Join YPT for an essential adventure for all country collectors. We visit three of the 10 least visited countries in the world, as well as the 15th least visited one: the Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, and the Solomon Islands. These destinations are all unique, beautiful and in vintage YPT style, very off the beaten track.
Our trip starts in the US pseudo-colony of the Marshall Islands, where we check out the capital before checking out the beautiful island of Eneko, which was linked to a fraudulent micronation in the 90’s.
After that, we head to Nauru where we will spend the next 5 days not only celebrating New Year, but exploring every last inch of the 3rd smallest country in the world. Nauru has recently been made famous by the Australian detention centre, and the continued presence of refugees and YPT get right to the heart of this, with us not only being guided by an asylum seeker but also getting lots of chances to discuss the contemporary situation with them. Nauru is at the heart of the migrant crisis, and our trip gives us a real understanding of it.
Following this, we’ll have two nights and three days in Kiribati, one of the most beautiful and interesting countries in the world. Something that is evident as soon as the plane makes its initial descent. Kiribati was one of the fiercest places for fighting during World War 2, and the shipwrecks, pillboxes, gun turrets, old hospitals and a whole host of other WW2 stuff making a great day tour, before we do a day on an island.
We then finish our trip at the 15th least visited country in the world – the Solomon Islands, which lies next to Papua New Guinea but is thankfully much safer. We stay at the Honiara Hotel, which has been visited by the Queen, Prince William, and Princess Kate. Here we enjoy a great day tour and some wreck diving.
These are some of the hardest to reach, and most untouched places in the world, with our group tour offering amazing savings on if you did it by yourself. There’s off the beaten track, and there’s doing New Year on the last visited country on the planet.
Visit all 11 Pacific island countries by joining our combo tour!
Arrival at your own leisure in Majuro, the capital of the US freely-associated state of the Marshall Islands! We will arrange for pickup to take you to the Marshall Islands Resort hotel.
Once all the group arrive we will have a quick orientation at 6pm before heading out for dinner.
We take the very short journey to the Tide Table Restaurant, a popular place with locals and expats alike for a dinner, drinks and a chance to make some new local friends and learn about life in the Marshall Islands.
Overnight at Marshall Islands Resort hotel.
Sunday 29th December – Nauru
Early start to go to Majuro airport for our flight from the Marshall Islands to country number two, and the world’s least visited nation: the Republic of Nauru, at 9.25am
Met at the airport by our guide for the next 4 days.
We check into the Menen Hotel, the main international hotel of Nauru.
We have lunch at the international restaurant at the hotel.
We head to Anibare Bay, which is where the best beaches are to make the most of this tropical island with swimming and beach time.
We go for dinner and drinks at The Bay restaurant, renowned as being the best restaurant in Nauru. This bar is also popular with the expat community, which will give us a chance to learn about what it is like to live in Nauru.
Overnight at Menen Hotel.
Monday 30th December – Nauru
Whilst Nauru is famous for being a country without a capital, it does have a capital village (where the airport is), and we head there to check out the parliament building, high court, and all the other little quirks that make Nauru a country.
Lunch at Od’n Aiwo Hotel.
We also know how important it is for people to buy fridge magnets, t-shirts and postcards, so we head the main gift shop and post office to deal with this.
During our time in Nauru we’ll meet plenty people who arrived as asylum seekers, who’ll be happy to answer any questions that you might have about how they arrived there, what life is like for them and what hopes and aspirations they have for the future.
Overnight at Menen Hotel.
Tuesday 31st December – Nauru
Get up relatively early and head out after breakfast to explore World War 2 relics in Yaren along with our local guide. Explore the remains of Japanese guns, bunkers and pillboxes left over from the Pacific Theatre of the war, and visit the Japanese prison which was used to lock up any non-compliant locals during the occupation.
We’ll have our local guide take us to some of the secret caves around the island, and tell us some of the scary stories about events that took place there in the relatively recent past.
We head to the fish and chips restaurant for locally-caught fish and a few beers for lunch.
After lunch, we grab our supplies and head to the Buada Lagoon: the only fresh water lagoon on the island, a beautiful place surrounded by palm trees, great photo opportunities, and a wonderful place for us to hang out.
After this, we explore the other side of the nation’s recent past by looking at the detention center at topside, as well as doing some serious urban exploration at the former phosphate ore processing plants of Nauru, and checking out the abandoned industry and shipwrecks at the port.
NEW YEAR’S EVE – Luckily the best party in town is held right at our own hotel, so we head down for dinner in the hotel and a few drinks in the disco, before heading poolside to join the eclectic mix of refugees, expats and locals to see in a very unique 2020 in style!
Overnight at Menen Hotel.
Wednesday 1st January 2020 – Nauru
After our busy New Year’s Eve, we start New Year’s Day in relaxed fashion with a late start, or for early risers a chance to explore the island at your own leisure.
Ever walked around a country? Ok, maybe you have, but have you ever done it in one day? Nauru is the only country in the world where it is genuinely possible to do this in a few hours! It’s about a 5 hour walk at a gentle pace. For those feeling slightly less energetic, we can arrange for scooter rental at an extra charge.
