Micronesia. A republic consisting of many small islands
The Federated States of Micronesia , is a federal republic in the Pacific Ocean northeast of Papua New Guinea. It has a total land area of 702 square kilometers and is home to more than 100,000 people. Micronesia consists of four federal states, namely Yap, Chuuk, Kosrae, and Pohnpei, where the capital Palikir is located. It consists of hundreds of picturesque islands with beautiful beaches. In addition, there are monuments of recent and more distant history.
Interesting facts about Micronesia :
The first inhabitants of Micronesia were Micronesians, who settled here about 4,000 years ago . Although European and Asian powers have claimed the region since the 17th century, it is now a sovereign state in free communication with the United States;
Interesting facts about Micronesia:
The Federated Republic of Micronesia consists of 607 islands of the Caroline Archipelago , which are nearly 3,000 km apart . Most of them are of coral origin, but some were formed as a result of volcanic activity;
In the northwestern part of Micronesia is the lowest point on the Earth’s surface. This, of course, is the Mariana Trench , 10924 m deep;
Although the highest local mountain, Totolom, reaches 791 meters above sea level, most of the islands are flat. Because they extend only slightly above sea level, Micronesia is therefore threatened by flooding due to rising ocean levels.
When visiting Micronesia, it is worth visiting the largest island Pohnpei, which is also the most attractive for tourists. Besides exploring life in the capital Palikir and Colonia , there are great opportunities for diving. In its vicinity are the Ant and Paquin atolls , where beautiful underwater scenery can be admired. Pohnpei and the surrounding atolls also offer ideal conditions for a casual beach holiday.
The ruins of Nan Madol
Ruins of Nan Madol
On the island of Pohnpei are the ruins of the city of Nan Madol. It spreads out on 93 man-made islands connected by canals. Hence the name “Venice”. It was the center of the Sadelouer dynasty, which ruled from 500 to 1500. Today, however, there are “only” the remains of megalithic buildings, for which the remains have been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The island of Vaino
Veno , the largest city in the federal state of Micronesia . Veno, the capital of the Chuuk Archipelago , is home to 18,000 people , which is 13,000 more than the second most populous city of Kitty . The island also recalls the battles of World War II that took place in the area. The surrounding landscape can be seen, for example, from the lighthouse built by the Japanese, and there are cave formations, which were also widely used by the soldiers of the “Land of the Rising Sun”.
If you are interested in the theme of World War II, you should visit Tonovas, which is located near the island of Weno. It was the main base of the Japanese army in the area, which was called “Naku Shima”, that is, “Summer Island”. This period is also marked by a number of bunkers, trenches and other military buildings. Therefore, Tonovas is included in the United States National Register of Historic Places.
Kosrae is the southernmost island of Micronesia. There are many beautiful beaches, as well as cliffs, lagoons, and mangrove forests. The surrounding sea is also attractive to diving enthusiasts, as it is full of life. There are some remains of a historic settlement. You can visit some churches that are widely used by locals.
Yap is another one of the most often visited islands in the Federated States of Micronesia. Although divers come here again because of the crystal clear sea and wildlife lovers admire the local forests, Yap will also be of interest to tourists who like to get acquainted with different cultural traditions. Throughout the island are scattered small indigenous villages where you can observe the traditional way of life, including crafts and festivals.
Individual islands are oases of peace and quiet, so they are an ideal place for a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. There is also the chance to explore the undersea, wildlife, and historical sites for the more adventurous.
Micronesia. A republic consisting of many small islands
1. Micronesia is not only a Pacific region with many islands and islets, it is also a state.
2.This state is called the Federated States of Micronesia.
3.The country is in Oceania and is located in the Caroline Islands, north of the coast of New Guinea.
4. Micronesia is a nation of 607 islands, of which only 40 are large.
5. Because of its great geographic remoteness, it is not a popular tourist destination and remains little known.
6. The term “Micronesia” refers to “small islands”, and accurately reflects the essence of the country.
7.The total land area of Micronesia is only 702 square kilometers.
8.Only 65 of the country’s 607 islands are permanently inhabited.
9.Micronesia includes both volcanic islands and coral atolls.
10.The islands of volcanic origin are covered with dense forests, and in the center are usually more or less high mountains.
