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The tranquil paradise of Kiribati lies in an unspoilt corner of Micronesia. Formerly known as the Gilbert Islands, the Republic of Kiribati was granted independence from the UK in 1979. Comprising the Gilbert, Line and Phoenix island groups, Kiribati's low-lying atolls are fringed by white sand beaches, beautiful lagoons and extensive coral reefs. The islands saw fighting during World War II, when thousands of lives were lost in the Battle of Tarawa. There are many war relics scattered around Kiribati.

Traditional sailing canoes are still the main mode of transport in the outer islands of Kiribati. The people of Kiribati are renowned for their hospitality, skilled dancing, weaving and canoe building. There are wildlife sanctuaries on most of the Line Islands (with birdwatching on Christmas Island), and excellent game fishing and diving in the ocean waters. Travel to Kiribati and explore this piece of paradise in Micronesia.

Kiribati Visitors Bureau
Ministry of Communication, Transport and Tourism Development
P O Box 487

Geographic Location

Central Pacific Ocean, near the equator between 173-177°E longitude and 4°N and 3°S latitude. The islands are roughly mid-way between Hawaii and Australia.


98,549 (July 2003 est.)


Humid, tropical, marine climate moderated by trade winds.
Temperature: 25º-33ºC.
Wet season: December to May.

Capital City


Time Zone

GMT plus 12hrs (Tarawa); GMT plus 14hrs (Christmas Island)

Major Attractions

World War II relics, cultural Shows, Bikenibeu Cultural Centre, handcrafts, game fishing, diving, wildlife, Christmas (Kiritimati) Island, Tabuaeran Island, Abemama Island, Marakei Island, Independence Day celebrations, watersports.

Discover Kiribati

Head to the Highlands for a glimpse of Papua New Guinea’s tribal culture.

See how Vanuatu invented the bungee jump.

Swim with gentle humpbacks in Tonga.

Come face to face with Samoa’s multi-coloured marine life.

Dive into the world’s largest coral lagoon in New Caledonia.

Gorge on French cuisine and tropical surroundings in the Cook Islands.

Dive Fiji’s easy-access sites in this 'soft coral capital of the world.’

Shop to your heart’s (duty-free) content in Norfolk Island.

Explore Nuie’s unique peaks and exciting coastal caves.

Island-hop your way through Tahiti and Her Islands.

Hike American Samoa’s mountain ridges peppered with wild papaya.

Spend New Year’s on Kiribati and be the first in the world to see midnight.

Take a swim at sunset in Tuvalu’s spectacular lagoon.

Kiribati Map