Following this, we give the walkers some time to rest, before heading out for Chinese food for lunch. Believe it, or not 8% of people in Nauru are Chinese, and that means great quality food.
At night we head to Od’n Aiwo Hotel, for dinner, drinks, pool, and maybe a bet on the pokeys!
Overnight at Menen Hotel.
Thursday 2nd January – Tarawa
Up early for the 5.15am one-hour flight from the world’s least-visited country to the third-least-visited – Kiribati, arriving at 6.30am. Kiribati was formerly the Gilbert and Elise Islands before it gained independence, with Tarawa the capital island chain/city.
Get picked up at the airport and transfer directly to Mary’s Motel to freshen up (as well as get some internet).
Lunch and check in at George Hotel.
Tarawa was where one of the bloodiest battles of WW2 occurred, so we meet our local guide and head out to explore the island’s WW2 past and see some of the many relics of the war such as coastal defence guns, bunkers, pillboxes, tanks and shipwrecks. If you like WW2 history, Kiribati is heaven. Most of the battle happened on Betio, which is the island on which our hotel is.
As well as checking out the WW2 stuff we get a chance to explore the villages that make up Tarawa, where we will see real Kiribati life almost unchanged for centuries. So few foreigners come here that you can expect the locals to be very friendly!
Dinner at Mary’s Motel followed by drinks at the one and only Fab Ace bar.
Overnight at George Hotel.
Friday 3rd January – Tarawa
After an early breakfast, we head off north to see the rest of Tarawa, including the Parliament complex.
We know postcards are still a big thing so on the way we will stop by the post office.
On the way, we stop by the culture centre, for a quick visit of what could be called the only museum of Kiribati, here some artefacts of Kiribati culture are exhibited such as a copra armor and a gruesome seashell sword (we don’t think it is very effective but certainly very painful)
We’ll get out our high-altitude oxygen masks to hike to the highest point on the island, a whopping three metres above sea level. We’ll also explore one of the local villages and meet the children playing in the rockpools made, according to local legend, by giants’ footprints.
We’ll take a canoe taxi, local-style, to one of the islands and sip drinks by the beach while our lunch of freshly-caught fish, chicken and vegetables cooked in coconut milk is prepared.
Those with strong stomachs can sample karewe – a local moonshine made by fermenting the sap of palm trees.
In the afternoon, we will be going for a stroll through the nearby villages and possibly visiting a clam farm, some of the clams here are half your size!
Boat and bus back to Tarawa.
Head out for a dinner and few drinks in a bar crawl of the cool local bars near our hotel in Tarawa; karaoke optional.
Overnight at George Hotel.
Saturday 4th January – Tawara
Today, we will be heading to another island of Kiribati
Here, we will have the opportunity to do some incredible snorkelling in areas left untouched by mass tourism.
Lunch of local fare, 100% natural!
In the afternoon, we will be exploring the intriguing fauna and flora of the island
Head back to Tarawa by dinner time
For our last night in the country, we will revisit our favourite bar according to our exhaustive knowledge of the nightscene, after two nights there.
Sunday 5th January – Honiara
Relaxed start for the 11.50am flight to Honiara, the capital city of the world’s 15th least-visited country – the Solomon Islands, arriving at 3pm.
Met at the airport and transfer to the Honiara Hotel where we will have a chance to freshen up.
The Honiara Hotel is a local institution – we’ll get the chance to talk to the eccentric owner, Sir Thomas Chan, about his life in politics on the island, as well as his experiences meeting various member of the Royal Family and being invested as a knight by the Queen.
We dine on the generous buffet and finish with drinks by the pool at our hotel with a performance of Melanesian dance organised for the diners.
Overnight at Honiara Hotel.
Monday 6th January – Honiara
Up early to explore Honiara central market, which is where real Solomon life occurs, and where we will have a chance to buy local souvenirs.
Following this, we do a full city tour including all the monuments to WW2, parliament and the national museum.
The way to really discover a country is through its street food, so on the journey to the next part of our tour we stop at street-food heaven, where the choices are pretty much chicken or fish served with rice and pumpkin.
#TRIP HIGHLIGHT# We head to a beach which has a major Japanese WW2 wreck for some wreck snorkelling and underwater photography, as well as great views of the city of Honiara, whilst enjoying the beach.
All good things must come to an end, including tours to the least-visited countries in the world, so we enjoy a specially cooked meal for us put on by the Honiara Hotel, a few snaps on the bed that Kate Middleton slept in, goodbye drinks by the pool, and a general end to our tour.
Overnight at Honiara Hotel
Tuesday 7th January – Honiara
End of tour for those who do not follow for Part 2
There are connecting flights to Australia and other Pacific destinations, with YPT able to arrange airport transfer, and ongoing transportation for those that need it.
– International Flights to the Marshall Islands before the tour and from the Solomon Islands after
– Visa fees if needed (YPT can provide visa support)
– Dinners and drinks
– Other personal expenses
– Tips for the local guides
– Single supplement $880
We have expert guides ready to help answer any questions you may have.