JOHN and Larry Brown, John and Marion Wisbey and John and Sally Ritchie travelled on a cruise to Papua New Guinea in November 2013.
They visited an American landing barge which was dragged about 3km in land from the Milne Bay coast so the troops would not be discovered by the Japanese.
There was no need for a guide as John Ritchie is a Milne Bay and PNG war buff and had an amazing knowledge according to Larry.
One day on their holiday one of the four major volcanos in Rabaul sprang into action having been quiet for over a month.
Larry says all was quiet in the morning with just an occasional wisp of smoke but by about 3pm huge clouds of smoke billowed from the top.
The smoke later obliterated the view of Rabaul as the travellers departed on their cruise ship.
“It was a very spectacular show indeed,” Larry said.
“There was one area on the bay where the ocean water was too hot to swim in with a stream flowing into the ocean having its waters boiling.
“Sulphur residue lined parts of the beach which of course was all grey volcanic ash.”