- Trip Outline
- Trip Includes
Learn more about the Kokoda Track.
Back Track trekkers are everyday Australians, just like you, just like us. Trekkers join us for a variety of reasons; some seeking an understanding of the Kokoda campaign; others honouring family who fought in wartime Papua New Guinea; some are seeking an exhilarating physical and mental challenge; while others are striving to achieve a personal goal.
Whatever your reason, trekking Kokoda is a powerful experience awaiting you – an experience that will stay with you forever.
Back Track’s sensible 11-day itinerary is the best itinerary to fully appreciate the Kokoda Experience. It includes a 9 day/8 night trek over the exact war time Kokoda Track. All major battle sites and important attractions visited. All treks escorted by professional Australian Guides with experienced, PNG support crew. Our professional approach to trekking was developed over our 30-years specialising in treks to remote and exotic locations worldwide. Join us for your Kokoda adventure.
Back Track’s sensible itinerary allows enough time to explore all the battle and historical sites, to gain a comprehensive understanding of the Kokoda Campaign and as well, meet the locals and obtain an insight into village culture on our Sabbath rest day in Naduri Village. Our sensible itinerary will not detract from the overwhelming sense of challenge and achievement. Our Australian Trek Leader and Local Guides will ensure the smooth and safe operation of the trek.
The majority of our teams trek in a North to South direction, Kokoda to Owers Corner.
Occasionally we trek in a South to North direction, Owers Corner to Kokoda.
Fly to Port Moresby
Day 1Met on arrival and transferred to our accommodation at the Holiday Inn Express. A team briefing is held this afternoon to discuss final preparations for our trek. Early evening Team dinner, and to bed for a good nights sleep to be prepared for an early morning departure on Day 2.
Day 2A spectacular flight over the Owen Stanley Ranges into Popondetta and road to Kokoda. Your leader will explain the battle history as you explore the Kokoda battle site and museum. Just a very short acclimatising walk today to our first nights' beautiful campsite at the small village of Hoi. (BLD)
Day 3We start early so we can walk at a slow and relaxed pace. The morning walk is very steep. You’ll be glad you trained hard. The scenery is spectacular with sweeping views as we trek via the original wartime village of Deniki, the site of the 39th Militia Battalion’s first defensive position after withdrawing from Kokoda. We push on for a late lunch at the war memorial at the Isurava battle site. We will have enough time to explore the area thoroughly. A full briefing is given on the now legendary 4 day battle of Isurava. It was here that the 2/14th Infantry Battalion arrived to support the 39th Militia Battalion and the legend of ‘The Ragged Bloody Heroes’ was born. From Isurava it’s a short walk to our campsite in Alolo Village. Alolo was the major logistics support base and first aid post during the Isurava battle. On the walk to Alolo, you will visit some very special campaign sites. (BLD)
Templeton's Crossing and the Lost Battlefield
Day 4Our walk today begins with a short, taxing descent followed by a long gradual ascent to Eora Creek battle site. We leave our packs on the main trail and ascend a short side trail to the Japanese forest fort often referred to as “The Lost Battlefield”. This fortified area is extensive with much of it cleared by the local villagers for trekkers access and exploration. The fort covers part of a high ridge with a commanding position overlooking Eora Creek. For many years now all our trekking teams have been visiting this important site. Your trek leader will explain the forts defensive significance and how the battle to capture this fort unfurled. You will explore the Japanese mountain gun and heavy machine gun positions. Still clearly visible are large quantities of munitions and artefacts. Many Australian soldiers lost their lives here before the Japanese fled. There have been several discoveries of human remains of Japanese soldiers and possibly even Australian. Entrance to this sacred site is by donation to the landowners from Alolo Village. The money collected is intended to assist the people of the village and also to help preserve this site so all trekkers can continue to visit while crossing the Track. After exploring the site we move on. The trail is always challenging today and the beauty of the jungle provides a wonderful distraction. We camp beside the creek at the battle site at Templeton’s Crossing. (BLD)
Day 5The day commences with a steep climb and descent to Templeton’s Crossing 1, followed by a long climb on slippery trails to our highest point on Mt Bellamy (2190 metres). From the Kokoda Saddle, the beautiful forest Track is festooned with moss and once again the occasional sweeping panorama adds to the beauty of our surrounds. We will undertake a short excursion to see the Myola lakes. The dry lake beds were, at various times during both phases of the Kokoda campaign, the site of a major Australian Army supply depot. They were also a point for the evacuation of the wounded. Myola is most remembered as the site for the low-level dropping of provisions by the Australian Air Force. We arrive late afternoon at Naduri Village and our friends welcome us as guests of honour in their village. At 6 pm, the local people commence their religious ceremonies acknowledging the start of their Sabbath. (BLD)
Naduri Village - Rest Day
