Best & Fun Things To Do + Places To Visit In Kiribati. #Top Attractions

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Kiribati offers a lot to its visitors! Look at our recommended travel activities and attractions in Kiribati to get the most out of your time there. Check out the list of the best things to do in Kiribati and places to go in Kiribati below. We at Wondrous Drifter, a Web 3.0 travel startup, have big plans to shake things up in the travel business.

Abaiang Island

Abaiang Island, Kiribati
Abaiang Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Observe the first-ever tall structure constructed in Kiribati.

A coral island belonging to Kiribati, Abaiang Island is located in the Gilbert Islands and has a total land area of 17.48 km2.

Abaiang is an island in the western-central part of the Pacific Ocean. It is also referred to as Apia, Apaiang, and was formerly referred to as Charlotte Island.

The name Abaiang comes from a traditional phrase that translates to “land in the North.”

It is known throughout the nation as the most comfortable island.

The magnificent Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church can be found on the island of Abaiang. It is one of the oldest and tallest churches in the country of Kiribati.

Teirio, Nanikirata, Nuotaea, Ribona, Twin Tree, and Iku are the names of the islets that make up Abaiang.

Hiram Bingham II, the first missionary to arrive in Kiribati, made his home in Abaiang once he arrived in Kiribati.

Tuarabu is the principal settlement as well as the administrative center, and it is from here that copra is exported.

You can go there to enjoy the tasty fish and to take in the natural beauty that surrounds you.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Abemama Island

Abenama Island, Kiribati
Abemama Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Discover the island’s deep cultural traditions and historical landmarks.

Atoll Abemama (Apamama) is located 152 kilometers southeast of Tarawa and slightly north of the Equator in the Gilbert Islands of Kiribati.

The meaning of the island’s name Abemama is “land of the bright moon.”

Snorkeling and swimming in the lagoons are enjoyable activities that may be enjoyed on the island of Abemama.

You must participate in an oral history of Abemama while you are on the island. 

This will allow you to have a better understanding of the island’s traditional practices as well as its historical landmarks and locations.

The reign of the royal dynasty is considered to be the beginning of its cultural history. 

In addition, the well-known author Robert Louis Stevenson once called this island his home and lived here close to King Binoka.

Both Biike Islet and Abatiku Island are must-see destinations for their breathtaking scenery, which includes powdery white sand beaches and azure oceans.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Aranuka Island

Aranuka Island, Kiribati
Aranuka Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Be at the literal “center” of the world by visiting this place!

In the Gilbert Islands, you’ll find Aranuka, which is situated slightly above the equator.

According to the oral history of the Gilbert Islands, the island of Aranuka occupies the geographic center of the group.

The other populated islet, Takaeang, is located 7.68 miles (12.36 kilometers) west of Aranuka and forms the other half of the triangle shape.

There is only one road on Aranuka, and it is located on the side of the island that is adjacent to the lagoon.

However, there is a network of access roads and feeder roads that branch off of the main road and lead to all of the other areas of the island.

In general, these pathways are broad enough to handle bicycles and motorbikes, but they are not wide enough for large trucks.

Rhyzophora stylosa mangroves, formerly as tall as coconut palms, now serve as a breeding ground for birds. This is the only place in the world where you can find this species.

Aranuka, the island in the heart of Kiribati, is traditionally considered to have been the starting point for the development and separation of all of Kiribati’s islands.

Visitors can also enjoy swimming and snorkeling at the island’s uninhabited islets.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Beru Island

Beru Island, Kiribati
Beru Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Have you ever tried eating something unusual?

There is only one location in all of Kiribati known to contain the edible algae known as “te Bokaboka,” and that location is on the island of Beru.

These algae can be found on the southern part of Beru Island, specifically in the Taboiaki Village.

Beru Island is ranked as the seventh-largest island in all of Kiribati and can be found in the southern islands of the Gilbert group.

Taubukiniberu is the site of the island council as well as several other government agencies, including those dealing with agriculture, fishing, and the post office.

In addition, there are historical structures and sites in Beru that have been abandoned over the years.

