Somehow, I doubt the practicality of dividing PNG in only 3 regions, especially when the whole coastal area is packed into 1 region, as are all the islands. This site divides the country into 7 regions on the main island and 4 other island regions. So, taking this as a base we could have:
Thanks for all your work. One thing, the map seems to be missing. A clarification: SW PNG; South PNG and Milne Bay (and, I think, Oro) make up Papua. I would prefer to see as regions, using your nomenclature, SW Papua and S. Papua. However, while I see a good case for separating Milne Bay, given all its islands, I am not sure of the need to separate SW and S Papua. One option could be:
Milne Bay and Oro. Cheers Shep 15:33, 3 May 2010 (EDT)
Thanks Shep for your feedback. I must say first that I am no expert on PNG, although it is an area that has always interested me greatly. I think the clearest provincial map comes from the UN here, and I would suggest having a good look at that if you have not already done so. Let's do the easy bit first:
Are you happy with the four offshore regions? The only change I suggested was to merge New Ireland and Manus into one region.
Mainland PNG is more tricky I think. I do not understand your point: "SW PNG; South PNG and Milne Bay (and, I think, Oro) make up Papua". Could you expand on that please? What does Papua mean in the context of just those provinces?
If we create one south coast region, it will be truly vast (about 700 miles across). We would also need to split Western Province, as some of the most unexplored, inaccessible hinterland anywhere on earth could not logically be in a region called South Coast.
I would strongly suggest that mainland Oro and Milne Bay should be in the same region as Port Moresby. Otherwise we end up with Moresby, Kokoda and Tufi in different travel regions.
Milne Bay mainland and Milne Bay Islands are not very related from a travel viewpoint, and it makes sense to me to have the islands dealt with as a separate region.
I can see the sense of a north coast region which consists of both Sepiks and Madang. But where does that leave Morobe? The Huon Gulf area cannot really be thought of as north coast which is why I suggested the Madang-Morobe and Sepik scheme to cover this part of the country.
I knew this one was going to be tricky :).--Burmesedays 00:04, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
Re: point 2, I think Shep was suggesting calling "Southwestern Papua New Guinea" to "Southwestern Papua," and so forth, as Papua is the name of the mainland. I think the problem with that, though, is that Papua is the name of the entire island, with West Papua lying in Indonesia. Lovely map, by the way. --PeterTalk 00:21, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
Ah. If that is the case then there is massive scope for confusion. I actually thought the "mainland" island was called New Guinea? Wikipedia agrees with that view. On the Indonesian side of the island, there are two provinces: West Papua (The Bird's Head Peninsula) and Papua (the rest of it), which were formerly jointly known as Irian Jaya. Further provinces called East Papua and Central Papua are proposed. So, I would say, let's not go down that route!--Burmesedays 00:47, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
Well, my understanding when I used to live there was that Papua was basically the south, while New Guinea was everywhere else. But I agree that the Indonesian province now causes great confusion. In answer to Burmesedays questions:
Happy with the "offshore" groupings;
South instead of South Coast??
Combining these makes sense. Eastern PNG?
Can't agree to splitting Milne Bay from its islands. One, you would split a province into two regions: two, the mainland and the islands must be treated together because you cannot reach most of the islands without going through Alotau on the mainland.
Morobe, point taken.
So my next query is: do you really need to create arbitrary regions? Why not just go with the existing provinces of PNG? Shep 01:14, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
Creating arbitrary regions that make sense to the traveller is exactly what we do! Do you really think 20 top level PNG region articles to correspond with the 20 provinces would be useful to anyone, when we only have a handful of destination articles? All that being said, every boundary line suggested in this particular scheme follows an official region boundary.
Point taken and I will concede on Milne Bay - so it will be a region with onshore and offshore elements. I have amended the map already to reflect this.
The South and Southwest are still problems. I think it needs to be two regions and you don't :).
Whenever possible, we try to avoid bland region names when an interesting alternative is available. Don't you think that Madang-Morobe is a better name than Eastern PNG?
