Located in the northwestern region of Oceania, Micronesia is region packed with spell bounding beauty defined by its four archipelagos namely: the Federated States of Micronesia (Caroline Islands), the Republic of Marshall Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands and the Republic of Palau. Overcoming the shadows of wars and political turbulence, the region is today known for its cultural heritage and traditions, dramatic tropical nature and unbeatable natural beauty.
Rich culture and past. Pristine beaches. Steaming volcano peaks. Coral reefs and remarkable marine life. Diverse wildlife. Natural beauty. Water sports.
What's Not So Great?
Expensive. Mosquito based diseases.
Cultural and history buffs. Nature lovers. Those who love adventurous sports. Marine life and wildlife enthusiasts.
Details of Micronesia
About places in Micronesia
Micronesia comprising of the Federated States of Micronesia (Caroline Islands), the Republic of Marshall Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands and the Republic of Palau is wholesome package offering its visitors unforgettable experiences. The Federated States of Micronesia made up of over 600 islands is recognized for its palm-shaped beaches, temples, ancient remnants and wonderful dives. Marshall Islands, the next group of atolls and reefs along with the island Nauru are natural wonders. The Northern Mariana Islands offers an amazing opportunity for its visitors in form of scuba diving and snorkelling amid reefs and wrecks. Palau is a remarkable island nation known for its lake packed with jellyfish in Rock Islands. Make sure to indulge in activities such as scuba diving, swimming, and fishing, sailing, hiking, and exploring the historic sites of WWII.
Stay Option in Micronesia
Accommodation options through the Micronesia is quite varied depending upon the island you are planning to visit. Overall, one will find wide range of hotels and resorts to rustic accommodations and even the camping facilities. The guesthouses are also available along with an option of home stays. Small islands such as Kosrae houses six hotels with 60 rooms whereas Palau offers a wide range of luxury hotels, budget bungalows, motels and resorts despite being small in size.
Food in Micronesia
The diet in the Micronesian region is quite similar throughout. However, one will find some local differences owing to climate patterns and geographic features. Taro root, breadfruit, coconuts, potato, and yams are the basic food items found in most households throughout the region. Fish and pork are the main proteins used in cooking. Corn, sweet potatoes and manioc (cassava) are food items introduced by Europeans. Finadene and Tinaktak are popular dishes of the region.
Other cuisines including American, Korean, Japanese, Chinese and Marianas are favoured by youngsters. A lot of variety of fresh fruits are available in the region and are frequently used in delicacies. Sakau is the popular local drink in some part of the region.
Culture, Religion & Language of Micronesia
Music is given a lot of importance in the Micronesian culture, which is mostly based around mythology and very old Micronesian rituals. The music here is mostly vocal and shell trumpet and the nose flute being the most common instruments used in the region.
Christianity is the dominant religion in the region with most of the people converted to either Catholicism or Protestant faiths. Traditional religion in this local culture involves the worshipping of ghosts and ancestors. Chanting and offerings to patron spirits are also part of the belief.
English is the official language of the region whereas eight indigenous languages are also spoken in Micronesia including Yapese, Ulithian, Woleaians, Chuukese, Pohnpeiana, Kosraeans, Nukuoro, and Kapingamarangi. Japanese is also common language in the region among many elderly people.
Tips for visiting Micronesia
Carry your sunglasses, hat, sunscreen, sunhat, flip-flops, swimwear, and light summer clothes during summer season, as it gets hot during the season.
Do not touch, grab or stand on corals as they are alive and can be easily damaged. Also, collecting corals, shells, or other sea creatures is illegal.
Make sure to follow the guidelines while indulging in water related activities and avoid damaging the fragile ecosystem.
Carry mosquito repellent, especially for the outer islands. Make sure to carry the prescribed medicines and first aid kit.
Shopping in Micronesia
Handicrafts are one of the specialities of the people of Micronesian region producing some of the most beautiful works. Each island has its own unique forte for instance while in Federated States of Micronesia check out colourful grass skirts, woven baby cradles, betel nut pouches, lava-lavas woven from hibiscus bark and stone money along with products made from fresh coconut whereas Mariana Islands is known for its wishing dolls, coconut masks, coconut-crab decorations and woodcarvings. Buy kili handbags, stick charts, plaited floor mats, purses, fans, baskets and shell necklaces from Marshall Island while Palau is famous for its jewellery, storyboard, carved sculptures, hats, woven mats, purses, etchings and baskets and other local crafts.
Festivals in Micronesia
Micronesian festivals and events are mostly unique to each island country with their own traditions. Yap Day Festival on the Yap Island is one of the most famous events of the region. The festivals in the region are celebrated with great zeal, dance and music. Constituting Day, United Nations Day, and Liberation day are some of the other major festivals celebrated in the region.
Hygiene in Micronesia
Hospitals and medical facilities in almost all the main towns of the islands are quite good. However, the facilities may ask for the fee in cash. The Northern Mariana Islands houses modern hospitals in Saipan. The healthcare facilities in Palau are centralized on the main island of Koror. Health insurance is highly recommended to the travellers to the region.
Water is mostly chlorinated but safe for drinking, however, outside the major towns it is advised to stick to bottled water and take care of sanitation. It is also recommended to take vaccinations against tuberculosis and Hepatitis B.
Customs of Micronesia
People of the Micronesian region are warm-hearted and are known for their warm hospitality. Public display of affection is frown upon and there are roles division in accordance to the gender.
Casual attire is usual form of dressing in the region; however, avoid swimsuits and shorts in the villages. Also, make sure your attire cover your knees and shoulder; it goes for both men and women.
Tips are not expected or encouraged in the region but are appreciated, especially at restaurants.