Arovo Island

By Leonard Fong Roka


Before the Bougainville crisis, Arovo Island was a get-away island resort for the people in the then economically buzzing Bougainville.

The crisis shattered the fantasy world of Arovo, but its natural beauty is still intact, girded by the pristine Solomon Sea.


The greenish Pidia peninsular kisses you

Arawa weeps to see your sweet silent beating

And Pokpok yawns to your brilliance every morning

As she brawls Pidia away

To cuddle your weeping heart

Oh my Arovo

Long ago Arawa darted for you; Kieta paddled for you,

And Loloho steamed for you

As Panguna exhausted those foreigners more and more

You gave those foreigners life and pleasure

You gave them sweet memories

That stretches beyond Bougainville

My Arovo


Oh Arovo

Panguna pitied you and blooded

You to sorrow to save you; but time is healing your broken heart,

As Pidia and Pokpok now cuddles you

Smiling away to the Bougainvillean

Panguna runs to you; Loloho hops for you; Pidia and Pokpok

Elope to your peaceful world of dreams

In snore of romance

Oh my Arovo


Oh my Arovo

You my love

You my healer

You my dance

You my shield

You my teacher

You my honey

You my Arovo

Teko tampa noru ramaung*!


*That’s why I value you!



  1. Noel Stone
    2016/07/22 at 11:48

    I first visited Arovo Island in 1979 during a business trip to PNG and made many return visits. The procedure was to collect your hire car at Aropa airport, drive into Kieta to the post office, ring the island’s resort to arrange a boat to pick you up, then drive to the yacht club where you parked the car.
    The boat ride to the island was a beautiful experience. Once the boat cleared the headland there was Arovo beckoning to you. You disembarked at the jetty then strolled to the resort where you were made most welcome.
    On one occasion a helicopter landed near the resort and as the pilot and myself were the only guests we soon struck up a conversation. It turned out he was surveying sites on the mainland for PNG Telecom and as the next day was a Sunday, he invited me along as his loadmaster. We spent the day flying from village to village picking up cargo which was stowed in a net underneath the aircraft or transferring workers to new sites. On one occasion he had to leave me behind at a remote location as the cargo’s weight was too much. He was true to his word and did come back to collect me!
    The pilot was planning to take the Monday off so we scouted around the coast looking for somewhere to drop in for a picnic. He invited me along but sadly I had to decline as I was flying out to the Solomon Islands that day.
    Sadly, the civil war brought an end to my visits to Bougainville and Arovo Island but I still treasure the memories of these magical places!

  2. Bridgitte Esau
    2016/07/26 at 12:21

    We started cleaning and clearing the remains of Arovo Island resort.

    • Noel Stone
      2016/07/27 at 16:50

      Tell us more!


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