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Solomon Islands Tourist Guide

Solomon Islands

Cruising around on a live-aboard dive boat is possibly the best way to experience the South Pacific Solomon Islands. The seas around the Solomon Islands have wonderful dive sites and scuba diving is developing as one of the country's main tourism offerings. Diving in Solomon Islands is spectacular. Brilliant soft and hard corals, huge sea fans and a world of pelagic species as well as many unidentified species of reef fish, make diving in Solomon's an adventure you won't forget. Add to this the thrill of a WWII wreck diving and you have the perfect diving holiday for everyone. Not only do you get some brilliant diving, you visit island villages and historic sites related to World War II and the first campaign by allied forces in the South Pacific against Japanese occupiers.

Made up of almost one thousand islands in the South Pacific to the east of Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands were a British protectorate and became an independent state in the 1970s. The country saw bitter fighting in the Second World War, notably the Battle of Guadalcanal, but it remains one of the few countries in the world with no standing military forces of its own.

The country is as yet under-developed economically and the culture is largely traditional. Ancient customs are still practiced in small villages. Wood carving and sea shell accessories are the main craft industries. Finely crafted sea shell money can be bought as souvenirs - it is still used as currency in traditional ceremonies. Much of the country is covered by rain forest and has rich fertile volcanic soil. The mountains have stunning waterfalls and there are beaches near the capital city, Honiara.

A thrilling excursion is a walk from Honiara to the Mataniko falls and water cave. The initial climb is steep but the view is wonderful. The water cascades into a cave lined with stalactites and you can spend some time exploring if you don't mind getting wet. The usual way back to town is floating down the river on a raft or inflated tyre!

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