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Located on Papua New Guinea’s northeastern tip, this province - blessed with natural beauty but plagued with an unlucky past - has literally risen from the ashes.
The former capital of New Britain is a town with a colourful history and no stranger to rebuilding itself from the ground up. It’s been destroyed by volcano eruptions in 1937 and 1994, as well as being all but flattened by aerial bombardment in World War II. Its kilometres of underground tunnels built by the Japanese during its occupation in World War II are a testament to its wartime past. Since 1994, Rabaul has returned to life and its harbour is still one of the most impressive in the entire Pacific basin.
Tok Pisin, Kuanua and English
Guest favourites, the most booked Shore Tours at this port
Our handpicked Shore Tours are a must for any guest.
New Britain has been wracked by three massive volcanic eruptions in the past 100 years. Surrounded by three volcanoes, this observatory offers the ideal location for scientists to study volcanic activity.
From Karavia Bay, you’ll see one of the great wartime Japanese feats. The tunnels were part of a network of rail tracks that connected barges and ships with munitions' stores. The Japanese headquarters and barracks were constructed using the slave labour of captured Indian/Australian and indigenous prisoners of war. The main tunnel still contains five rusting barges, although without interior lighting, only three are visible from the entrance.
Mt Tavurvur is one of the most active volcanos in the South Pacific. From this site, you’ll have views of the volcanoes and what the locals call the "bubbling" beach below. The bubbling is the result of an underwater volcanic vent, which is so hot the water literally boils.
Your ship will berth at the port of Rabaul, just a short walk to town and markets.
Everything in Rabaul is within walking distance but taxis are available.
Market stalls are within walking distance, local artists often set up informal market stalls at popular tourist sites.
There are a few local restaurants and resorts where you can sample local fare - seafood and yams are the specialty. Quarantine authorities generally don’t allow food such as fruit and vegetables, dairy and meat products or sandwiches to be taken off the ship, however commercially packaged confectionery, chips and bottled drinking water are allowed, subject to inspection.
Rabaul maintains a year-round tropical climate with daytime temperatures ranging from 25 to 35 degrees.
Credit cards are accepted at some locations, however local currency of Kina is preferred.
Communication is very limited with intermittent mobile coverage.
To make your day as enjoyable as possible, be sure to wear comfortable, flat-soled shoes, lightweight clothing and a hat. We also suggest bringing sunscreen and bottled water.
There are a range of Shore Tours available to really get the most out of your time in Rabaul. Tours can be booked onboard at the Shore Tours desk and are subject to availability. Guests are required to meet at a specific location for each Shore Tour departure. Please refer to your tour ticket for the correct time and location.
The geothermal pools are naturally heated to a boil and under no circumstance should be attempted to be touched. During your time ashore we also ask that you dispose of your rubbish thoughtfully.