The goal is to build luxury private residences and develop sustainable multifaceted eco-tourism operations where a group of like-minded individuals who share a passion for nature and ecology can come together to create their own unique island sanctuary and marine reserve. Whilst contributing to the protection and understanding of the environment around this unique private atoll, we also aim to increase educational and employment opportunities for surrounding communities whilst protecting culture, tradition and heritage.
- Conflict Islands is a unique sustainable eco-tourism destination
- Put forward for consideration as a World Heritage marine site
- Located in secure waters away from mainland Papua New Guinea
- Papua New Guinea is the Last Frontier of South East Asia for adventure seekers
- Milne Bay province, which includes the Conflict Islands, has seen a sustained increase in international tourism for diving, fishing and cruise ships
- The government has a positive attitude to foreign investment
The Conflict Islands comprises 21 uninhabited, undeveloped, pristine, freehold islands covering a total landmass of 375 Hectares (925 acres). The Conflict Islands Group were named after H.M. Survey Ship “The Conflict”
which first charted the islands in 1886.
The Battle of Milne Bay was a battle of the Pacific campaign of World War II. Japanese marines attacked the Australian base at Milne Bay on the eastern tip of New Guinea on 25 August 1942, and fighting continued until the Japanese retreated on 5 September 1942. The battle was the first in the Pacific campaign in which Allied troops decisively defeated Japanese land forces, forcing them to withdraw and completely abandon their strategic objective. The local population also played a role during the conflict and there are many stories of locals supporting the allies and hindering the Japanese attacks.
Many relics of the war remain today including several sunken plane wrecks. The B-17 Bomber “Blackjack” is considered by many to be the finest World War II aircraft wreck in the world. Following a bombing run to Rabaul in July, 1943, the Blackjack lost two of its four engines and after flying through the night in an effort to reach friendly territory was ditched by pilot Ralph Deloach. Fortunately, the ten crew members of the Blackjack all survived the crash with the assistance of the inhabitants of nearby Boga Boga village. The wreck now rests on the bottom of the ocean at the base of the reef in just over 45 metres of water. There is also a P38 lightning aircraft lying completely intact in 27 metres just off Basilaki island.
CEO and Atoll Custodian
The Conflict Islands are privately owned by British-based Australian, Ian Gowrie-Smith and his family. They are part of an elaborate plan to create a legacy of protected wilderness’ around the world. With internationally renowned success as a global entrepreneur, Ian Gowrie-Smith is passionately dedicated to ensuring the centuries’ long protection of the Conflict Islands.
Being privately owned by her family, this only further serves to enforce her dedication as custodian and protector of this unique and untouched tropical paradise.
Passionately driving the protection & conservation of the conflict islands, Ed & Hayley work full-time to keep this island paradise pristine and beautiful with help from their companions, Busta and Odin
Planning & Development
Whether you want to build your own home, have one built for you or design an entire island resort, these are the architects with the know- how to make it happen.
Carnival Australia are our exclusive cruise partners and the only way you can visit the island group without hiring the entire resort. Various ships within this cruise ship industry leaders fleet can provide a fascinating, adventurous and luxurious Papua New Guinea experience for all.
A boutique travel agency in Sydney’s Woollahra where the principal booking agent, Catherine Rich, can manage every stage of your trip to the Conflict Islands. As our previous General Manager, Catherine is incredibly well informed to help you plan your holiday.
The phenomenally talented marine, aero and land based photographers, marine biologists Hayley and Ed, from Migration Media are part of our fabulous team on the Conflict Islands. Leading photography holidays and pioneering our conservation program; They are an invaluable asset to our team.
The dynamic twins, Michelle Ashton and Simone Larmer, as former residents of Milne Bay where the Conflict Islands are located, are ideally positioned to handle any PR and media related enquiry regarding the Conflict Islands.