Journeying in Tuvalu: Discovering Uncharted Paradise - Travel

Being one of the countries least visited in the world, Tuvalu will definitely make a mark as an extraordinary experience for first time visitors.

Tuvalu is one of the smallest and most secluded places in the world. It is located west of the international date line and 1000 kilometers north of Fiji in the central Pacific. 

There are six atolls (or ring shaped coral reefs, islands, or islets) and three islands that make up Tuvalu, totalling 25 square kilometers in land area, curving northwest to southeast in a 676 kilometer-long chain on the outer western edge of Polynesia.

Aside from the ocean and atolls, lagoons, coral reefs, and small islands will surely fill its tourists’ itineraries with a premier South Seas escapade.

Tuvalu‘s official website, which is managed by the country’s government as well as its tourism, foreign affairs, environment, labor, and trade arms, says that Tuvalu offers a peaceful and non-commercialized environment that is ideal for rest and relaxation. 

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To do’s in Tuvalu

Tourists are recommended to visit the Funafuti Marine Conservation area, which is on the western side of the Funafuti atoll. It is home to many species of fish, corals, algae, and other marine life, and serves as a nesting site for the endangered green sea turtle.

A green sea turtle swimming in Tuvaluan waters
A green sea turtle swimming in Tuvaluan waters/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

The Tuvalu Philatelic Bureau is located at the southern end of Funafuti, where collectible stamps can be found here. These, which consist of original designs, are popular due to the creation of the bureau when the country was separated from the Gilbert and Ellice islands in 1975. 

Collectors from more than 60 countries have eagerly sought new issues of the country’s stamps.

Original unique stamps of Tuvalu
Original unique stamps of Tuvalu/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

The local women of Tuvalu’s Women’s Handicraft Center handcrafts keepsakes and other items such as fans, mats, baskets, necklaces, woodcarvings, fish hooks, and many more. Small handicraft stalls are located outside the airport and each of the outer islands.

Handcrafted jewellery with shells
Handcrafted jewellery with shells/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

Tuvalu has a mangrove plantation found in the Nanumea atoll. Mangroves are an essential resource in the country as they boost local fisheries, provide material for handicrafts and firewood, and protect the islands from tidal and storm surge.

Mangroves planted in Tuvalu's Nanumea atoll
Mangroves planted in Tuvalu’s Nanumea atoll/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

Tourists can also have the ultimate island experience by booking the Afelita day tour. It starts with a 10-minute boat ride from Funafuti and you can have the whole island to yourself, along with a chef who cooks fresh and authentic Tuvalu cuisine.

Water activities

Tuvalu is an ideal site for diving and snorkeling. Clear blue waters surround the small country. The hotels surrounding the area would be happy to assist with equipment rentals and would direct tourists to the best places to maximize your time exploring the waters. 

Chartering a yacht is also a favorable activity in Tuvalu. You can just sit back, relax, and enjoy a picturesque view of all the islands while aboard the rented yacht. Neverland Yacht Charter is one of the companies who can organize excursions around the area. The company can also accommodate boating activities and sport fishing inquiries.

A tourist enjoying a yacht excursion
A tourist enjoying a yacht excursion/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

Tuvaluan Culture

Island visitors can also head to the nearest Maneapa or local town hall to immerse in Tuvaluan culture. Performed there are traditional and cultural ceremonies and dances. Surrounding accommodations can direct you to the town halls and let you know of any upcoming events. 

There are also two nightclubs on the island that are open to the public on Saturdays. The “Matagigali” bar and “Tefota” are the ones to look out for if you want to experience island dances and their music.

The locals performing a cultural dance
The locals performing a cultural dance/Photo via Timeless Tuvalu

Once you find yourself in Tuvalu, always remember to admire the scenic spots and being present in the moment. The luxury of being in uncharted waters is second to none, and will truly be one for the books.

An aerial shot of Tuvalu
An aerial shot of Tuvalu/Photo via Instagram @michael_from_berlin

Flights to Tuvalu are provided for by Fiji Airways, which operates one flight per week to the remote island. 

You can find Tuvalu’s travel information here before setting it as your next dream getaway!

Banner photo via timelesstuvalu.com.

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