These include two sites that were bombed during World War II, the home of a Cambridge graduate who lived in Rongongo during the 1900s, one of the oldest churches in Kiribati, and the residence of the Commissioner for the Southern Island during colonial times.

Have a one-of-a-kind experience on your visit to this island!

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Butaritari Island

Butaritari Island, Kiribati
Butaritari Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Explore the four unique species of mangrove that can only be found here!

Butaritari Atoll, also known as Makin Atoll, may be found toward the southernmost tip of the Gilbert Group, not far from Little Makin.

Butaritari was the original trading city of Kiribati and was home to resident traders from the 1800s up to the early 1900s, according to historical accounts. 

The Spanish explorer, Pedro Fernández Quirós, is credited with discovering it in 1606.

Butaritari was supposedly an underwater land that was plucked out of the ocean by one of the Kiribati mythological gods.

It was given the name “Butaritari,” which means “Scent of the sea,” after this event in the folklore of the Kiribati people.

The King’s Pond, sometimes referred to as “te nei ni man” in the immediate surrounding area, is one of the primary attractions of the sightseeing tour. 

At this old site, the ancient monarchs would place orders for a variety of fish to be prepared for them every day to eat.

The kings of Butaritari left this pond for future generations to enjoy as a legacy.

Take a look at the water inside the pond since it is seawater, and reef fish are living there. 

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Christmas Island

Christmas Island, Kiribati
Christmas Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Your eyes will be treated to the sight of the largest coral atoll in the world.

Kiritimati Island, also referred to as Christmas Island, is the biggest coral atoll in the world with a total land area of 388.4 square kilometers and can be found in the Gilbert Islands. 

These islands are not only the largest in the North Line but also hold the record for the most land area in all of Kiribati.

The atoll was given its name, “Christmas Island,” by Captain James Cook, who found it on the eve of the 24th of December in 1777 while he was on his third expedition to the Pacific.

It is a world-class site for fly fishing in salt water, and it is located in the South Pacific. 

Fishing is possible throughout the year, and it is famous for bone fishing and GT fishing.

The island serves as a sanctuary for 26 different species of birds, both tropical and terrestrial, and is home to the endemic “Christmas Island Warbler,” also referred to as the “Bokikokiko” by locals.

Be prepared to participate in the activities that the island has planned for tourists visiting the atoll, such as birdwatching, diving, surfing, and tours of the lagoon.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Copra Factory

Copra Factory, Kiribati
Copra Factory is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

See how Kiribati’s largest product export changes their economy!

Copra production is the only significant industry in Kiribati, and it is responsible for exporting products. Copra production involves the processing of the flesh of coconuts.

The collection of naturally occurring coconuts provides a source of income for residents of a significant number of Kiribati’s most remote islands. 

Once the coconut meat has been sun-dried, it is shipped to a facility in Betio for further processing.

The person in charge of the operation had his engineering education in New Zealand, and he used his skills in the process of designing the machinery that is today one of the most important sources of foreign money for the country.

The meat of the coconut is crushed up, the coconut oil is taken to be used in cosmetics, and the remaining powder is bagged for use as a feed for animals, which is very nutritious.

It’s a remarkable thing to see because it exhibits the creativity of the island’s people.

Address: Betio Village, Kiribati

Fanning Islands

Fanning Island, Kiribati
Fanning Islands is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

A lovely natural paradise awaits you where you may take in the breathtaking scenery.

Locally known as the Tabuaeran, this is one of Kiribati’s most popular tourist attractions as well.

There are several beaches to choose from on these lovely islands, so you may relax and unwind during your holiday.

The majority of these islands are yet to be discovered, and few people visit. Getting here is as simple as taking a boat or a seaplane.

There is a Game Wildlife Reserve on these islands, so birdwatching can be done in a quiet area on the beach.

The native birds of Kiribati are stunning, and you won’t want to miss out on the opportunity to capture them on camera.

Meet the locals in the villages, take in the island’s many shades of blue, relax in the open-air cottages, and take a ride on a fishing boat.

