Overlooking the waters of Balgai Bay, Kavieng lies at the northern tip of New Ireland and serves as the province’s main port. It’s renowned for its snorkelling and scuba diving, with several fascinating World War II wrecks to explore, as well as its surfing, fishing and sailing that are a hit with water-loving travellers.
Things to do
Venture underwater with one of the local dive operators to explore the offshore coral reefs that fringe the islands between Kavieng and New Hanover. In 1942, Kavieng was bombed by Japanese forces and its seafloor is now scattered with coral-adorned planes and ships. In addition to wreck diving, Kavieng boasts some spectacular underwater walls and steeply-dropping reefs where you can come face-to-face with big pelagic fish.
If you’re a keen surfer, there are several breaks around the northern end of New Ireland that are fed by North Pacific Ocean swells between November and April. Anglers can try their luck at luring black and blue marlin, sailfish and yellowfin tuna in the surrounding waters, together with coronation trout, red emperor and amberjack.
Prefer to stay dry? New Ireland also attracts cyclists wanting to complete the 265-kilometre-long Boluminski Highway, which hugs the east coast from Kavieng to Namatanai. This relatively flat road offers picturesque coastal views and passes through several traditional settlements where you can experience authentic Papua New Guinea life.
Kavieng Airport New Ireland is a five-minute drive from the town centre and has regular flights to destinations across Papua New Guinea. Pickup trucks and buses connect Kavieng with destinations across New Ireland while the nearby islands are easily reached by boat. Kavieng is compact enough to be explored on foot.