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Close up mask, Mask Festival, Papua New Guinea

Sepik River and Rabaul Mask Festival

Start dateEnd dateDays
Prices from
Single SupplementTour ExpertGroup SizeStatus
03/07/22 15/07/2213 days £12,995 ex. flights £3,895Nathan Bately10 Max AVAILABLE Reserve place

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Sepik River hut, Papua New Guinea 1

Sepik River

Cruise the Sepik, home to remote villages nurturing traditions, rituals and legends

Local Tribesmen, Mt Hagen, Papua New Guinea 2

Highland tribes

Encounter Asaro Mudmen, Huli Wigmen and birds of paradise in the Highlands

Young girl in Papua New Guinea 3

Cultural immersion

Experience sing-sings, fire dances, and elaborate, ritualistic costumes and masks

Close up mask, Mask Festival, Rabaul, Papua New Guinea 4

Mask Festival

Spend three days witnessing a wide range of cultural dancing, sing-sings, and ritual performances at the annual Mask Festival.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1

    Port Moresby - Mandang

  • Day 2


  • Days 3 - 6

    Sepik River

  • Days 7 - 8

    Mount Hagen and the Highlands

  • Day 9

    Mount Hagen to Rabaul

  • Days 10 - 12

    Mask Festival

  • Day 13

    Rabaul to Port Moresby

Day 1

Port Moresby - Mandang

Aerial View, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

Arrive into Port Moresby. Enjoy a morning city tour before flying to Madang in the early evening.

Day 2


Kalibobo Spirit, Boat, Papua New Guinea

In the morning explore Madang. After lunch, transfer to the port to embark the Kalibobo Spirit, before departing for the Mighty Sepik.

Days 3 - 6

Sepik River

Kumbarumba village, Sepik River, Papua New Guinea

Spend the next four days exploring remote villages along the Sepik River.

Days 7 - 8

Mount Hagen and the Highlands

Local Tribesmen, Mt Hagen, Papua New Guinea

Visit the local remote villages of the Mount Hagen region. Whilst here, learn about sorcery and witchcraft from real Sangarum (witch doctors).

Day 9

Mount Hagen to Rabaul

Baining Fire Tribesmen, Rabaul, Papua New Guinea

Transfer back to Mount Hagen for your flight to Port Moresby. From here, fly to the beautiful East New Britain, home of National Mask Festival.

Days 10 - 12

Mask Festival

Mask Festival, Rabaul, Papua New Guinea

Spend three days witnessing this incredible festival. We have strategically booked accommodation right next door to the showgrounds which allows you to come and go as you please – to retreat to the air conditioning, recharge cameras and refresh whenever you feel the need.

Day 13

Rabaul to Port Moresby

Old Town, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

Depart on an early morning flight to Port Moresby to connect with your flight home.

Kalibobo Spirit, Boat, Papua New Guinea
Kalibobo Spirit, Boat, Papua New Guinea, PNG, Cruises

Kalibobo Spirit

Boasting four levels of luxury, the Kalibobo Spirit features separate indoor and outdoor dining and a comfortable lounge area with a well stocked cocktail bar and ample covered deck space for relaxing on three decks. The master suite, 6 queen sized and 2 single guest cabins, accommodating up to 16 guests.

Refitted to cruise the waters of Papua New Guinea, this beautiful vessel – manned by experienced crew – brings the ultimate boat experience to the waters of the South Pacific.

Kumbarumba village, Sepik River, Papua New Guinea
Kumbarumba village, Sepik River

Sepik River

The Sepik River runs over for well over a 1000 kilometres from its source deep in the central mountains through to the Bismarck Sea. This remote region made up of vast river systems, beautiful coastlines and mountain ranges takes you well beyond the beaten track to villages with one foot still in the stone age.

The timeless mystery of Sepik folklore is still proudly displayed right throughout the region with insights into the origin of the country’s greatest tribal adornments, traditions and artefacts.