What more can you ask for? A lot of activities are waiting for you, so visit now!

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Giant’s Footprints

Giant's Footprints , Kiribati
Giant’s Footprints, Kiribati / Katie Birkwood / Flickr

Let your imagination run wild to see the surprise of this island!

It is a wonderful way to explore how people live in this long and narrow capital city to simply go among the densely packed traditionally built homes in Banraeba village, which is part of Tarawa.

Local folklore claims that giants’ footprints can be found in the rocks along the ocean’s rocky shore.

If you put some effort into it and use your imagination, you can almost make out the heel and toe imprints.

It is often held that the largest footprint belonged to “Tabuariki,” a legendary giant who, according to the stories told by the elderly residents of Tarawa, was born and raised on the island.

He was one of the first people to settle in the area, and tales of his adventures circulated frequently among the natives.

He was able to gather nuts from coconut trees without having to climb the trees, and he fished while moving about.

When planning your trip, make sure you include a stop here to see these unusual footprints.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Kiribati National Library and Archives

Kiribati National Library and Archives, Kiribati
Kiribati National Library and Archives is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

A good place to visit if you’re related to someone from the Gilbert Islands or just want to learn more about the islands’ history.

A product of the mid-century modernist movement, the National Archives building dates from that era’s development.

The library houses a variety of educational books and records that are relevant not only to Kiribati but also to the whole Pacific region. 

It’s still a useful tool for keeping track of and searching through all the data that has been gathered over the years.

On microfilms and antique ledgers are kept records that have been converted to computers.

In addition, you’ll discover a few novels here. It is bolstered by volunteer and missionary groups, therefore, there is a fair amount of foreign literature and historical works.

The structure itself is not particularly spectacular since South Tarawa does not have any architectural benefits, but the interior is beautiful and deserving of some photographs.

Find a treasure trove of information right here at the National Library and Archives of Kiribati.

Address: PO Box 6. City, Bairiki, Tarawa

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Kiribati Parliament Building

Kiribati Parliament Building, Kiribati
Kiribati Parliament Building is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Take a look at the stunning beauty of one of Kiribati’s stunning architectures!

Kiribati, which includes the Tarawa Atoll, is a sovereign state with its own government and administrative facilities.

The elected officials from all around the country make the long journey to Tarawa, which is located on an artificial island, three times a year to assemble in the building that serves as the parliament.

You can also take a short tour of the Parliament Building, which is a contemporary structure with canoe-shaped roofs, white walls, and a light blue front. 

This will allow you to gain additional knowledge regarding the building’s history as well as its architecture.

Getting into the buildings is restricted, so inquire at the security office about tour opportunities.

Look for signs and maps that provide useful information as you make your way around the building, and stop to take some pictures in front of the beautiful fountain.

Being in another sovereignty but still in the same country is a whole different level of experience!

Address: 922Q+3JC, Bairiki, Kiribati

Kuria Island

Kuria Island, Kiribati
Kuria Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

This will surely complete your visit to the Gilbert Islands.

Along with Abemama and Aranuka, Kuria is one of three islands that make up the Gilbert group’s central district.

It is composed of two islands, the mainland island of Kuria and the islet of Oneeke, which are linked to each other by a bridge.

When compared to the other islands in the country, Kuria is distinguished from them all by its very large breadth, which measures 4.26 kilometers from the lagoon to the ocean side of the mainland.

The major islet is made up of the settlements of Bouatoa, Buariki, Marenaua, Norauea, and Tabontebike.

A ten-meter bridge has replaced the ancient causeway that crossed the reef passage between Oneeke and the other two islets.

The major islet of Kuria is traversed by a gravel road that also goes around the island, while another gravel road goes around Oneeke. These allow access to the majority of the islets’ more interior regions.

Make the most of your time in Kiribati by getting to know this island!

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Maiana Island

Maiana Island, Kiribati
Maiana Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Hear out the local story of the island’s creation from the locals.

One of the atolls that make up the Central Gilbert Islands, Maiana, may be found in Kiribati.

