"The Highlands" Tari by jadedmuse

Tari Travel Guide: 30 reviews and 34 photos

The Highlands of Papua New Guinea are resplendent with mountain mist, vibrant color, birds of paradise, the famous Wig Men, tribal sing-sings, and wonderfully rich coffee.

It was our first destination on our "PNG Tour". It couldn't have worked out better.

I recall sitting in the airport at Port Moresby (where we landed from Cannes, Australia) and it dawned on me that I could see straight through this gentleman's nose....he was seated a few chairs down from me and I was looking through his nose, across to the other wall - because his nose piece (usually a cassuary bone) had been removed.


Then, once we were in the airplane, I noticed how it didn't matter that so many of the PNGers had boarded the plane barefoot. I observed an interesting phenomenon: the big toe always seemed to be really separated from the rest of the toes, which is biologically atypical. I was to later learn that it's considered a sign of beauty and also a local custom, to wedge a rock or stick in between the big toe and the second toe to create this separation as the foot grows. Sure enough, I saw this trait throughout the Highlands.

I can also recall how there was a man two rows ahead of me on the plane, who seemed fascinated with the overhead button - the one that you ring for the flight attendant. He kept pressing it and to his delight, the flight attendent would appear. Finally the attendent grew weary of this game and began scolding the man...I felt kind of bad for him since it was obvious he'd never been on a plane before and was just indulging himself in a little bit of innocent fun. At any rate, he seemed perfectly fine and none the worse for the scolding - as soon as the flight attendent went to sit down, you know it - button pushed! He just couldn't resist it!

Good thing it was a quick flight from Port Moresby to the Tari airport !


For more info/photos on Tari and the Highlands, please see this section's Travel Tips


And if you haven't seen it yet, please visit my intro page under Papua New Guinea

  • Intro Updated Jul 19, 2004
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Reviews (31)

Comments (19)

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Jun 4, 2010 at 6:01 PM

    Michele, thank you for this excellent page on your visit to Tari! Really fantastic tips here that brought back a lot of memories. I envy that you were able to get so up-close with the locals but you really got it right with these tips!

  • fabrice's Profile Photo
    Jul 26, 2008 at 11:52 PM

    wonderful and frightening (I imagine the size of mosquitoes in PNG )

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Aug 19, 2007 at 7:21 PM

    great page!

  • Alaska-ski's Profile Photo
    May 3, 2007 at 10:44 AM

    I am thinking you might be giving National Geographic some competition. That bird man portrait is really classic. I have to ask have you ever considered a trip to Alaska?

  • sachara's Profile Photo
    Apr 30, 2007 at 12:37 PM

    Michele, fascinating page. PNG looks like a real off-the-beaten-path destination.

  • gilabrand's Profile Photo
    Mar 23, 2007 at 6:25 AM

    MAZAL TO TO THE BIRTHDAY GIRL, from your friend in Jerusalem.

  • sprdak11's Profile Photo
    Nov 15, 2006 at 1:15 PM

    Interesting website. Best wishes.

  • madamx's Profile Photo
    Nov 10, 2006 at 3:15 PM

    Thanks for a fascinating page! The Ambua Lodge looks like a slice of heaven ~ Helen

  • LuisGuimaraes's Profile Photo
    Jan 15, 2006 at 4:27 PM

    I just loved the story of the man pushing the button! How cool is that! I love the innocence u can spot, @ the other side of the world. As innocent as our own curiosity for their innocence, perhaps?

  • grets's Profile Photo
    Jun 25, 2005 at 11:01 AM

    Great page - brought back many memories. We too stayed at Ambua Lodge - amazing place isn't it? x - Grete - x


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