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23 October 2014 / leggypeggy

Not quite National Geographic, but plenty of boobs

Goroka Show

One of my favourites

Goroka Show, 2014

Soon after I started posting items about the Goroka Show, a reader commented that my photos reminded of him of old National Geographic magazine stories. Not really erotic, but filled with an abundance of interesting flesh.

I have to admit that I was a little surprised by all the flesh on display at the show. I’m no prude, but I simply hadn’t expected that at least half of the performing women would have stripped down to their bare bums and breasts.

I suppose the show offers locals a time of year when they can embrace the culture they used to live. Having said that, I suppose plenty of women don’t want to strip off these days.

Poor John visited Papua New Guinea twice during the 1980s (I didn’t get to go). He never got to Goroka back then, but he did get to other highland communities. He clearly remembers seeing many locals ‘roll’ into town in similar get-ups. There wasn’t any show on at the time. It was simply the dress of the times.

Frankly, it makes a lot of sense. Good grief, it gets hot in PNG, and many people have no source of cash income, so they have to make-do with what the earth and sea have to offer.

It didn’t take us long to figure out that the materials and ‘fabrics’ on hand for clothing tend to be leaves, grass, shells, bark, bush rope (made of bark), gourds (more about them soon), feathers (and sometimes whole birds), branches, skins, fruit, seeds, straw, dyes, mud and clay.

Goroka Show

Another favourite

As an aside, the Goroka Show reminded me of our two visits to Brazil—where anything you wear that’s skimpy is totally okay. After a couple of months in Brazil, I even got to the point where I thought it might be okay for me to buy and wear a bikini. Luckily, I came to my senses. It might have been okay in Brazil, but no where else in the world.

But after me dangling the ‘boob’ carrot for a while, it’s time to produce the evidence. So here it is.

I had to laugh (and agree) when one reader commented that if we all looked this good without clothes, the habit might catch on everywhere. Of course he’s right, but I guess it might depend on the season and the weather. Also have to admit that I’ve now seen boobs of every single shape and size imaginable. Have even seen some you can’t imagine.

Goroka Show, 2014


Leave a Comment
  1. suchled / Oct 23 2014 11:11 pm

    As you say. All the material seems to be natural Where does the bright pink com from? Is it Betel nut juice?


    • leggypeggy / Oct 23 2014 11:43 pm

      Oh darn, I forgot to ask about the pink, but betel nut juice looks very similar. I bet you’re right.


  2. CuriositytotheMax / Oct 23 2014 11:57 pm

    I might consider going topless if I could adorn the rest of me as creatively and colorfully to scramble other people’s visual fields, overwhelm their senses and make them marvel.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 12:31 am

      What a perfect way to describe the effect—’scramble other people’s visual fields’. Wish I’d thought of it. 🙂


  3. Derrick / Oct 24 2014 12:23 am

    This has to be the best blog entry I have read

    I knew a bloke who said he had lived here with his family for over 10 years, he never mentioned any of this

    The pictures here have been great and this has to be on anyone’s ‘To see list’

    I am just blown away with the colours, the outfits, masks, I know anne has told me bring nothing home any more from my trips, but there is more than a few I would bring back from here (even if I had to chuck stuff out of my back pack)

    I hope these displays go on long enough for me to get out there and see one

    Thanks for this Peggy (and John) it has been a really good entry, I have enjoyed every photo


    • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 12:31 am

      Thanks Derrick. It’s taken me a couple of days to choose photos and bring it together. Next instalment will be skirts.


      • Derrick / Oct 24 2014 12:36 am

        It has very reminiscent of the old NG magazines, I dont think you could have taken any better photos

        Looking forward to the skirts next


      • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 12:50 am

        🙂 I’ll get started on the writing. Have already chosen five or six pics.


      • Derrick / Oct 24 2014 1:05 am

        I think somewhere you mentioned you had taken over 800 photos,

        I know I have said about how many photos you take, but with this Goroka display, I cant think why you never took more (I know I would have taken hundreds and probvably lots of video as well)

        It is a truly amazing display 🙂


      • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 2:33 pm

        Thanks, Derrick, for admitting that you would have gone overboard too. It really is overwhelming and breathtaking.


  4. Helen Kendall / Oct 24 2014 8:47 am

    I enjoy reading about your travels.