Asaro Mud Dance, Goroka, Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea

Mount Hagen and the Highlands

Papua New Guinea’s largest populations of tribes people are found among the mountain valleys and rushing rivers of the Highlands. This region is considered to be the true heart of Papua New Guinea. The Highlands offer a huge variety of different and most renowned tribes. Huli wigmen and the Asaro Mudmen are to be found dwelling here.

Close up mask, Mask Festival, Rabaul, Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea

Mask Festival

At dawn the beating of kundus and chanting of elders evokes the male and female spirits of the Duk Duk and Tambuan for the for the Kinavai Opening Ceremony. From across the water in dugout canoes, through the mist to the crescendo of drums and voices they come. This spine-chilling opening sets the scene for three days of immersion among some of the most ancient cultural ritual in the world, still practiced today. Welcome to Papua New Guinea’s International Mask Festival in Kokopo, East New Britain, the rising star of PNG’s renowned festival scene.

Why a Steppes expert-led group tour

1.Experience Matters

We have been running insightful and groundbreaking group tours since our inception in 1989. We have worked with institutions such as the British Museum and Victoria & Albert Museum and run wildlife tours in conjunction with conservation agencies such as Fauna & Flora International, Wildlife Conservation Society, the Orangutan Foundation, Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the Jane Goodall Institute.

2.Size Matters

Our average group size is typically eight to ten people, smaller than other group tours typically offered – a factor which many of our clients appreciate. Travelling as part of a smaller group provides a more intimate, personalised and relaxed atmosphere.

4.It’s about who you know

We have developed an enviable pool of expertise from which to choose our tour experts, who we carefully select based on their knowledge, companionship and personality. Often, these experts can use their influence to facilitate private access to sites not typically open to the public.

3.Like-Minded People

Steppes Travellers are like-minded people – interesting, interested and curious. Our group tours aim to create an easy and informal atmosphere – we have a lot of fun on our tours and many friendships have been formed.

5.Value for money

Our tours are well-priced to ensure you get real value for money. We include gratuities on the majority of our tours and do not pass on currency surcharges. We strive to look after single travellers as well as we can, keeping single supplements to a minimum.

6.Peace of Mind

When you travel on one of our group tours, you will be looked after by our local agents and your tour expert with the back-up of our 24-hour emergency number and duty manager. All our holidays are fully bonded and protected – our ATOL number is ATOL 6495.

Includes / Excludes

Important Information

Activity Level
Single Supplement

Travelling on your own? Our group tours are perfect for solo travellers, as travelling as part of an organised group in faraway places provides security and peace of mind. We handle all of the arrangements for you and there will be a local tour guide on hand throughout to provide advice and help if needed, as well as the expertise of a Tour expert.


To allow flexibility, our group tours do not include international flights as standard. We can arrange international flights on your behalf, please get in touch with our travel experts for a quote. All international flights from the UK are ATOL protected.

What is included

  • Accompanied by Nathan Batley throughout
  • Entrance fees for sights mentioned
  • Accommodation throughout including four nights onboard the Kalibobo Spirit
  • Transportation throughout
  • Domestic flights as per itinerary
  • Private charter flights to the highlands
  • Meals, as per the itinerary
  • Gratuities for local guides. drivers and porters
  • £25 to help fund the communities, conservation agencies and NGOs that we work with
  • £25 contribution to ‘Trees and Science’ in mitigation of your carbon emissions

What is excluded

  • International Flights
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas if applicable
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Drinks throughout

Our future tour dates

For further information about any of these tours please call 01285 880 980

Start dateEnd dateDays
Prices from
Single SupplementTour ExpertGroup SizeStatus
03/07/22 15/07/2213 days £12,995 ex. flights £3,895Nathan Bately10 Max AVAILABLE Reserve place

Reserve your place on this group tour

Our travel experts have a wealth of first-hand knowledge, so if you have any questions about this expert-led group tour, please get in touch. They would love to help. We hope you can join us on this tour.

01285 880 980

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Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise set us apart. So too our curiosity. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you, all the while ensuring we travel and operate sustainably.

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