About Kokoda Historical
Welcome to Kokoda Historical, my name is David Howell and along with my good friend Kila Jons from Kokoda, I am the co-founder of Kokoda Historical. History and in particular Australian military history, is a passion of mine along with the great outdoors.
I look forward to sharing in a great adventure with you to one of the many PNG destinations that Kokoda Historical has on offer. Perhaps your next adventure is taking on the Kokoda Track, Shaggy Ridge, Black Cat Tack or visiting the First & Second World War battlefields of Rabaul along with the many other destinations we have on offer. Either way you will be visiting one of the most pristine and beautiful places on our planet, Papua New Guinea.
We specialise in small-size historical tours to the First and Second World War battlefields and places of cultural significance in Papua New Guinea.
We have been conducting guided tours across the Kokoda Track / Kokoda Trail, Black Cat Track, Shaggy Ridge, Lark Force Track (Rabaul-Tol Plantation), Milne Bay, Wewak and Aitape to name a few, since 2005 and have enjoyed many successful treks and tours. To read testimonials from our previous satisfied customers please visit our page: Client Testimonials section.
In more recent times we have undertaken many unique and one off special treks and tours. We have a great passion for the shared and proud history of Australia & PNG.
Kokoda Historical provides a complete living history experience; we focus not only on the exciting adventure of treks/tours themselves, but also on the historical events. We offer a wide range of competitively priced tour packages and safety is our number one priority.
We combine local knowledge with meticulous research carried out by some of the industries top guides and historians, to make your pilgrimage unique and special. Our tour groups are always small in number (average size is 8-10) enabling us to give that personal touch to all of our clients. If you contact Kokoda Historical then you are speaking to the owner directly.
In 2007, we had the honour of being the very first company to take a group of young Aboriginal students across the Kokoda Track in a symbolic gesture acknowledging the importance and much overlooked role Aboriginal people played during the Second World War. This initiative was part of the Kokoda Dreaming project and this trek featured on the ABC show, Message Stick. A thirty minute episode entitled 'Going the Distance' followed the group of Aboriginal students on our trek. Click the link to read more about this: Kokoda Historical Message Stick
Since 2008, we have been conducting the annual Harold Bould Memorial Tour, an initiative of the 39th Battalion Association. The Association organises an annual competition inviting students from across the Cardinia Shire in Victoria to submit an essay outlining what Kokoda means to Australians. With the assistance of organisations such as the Cardinia Shire Council, Pakenham and Parklea Racing Club and The Hon. Edward O'Donohue MLC, we have taken many young students on the adventure of a lifetime. Each June, the winners get to experience the adventure and history of the Kokoda Track.
In 2010, Kokoda Historical successfully merged with the renowned Komplete Kokoda. The company was ran by Soc Kienzle - the son of famous Captain Bert Kienzle who was himself involved in the Kokoda campaign. Soc has since retired from full time trekking however he passed on many of his father's stories to David Howell, while the two of them were on location at the various points of interest in the Oro Province.
In 2012, the 70th anniversary of the Kokoda Campaign, Kokoda Historical were approved by the Australian Defence Force as a supplier for Adventure Training. In the same year we took the 39th Personnel Support Battalion over the Kokoda Track. This current Australian Army Unit (now 39th Operational Support Battalion) walked in the footsteps of those who served in the now famous militia unit, the 39 Australian Infantry Battalion.
In 2014, we led an expedtion to Rabaul which located the the site of the German Wireless Station. On 11 September 2014, on the occasion of the centenary of the action at Bita Paka, we took many of the decendants to Rabaul including Simon Pockley the great-nephew of Captain Pockley, the first Australian soldier lost in the Great War.
In 2015, for the cenentary of Anzac we lead a group of soldiers from contemporary conflicts over the Kokoda Track. The project was supported by Soldier On and brought attention to those in our community suffering from PTSD. Amoung the partipants was Senator Jacqui Lambie, veterans Michael Lyddiard & Mathew Peppi.
In 2017, the 75th anniversary of the Kokoda Campaign, we were involved with brining Havala Laula, the last known Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel on the Kokoda Track to Australia. We also ran a special trip recreating the first crossing of Kokoda by B Company 39 Australian Infantry Battalion which was led by Captain Sam Templeton. We also had the honour of taking the cousin of our Governor General, Hon. General Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC, Mrs Madeline Huxtable, to visit the last resting place of her father, Flight Sargent Bill Cosgrave. Sir Peter and Madeline attend the Anzac Day commemorations at Bomana.
In 2018 the 75th anniversary of the retaking of Lae and the battles of Shaggy Ridge will be our special focus.
We look forwarded to taking you on your next adventure.
Kokoda Historical Co-Founder Dave Howell