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Flights to Tuvalu
Tuvalu, formerly called the Ellice Islands, is a group of low-lying islands and atolls in the Pacific Ocean, located between Hawaii and Australia. The Polynesian island nation comprises of three reef islands and six true atolls. Tourism is not very significant in Tuvalu due to its remoteness and very limited international connections. Those who do come to Tuvalu are more often than not there for the ecotourism, and usually stay in the capital Funafuti. The other atolls can be reached by passenger-cargo ships that provide round-trip journeys to the outer islands every few weeks.
What to see & do
Funafuti Marine Conservation Area - The Funafuti Marine Conservation Area, also called the Kogatapu Conservation Area, encompasses 33 square kilometres of reef, lagoon, and islets on the western side of Funafuti. Established in 1999, the protected area was created for the purpose of conserving the marine and land based biodiversity within its boundaries. Some of the notable creatures that live in the protected area are coconut crab, tiger shark, oceanic whitetip shark, green sea turtle, hawksbill sea turtle, and leatherback sea turtle.
Nanumea Atoll - Nanumea is the northwesternmost atoll in Tuvalu, south of the Gilbert Islands. It features an unusual fresh-water pond and a large church. Nanumea suffered Japanese attacks during WWII, hence the plane wrecks and a wrecked cargo ship near the main settlement.
Te Ano - The national game in Tuvalu is te ano, or 'the ball'. The game is similar to volleyball; two teams line up facing each other and have to constantly hit the ball to keep it in the air for as long as possible.
Tuvalu Women's Handicraft Centre - Tuvalu Women's Handicraft Centre is located at the airport and is the best place to see local crafts. Purchase crafts as a remembrance or as souvenirs for the people back home. Other places to see beautiful local arts and crafts are the outer islands.
How to get around
Most of the islands of Tuvalu can only be reached by boat. Larger ships can only be accommodated in Funafuti and Nukufetau, and only the former has a real dock. Ships that need to go to the other islands must unload and load into a smaller boat. There are no car rental agencies nor organized car hire in Tuvalu. The most common means of land transport are motorcycles and mopeds. These can be rented on Funafati, on Fakaifou Side, for a daily rate. Rented motorcycles and mopeds are the most popular and most convenient way to explore the island. Other available options for getting around Fongafale are minibus and taxi service.
How to get there
The sole international airport in Tuvalu is Funafuti International Airport, located on Funafuti. The airport is used by Fiji Airways, which operates three flights a week between Funafuti and Suva (originating from Nadi). Another way to get to Tuvalu is by a merchant marine fleet, consisting of two passenger/cargo ships that operate between Funafuti and Suva, Fiji about three to four times a year.
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