We are getting there :).--Burmesedays 02:20, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
I think "Southern" and especially "Southwestern Papua New Guinea" are too cumbersome, it would be a grandoise task to type those every time when creating wikilinks etc. If possible, they should be shortened to easier, yet as inclusive names. And Wikipedia maintains that "Papua" is (amongst some other places) a name of those two regions combined (see this and especially this article). So, if there will be no confusion with Indonesian regions/provinces, I suggest they are renamed "Southern Papua" and "Southwestern Papua". – Vidimian 11:29, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
I am not sure that use of Papua is terribly well known or understood, and there is great potential for confusion with the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua (soon to be joined by more with similar nomenclature). --Burmesedays 11:41, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
Just noticed that they should rather be named "Eastern" and "Western Papua" instead of S and SW if we are to use "Papua", so that would result in a mess with Indonesian articles. However, there were situations like this before, and disclaimers at the top of articles (for example, Western Macedonia and Southwestern Georgia) seem to fix that. – Vidimian 11:36, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
OK, you are the one who knows the area well, I will follow whatever is decided. – Vidimian 11:58, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
I certainly agree that Southwestern Papua New Guinea (and Southern) are far from ideal, and there may well be a better name(s). I am just concerned about confusion, especially as travel to Papua (Indonesia) is distinctly on the rise. --Burmesedays 12:12, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
I'd be happy to see Southern and Milne Bay merged into, perhaps, Eastern. Could we solve the name length problem by using PNG instead of Papua New Guinea? Shep 14:05, 4 May 2010 (EDT)
What is wrong with the conventional four-regions division of Papua New Guinea into Papua Region, Highlands Region, Islands Region and Mormase Region? I don't see the 700 miles region of Papua as a problem, we also have Western Australia als a first-level country division. Anyway, most important I think is that the islands are grouped as one subgroup. Now there are too many unnecessary island regions. --globe-trotter 16:13, 5 May 2010 (EDT)
From a travel point of view, I think there is lots wrong with that division - it was actually the first option I looked at when seeking to adjust the over-complex structure that is already in place.
It would I think be both a very lazy and impractical solution. Australia is surely different as it was always clear that we would have 2nd level regions. PNG has them at the moment but that is a bit silly for a country with so few articles. If we divide sensibly at the top level, all the lower level regions can go, and there should never really be any need for further division in the future.
The islands as one region? Have you really thought that through? They bear little relation to each other as travel regions. Wikitravel has erred on this front before by lazily sticking islands all in one region with no regard for geography, logistics or culture. Remember Hong Kong for example? It made no sense having all those completely unrelated islands in the same region, and the same would be true for Bougainville, the Trobriand Islands and Manus (for example).--Burmesedays 22:21, 5 May 2010 (EDT)
I think any Islands Region would exclude the Milne Bay islands, leaving them in Papua. As I noted before, you can't split up a province into two regions. Shep 01:13, 6 May 2010 (EDT)
Yep, Milne Bay islands are now part of a mainland region, that is agreed (one of the few things that is!) :). As an aside, we split provinces (or their equivalent) all the time when regionalising. They often make no sense when you are setting up travel regions. In the case of PNG though, I do not think we need to. --Burmesedays 01:19, 6 May 2010 (EDT)
Four regions alternative
To show willing :), I have redone the map using the four regions as suggested by Globe-trotter. I think this makes no travel sense, and makes sub-regions inevitable. It is actually the scheme that was in place before user DhDh made the first comment above, all the way back in 2003. --Burmesedays 03:43, 6 May 2010 (EDT)
My knowledge of PNG travel is clearly outclassed here, so I'll keep quiet ;) But I will at least say that I support the purpose of flattening our regions hierarchy wherever possible (avoiding additional layers of intermediate regions), to help keep the article structure simple, and to avoid having too many blank outline regions. --PeterTalk 21:08, 6 May 2010 (EDT)
I feared this one would be a bit of a slog and so it is. Perhaps we could a least decide whether we want these four huge regions and then lots of sub-regions sitting below them, or as I prefer (and as Peter has indicated he believes is a worthy aim), smaller top level regions and then no sub-regions?--Burmesedays 23:54, 6 May 2010 (EDT)
I'd be in favour of keeping what you have done here and amending the regions if and when we get a lot more material. Right now we have nothing like enough for nine cities and nine attractions in any of these five regions. Shep 06:15, 12 May 2010 (EDT)
That's a bit of a cop out. This needs sorting. Currently there are 11 regions with a host of sub-regions. I am proposing 9 regions with no sub-regions. The other proposal is 5 4 regions with a host of sub-regions inevitable. We have sensibly regionalised many countries with less content than PNG (see most of Africa for example). That's the aim of this expedition - carve countries up into a region scheme that makes sense to the traveller, and draw a map which shows that scheme. We can't just say leave it until there is more content. There are very few countries left to regionalise that are not tiny islands. PNG is one of that small number. --Burmesedays 07:11, 12 May 2010 (EDT)
Isn't the whole idea that we first start with some logical reasons and then expand them when more destinations become available? I don't know exactly how many destinations PNG currently features, but for now I think 4 would be enough for the country. More regions can always be added later, but 9 now seems to overstretch it. Especially as the 4 regions do make sense I think. Even an enormous country such as DRC only has five regions.
