“Conflict Islands” – are they conflicted??? Not at all! They are named after the HMS Conflict, the British survey ship that “discovered” the islands in 1886. They are actually atolls, and there are 21 of them! The island we anchored at, and tendered into, has 30 inhabitants and two open-air structures that we passed, the Coconut Bar and the Souvenir Market (where prices were equivalent to those in Manhattan: a visor cap was $20 US!). There was also a Medical Station, but as you can see, it was a card table staffed by one young man with a first-aid kit!
The color of the water here is absolutely unreal, other-worldly, with many different shades of blue blending into each other. In other words, it is a typical South Pacific scene! The color of the water changes by the hour, and by its location around the island. We will not comment on each photo, as we usually do, since they tell the story unaided by us. The photos are in the order that we saw Conflict Island: first from the ship, then landing on a tender on white sand beach. From there, we walked through a jungle path to reach the other side of the island. Over there were the bar and souvenirs, and we continued in a circular counter-clockwise direction until we returned to where we had started. (You can see a new, budding coconut tree growing from a coconut!) The final photo is of the day’s sunset as our ship left the island. It was all just glorious. It was very hot and humid, but there was just enough of a breeze to make it bearable and well worth it. It is an island made just for enjoyment – sunning on the beach, snorkeling, walking, riding in the glass-bottom boat – and nothing more. Quite a lovely part of Papua New Guinea.
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