Destination Guide

The Travel Well Guide

Tarawa

City: N/A       State: N/A       Country: Kiribati
Tarawa is an atoll in the central Pacific Ocean, previously the capital of the former British colony of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands. It is the location of the capital of the Republic of Kiribati, South Tarawa. The island is known by outsiders as being the site of the Battle of Tarawa during World War II. Tourist development and infrastructure are minimal, so for people who really want to get away from it all, it is a must. The capital, Bairiki is in the south and there is a small resort on Buariki in the north. The islets are sparsely inhabited and low lying. As the volcano below them erodes, the corals grow to maintain their position at just the right height below the surface, but several of them have already been submerged by rising seas, and others are predicted to be lost the same way within just a few years. The reefs are topped by sandy beaches and the lagoon is edged by palm trees, making this quiet place, where the only sounds may be the surf crashing against the coral and the calls of seabirds, ideal for relaxing. The island's reefs have a wide variety of different species of coral and pretty shoals of colourful fish. Divers may see rays, snapper, clams or black-tipped shark and bonefish. If lucky, they may catch sight of a wary octopus squeezing itself into a crevice. This undeveloped and beautiful atoll is a very special place.

Climate | When to Visit

Visit during: January to December

Directions | How to Reach

By air from Sydney, Brisbane, Auckland or Wellington.

miscellaneous | Important Information

Several of the islets have already succumbed to rising sea levels.

Travel More. Live More | Xplore

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