11. this country has all the prerequisites for tourism, but one problem complicates things: it takes a long and therefore very expensive flight to get here from almost anywhere.
12. Micronesia is in free association with the United States and depends on American subsidies.
13. 13. Micronesia has no currency of its own-the U.S. dollar is the currency of choice here.
14. Micronesia’s official language is English, but indigenous dialects such as Kosrae, Ponpei, Truk, and Japanese are far more common.
15. There are four stars on the Micronesian flag. They represent the four Micronesian states.
16. Micronesia’s climate is equatorial and subequatorial. Temperatures are around +27 C year round. Rainfall ranges from 2,250 mm to 3,000-6,000 mm (in the mountains on Kusape Island) per year. The wettest month is April.
Part of the Pacific Ocean, where Micronesia is located, is an area of typhoon origination (on average, there are up to 25 typhoons per year). The typhoon season is from August to December.
18. Kosra (Kosrae) Island is one of the least spoiled and least developed areas in Micronesia, a quiet and relaxed place that retains an aura of intactness.
19.This island has an area of 109 square kilometers and a volcanic interior with wild tropical forests, an ancient barrier reef and a beautiful coastline, which is formed by a combination of sandy shores and mangrove swamps.
20.People here are quite rare and completely unassuming and given that they have usually never had contact with more than a dozen visitors at a time, the islanders still show a friendly interest in tourists.
21.Kosra Island itself has completely unspoiled coral reefs close to shore, which are suitable for diving and easily accessible by boat. Underwater visibility here often exceeds 30 meters, and often more than 60 meters in the summer.
THE RUINS ON LELU ISLAND
22. The imposing ancient ruins on nearby Lelu Island date back to the 14th century, when Chief Kosra was the dominant regional ruler. Although the outskirts of the massive royal castle-city have been destroyed, the remaining ruins still give a sense of the power and majesty of the ancient city, which can only be realized after the hours-long journey through the dense jungle that it takes to do so.
23.Lelu Hill, the highest point of the island, has a cluster of caves and tunnels used by the Japanese during World War II.
24.The underwater cave Blue Hole (“Blue Hole”) in Lelu is inhabited by colonies of corals, scatatai and barracudas. To the south a good place to dive is Hiroshi Point, which is famous for its beautiful soft corals and a gathering place for hammerhead shark packs.
25.20 meters from the entrance to Lelu Harbor, an American reconnaissance plane lies at the bottom. Also nearby are two Japanese ships and several whaling ships sunk.
26. Vegetation here is represented mainly by pristine moist equatorial forests on the slopes of mountains. On volcanic islands it is much more diverse than on coral islands. The coasts of volcanic islands are often covered with mangroves.
On both types of islands, coconut, breadfruit, pandanus, and bananas grow. Europeans and Asians have introduced citrus, manioc, yams, various tropical fruit trees, chocolate tree, and black pepper.
28. The island of Pohnpei with its lush vegetation, jungle-covered mountain slopes and blooming hibiscus, best fits the typical image of a southern island, although the excessive humidity spoils the picture somewhat.
29.The main, and the largest island in Micronesia, it has an area of 334 square kilometers. It is an almost rectangular island framed by picturesque bays and narrow peninsulas. The shoreline of the island is mostly formed by tidal beaches and mangroves, but there are also many small islands with beautiful shores in the lagoon between the island itself and the surrounding reefs.
30.The main town of the island, Kolonia, a relatively large population center by island standards, still retains a colorful provincial character.
31.The small town of Palikir, only 8 kilometers away, is the capital of Micronesia.
32.Pohnpei’s airport and most of the island’s hotels and restaurants are in Colonia.
33.The ancient stone city of Nan Madol, lying on nearly 100 man-made islets off the southeast coast of Pohnpei, is the best archaeological site in Micronesia.
34.Nan Madol was built of colossal basalt blocks during the tyrannical Saudelaer dynasty, which reached its heyday in the 13th century.
35. Nan-Duwas is the largest, still standing, part of the city, whose outer walls reached 8 meters high and contained crypts on the inside. Although many of the temples, vaults and reservoirs of Nan Madol have been destroyed, the whole of this colossal semi-legendary city still has a great dramatic impact.
36.The most famous natural monument of Pohnpei is the picturesque Sohes Rock (180 meters), a basalt cliff that resembles a human face.
