Prime Minister Julia Gillard has received a red carpet welcome in Papua New Guinea, complete with singing, dancing and gunfire.
Colourful Huli Wigmen from PNG's Highlands beat drums, jumped and chanted as Ms Gillard stepped off the plane in Port Moresby on Thursday on her first visit to the country as Prime Minister.
There was also a 19-gun salute to announce her arrival and around 100 locals gathered on the hill overlooking the airport to catch a glimpse of her.
"PNG and Australia have a close relationship together. We like to see the Prime Minister of Australia and that's why we are here," said one local.
Also there to greet her were PNG deputy prime minister Leo Dion and foreign minister Rimbink Pato.
After her warm welcome, Ms Gillard paid a courtesy call on governor-general Sir Michael Ogio.
She then attended a state dinner hosted by her PNG counterpart Peter O'Neill.
Ms Gillard says the three-day visit will write the next chapter in the bilateral relationship between Australia and PNG.
In the past that relationship has been heavily focused on Australia's aid program to PNG. But Ms Gillard says now it is much broader, encompassing trade, investment, education and defence links.
"Papua New Guinea is changing, it's modernising. You can see it all around you and that means it is a good time for me to be here talking about the future of this relationship," she said.
Mr O'Neill says if Ms Gillard wants to modernise their bilateral relationship she should make it easier for those in PNG to visit Australia.
"Our people find existing visa arrangements very frustrating, some regard them insulting," he said.
Those visa arrangements include having to provide a comprehensive list of relatives who are not travelling and financial statements.
Ms Gillard will today visit a local high school and a market in the suburb of Gerehu, which even locals consider a rough neighbourhood.
Ms Gillard says she will sign a defence cooperation arrangement with Mr O'Neill during the visit.
She will not be visiting the processing centre for asylum seekers on Manus Island.