And about the islands: in Hong Kong we also still feature the Outlying Islands region, but instead of making it encompass every island of HK, it is similar to the Islands Subdivision of Hong Kong. I think the same logic could be followed here in PNG. Only the islands together that form the Islands Region of PNG, excluding the Milne Bay Islands for example. --globe-trotter 10:48, 13 May 2010 (EDT)
Could you please explain exactly what you mean by "islands together"? In this specific case would you have all the islands other than Milne Bay in one region? Bear in mind that Bougainville to Pelunun is about 1,000 miles and the people are as different to each other as Swedes and Mauritanians :). When you are dealing with island groups, more regions often make sense. We have 11 regions for the Seychelles for example - (pop 80,000); six for Palau (pop 20,000). And those make perfect sense to me. I am only proposing three regions for all of the PNG islands. --Burmesedays 11:33, 13 May 2010 (EDT)
I'm not saying these regions should never be created, but for now it doesn't make sense. Bougainville is just one article, how can it function as a region? There is nothing to put in it. --globe-trotter 13:40, 13 May 2010 (EDT)
So are you saying we should map them and colour code them and not create the articles? This is the case with half of the 11 regions of the Seychelles for example. On Bougainville, there is a far bit of discussion about that article here and here. The fact is that it functions as a travel region - travellers go there specifically and spend a long time there. I could have created a region article with at least two articles underneath it (Buka and Bougainville Island), but as you will see from the discussions, I have tried something different.
I am wondering why PNG is being singled out for different treatment from our usual approach. All over the world we have empty region articles and nobody questions it. And I would again make the point about island groups often requiring more regions than might otherwise be the case. Another example is the Falkland Islands - superb job done with 8 regions. Why should the far more substantial PNG islands be lumped together as one region when we do not normally do that (or when we do, it has to be changed later)?--Burmesedays 21:32, 13 May 2010 (EDT)
Not really wanting to labour the point (although I know I am), I have just started drawing the Solomon Islands map. Very interesting country, but insignificant compared to its giant neighbour of Papua New Guinea. And it has 9 regions. --Burmesedays 05:15, 14 May 2010 (EDT)
I did not mean that we should not create the articles. They can be created. I meant, for travellers, regions in Wikitravel have the goal of cutting a country in chunks so its destinations are easier to find. Making 4 regions with each about 5 destinations is better than making 10 regions including about 2 destinations. Bougainville should not be a region, because there is only 1 destination article for it. Thus, it is a destination (not a region), and can more easily be grouped among other destinations inside a region. In case Bougainville splits up into, say, 5 destination articles of different towns of the island, then Bougainville could be bumped up and function as a region.
When most people divide PNG, it is into these four regions . I think they are recognizable for most and that the islands could easily be a sub-region under the Islands region. --globe-trotter 11:24, 26 May 2010 (EDT)
I don't see why we should rule out Bougainville as a region on the map simply because there is nothing below it—what is the problem with a bottom-level region? --PeterTalk 17:03, 26 May 2010 (EDT)
The fact that a country is usually divided a certain way should not concern us. I am almost out of energy trying to keep some consistency in this matter but I will have one more go.
I am bemused as to why there are objections to treating the PNG islands in the same way as we treat other highly dispersed island groups? I have given lots of examples above so will not repeat them. Nobody has answered those points.
Is it not desirable to avoid low level regions if possible? Or is it only Peter and I who think that?
