The Independent State of Papua New Guinea is a country in Oceania, occupying the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and numerous offshore islands (the western portion of the island is occupied by the ► Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Irian Jaya). It is located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, in a region defined since the early 19th century as Melanesia., and has maritime borders with ► Micronesia, ► Nauru, the ► Solomon Islands and ► Australia. In the east lies the autonomous province of ► Bougainville. Its capital, and one of its few major cities, is Port Moresby. It is one of the most diverse countries on Earth, with over 850 indigenous languages and at least as many traditional societies, out of a population of just under 6 million. It is also one of the most rural, with only 18 per cent of its people living in urban centres. The country is also one of the world's least explored, culturally and geographically, and many undiscovered species of plants and animals are thought to exist in the interior of Papua New Guinea.
Administrative map of Papua New Guinea (2004), with names of archipelagos, and the former subdivision into 20 provinces, including the capital district and the former province (now an autonomous region) of Bougainville (Northern Solomons).
Topographic and administrative map of Papua New Guinea (1985), with names of archipelagos, and the former subdivision into 20 provinces, including the capital district and the former province (now an autonomous region) of Bougainville (Northern Solomons).
Topographic and administrative map of Papua New Guinea (1989), with names of archipelagos, and the former subdivision into 20 provinces, including the capital district and the former province (now an autonomous region) of Bougainville (Northern Solomons).
Southern Highlands Province (before 2012), including the newer Hela Province (since 2012)
Western Highlands Province (before 2012), including the newer Jiwaka Province (since 2012)
East Sepik Province
West Sepik (or Sandaun) Province
New Ireland Province
East New Britain Province
West New Britain Province
Autonomous Region of Bougainville (Northern Solomons)
Map of Bougainville (Northern Solomons)
Basic divisions of New Guinea island, including parts from en:Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (before 2012).
This section holds a short summary of the history of the area of present-day Papua New Guinea, illustrated with maps, including historical maps of former countries and empires that included present-day Papua New Guinea.
Division of the Germany colonies in Oceania after World War I
This section holds copies of original general maps more than 70 years old.
Map of New Guinea ('Nova Guinea'), Spanish/Portuguese, c.1600; as reproduced in G. Collingridge's 1906 work, "The First Discovery of Australia and New Guinea"
Notes and references
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