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Sepik River hut, Papua New Guinea

Nathan Bately

Nathan Batley has been accompanying trips as a guide since 2017.  Nathan is driven by the desire to show guests the absolute best this diverse region has to offer, and in doing so to support local tribes to celebrate their ancient traditions, to protect the unique endemic wildlife, preserve their pristine natural environments and move prosperously towards a bright tomorrow.


Nathan’s earliest memories from childhood are of Papua New Guinean village life. Raised in Samban village in the swampy grasslands of the lower East Sepik, Nathan spent his formative years swimming and fishing in the waterways, hunting frogs and dodging Death Adders with the local village kids. As a friendly and outgoing child whose fair hair and skin made him something of a novelty in the village of 800, Nathan would often leave home shortly after sun up and be out exploring most of the day, mum coming to find him around dusk in any number of houses with a plate of sago in his lap, trading stories in Pidgin and learning about traditional and contemporary village life.

As an adventurous and well-travelled adult, the bond Nathan has felt with Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific and his desire to serve the people has drawn him back to the region all his life. With a Bachelor’s Degree in Youth Focused Development and a Post Graduate Diploma from the International Institute of Humanitarian Affairs (Fordham University, New York), Nathan has worked as a leading Adviser for the Australian Government and as a Consultant to United Nations agencies on youth related projects throughout the South Pacific. He is passionate about the preservation of culture and the handing down of customs from one generation to the next.

Nathan is fluent in Melanesian Pidgin (Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands) and Bislama (Vanuatu).

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

Papua New Guinea – Sepik River and Rabaul Mask Festival

Evoke your senses and prepare for a cultural immersion like no other. Discover diverse tribal tapestry’s in the Sepik river, ancient cultures and rituals of Papua New Guinea’s highlands and the dramatic costumes, colours and rhythm of Rabaul’s annual Mask Festival.
Begin with five days cruising the mighty Sepik River aboard the Kalibobo Spirit yacht. Enjoy unforgettable encounters with villagers still living a completely subsistence lifestyle off the fish they catch daily and the sago cultivated in the surrounding lowland waterways.

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