  5. Joanne T Ferguson / Oct 24 2014 12:12 pm

    G’day! Definitely National Geo quality Peggy and is always interesting to learn more about all cultures around the world and through your unique eyes! Cheers! Joanne


    • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 12:54 pm

      Thanks Joanne. PNG is so fascinating. Hope you get there one day.


  6. David York / Oct 24 2014 12:38 pm

    Quite fascinating! How did you and John stay cool?


    • leggypeggy / Oct 24 2014 12:55 pm

      As usual, we wore shorts and short sleeves. No chance of me copying the locals! 🙂


  7. / Oct 24 2014 8:28 pm

    Fabulous post Peggy – and what an attention-getter! It really takes me back to my NatGeo days. Beautiful costumes and I love how you handled the whole subject. 🙂 ~Terri


    • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2014 8:19 am

      Thanks Terri. It took some time to decide exactly how to present the pics, and to choose the ones to show.


  8. Dr Sze Wey Lee / Oct 24 2014 11:06 pm

    What amazing photos. And full of color. Thanks for sharing the photos. The show must be such an experience.


    • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2014 8:20 am

      Thanks, I hope more people take the opportunity to go.


      • Dr Sze Wey Lee / Oct 25 2014 11:45 am

        Now that I know about it, straight onto my bucket list!


      • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2014 1:44 pm

        This is who we travelled with—
        Much of Papua New Guinea is not safe, so best to go in a group.


  9. jollof / Oct 25 2014 8:51 am

    Very…revealing post, lol. I just couldn’t help but think to myself what it’d be like to walk into that environment and go, what’s sagging…er…I mean hanging? 🙂


    • leggypeggy / Oct 25 2014 5:22 pm

      Hahaha—there was a lot of sagging and hanging. 🙂


  10. hiMe / Oct 26 2014 10:03 am

    Interesting pictures, abundant images of what we cannot see here!


    • leggypeggy / Oct 26 2014 1:42 pm

      Yes, I think these pics could be taken only in Papua New Guinea.


  11. skippersy / Oct 30 2014 12:16 pm


    Like many have said, some excellent photos of the Goroka Show in PNG. And you have done a great job of getting some close up face shots as well. I have some general questions and comments:
    1) The woman and with painted faces appear to look more male then female?
    2) The woman appear to be overweight somewhat? Is that normal for PNG?
    3) Being overweight and having big “Breasts,” Do you think that is why they have been chosen to represent their tribe at this show?
    4) I have been told that in the Philippians the natives can care less about beautiful looking birds and kill them. Do you think that is also the case in PNG?… and destroying their beautiful bird population (based on seeing so many performers with colorful feathers).
    5) Have you had the time to go to some restaurants and what is their food like? Similar to the Philippians and other cuisines in Asia.
    6) Are the people friendly, like other Asian countries?
    7) Since PNG does have dangerous areas, would you consider going to a few interesting places in the future?



    • leggypeggy / Nov 6 2014 8:55 pm

      Hi Sy, sorry to take so long to reply, but it’s been super busy here. Also had to think about answers to your questions. So here goes.
      1, 2 and 3) PNG has about 800 languages and probably about as many tribes. In Goroka, I noticed so many different facial and body features, skin colours, heights, weights and such. More than 100 tribes were represented and some had overweight (and busty) performers and others didn’t. Not sure whether it’s down to tribal traits, genetics or diet, but I don’t think body type had anything to do with who performed.
      4) Papua New Guineans love their birds, but I guess they love their costumes too. All the costumes rely heavily on organic materials. Sadly that includes feathers. Not sure if the birds are always killed to obtain the feathers. But I do know that the same costumes (except for the grassy and reedy materials) are used again and again.
      5) We ate in a few restaurants in Goroka and had Western and Chinese food. But that’s just for foreigners. When we stayed in villages (we overnighted in four different villages) we ate mostly carbs because that’s what’s so readily available. Some meals were based on three or four types of carbs.
      6) We found the people friendly. The four villages we stayed in knocked themselves out to welcome us. The Goroka performers were wonderful too.
      7) Many parts of Papua New Guinea are extremely dangerous and I plan on writing a separate post about that. But I’d be willing to travel if accompanied.


