South Pacific Travel Guide


South Pacific Accommodation, South Pacific Attractions and Activities in South Pacific - Jasons Travel Channel™ is Your Complete South Pacific Travel Information Source.

Stunning natural scenery, welcoming people and a diverse range of vibrant cultures have made the Pacific one of the world's most popular holiday destinations. The palm-fringed beaches, sparkling lagoons, rugged volcanic peaks, waterfalls and dense tropical forests are a world away from the hectic pace of modern life. There is something for every traveller to enjoy, from basking on a white sand beach, to diving or snorkelling in warm waters full of multi-coloured tropical fish.

American Samoa
Consisting of five tropical volcanic islands and two coral atolls, the volcanic activity which shaped the islands has created a landscape of rugged mountains and a coastline of indented bays and harbours. The largest island is Tutuila, home to the country’s capital, Pago Pago. Pago Pago Harbour is one of the best all-weather deep water harbours in the Pacific.

Cook Islands
This cluster of 15 islands is scattered over more than 2 million sq km of ocean. Rarotonga is the vibrant capital, and home to more than half the population. It is part of the Southern Group of islands which also includes Aitutaki, an idyllic holiday destination popular for its beautiful palm-fringed beaches.

Covering an area of 200,000sq km, Fiji's 330 islands and atolls are the epitome of a South Pacific paradise, with palm-fringed beaches and sparkling lagoons fringed with coral reefs. The two main islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, account for 85% of the country’s total land area. Fiji’s bustling capital, Suva, lies on the south-east corner of Viti Levu. Fiji's legendary firewalkers come from the island of Beqa.

Formerly known as the Gilbert Islands, this island group was granted independence from the UK in 1979 as the Republic of Kiribati. Comprising the Gilbert, Line and Phoenix Islands, the group'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.

New Caledonia
New Caledonia is composed of La Grande Terre, divided into the Northern and Southern Provinces, with the Loyalty Islands to the north-east (Lifou, Maré, Ouvéa and Tiga) and the Isle of Pines to the south. The capital of Noumea is in the south-east of La Grande Terre in the Southern Province. The main language is French, and the shopping, restaurants and nightlife feel distinctly European.

Covering an area of 259sq km, Niue is believed to be the world’s largest upraised coral atoll. This coral makeup gives the island a rugged coastline with small, sandy coves rather than the long sandy beaches typical of other South Pacific islands. Niue is dotted with deep limestone caves featuring spectacular stalactites and stalagmites.

Norfolk Island
This 3455ha island was first settled in 1788 as a penal colony and later became home to descendants of the famous mutineers of the Bounty. Today's inhabitants are a friendly mix of Norfolk Islanders, Australians and New Zealanders. Norfolk is a shopper's mecca with a large range of tax-free goods from all over the world. The island has patches of sub-tropical rainforest and gently rolling pasture dotted with Norfolk pines.

Papua New Guinea
This fascinating land has more than 600 islands and 800 indigenous languages and is home to the largest area of intact rainforest outside of the Amazon. The country is divided into provinces which include Central, Oro, Gulf, Western, Morobe, Madang, Highlands, Sepik, New Britian, New Ireland, Manus and Milne Bay/Northern provinces. Within each region, visitors can experience a rich variety of cultures and ancient traditions. Relics dating from the allied battles with Japan can be found in many parts of the country.

Dominated by rugged mountain ranges, Samoa's beautiful volcanic islands are surrounded by a fringe of coral reefs and lagoons. There are 10 islands altogether, with the two largest, Upolu and Savaii, accounting for 96% of the total land area. Upolu is home to Samoa’s capital, Apia. The eight smaller islands include Apolima, Fanautapu, Manon, Namau, Nuulopa, Nuulua, Nuusafee and Nuutele.

Solomon Islands
Composed of rugged volcanic islands and tiny low-lying coral atolls, this archipelago is the third largest in the South Pacific, with soaring mountain peaks, dense tropical rainforest, palm-fringed beaches and traditional villages. The 992 islands lie south-east of Papua New Guinea, covering a total area of 28,450 sq km. The group's capital, Honiara, is located on Guadalcanal Island.

Tahiti & her Islands
Famous for their magnificent natural beauty, the 118 islands and atolls comprising French Polynesia cover a land area of 40145sq km. There are five archipelagoes altogether - the Society Islands (including Tahiti, Moorea and Bora Bora), the Austral Islands, the Marquesas, the Tuamotu atolls and the Gambier Islands. The islands are known for their intriguing blend of Polynesian, French and Asian culture. Papeete, on the island of Tahiti, is the capital.

This ancient Polynesian kingdom is one of the world's few remaining constitutional monarchies, ruled by King Taufa'ahau IV. Only 37 of Tonga's islands are inhabited. The main island is Tongatapu in the south, home to the capital of Nuku'alofa and the Royal Palace. To the north lies the Ha'apai group, a chain of atolls surrounded by turquoise waters, and further north is the Vava'u group, with its lush tropical landscape. Vava'u is one of the best places in the world to see humpback whales.

This chain of nine low-lying coral atolls is the world's second smallest country with a total land area of just 26 sq km. These islands are quite unique in that there are no mountains, waterfalls or natural streams. Formerly known as the Ellice Islands, Tuvalu was granted independence from Kiribati (the former Gilbert Islands) in 1975, and is now a constitutional monarchy. The capital is the atoll of Funafuti, which is home to almost half of the country's population.

Previously known as the New Hebrides, the 83 islands that make up Vanuatu offer diverse scenic attractions from mountainous volcanic landscapes to white sand beaches and the magnificent deepwater harbour at Port Vila. The group’s capital, Port Vila, is located on the island of Efate, along with the international airport. The islands reflect the influence of both French and English colonists.