Lightning fast becoming one of the nm favorite places and indeed maybe one of my favorite countries soon, Bougainville surely has it all and includes island hopping. So, what is Island Hopping in Bougainville like?
The Bougainville Story
Originally a British colony when it came to independence for Papua New Guinea they instead opted to try either go it alone, to join with the Solomon Islands, declaring the Republic of North Solomons.
Sadly they also had copper and a lot of it so no one agreed with this. They were then promised autonomy, but were again fucked over. This ended up leading to. A war for independence led by the Bougainville Republican Army.
It was along brutal war with estimates of up to 15,000 of the 300,000 people being killed, oh and there was also a blockade of the place.
In 2019 they he’d a referendum where 98 percent of people voted for independence, with plans that this will happen between 2025 and 2027, but if this ever comes to pass is very much yet to be seen.
You can read about their struggle for independence here.
Island Hopping in Bougainville
So, with the rather sad and depressing history past us lets deal with some of the fun stuff. Bougainville is not just an island itself, but also has its own islands and atolls, which make for great island hopping in Bougainville.
In fact the islands are so good that there was even a movie filmed here staring Hugh Laurie called Mr Pip, which makes a good Segway into my film company Pioneer Media.
So, back to island hopping! To get to the most renowned islands you will have to travel to Arawa which is kind of like the co-capital; of Bougainville with Buka. From here it is about a 20 minute boat ride to a sublime island that has a few rooms to rent on it.
Its not the ritz, nor even do they have drinks for sale, but you do not come here because it is developed, you come here for the serenity. On said island we started by simply paying in the sea, with sea cucumbers and star fish whilst watching the world go by.
Check out my TikTok.
On saids island we probably had one of the best Bougainville meals which consisted of fresh lobster, fish and the flying fox that we had caught earlier that day.
Oh and of course we were drinking firewater.
The other islands
Of course you cannot go island hopping in Bougainville if you stick to just one island, so off hopping we went. This largely consisted of a number of uninhabited islands, before we went to where the movie was set.
Not much is left of when it was a film location, but there is a cool little village where we could buy crisps/chips, as well as water ourselves down with Gold Spot, alas the beer we had to supply ourselves……
And that was our island hopping in Bougainville experience. I am told that there are many other islands, some even with World War Two plane wrecks on them and it is certainly my intention to explore some more.
Whether Bougainville does become a country or not we do not know, but I will say one thing for absolute sure, these islands and their stunning beauty can only remain a secret for so long.
Now truly is the time for you to come and visit Bougainville.