For the mainland regions, I could just about live with those very large unwieldy regions, but still believe my first suggested re-jigging of the existing scheme is better, and will avoid the need for further divisions in future.--Burmesedays 22:55, 26 May 2010 (EDT)
This one still remains outstanding. PNG is probably the most major of all regionalisation work which is yet to be resolved. It has been a very long debate. --Burmesedays 11:10, 24 April 2011 (EDT)
Well, I'm not sure exactly how we'll move this forward. I'd like to reiterate my strong support for Burmesedays' preferred version, as it will avoid the need for any further regioning, and thereby avoid ever more weak mid-level region outlines. I also think it simply does a better job of explaining PNG's travel possibilities cartographically. I guess I'll rfc this and see if anyone else wants to chime in? --PeterTalk 22:46, 19 July 2011 (EDT)
No one has responded to the rfc... I'll try a stranger tack—would anyone object to letting the creator of the beautiful map above make an executive decision and go forward with his preference? As Burmesedays moreover seems willing to tackle the hard work of regioning, allowing this to move forward would see our guide improve by leaps and bounds quickly, while it has simply stagnated over the past year+ of deadlocked and cast-aside discussion. --PeterTalk 19:15, 25 July 2011 (EDT)
I will give this 14 days from the date of Peter's latest suggestion and if no objections in that time, I will get on with it.--Burmesedays 08:24, 31 July 2011 (EDT)
Greetings all. I've been overworked for some time and can't return seriously to WT until the end of September. Which of the two beautiful maps are we being asked to approve? My preference is for the four region one. Shep 15:45, 31 July 2011 (EDT)
Actually, preferences weren't being asked—we've been deadlocked with the exact same even split we had before. What I was asking was whether anyone would object to letting the mapmaker use his preferred version as a way to move forward and improve the guide, as there appears to be no hope of coming to an agreement on preference. --PeterTalk 15:54, 31 July 2011 (EDT)
And not to labour the point, but the four region split will be a disaster. This was pretty much was WT moved away from in 2003. Good luck with writing the mass of 2nd level region articles it would require.--Burmesedays 22:32, 3 August 2011 (EDT)
I am fine with letting the mapmaker use his preferred version (eventhough it appears to be way to many regions, 11 regions for 27 destination articles, in my opinion the perfect solution would be 3-5 regions and no 2nd level regions), --ClausHansen 05:04, 5 August 2011 (EDT)
Claus, if you really look at the option of 3-5 regions you will see that 2nd level regions would be inevitable. For example... say we have a nebulous "Islands" region. Logically, linking all the city articles straight to that would make no sense for the traveler whatsoever (the region would be 1,000 miles across). Additionally, how on earth could you write Get in, Get around, or just about any of the sections (!), for that region?
So the article would have to go, for example, PNG -> Islands (a region article which would be impossible to write) ->New Britain (sub-region) -> Rabaul (city) or Embe (city). The version I am proposing cuts out one layer of region articles: PNG straight to New Britain. A key motivation here is as I expressed early in the discussion: "If we divide sensibly at the top level, all the lower level regions can go, and there should never really be any need for further division in the future." The future consideration is an important one - please do not look only at the number of articles which exist today. --Burmesedays 05:29, 5 August 2011 (EDT)
My country PNG is an extremely diverse place both geographically & culturally, so the task of regionalising it is particularly difficult. However, it isn't that difficult. PNG embarassingly still doesn't have a map, we just need to plunge forward with something and go with it. I support Burmesedays' divisions into 9 regions.
Southern (NCD, Oro & Central Provinces)
Western (Western & Gulf Provinces)
Milne Bay (Milne Bay Province - mainland & islands)
New Ireland & Manus (New Ireland & Manus Provinces)
New Britain (East & West New Britain Provinces)
Bougainville (Autonomous Region of Bougainville)
You might think 9 regions is too many for so little destination articles, but this isn't sensible. Tourism is a growth industry here. There will be more destination articles in the future. I can and will add at least 5 to the Madang Province alone. Burmesedays is spot on when he expresses this above. I support him just going ahead and publishing the map (albeit fixing a few things like adding Kavieng, Goroka & Kerema). Let's finish this! --User:TourismMadang 17:39, 20 November 2011
I also think any solution now is better than the current state. I also think Burmesedays should just go ahead and implement his proposal. --Globe-trotter 15:32, 20 November 2011 (EST)
Yay! Wikitravel's longest ever regional saga is coming to a close. I will set about the regionalisation task this week. Special thanks to user TourismMadang for the local input - I am pleased my plan made sense to you. --burmesedays 23:54, 20 November 2011 (EST)
Ah OK. I do know that Kava consumption is fairly large in the Eastern islands which are famous for growing what is regarded as the very strongest strain of the stuff anywhere.