The lagoon that surrounds the atoll is surrounded by a single island on its northern and eastern edges, while the western border is made up of numerous deserted islets and submerged reefs that encircle the lagoon.

The lagoon around the atoll is of moderate size, and there are a few small coral islets located at both the northern and southern extremities of the island. 

It was also the residence of the nation’s former leader, His Excellency President Anote Tong.

Maiana and the other islands in the Gilberts are said to have been formed according to a variety of myths and legends.

Samoan folklore says the tree of life, the “Te Kaintikuaba,” was carried northward by the spirits who dwelt in it, and this is a key part of Maiana culture.

The Gilbert Islands were formed by these spirits, along with Nareau the Wise.

You’ll find several shrines to old gods that have been preserved when you visit Maiana.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Marakei Island

Marakei Island, Kiribati
Marakei Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Another part of the Gilbert Archipelago where you will experience a different kind of holiday!

One of the Northern islands that make up the Gilbert archipelago, Marakei, is located 71.49 kilometers to the northwest of Tarawa and 39.53 kilometers to the northeast of Abaiang.

The island of Marakei is the only one in Kiribati that is round, with a total surface size of 14.13 square kilometers, it ranks as the fourteenth largest island in the Kiribati group.

What makes this island stand out is the fact that guests are required to travel around the island in a counterclockwise direction upon arrival.

The route around the island is 26 kilometers long, whereas the length of the island from the airport to the southern portion is 9.93 kilometers.

It is the widest in the village of Rawant towi, and the smallest in Temotu, on the island’s western shores.

Marakei is one of only two islands in Kiribati that is surrounded by water. Even though it’s saltwater and somewhat deep in places, the Marakei lagoon is not tidal.

The islands of Gilbert are worth visiting, so check out this one!

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Nikunau Island

Nikunau Island, Kiribati
Nikunau Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

The bigger the waves, the better the experience. Learn to ride the waves here!

There are no lagoons on any of the other southern-most islands in the Gilbert region, but Nikunau has several landlocked, hypersaline lagoons where milkfish are raised, making it unique.

The largest waves on the island may be found near the island’s runway at the island’s tip, where two tides collide, creating powerful tides and waves suitable for surfing.

Nikunau is the sixth-largest island in the country and one of the southernmost members of the Gilbert Group.

The island is divided into two portions, with Muribenua, Rungaata, Tabutoa, and Mwanriiki in the north and Nikumanu and Tabomatang in the south, connected by a short strip of land in the middle.

There is a wonderful view of the ocean from the guesthouse, as well as a gentle breeze to keep you cool in the summer.

Get a chance to stay at the Kiribati Uniting Church Guesthouse in Tabutoa Village, which is owned and administered by the church.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

Phoenix Island Protected Area

Phoenix Island Protected Area, Kiribati
Phoenix Island Protected Area is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Be amazed by the true wilderness of the oceans!

There is no greater natural wonder than the Phoenix Islands Protected Area, a vast tract of unspoiled mid-ocean environment that is the largest marine protected area in the Pacific and contains the majority of a significant number of uninhabited atolls in their original form almost entirely.

The Phoenix Islands Protected Area is home to a remarkable collection of large submerged volcanoes, all of which are thought to be extinct. 

These volcanoes rise directly from the expansive deep-sea floor at depths of more than 4,500 meters on average and more than 6,000 meters at their deepest point.

There are no fewer than 14 known seamounts, which are underwater mountains that do not reach the surface.

The reef islands and atolls are the coral reefs that cover eight additional volcanoes that are close to the surface.

The buried seamount landscape’s wide bathymetric range affords a diverse range of habitat types that are perfectly typical of the Pacific mid-ocean biota.

As a scuba diver’s dream destination that opens up to breathtaking coral gardens, it is an absolute must-see destination.

Address: Phoenix Island Protected Area, Pacific Ocean

Sacred Heart Cathedral

Sacred Heart Cathedral , Kiribati
Sacred Heart Cathedral, Kiribati / Will Fisher / Flickr

A Catholic Church without pews? Visit this unique one!