37. Terrestrial fauna is not very diverse. Bats, rats (brought in on the ships of the first Europeans), lizards live here.
38.But the ocean fauna is extremely diverse and rich with many species of fish, crustaceans, bivalves, dolphins, and sometimes whales and dugongs.
39. Micronesia has an unusual tradition of changing the name every New Year to confuse evil spirits.
40. The Fiji soccer team once beat the Micronesian team with a record score of 38-0.
ANCIENT MONEY ON THE ISLAND OF JAP.
41.One of the unique attractions of Micronesia are huge stones with a hole in the center, which were once used here as money. The bigger the stone, the more valuable it is. They were discovered on the island of Yap.
42.Some of these “coins” reach several meters in diameter and weigh two to three tons. The largest of them: 3 meters in diameter, half a meter thick and weighs four tons. When they were bought, they were not moved, but the name of the new owner was simply written on them. These stones are now a legacy of the Micronesian culture.
43. Micronesia does not actively trade with other countries because of its remoteness from them.
44. There is no criminal danger in Micronesia. It is no more dangerous than Andorra or Luxembourg.
45. Dangerous fauna are almost nonexistent in Micronesia.
ON THE ISLAND OF CHUUK.
46. Chuuk Island (formerly Truk) is very colorful, with a lively and rather “rough” coastline. Chuuk includes 15 main islands, 92 outer islands and more than 80 islets in the lagoon. Its biggest “trumps” are the sunken ships and airplanes of World War II.
47.All over the world know about the “underwater museum” of Chuuk – an entire Japanese fleet lies at the bottom of this lagoon, a testament to the greatest naval disaster in history. Each ship lies as it was caught in “death” – some upright, some completely undamaged, others only partially intact. Some of the transports are filled with weapons, trucks and fighter planes, the members of the crews also remain buried at sea.
48. Although the islands are firmly tied to U.S. economic and political interests, Micronesia stubbornly pursues its traditional path.
49.Micronesians are very proud of their past, especially as they have every right to be – their ancestors crossed the Pacific Ocean in a flimsy canoe long before Europeans entered these waters.
50. The main ingredients of the local cuisine are sweet potato “yams”, breadfruit and coconuts. Meat dishes are mostly cooked with pork, but more popular are dishes with seafood – all kinds of fish, crabs and shellfish. The locals drink freshly squeezed lemon juice and water.
51.This is a land of unexplored paths for mass tourists – Europeans rarely get here because of the inaccessibility of these paradisiacal islands, and in vain.
52. The islands have some of the best conditions in the world for diving, snorkeling and surfing, and are seen as a potential international center for beach vacations and water sports.
CORALS IN THE WATERS AROUND THE ISLANDS OF MICRONESIA
53.The waters around the islands are saturated with many forms of exciting marine life. There are numerous species of hard and soft corals, anemones, sponges, fish, dolphins, and clams, including the giant tridacna clam. Large herds of whales pass through these waters each year.
54.Several varieties of sea turtle lay eggs on these shores, and islanders are allowed to use both turtle meat and eggs for food. The islands are also home to more than 200 varieties of seabirds.
55. Yap Island is the land of giant stone money, the most traditional area in Micronesia. Yap consists of four islands, Yap, Tomil Gagil, Map, and Rumung. Unlike the other “high” islands in the country, which are volcanic in origin, Yap was formed by the uplift of a section of the Asian continental shelf. Hence the peculiar landscape of the island – more hilly terrain and plains than mountains and valleys.
56.Of the 134 outer islands, many are just tiny pieces of coral and sand shore barely rising above the surface of the water. The island communities are connected by old stone walkways (some estimated by scholars to be several centuries old), and the village buildings are still built in the elaborate traditional style of wood, straw, rope, and bamboo.
57.This is a society with a pronounced caste system, where village elders and chiefs still have so much influence that they easily challenge the decisions of elected officials, and stone money is still used for some traditional operations.
ON THE ISLAND OF PONPEI.
58. There are 240 kilometers of roads in Micronesia. 42 kilometers of them are paved.
59.Each of the 4 urban centers has an international airport capable of receiving medium-range planes and a deep-water port accessible to ocean-going vessels.
60. No visa is required for tourist trips of up to 30 days to Micronesia. And, the 30-day period starts counting again each time a tourist moves to another island group.