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Rabaul - Rabaul Cruise Tours/Kokopo Tours


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Hoping you guys can help. 

 

We are booked on a Sea Princess cruise (ex Brisbane) in January to Papua New Guinea and our main focus is snorkeling.  Princess doesn't offer any snorkeling opportunities in Rabaul so we are looking at a local tour operator.  Rabaul Cruise Tours (no reviews on Tripadvisor available) in association with Kokopo Tours (mixed reviews) offers the following option:

 

Snorkel and Swim (morning) and in the afternoon tour the area (not interested).  The snorkel/swim is done at the Rapopo Plantation Resort which has good reviews for this activity with a great sandy beach and nearby reef so happy about that.  The cost meets our budget so not an issue, but getting back to the ship is!! 

 

We would rather get our own transport there and back and just use the resort facilities but I know that PNG really doesn't have that sort of reliable service.  We are not interested in the afternoon activities of touring the area.

 

Does anyone have any experience with a local operator that can provide this transfer service?  I will be trying to contact the resort to see if they provide this service, but thought in the meantime I would like to ask if anyone on this forum can make alternative suggestions or know of a transfer service.

 

Many thanks in advance:)

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From my trip

 

Friday 8th Feb

We docked on time at 8.00 and by 8.30 we were sitting on our tour bus,we had been met at the dock with someone with our names in a board.

Unfortunately the professionalism came to an end there.

I had booked this tour online with Rabaul Kopoko Tours  and they had excellent reviews but our guide lacked knowledge,she had a script to read and read it well but in a small voice that not all in the small van could hear.

When asked a question she just nodded or smiled,we had no info from her whatsoever, she told me she has been a tour guide for 2 years !! but when asked a basic question like how much is petrol in Rabaul she could not answer.

We paid $85 each for a 4 hour tour that lasted 3 and a half.

The tour however had some intresting sights to see (see pics)just a shame we couldnt interact with the guide.

 

 

 Feel like we didn’t get what we paid for at all,nothing was explained at the stops we had,just as well we had done our own research so we knew what we were seeing.Maybe we just got stuck with a poor guide as some had given good reviews.

 

So ended at the market which she used to make up some more time I suppose but it was interesting it was the every day market that the natives use with lots of fruit,fish and greens and a few stalls with cheap trinkets and t shirts.

Some of the greens were pumpkin vines,,,ferns,,,,,,and also tops from various root plants,it seems we could learn something here.

 

Cheers Carole

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1 hour ago, Elorac123 said:

From my trip

 

Friday 8th Feb

We docked on time at 8.00 and by 8.30 we were sitting on our tour bus,we had been met at the dock with someone with our names in a board.

Unfortunately the professionalism came to an end there.

I had booked this tour online with Rabaul Kopoko Tours  and they had excellent reviews but our guide lacked knowledge,she had a script to read and read it well but in a small voice that not all in the small van could hear.

When asked a question she just nodded or smiled,we had no info from her whatsoever, she told me she has been a tour guide for 2 years !! but when asked a basic question like how much is petrol in Rabaul she could not answer.

We paid $85 each for a 4 hour tour that lasted 3 and a half.

The tour however had some intresting sights to see (see pics)just a shame we couldnt interact with the guide.

 

 Feel like we didn’t get what we paid for at all,nothing was explained at the stops we had,just as well we had done our own research so we knew what we were seeing.Maybe we just got stuck with a poor guide as some had given good reviews.

 

So ended at the market which she used to make up some more time I suppose but it was interesting it was the every day market that the natives use with lots of fruit,fish and greens and a few stalls with cheap trinkets and t shirts.

Some of the greens were pumpkin vines,,,ferns,,,,,,and also tops from various root plants,it seems we could learn something here.

 

Cheers Carole

We did a Princess tour that sounds similar 🙂. Our guide was quite young and she read from a script. Her English wasn't too bad, but she spoke so softly only the few people closest to her could hear her. When someone asked, she said she was a high school student. We also ended up at the fruit and vege market.

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Well it is Papua New Guinea and I have read similar experiences across the board.

 

We have decided to go with Rabaul Cruise Tours (they work with Kokopo Tours).  They have a stand at the cruise dock, take cash AUD on the day so no pre deposits which a couple of other operators were asking for.

 

We will be transported to the Rapopo Plantation Resort for the morning snorkeling and lunch and then will join an afternoon tour returning to the ship by 3pm they have guaranteed.  This is important as the ship departs at 4pm.   We are not really interested in the afternoon activities but will just join along for the ride.  If they get us to the ship earlier all the better as I will be a lot less anxious.  Cost AUD$150 per person.

 

Reviews of the snorkeling at Rapopo Plantation Resort are good, they also have a dive operator so maybe we can add on another activity.  I will report back at the end of the cruise. 

 

Thanks for your comments.

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