13-Day Kokoda Battle Trek

Day 1: Owers Corner - Goodwater Campsite (3-4 hours)

After leaving the hotel in Port Moresby, we travel by road to Owers Corner, the begining of the Kokoda Trail. On the way to Owers Corner, we visit the Bomana War Cemetery, the burial site of over 3000 servicemen, mostly Australians.We also have the opportunity to the photograph the Owers' Corner Memorial Archway.

On our way to our campsite at Goodwater, we cross the Goldie River and pass through the abandon Uberi village.

Day 2: Goodwater - Ioribaiwa (5-6 hours)

The morning begins with the climb up the Golden Stairs to Imita Ridge, where the Australians made their last stand against the Japanese. After stopping for lunch at Ua-Ule, we cross Ua-Ule Creek and then continue to our campsite at Ioribaiwa.

Day 3: Ioribaiwa - Nauro (7-8 hours)

On Day 3, we climb to the top of Ioribaiwa Ridge, the final Japanese defensive position of the campaign. We then trek down to Ofi Creek and make the steep climb up to Maguli Range, passing the range peak, Japanese Ladder, and a Japanese artillery position on the way.

After we make it to the top of range, we climb down to Nauro village, our campsite for the evening.

Day 4: Nauro - Menari (6-7 hours)

On the way to Menari Gap, we cross the famous Nauro Swamp, where an Australian section got lost and spent the night in waist-deep water. Then we cross the Nauro River and trek up "The Wall," a narrow ridgeline, to Mt. Tamata, also known as Menari Gap.

We then walk down to Menari, which was captured by the Japanese after the Battle of Brigade Hill. We spend the night in the village guesthouse.

Day 5: Menari - Kagi (7-8 hours)

From Menari, we journey to and climb Brigade Hill, the site of a major, four-day battle. In that battle, nearly 300 of the badly outflanked Australian soldiers escaped the Japanese and retreated with their wounded to spend three weeks in the jungle.

After touring the battlesite, the climb down takes us past Mission Ridge to Efogi 1. We then climb to Efogi 2 (Launumu). There we see a memorial erected by the "Bone Man of Kokoda," a Japanese veteran of the Kokoda Campaign who returned to retreive the bodies of his fallen comrades.

From Efogi 2, we head down to Efogi River and make the steep climb to Kagi, where we spend the night. The locals including descendents of the Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels, welcome us and treat us to an evening of dinner and entertainment from their sensational village choir. 

Day 6: Kagi - Templeton's Crossing (8-9 hours)

 On Day 6, our first stop is at the Kagi Gap. After making the gentle climb up the gap, we enjoy the panoramic views of Kagi and the mountain ranges to the south. On the way to Mt. Bellamy, at over 2100 metres the highest point on the trail, we pass through Diggers Rest and 1900 Crossing campsite, and the Kokoda Gap, whose rugged terrain was famously underestimated by Generals MacArthur and Blamey.

From the gap, we follow Eora Creek along several ridgelines to our campsite at Templeton's Crossing. The site of fierce fighting during the Kokoda Campaign, the crossing lies in the vicinity of an Australian war cemetery.

Day 7: Templeton's Crossing - Alola (6-7 hours)

On our way to the village of Alola, we cross an amazing cane bridge built by the locals. We also visit a famoulsy dangerous Japanese artillery position above Eora Creek.

At Alola, our campsite for the evening, we have the opportunity to take showers, and rest the previous days of trekking. We can also enjoy the panoramic views of the trail, the Eora Gorge, and the mountain ranges.

Day 8: Alola - Isurava (2-3 hours)

Our trek to the famous Isurava War Memorial and the Isurava battle site takes us past Surgeon's Rock, a flat rock where surgeries were performed during the battle.

At Isurava, we tour the battle site, visit the local musuem, take pictures of the four granite pillars etched with the words courage, endurance, mateship, and sacirfice - that serve as a memorial to the battle's fallen. The battle is also famous as the site where Private Bruce Kingsbury, the first Australian soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross on Australian soil, forced the retreat of the Japanese before suffering a fatal wound at the hands of a enemy sniper.

We spend the night at Isurava, where we enjoy a spectacular view of the Eora Gorge and the mountain ranges to the east and west.

Day 9: Isurava - Deniki (3-4 hours)

On Day 9, we pass Front Creek, the site of Kingsbury's shooting, on our way to Deniki, our campsite.

We return to Deniki in time for nice cool baths and a change of clothing for the evening. Since it's our last night on the trek with our porters, they sing for us at dinner. It's also customary for trekkers to tip porters as a token of appreciation and friendship during the trek.

Day 10: Deniki - Kokoda - Popondetta (6-7 hours)

On our way to Kokoda, we travel through the villages of Hoi and Kovelo. At Kokoda, the finish point of the trail, we have the opportunity to tour the battlefields before driven to Popondetta. We spend the night at Oro Guesthouse.

Day 11: Popondetta - Oro Bay (7-8 hours)

Day 11 begins with a visit to the War Memorial in town, and then travel to Oro Bay. Oro Bay a staging base for the Allied drive to liberate Buna, Sanananda, and Gona.

At Oro Bay, traditional dancers welcome us before an evening of dinner and "singsing," the local term for dancing and celebrations. We return to Popondetta to spend the night the guesthouse.

Day 12: Popondetta - Oro Bay - Buna - Sanananda - Gona (8-9 hours)

On Day 12, we take a boat to visit the beachheads of Buna, Sanananda, and Gona, the site of the first Japanese landings in Papua. On our tour, we meet the locals as well as visit village war musuems and Allied memorials. Then we return to Oro Bay for a traditionally prepared "aigir," and return to our guesthouse in Popondetta.

Day 13: Popondetta - Port Moresby (1-2 hours)

On Day 13, we fly from Girua Airport in Popondetta back to Port Moresby. We spend the evening at the hotel before flying out of Papua New Guinea the next day.


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