There are plenty of references to Kava consumption in PNG, and documentation of the westward spread from Vanuatu and elsewhere in Melanesia. Erowid.org is as usual the best place to look for such references but the site is down right now. --Burmesedays 10:48, 31 May 2010 (EDT)
Don't understand the logic of your recent edit. On the United States page there is a link to Grand Canyon. There is also a link to Grand Canyon from the Arizona page. By the logic of your deletions on the PNG page we should delete Grand Canyon from the US page. What is Other destinations for if not to highlight interesting places for people to learn about without going through the whole sequence of Country-Region-, etc.? Shep 02:01, 6 June 2010 (EDT)
Other destinations are national parks and other destinations that are not cities. Grand Canyon is a national park and, therefore, listed as an other destination. The ones I deleted in PNG are cities, which should be in the list of cities, regions which should only be in the list of regions, and itineraries which should be in the see section, --ClausHansen 02:10, 6 June 2010 (EDT)
I can agree to New Britain going out. I didn't put it there. But Tufi is not really a city, more an area. You don't visit Tufi town for the sake of the town but for the attractions in the area. I will think of other ways to steer people to Bulolo and Wau, perhaps by refering to them in the main text of the page. Shep 06:32, 6 June 2010 (EDT)
Islands are valid Other destinations. It is a moot point if an island which is a region could also be included as an OD...... this has been done several times in other articles. I will put a copy of this on the PNG talk page, which is where the discussion should really be happening.--Burmesedays 23:52, 6 June 2010 (EDT)
I do not think there is a policy of not allowing itineraries (or regions) in the list of other destinations. But I think it follows from the description of what can be in other destinations, namely destinations like national parks which are not really cities. Itineraries are not destinations. Further, I do not see any reason to list a region/itinerary in both the regions/itinerary section and in other destinations. Those were my thoughts behind deleting items from the other destinations section, but I am fine with whatever you guys find appropriate to include in the PNG list of other destinations, --ClausHansen 01:19, 7 June 2010 (EDT)
Agree with ClausHausen's interpretation of ODs. --globe-trotter 07:16, 7 June 2010 (EDT)
It surely depends on the nature of the itinerary? The Kokoda Trailis a destination. It just makes more sense to write about it using the itinerary format. I think that the Kokoda Trail is exactly the sort of place that the other destinations section was intended for.--Burmesedays 07:53, 7 June 2010 (EDT)
Would it not be a better solution then to use the park template to avoid confusion? Also, the itinerary template misses sections for eat and sleep, --ClausHansen 08:05, 7 June 2010 (EDT)
I wouldn't get too wrapped up in the use of templates. The template used should be whatever is best suited to the destination—not simply matched to the name or type of destination. While the park template is most often best for articles about parks, sometimes a city, region, or even itinerary template (or some combination thereof) might fit the destination better. Islands are an even clearer example—we generally use city templates for them, even if there are no cities on the island! The Appalachian Trail in the U.S. is most certainly an "other destination," albeit an exceptionally long one, as well as a park, but is best covered in an itinerary. Bougainville is indisputably a region, with sub-destinations (villages) to boot, but for our purposes the city template actually works best.
For picking ODs, I think it's best to just include those non-city destinations which a) a traveler would want to find immediately at the top of the page, b) are not cities, and c) are not listed prominently elsewhere on the page. So Bougainville would be out if listed as a region, but otherwise should be included. Kokoda Trail would be fine, but not if listed in the "itineraries" section of "see." --PeterTalk 13:53, 11 June 2010 (EDT)
While regionalization remains unresolved can I at least change Huon Gulf to Morobe? Why have a region that covers just one province and not call it by the name of the province? Better still, lets merge Huon Gulf with Madang (region). Shep 00:59, 8 June 2010 (EDT)