"Port Moresby - Hot and Humid!" Top 5 Page for this destination Port Moresby by Bwana_Brown

Port Moresby Travel Guide: 81 reviews and 160 photos

I spent three years in Papua New Guinea, based in it's capital city of Port Moresby, between 1979-1982. I had previously spent 3 years in Zambia and then worked for 4 years in my home province of New Brunswick, Canada before the need for new adventures and a warmer climate struck my wife and I. In response to an advert in the back of an electrical magazine, I applied for and was given a contract job to work for the Papua New Guinea Electricity Commission. The country had become independent only in 1975 and was looking for some technical help in keeping its power system working.

Port Moresby is located in an area called the National Capital District or NCD. It is on the southern coast of the country and surrounds part of Fairfax Harbour and was named after British Captain John Moresby, who discovered its harbour in 1873. The following year a mission station was established at the village of Hanuabada, a traditional Papuan village and home to the Motuan people. The houses of this village still stand on their traditional wooden stilts down on the waterfront. During the Second World War, the small town of Port Moresby was transformed into a large military camp, accommodating tens of thousands of troops during the Pacific campaigns. At the end of the war Port Moresby was the only town of any size left standing in Papua New Guinea and was chosen by the governing Australian administration to be the seat of government. As a result, this magnet has drawn tribal people to it from all over the country and has led to a gradual deterioration of the security situation here as the population has now swollen to about 300,000. It was still manageable during my time in the country but I'm not so sure if it still is.

It was quite an experience living in this remote country and, on this page, I have tried to convey a sense of what it was like living there at that time. For an overview of Port Moresby and surrounding area, check out my 'General' tips.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:A Different Experience
  • Cons:Hot, Humid and Isolated
  • In a nutshell:I'm glad I tried it but would not go back again
  • Last visit to Port Moresby: Jun 1982
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (41)

Comments (34)

  • starship's Profile Photo
    Jun 21, 2012 at 7:32 PM

    A very interesting page! Life certainly was what you made of it and you and your family seemed to thrive in the distinctly different geography and culture. The pigeon English "did" make a lot sense once I saw how it was translated. Nice work!

  • JohnPaulla's Profile Photo
    Jan 31, 2009 at 2:41 PM

    Bwana, Great pages. Thanks.

  • Nov 21, 2008 at 6:17 PM

    Hllo Bwana My now husband and I were managing Davara at the time of your stay - the photo sure brings back memires. Regards

  • Sep 23, 2008 at 6:45 PM

    This picture you've shown is really great. I leave in Port Moresby for 7years with my parent, and somehow seeing Boroko and "Hugos bldg." as back groud give back memory. you got any more picture in Boroko friend. Thanks much ARMAND/ARAMCO SAUDI ARABIA

  • Apr 13, 2008 at 5:00 AM

    I have many fond memories of the Ela Beach RSL as a child growing up in PNG from 1976 to 1986. Unfortunately the RSL burned down many years ago and was not rebuilt. Your photo of the old chairs outside was a real trip down memory lane. Thanks!

  • Feb 5, 2008 at 3:47 PM

    I was probably the DJ on that Friday night that kept you awake and Ken Coddington would probably have been the one on the Saturday night. Jeff Oh, and Podge, I think that is you with your daggy haircut facing away from the camera

  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo
    Jan 21, 2008 at 5:16 AM

    What a fabulous page Glenn!!! Insight as a local and a non local. Love it. Thanks!

  • victorwkf's Profile Photo
    Jan 11, 2008 at 3:10 AM

    Hi glenn, great insight into port moresby and PNG! Happy new year and enjoy your travels :)

  • evaanna's Profile Photo
    Oct 11, 2007 at 1:56 PM

    It's high time you wrote a book about your experiences on PNG, Glenn. This page makes fascinating reading. The heat there must have been really hard to bear but I can tell you that I was also in 'a constant state of perspiration' in Britain in July 2006.

  • Sep 18, 2007 at 3:50 AM

    still a resident in PNG and the memories of the Davara hotel is clear as it was my farther that was the DJ in the disco I think thats my brother featured in the pool photo as he was the correct age


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