Day 6Today is a compulsory rest day for all trekkers, acknowledging the village leaders wishes for all trekkers to respect their values and the 7th Day Adventist Faith of the local people on the Kokoda Track. After breakfast, we will be guided around Naduri Village to inspect some of Back Track’s current Trekker Assistance Programmes. We will provide our trekkers with an insight into village life during our stay. As well this is a great time to catch up on washing clothes and resting and preparing to commence the 2nd half of our trek. After sunset tonight, which marks the end of the Sabbath, we will have a “Sing Sing” before we bunk down for a good nights rest. (BLD)
Day 7Beautiful views again await us today as we begin the slogging ascent of Brigade Hill via Mission Ridge. A small ceremony is conducted on the summit in honour of the soldiers and in remembrance of their bravery. As always, we follow the steep ascent of Brigade Hill with a long descent. We camp tonight at Menari Village. This is the site where the brave 39th Battalion was withdrawn from the campaign on the eve of the battle at Brigade Hill. Exhausted and on the brink of total collapse, the remaining ‘Ragged Bloody Heroes’ struggled back to Port Moresby. They would return to fight at Buna and Gona. (BLD)
Day 8A challenging day in differing terrain. We cross swampy flatlands, the Brown River and push on in the increasing heat up the seemingly never-ending slopes of the Maguli Range to camp at new Nauro Village. Sunrise and sunset are beautiful. (BLD)
Day 9Today begins with an ascent to the top of the Maguli Range followed by a steep descent via a major Japanese campsite, then down to Ofi Creek and a rewarding swim. Then it’s up and over Ioribaiwa Ridge. We examine the Japanese offensive positions that would soon become their defensive positions as they were pounded by the Australian artillery which had been hauled up on to Imita Ridge. This Japanese position so easily explored today marks the furthermost point of the Japanese advance over the Track. It was here, with Port Moresby nearly in sight, that the order was received to withdraw. Half starved and facing major shortages of munitions and reinforcements, the Japanese army retreated with the Australians in hot pursuit. Though the Kokoda Campaign was far from over, it was the beginning of the end for the Japanese forces. This afternoon the Track crisscrosses Ua-Ule Creek leading to our camp beside a welcoming swimming hole. Our campsite is completely surrounded by high rainforest trees which form a perfect frame for the star-filled night sky. (BLD)
Day 10The final day starts with the steep ascent and then descent of Imita Ridge via what was once known as the ‘Golden Staircase’. All our soldiers who fought along the Track had to face this first, back-breaking ascent of Imita Ridge. After we cross the Goldie River, it’s a steep 40-minute hike until we triumphantly arrive at Owers’ Corner and our awaiting transport, a cold drink and lunch. We’ve done it! Back to Port Moresby to clean up and prepare for a final nights celebration and awards presentation at the hotel. On the way to Port Moresby, we stop at Bomana War Cemetery, where Australian soldiers who died in the Kokoda campaign and in other campaigns in the Pacific have been laid to their final rest. This visit is the final tribute we pay to these brave soldiers before our return home tomorrow. Tonight we will get together to celebrate our achievement. A personalised Certificate of Achievement, suitable for framing will be presented to all Team members tonight. (BL)
Day 11Very early morning transfer to the airport for our flight to Brisbane and connecting flights to Sydney, Melbourne and other Australian ports. (B)
- Professional Australian Trek Leader
- Experienced Local Head guide
- Management Team and Trek crew from villages along the Track
- One-way scheduled domestic flight
- 2 nights accommodation in Port Moresby, Twin-share including breakfast
- International airport arrival and departure transfers in Port Moresby
- 11-day comprehensive program with a 9-day/8-night sensible Trek Itinerary
- Satellite Phone for emergency use.
- Comprehensive history briefings at all war sites. We trek the wartime Track.
- Respecting the local villages and crew by observing the Sabbath
- All necessary land transport in PNG
- 10 breakfasts, 9 lunches and 8 delicious dinners.
- Fresh, nutritious meals prepared daily whilst trekking by our expert cook and kitchen crew.
- All personal eating utensils
- 8nights accommodation along the Track, in your own individual, spacious, insect proof 2-man tent, which we provide, carry, set-up and take down each day for you.
- All camp fees
- Trek permits
- All meals and camp fees for your amazing trek crew, plus, crew travel allowance, wages
- Memorial service conducted on the summit of Brigade Hill
- 1:1 ratio client to crew
- All emergency equipment including ropes, bush knives and axe, for use by our trained, expert crew
- Visit to Bomana War Cemetery
- Entrance fees to Japanese Forest Fort at Eora Creek, Con’s Rock, mortar and grenade dump above Templetons, and Brigade Hill.
- Commemorative embroidered trekking shirt
- Kokoda Certificate of Achievement
- Access to free weekend training hikes to prepare for the challenge ahead
- Comprehensive Confirmation Pack issued on booking which includes a detailed Information Guide to ensure you’re prepared.
- Qualified agents to assist with your Travel Insurance and any stopovers or extensions in PNG after your trek.
- Kokoda Assist line 1300 669 780. Professional guidance and assistance available for any questions big or small.
- $10,000,000 – Tour Operators Public liability insurance with Lloyds of London for your additional peace of mind;
- Back Track Adventures is a fully licensed Travel Agent and Tour Operator and members of the:
– Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA)