This major Milne Bay port has come alive in recent years, thanks mainly to attention from Australia's P&O Cruises, which has worked hard with local authorities to bring it up to standard for its large ships.
Alotau is the location for the spectacular annual Kenu and Kundu (canoe and drum) Festival, which completely takes over the town. Held in November, it's quite a carnival. A song and dance festival is also held whenever a P&O cruise ship visits; tickets are sold to attend. Canoe rides are offered from the shore and markets sell Papua New Guinea-themed shirts and local handicrafts.
Occasionally, Alotau is used as a turnaround port for smaller ships and expedition vessels because of flights available from the WWII-era Gurney Airfield.