A number of rogue individuals and companies can obtain licenses as trek operators without any due-dilligence checks – and they are free to operate!

The Kokoda Trail is managed by a Kokoda Track (Special Purpose) Authority (KTA) on behalf of the PNG Government.

Unfortunately the management system for the Kokoda Trail is dysfunctional – and has been for a number of years. This has allowed a number of rogue individuals and companies to obtain licenses as trek operators – all they have to do is turn up at the KTA Office – pay a fee without any due-dilligence checks – and they are free to operate!

The lack of management protocols allows these operators to lead treks without conducting a risk assessment or having any form of Public Liability Insurance. This exposes trekkers to unacceptable risk in the event of a serious injury.

The local PNG management authority has not produced a financial statement for many years so nobody has any idea where money collected for trek fees and licences goes – what we do know is that nothing is invested in campsites or community development along the trail.

Trekkers should therefore be aware of the principle of Caveat Emptor – a latin phrase for ‘Let the buyer beware’!

Only two Australian trek operators are registered as a Foreign Enterprise in accordance with the PNG Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) Act. Non-registration may possibly void any Travel Insurance Claim. Click on this link to check if the company you select is registered in PNG before you lodge your deposit as this should be a serious consideration post Covid-19 (select ‘Do It Online’ tab > ‘Search Foreign Enterprise’).

We have tried to address these issues over the years but to no avail – our concerns and suggestions can be found on this link.

Tripadvisor therefore offers the only option for trekkers to comment on their experiences along the trail which helps future trekkers identify the best Kokoda tour company to meet their needs.

Many who have had a rewarding experience will take the time out to write a review. Others who have not been so fortunate because they did not receive informative briefings; or who had to sleep in bush huts with a lot of infestation; or who ran out of food before their trek finished often prefer to forget the experience and do not register their concerns because they know the local management authority will ignore them anyway – see review extracts below.

Kokoda Trekking Company Reviews

The following table lists the number of Tripadvisor Reviews for each trekking company on the Kokoda Trail – reviews can be found on this link:

RankingTrek OperatorExcellentVery GoodAverage Poor
1.Adventure Kokoda317210
2.Escape Trekking59100
3. Kokoda Spirit30002
4.Kokoda Trekking26420
5.Australian Kokoda Tours22000
6.Kokoda Trail Expeditions19000
7.No Roads Expeditions16000
8.Back Track Adventures14000
9.Kokoda Historical9000
10.South Seas Horizons7000
11.100% Kokoda2000
12.Adventure Bound Tours2000
13.Adventure Professionals2000
14.Aurora Adventures2000
15.Free Spirit Adventures (PNG)2000
16.Kokoda Courage (PNG)2000
17. Kokoda Track Experience Ltd1100
18.Executive Excellence1000
19.Getaway Trekking1000
20.Heritage Treks (PNG)1000
21.Investa Treks1000
22.Kokoda Brothers (PNG)1000
23.PNG Trekking Adventures Ltd1000
24.Kokoda Experience (PNG)0100
25.Kokoda Trail Bushwalkers (PNG)0100
26.Kokoda Icon0100
27.Intrepid0001
28.Kokoda Angels Tours (PNG)0000
29.Buna Treks & Tours (PNG)0000
30.Imofat Trekking & Tourism (PNG)0000
31.Kokoda Campaign Tours (PNG)0000
32.Kokoda Crossing0000
33.Kokoda Culture0000
34.Kokoda Strive Trekking (PNG)0000
35.Kokoda Trail Bushwalking Expeditions (PNG)0000
36.Kokoda Tears, Tracking & Tours (PNG)0000
37.Kokoda Treks & Tours0000
38.Kokoda Tribute0000
39.Kokoda War Memorial Mission (PNG)0000
40.Ko Trek Limited (PNG)0000
41.On Trail Expeditions0000
42.Operation Kokoda Expeditions (PNG)0000
43.Sogeri Enterprises (PNG)0000
44.Tropic Tours Ltd (PNG)0000
45.Toogee Treks0000
46.Vaili Treks & Tours (PNG)0000
47.Unforgettable Adventures Pty Ltd0000

Tripadvisor Extracts . . .