  12. Sy S. / Nov 8 2014 11:09 am

    Hello Brave Leggy and Pour John,

    With all the countries you both have been to, I can’t imagine you not going to and traveling through some hostile, potentially dangerous areas. When you have the time perhaps you can post about the other villages you visited…. The Goroka Show and your photos and commentary were very interesting, but it would be nice to see some scenery of the countryside and other interesting sights. Too bad you have not done any snorkelling and get some underwater fish/coral photos. I know asking to much?!


    • leggypeggy / Nov 10 2014 5:30 pm

      I’ll be posting lots more about the villages we visited. Stay tuned. Oh, and we did go snorkelling, but I don’t have an underwater camera.


  13. JunkChuck / Nov 21 2014 6:14 am

    This is totally off the subject…well, not really but….when I was a kid my WW2 veteran grandfather, who only ever cursed once in front of me, employed the word “boob” as a synonym for “idiot.” To my sister, who was being a brat, “stop being such a boob.” Over dinner, “all those boobs in congress.” I guess i was around 10 when this started to just SLAY me every time he said it. I nearly choked on food a dozen times over, because my complete illustratied boob database at that point consisted of photos like those you posted above. I’m giggling right now despite myself, because I’m a terrible person. I’m sorry, but thank you.


    • leggypeggy / Nov 21 2014 6:52 am

      Oh JunkChuck, you are most welcome! But a big thanks to you too. You can bet I’ll start referring to ‘all those boobs in Parliament’ and ‘what a boob of a Prime Minister Australia has’. Perhaps together we can help this word to recover its, by far, more useful meaning. And none of this giggling business for me, I’m still laughing and laughing and laughing. Many thanks for such a great story to start my day.


  14. afterthelasttime / Mar 13 2015 12:34 pm

    It doesn’t take long for the entire boob thing to become ho hum. One, two boobs done. The outfits however are really fun and your writing of the limited sources of materials for making clothing reminds me of a company here in the U.S. (USAgain) that collects clothing in metal containers spread throughout cities. They have trucks on routes picking up the donated clothing and then in each location there is a huge machine that puts the clothes into bundles similar to very large bundles of hay. The bundles are then packed in containers, sent to third world countries where people bid on the bundles so they can usually open a shop selling the clothing from a world away, an ocean anyway.
    I think the owner needs to ship some containers to PNG! Maybe a whole ship full! Quite amazing to not even have scraps to sew together.


    • leggypeggy / Mar 13 2015 1:03 pm

      The developing world is full of our castaway clothing. Thirty years ago I noticed a kid’s outfit in Burma. It looked familiar, but I couldn’t quite place it. No, it wasn’t from our family. It was part of a uniform from a well-known fast-food outlet.


  15. Holistic Wayfarer / Jun 17 2015 1:26 am

    It’s interesting. It’s as though the bared top is part of their art, the way those leaves below the waist accentuate and follow the shape/lines of the breasts.


    • leggypeggy / Jun 17 2015 8:29 am

      Every group of costumes is so carefully planned that I’m sure you’re right.


  16. / Jul 6 2015 9:53 pm

    Beautiful photos greetings Wolfgang


  17. LaVagabonde / Jul 24 2015 4:13 pm

    You’re the only other blogger that I’ve ever run across on WP who has been to the Goroka Show. I went back in 1995. My photos aren’t nearly as good as yours. I had only a crappy camera back then and then the photos nearly got ruined by humidity. But there are plenty of boobie shots. It’s funny how modest the dress is outside of the show. I was told that women couldn’t show shoulders or knees. I sure suffered from the heat because of that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Jul 26 2015 6:34 pm

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

      Yep, the Goroka Show doesn’t draw a lot of tourists. I think about 400 VIP tickets were sold, up a little from the previous year. I doubt the show has changed much since 1995, although there are no rules now in relation to women showing shoulders and knees. I wore shorts the whole time. I was quite pleased with many of the pics, and still have more to post including a trip north to Tufi.


      • LaVagabonde / Jul 26 2015 7:46 pm

        I think there were just 50 of us VIPs when I was there…


      • leggypeggy / Jul 26 2015 8:52 pm

        Wow, that’s amazing. I’m so glad you dropped by with your comments.


  18. dougstuber / Aug 5 2015 11:45 am

    Maybe not National Geographic, in that you didn’t get paid, but the pictures are just as colorful, in focus and full of eye catching contrast though.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Aug 5 2015 10:59 pm

      You are absolutely right. I didn’t get paid, but I still had a great time. Glad you liked the pics.


