The Pacific Islands are considered to be one of the last frontiers for those in search of an island paradise. Among the Pacific Islands, visitors can choose from some of the most beautiful and unspoiled beaches, such as those in Palau, Hawaii, Fiji, and Samoa, to mention a few. Some of the best diving and water sports in the world can also be enjoyed at the 16 Pacific Island nations, which are made up of more than 20,000 islands.
Located in the Pacific Ocean, south of the Tropic of Cancer, east of Australia, and north of New Zealand, the Pacific Islands are generally divided into three groups: Polynesia, Melanesia, and Micronesia. Some of the best-known islands in the grouping include Hawaii, Samoa, Easter Island, French Polynesia (Tahiti and Bora Bora), New Guinea, Guam, Fiji, and Palau. There are of course lesser-known islands that are also well worth visiting, such as Tonga, Tuvalu, the Cook Islands, and Marianas. Although all these islands are part of the Pacific Islands, they each have their unique history and culture.
The main reason to visit the Pacific Islands is to unwind; simply enjoying the unspoiled beaches is a popular pastime. Otherwise, visitors can delve into the amazing marine life that surrounds the islands, and explore the unique local cultures. For those interested in diving but are not yet certified, the Pacific Islands is a perfect place to learn. The diving here is considered to be some of the best in the world! There are of course all kinds of other water sports to enjoy as well.
Visitors will find plenty of accommodations in the Pacific Islands. There is everything here, from upscale five-star resorts, to budget bungalow retreats. A popular destination for honeymooners, the Pacific Islands also boasts many resorts that cater to newly-weds and have special honeymoon deals. Resorts tend to fill up according to peak vacation times, such as summer and winter holidays. Those traveling during Christmas time especially should book ahead.
Many of the larger island nations have airports with direct flights to major Asian cities. Some of the smaller islands can only be reached by boat or seaplane, however, meaning that visitors will need to add the extra travel time to their schedules. Tahiti, in French Polynesia, is a very popular destination, with direct international flights from Los Angeles, Tokyo, Hawaii, New Zealand, and Chile via the Faa’a International Airport. Hawaii is one of the main tourist destinations among the Pacific Islands, and many international flight connections are available at Honolulu International Airport. Fiji also has direct international connections to Los Angeles, Sydney, Auckland, Hong Kong, and Seoul via Nadi International Airport.
The Pacific Islands differ significantly in size, from the largest island of New Guinea, to the smallest nation-state of Nauru. In general, most of the islands have limited public transportation options, and exploring is best on self-driving tours or by hiring a driver. Island roads tend to be narrow and small, so visitors should take care when motoring.
- Experience some of the most amazing dive sites and surfing in the world
- Take a helicopter ride over the volcanoes of Hawaii or the islands of Tahiti
- Learn sensual dancing in Tahiti or Hawaii
- Marvel at the snow-white sand and crystal blue waters around Palau and Bora Bora
- Buy Tahitian pearls for a special someone
- Play golf at the stunning golf courses dotted around Hawaii
- Snorkel and explore the unspoiled coral reefs