquerors, the Japanese, took control of New Ireland in 1942. they developed Kavieng into one of the major Pacific military bases along with Rabaul until their surrender in 1945. Australia then took over until independence on September the 16th 1975. Since independence life has slowed down considerably.
The provinces main income is derived from Copra, Cocoa, Palm oil and with the recent construction of a fish processing facility, coastal fishing.
Arriving at Kaviengs modest airport and driving into this small laid back town, not much reveals of the centuries of war and turmoil or the many colonial adventurers who came trying in vain to conquer and retain these islands.
Since PNG's independence 16 September 1975 life has slowed down in Kavieng. Now, the only invaders are the divers, surfers and tourists who come to enjoy this pacific wonder.
In Kavieng, you'll find a holiday destination like no other. Whether you are looking for an adventure, an escape or just somewhere to recharge your batteries, Kavieng is your perfect solution. Its simply the best holiday destination!
About New Ireland
New Ireland the shape of a giant rib situated between 2º and 5º South Latitude and 150º and 153º East Longitude, is 360km long but not even 10km wide in places. This island has an unusual geology, down its centre runs a range of mountains, which attain an elevation of six thousand feet, extremely rugged and precipitous. New Ireland with New Hanover and its off shore islands, Tingwon, Mussua - Emira, Tabar, Anir, Tanga and Lihir comprise New Ireland Province. New Ireland the second largest of PNG's outer islands acts as the eastern barrier for the Bismarck Sea.
New Ireland has 22 languages, many of them related - although you'll be able to get by fine with English in Kavieng. Many traditions of New Ireland groups are similar—matrilineal descent, big man leadership, weapons & tools. However there are differences in house & canoe designs, burial sites & marriage ceremonies. Malagan, Tumbuan & Shark Calling are among New Irelands many traditions.
New Ireland’s traditional culture is related to the Malagan concept. Malagan is a stylistically distinctive art tradition. Malagan carvings reflect the Malagan themes embodied upon the relationships central to the social organization to kinship ties linking social groups in the villages.
There are also different cultural identities in various parts of New Ireland. In the Namatanai region much of the peoples culture is very much centered around the sacred “Tumbuan” society a well guarded secret on which nothing much has been written as the villagers jealously guarded their secrets from researchers.
In the West Coast Central New Ireland area beliefs are related to various Cultural identities which are shown & manifested in the capturing of sharks in the ocean bare handed, armed only with a bush material noose tied to a propeller shaped piece of wood. Cultural aspects are undergoing a continual change due to modern day pressures.