The Kokoda Memorial at Isurava (also called Isurava Memorial) is the major war memorial on the Kokoda Track. Some tour operators spend the night in Isurava and hold a dawn service in memory of the Australians and Papua New Guineans who fought, and those who died along the track in 1942 during World War II. The memorial was constructed in 2002.
Do You Have To Complete The Entire Track To Reach The Kokoda Memorial Isurava?
It is possible to reach the Kokoda Memorial without walking the entire Kokoda Track. Isurava is one day’s walk from Kokoda Village, and it is possible to spend the night at Isurava, then walk back to Kokoda village and get picked up by an airplane. This type of 2 day track is offered by some Kokoda Tour operators, especially around the anniversary of the Battel of Isurava in August, as well as around ANZAC Day when Australian traditional honour and remember the diggers.
Isurava was the site of some of the most intense fighting in the Kokoda Track campaign. The memorial is immediately adjacent to the site where Private Bruce Kingsbury performed an act of valour for which he was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross – the first VC awarded in PNG.
The memorial features four Australian black granite pillars that are each inscribed with a single word – ‘courage’, ‘endurance’, ‘mateship’, and ‘sacrifice’ representing the values and qualities of those Australian soldiers who fought along the Kokoda Track.