  19. Maxima / Sep 27 2015 7:19 pm

    Reblogged this on Spiritual challenges and commented:
    My recommendation, for Sunday afternoon !With love maxima


  20. The Reading Cottage: The Platform For Books, Feature Articles, Book Reviews, Interview, Culture, Lifestyle , Entertainment / Oct 6 2015 5:01 am

    Beautiful world, wonderful people.


  21. bacardi gold / Jan 31 2016 1:27 pm

    wow, genuine boobs! They’re not silicone…! 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  22. xaranahara / Jan 31 2016 3:34 pm

    Yeah, nothing wrong. The human body is awesome

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Jan 31 2016 4:08 pm

      Totally awesome.

      Liked by 1 person

      • xaranahara / Feb 4 2016 3:07 am

        I quite agree. I don’t understand why America has such a huge problem/obsession with it. This country definitely distorts the way we feel about ourselves based on our body composition. I think there are better things for the media to focus on, no?

        Liked by 1 person

      • leggypeggy / Feb 4 2016 7:45 am

        Much better things for the media to focus on.

        Liked by 1 person

  23. Ray / Feb 27 2016 4:22 pm

    Outstanding photos! What kind of camera do you use to take these?


    • leggypeggy / Feb 27 2016 7:59 pm

      Thanks Ray. I have an Canon EOS 600D camera body with a rather expensive EFS 15–85mm lens that I use most of the time. The lens does most of the work. I just push the shutter button. 🙂


  24. Dinata Misovec / Aug 21 2016 12:34 pm

    We have something similar in Florida. Google some images of “key west fantasy fest”. Lots of colorful costumes but, many of them are nothing but paint. I don’t think National Geo has covered that festival.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Aug 21 2016 12:59 pm

      Oh my, those are definitely colourful and fantasy costumes. I think the National Geographic might skip covering this event.


  25. Heated Stew / Mar 31 2020 11:15 am

    Whilst in the south of Ethiopia I met 4 soldiers, dressed in tattered clothes – one was a girl. I asked if I could get a photo, they agreed. But she wasn’t going to be photographed in rags so stripped, and I got my picture. Maybe I’ll find it again one day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Mar 31 2020 11:20 am

      I’d love to see it. Reminds me of a gal I saw at a bus stop in Cameroon. She was wearing shoes and pearls.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. barkinginthedark / Apr 12 2020 7:27 am

    especially like your title for this piece Peggy – it made me chuckle. be well and… continue…

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Apr 12 2020 10:39 am

      Thanks. It took me a while to think up the title. Stay well, stay sane, stay home.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Heated Stew / May 29 2020 5:34 pm

    The thing that impresses me it is not immodest nor done to flaunt. Thanks for the post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / May 30 2020 5:56 pm

      You’re welcome. It was an amazing experience.


  28. Ankur Mithal / Aug 8 2020 3:06 am

    Not quite Playboy either, but plenty of colour and natural material 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Aug 8 2020 7:55 am

      I’d love to go to the Goroka Show again. Such a fabulous experience.


  29. jeanleesworld / Oct 13 2020 9:43 pm

    I do so love encountering your past adventures! I hope you and yours are well. Apart from the typical sniffles from Autumn colds, we’re doing well–just driving each other crazy being at home all the time. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 13 2020 11:08 pm

      So good to know the autumn sniffles are your only health problems. Sorry the proximity is causing angst.

      Liked by 1 person

      • jeanleesworld / Oct 14 2020 4:48 am

        We’ll make due here. You just be safe as best you can!

        Liked by 1 person

      • leggypeggy / Oct 14 2020 7:22 am

        Thanks Jean, Canberra has been a real safe haven. No cases for 97 days. You stay safe too.


  30. etravelersclub / Jul 26 2021 4:19 am

    Beautiful story splashed with a rainbow of colors 🙂 Pacific Islands on my wish-list. Perhaps not easy to access now with COVID restrictions. Bliss.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Jul 26 2021 1:11 pm

      Thanks so much. I can highly recommend the shows in Papua New Guinea. I’d love to go again.



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  2. No skirting around the Goroka Show—it’s all upfront | Where to next?
  3. Penis gourds rise to the occasion at the Goroka Show | Where to next?
  4. Dance, drama, music, fashion, religion—Bhutan’s Paro Festival | Where to next?

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