Located on the island of Guadalcanal, Honiara was built on land that saw some of the bloodiest battles of WWII. Now the capital and base of tourism to the beautiful Solomon Islands, this city offers something to satisfy the desires of history junkies, nature lovers, shoppers, and everyone in between. Spend your days picking up crafts at the outdoor markets or exploring the Botanical Garden's orchid collection, and your nights eating coconut crab and playing Pacific Poker, two local specialties.
Restaurants in Honiara
4 based on 79 reviews
Two popular dive sites off the coast of Honiara.
This the site of our obligatory shakedown dive before we tackle the deeper wrecks at offer in and around Honiara and Tulagi.The water is usually warm and clear if there's been little rain.The first wreck partially sits out,whilst the second wreck starts just below the surface and on this trip bottomed out at 55mtrs.The beach has couple of benches,a bit of shade and was busy on the Saturday we were there.Please take your rubbish with you.Snokelling both wrecks is easy up high.
4.5 based on 41 reviews
I've only done one daily trip with Tulagi Dive so this review will only focus on one experience.
The shop is well-equiped, tanks and gear are well taken care of (although I just hired a tank as I had my gear, you could see their gear was rinced and kept in good shape). The manager is very friendly and keen to explain the trip he is planning for your day.
Compared to other dive clubs I've been to around the globe, price is expensive (both compared to the local life and to what is "sold"): 1600 SBD for a daily trip (2 dives) including only the tank, boat trip and meal at a local hotel. If you need to hire some gear I think it's only 100 SBD extra (I would have expected a bigger difference).
The boat is basic, and can fit 6-8 persons. More and it's way too crowded. Don't expect comfortable spots, but it does the job.
If you're looking for wreck diving you'll be served. However such dives come at a price: divers must really be aware of their surroundings and master their own buoyancy... which is not the case for everyone. My 2 dives were polluted by divers that heavily made use of their fins around the wrecks and sand bottom, causing clouds of rust particules and sand. In my opinion this is something that should be *really* emphasized by the staff, and unfortunately it wasn't. You have to wait long minutes before this cloud settles down (and it won't completely...)
The real deal-breaker comes with the dive time: no more than 30 minutes due to ~30m depth with divers who are not experienced enough to adapt their depth to their air consumption. Add that to dust clouds they create, and your dive loses most of its interest.
In summary, dives could be amazing, but unfortunately you don't control who you're diving with and the briefing should emphasize these aspects. Too expensive for what's delivered.
Also, minus one point for the staff throwing cigarets butts to the sea. This is really a shame.
4 based on 38 reviews
3.5 based on 72 reviews
Its always interesting to have a look around the markets but this market is fairly basic in terms of not only what is there (very largely vegetables and fish) and treat the smells and sounds that go with it as part of the experience. You should go.
4 based on 38 reviews
There are not a lot of tourists in Guadalcanal. So the few that there are spread out and you hardly ever see anyone. The same can be said for this beach. Although it is hyped, there is often no one there. There are also no facilities. No shower, no food, no umbrellas. But it is a nice spot to relax.
3.5 based on 39 reviews
5 based on 9 reviews
When you think the Solomon's, you must include island hopping into the trip. If your not into diving or travelling like a local there's limited options available. We found a local operator (an Aussie) who provided our personal needs of a day trip snorkelling, fishing and island hopping, the outer island are fantastic and lunch in our remote location was unbelievable.
The trip home provided the opportunity to catch some fish and I wasn't disappointed with the outcome. A great day you wont forget or spend a fortune doing it. I will be back.
Thanks Henk [email protected]
spend time looking around Honiara's local land attractions before and after, if staying on an outer island, ensure your near the airport on departure day, as smaller Islands are around 2 hours away by boat (weather permitting).There's the market, museum and business district of interesting stores and friendly locals, we grabbed a taxi (our choice for regional land travel) for an interesting trip to the slightly neglected botanical Gardens, the Japanese & American memorials, the towns back streets and a beach side village to see how the locals live. Ask for some advice at the tourist information near the Mendana Hotel.
Honiara is not over run with tourist so you will definitely get the local prospective of the place, but its on the move with numerous accommodation and major building developments under construction so the tourist boom is not far away.
Expect to pay similar price for food and accommodation comparable with Australia, you definitely only get what you pay for, so spend the money if you want it fancy.
4 based on 16 reviews
Be prepared for a one hour each way walk that can at times be testing. The scenery is great, the falls themselves really good. What is the problem is the haggling over the custom fee when you arrive (whites are double that of locals) and your guide will be intoxicated on solbrew and betel nut before you start.
4 based on 6 reviews
Any visitor to Honiara should visit a church to hear the wonderful unaccompanied singing in harmony.
St Barnabas has a capacity of 3000, and it is full for two services every Sunday. Visitors are incited to join the congregation for tea afterwards in the hall. If you ate fortunate enough to encounter a celebration, you will be treated to traditional dancing and other musical treats.
5 based on 3 reviews
Imperial Travel Service Solomon Islands is a locally owned land transport service. We aim to provide quality meet and greet services, transfers and tours for all of our customers. We are a popular choice among overseas clients, regional eco tourists and we work closely with many International Organisations that operate in the Solomon Islands. We strongly encourage our neighbours and local business.
We exclusively use Imperial Travel Services to organise transport and logistics for our regular birdwatching and wildlife spotting expeditions on Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands. The staff are friendly, professional, and always on time. Having local agents on the ground is an immense help to our tours, and we have never been let down, whether we urgently need a 4WD to pick us up at 4am the next day, or have the regular van meet us at the airport with our luggage ready for a rescheduled flight. We have come to rely on Imperial Travel, and always look forward to greeting them again whenever we return to the happy isles!
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