Republic of the Marshall Islands
The Republic of the Marshall Islands is a state in the Pacific Ocean in free association with the United States of America. The Islands share its water borders with Kiribati, Micronesia, and the Mariana Islands. The Republic is situated on the 5 islands which formed 29 atolls. The capital city is Majuro.
The climate on the islands is tropical, but closer to the south, it is sub-equatorial. From May to November is a wet season on the islands. In October, cyclones and storms often occur. The touristic season is from May to October.
The majority of the population are the Micronesians. The official languages are Marshall and English. The people on the islands practice Catholicism and Protestantism.
The Marshall Islands attract the tourists with its white beaches. The best are the Laura Beach on the Majuro Island, the beach on the Miles Island and Ailinglaplap Island.
The Kalalin Strait offers a unique underwater world. The coast of the Arno Atoll attract the lovers of diving and snorkelling. Those who want to see the Naval Cemetery with the sunken ships of the Second World War dive near the Rongelap Atoll. The surfers enjoy the waves of Marshall Islands.
The out-of-town tourism is well-developed on the Bikar Island and Tanguy Island, where the tourists can visit the reserves.
There are not many city entertainments on the Marshall Islands. The most attractive city is Majuro but the lovers of shopping will be disappointed. Visit the Laura Village to see the people who still live in woven huts.
On the Maloelap Island, the tourists can see the Monument to the Victims of Typhoon and the Majuro Memorial Peace Park, the Canoe House Museum and the Ocean Reef and Aquarium Marine Farm.
The tourists who want to travel to the Marshall Islands should be ready for a long and difficult journey.
There are no direct flights from the CIS and EU countries to Majuro. The European citizens can take a transit flight with a transfer in Australia offered by Air France and Austrian Airlines.
The citizens of Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus will have to choose a flight with several transfers. At first, they should fly to Singapore, Hong Kong or New Delhi and then fly to Australia, Fiji or New Zealand. The local airlines can take you further to the Marshall Islands.
The Russians can get from Moscow to Los Angeles (USA) and then take a flight to Majuro through Hawaii or Honolulu.
The atolls of the Marshall Islands welcome the international cruise ships.
The EU and CIS citizens must obtain a visa to travel to the Marshall Islands. The Europeans should apply to the US Embassy. The CIS citizens must send an online application to the visa centre in Majuro.
On some atolls, there is US military equipment and will be not easy to get a visa. The tourists must apply to the US Embassy to get a permission.
The tourists from the USA, Canada and people who have valid visas of these countries will get a visa without any problems.
Before travelling to the Marshall Islands, learn about the restrictions concerning the import and export of goods.
At the Customs, each tourist must provide yellow fever and cholera vaccination certificate.
The tourists can import the following goods duty-free:
- personal belongings, perfume, and eau de toilette (150 ml);
- tobacco and alcohol.
The following things must be declared:
- sums of money exceeding 5.000 US dollars;
- golden jewellery.
It is prohibited to export:
- any perishables;
- pets without a special permission of the vet service.
The tourists are not allowed to export from the Marshall Islands:
- plants and seeds;
- corals and other marine species;
- items having a cultural value.
Due to the remoteness of the Marshall Islands the traditional cuisine is very specific and unique. The staple food here is fish, seafood, and sea weeds, coconuts, bread fruit, and screw pine.
Traditionally, meat dishes are prepared in the earth ovens Lovo. The tourists should try roasted pork and fish with vegetables. The game is typically served with bread fruit. You will enjoy the taste of Jakart (roasted chicken with bananas) and Limas (beans roasted over the charcoal with beef blood sausage).
The locals love fish and seafood. Traditionally, they bake fish and crawfish in banana leaves.
If you crave for more exotic dishes, choose a rich and substantial soup Agras with shark meat and a soup with codfish and sea weed. On the Islands, you will be offered salads with crawfish, sea cucumbers and clams dressed with a pumpkin sauce.
Reveal an unusual taste of the porridge from eggplants, coconut flesh, avocado, sweet potato, manioc and Paw-Paw.
Among the non-alcoholic drinks, the tourists will be offered fruit juices and sweet coconut milk. As for low alcoholic drinks, try fermented coconut water and palm juice.
Those who have a sweet tooth can treat themselves to bananas baked with sugar, coconuts, and various fruits. The locals love Cassava baked with coconut water most of all.
The official currency of the Marshall Islands is the US Dollar.
The tourists can exchange the currency at the airport or at banks in Majuro, Eibe, and Kwajalein.
The traveller’s checks are accepted only at banks.
At banks, the tourists can withdraw the money from their card accounts (Visa, MasterCard, and American Express).
It is not common to leave the tips in cafes or taxis.
The people on the Marshall Islands are friendly towards the foreigners. The criminal level is very low here.
Details of interest
The military forces of the USA tested the nuclear on the Bikini Atoll and on the Kwajalein island, there were nuclear warheads. We recommend you against visiting these places to avoid the radiation.
Running water on the Marshall Islands is of a very bad quality, so we recommend using the bottled water for drinking and personal hygiene.
Sightseeing on the Marshall Islands
In the Republic of the Marshall Islands, there is one UNESCO site, but it is not open to visits by the tourists. This is the Bikini Atoll Nuclear Test Site. There are three UNESCO candidate sites on the Islands.
- The tourists can visit the Northern Marshall Islands Atolls (Ailinginae, Bokak, Bikar, Rongerik, Taka, Erikub and Jemo).
- On the Likiep Atoll, the tourists can visit the Likiep Village Historic District.
- Visit the Nadrikdrik and Mili Atoll Nature Conservancy on the Knox and Mili Atolls.
Interesting excursion tours are arranged for the tourists on the Marshall Islands:
- The lagoon of the Bikini Atoll was a cemetery of ships and a place for test the nuclear. Today this place is popular among the divers.
- On the Majuro Atoll, the tourists can visit the Laura Village, the Alele Museum, and the Laura Beach Park.
- On all the atolls of the Marshall Islands, sports or underwater fishing can be arranged. The tourists can catch wahoo, sail fish, shark, tuna, and coral trout. The lovers of underwater fishing will see red bass, sea bass, sun fish, and swordfish. From July to August, the Cup of the President fishing competitions takes place.
- On the Rongelap and Arno atolls, the tourist can enjoy diving and snorkelling. Those who prefer extreme tourism can dive in the places of habitat of reef sharks and rays.
- Anyone can rent a boat and take a trip to the reserves on the Tanguy Island and Bikar Island.
Souvenirs on the Marshall Islands
On the Marshall Islands, the tourists buy unusual sea shells, souvenir corals, stuffed fish, and dry sea stars.
The local craftsmen can make textile from palm leaves and coconut fibres. The tourists can also buy clothes made of such textile.
An unusual souvenir is a sea map made of twigs and knots.