The Sacred Heart Cathedral is a place of worship that belongs to the Catholic church and can be found in South Tarawa, part of the island of Kiribati.

The cathedral is nothing more than a building designed in the Western style that is decorated with Catholic symbols.

The Sacred Heart Church, like all other churches in Kiribati, does not have pews. The locals like to sit on the Lino floors because they are more comfortable.

The high rafters, stained glass windows, and bright interior combine to create an environment that is warm and inviting.

Simply coming here to see the devotional practices of the locals is a rewarding experience in and of itself. The church is spacious, and it looks out over the lagoon.

The outside of the cathedral is equally stunning, with local features and the cathedral’s original bells.

Be enticed with their Church, not only by its uniqueness, and experience how the locals praise it in their most comfortable way!

Address: 82M4+3VG, Nanikai, Kiribati

Tabiteuea Island

Tabiteuea Island, Kiribati
Tabiteuea Island is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

What do you think about a place with no chiefs? Find out more on this island!

Tabiteuea, also known as Drummond’s Island, is an atoll that is located in the Gilbert Islands. It is located further south than the Tarawa Atoll.

Although the majority of the Gilbert Islands’ atolls correspond to local government regions that are managed by island councils, Tabiteuea, just like Tarawa, the largest of the Gilbert Islands’ atolls, is divided into two:

“Tabiteuea” means “land of no chiefs” in Gilbertese, and the island’s egalitarian heritage is reflected in its name.

During the late 1800s, a religious conflict erupted between the two islands when the inhabitants of Tabitiuea North converted to Christianity and, headed by a man named Kapu, invaded and conquered Tabitiuea South, which had remained faithful to its ancient religious practices.

Kourabi, a well-known warrior from Tabiteuea Island, is well-preserved and cared for by the residents of Buota.

Besides being a beautiful natural setting, the island’s rich historical past makes it an intriguing site to explore.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean


Tarawa, Kiribati
Tarawa is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

“Venice of the Pacific”

The atoll of Tarawa serves as the capital of Kiribati and is the second largest of the 16 islands that make up the Gilbert islands.

It takes the form of a boomerang and is made up of some islets that are connected.

Although the islands are mostly linked to one another by bridges, there are a few of them that could require you to take a boat to get to.

On the island of Bikenibeu, you’ll find many historically significant centers that present Kiribati’s history as well as the culture of the country.

The other areas of Tarawa have remnants of the conflicts that took place there during World War II.

In addition, you will have the opportunity to go reef fishing and to sail in the lagoons while on the island.

If you want to live among the locals and get an authentic feel for the island’s culture, the southern regions of Tarawa are where you should make your stay.

On the other hand, if you want to spend your holiday in an area that isn’t crowded with people, then the northern portions of Tarawa are the best option.

Address: Gilbert Islands, Pacific Ocean

World War II Battle Sights

World War II Battle Sights, Kiribati
World War II Battle Sights is one of the best places to go in Kiribati

Learn more about the bloodiest battles of World War II in the Pacific.

Tarawa’s occupation by the Japanese during World War II and its subsequent capture by American forces is widely regarded as the most significant event in the island’s history.

Although it had substantial walls made of reinforced concrete, this building was attacked and rendered useless during the battle; the damage can still be seen today.

It is possible to witness the remnants of the past, such as abandoned vessels, abandoned bunkers, and abandoned tanks. 

Scuba divers have a wealth of shipwrecks at their disposal while exploring the ocean floor.

In Betio, in front of the sports center, there is a monument that serves as a memorial to the American soldiers who died during the war.

A more peculiar feature is the equivalent Japanese memorial to their lost, which is discretely guarded by a fence and may only be viewed by making an appointment in advance.

You can see these by just walking or taking a bus trip around Tarawa, but it is strongly suggested that you go on a guided tour so that you don’t miss anything important!

Need more reasons to visit Kiribati? Hop over to reasons to visit Kiribati at least once in your lifetime here

Address: Betio Island, Tarawa, Kiribati


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