This unique event will be hosted at Kono Village, located on the picturesque West Coast of New Ireland.
The festival revolves around the age-old tradition of "shark calling," a practice deeply ingrained in the culture of Papua New Guinea. The skilled participants engage in the art of singing to sharks and subsequently capturing them by hand, showcasing their remarkable connection with these majestic creatures.
To successfully catch a shark in the waters off Papua New Guinea, the men begin by singing. Their melodious voices echo the names of their ancestors and express their utmost respect for the sharks. As part of the ritual, a ring of dried and halved coconut shells known as a “larung” is utilized to attract the sharks while venturing into the vast ocean.
With the coconut rattles in hand, the shark callers shake them vigorously into the sea, creating a mesmerizing sound that entices the creatures from the deep. Using their exceptional skills and fearless approach, the participants then capture the sharks using only their bare hands.
This fascinating custom, known as "shark calling," is predominantly practiced in the villages of Messi, Kono, and Kontu, situated along the scenic west coast of New Ireland province in Papua New Guinea, a captivating country, home to approximately 9 million people, lies just northeast of Australia.
The foundation of this unique tradition lies in the belief that sharks carry the spirits of ancestors. By meticulously adhering to strict protocols, the adept shark callers can beckon, capture, and even kill sharks, all while ensuring their own safety.
As the Shark Calling Festival approaches, anticipation builds for this captivating event where the spirit of ancient customs, reverence for nature, and the thrill of the hunt converge. Visitors and participants alike eagerly await the opportunity to witness this extraordinary demonstration of human skill and spiritual connection with the ocean's most powerful predators.