The Lihir island group lies to the east of mainland New Ireland, between the islands groups of Tabar to the northwest and Tanga to the southeast (see Map).

The Lihir group consists of six islands (see Map): the main volcanic island of Aniolam, or ‘big place’ and, in order of distance, the low coralline islets of Sinambiet and Mando, and the three larger raised coral platform islands of Malie, Masahet and Mahur, collectively known as Ihot, or ‘stone place’, denoting the relative dearth of resources on these islands compared to Aniolam.