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The Kingdom of Tonga, also known simply as Tonga, is a Polynesian sovereign state. Tonga is an archipelago that comprises of 176 islands, also known as the Friendly Islands. It has a total surface area of approximately 750 square kilometres scattered over 700,000 square kilometres of the southern Pacific Ocean. The Tonga archipelago comprises of two geologically different parallel chains of islands, but is administratively divided into three main groups: Tongatapu, Ha'apai, and Vava'u. The main island is Tongatapu.

As a tourist destination, Tonga is uncrowded, unhurried, and unspoilt, and is the type of place where visitors can unwind in deserted beaches, discover spectacular landscapes, watch beautiful sunsets, discover the islands' culture, and more.  

What to see & do

Kiteboarding in Uoleva - The island of Uoleva of the Ha'apai group boasts of sandy beaches, clear blue waters, a reef full of life, steady winds, and uncrowded lagoons. In Uoleva Island is the only resort in Tonga dedicated to kitesurfing, and even those who have never tried kiteboarding activities before can start here by renting equipment and going through training. Other activities available in Uoleva Island and the other islands in the Ha'apai group are snorkelling and whale watching. Additionally, Uoleva is a popular spot for yachters as well.

Ha'amonga 'a Maui - Ha'amonga 'a Maui, or Burden of Maui, is a trilithic gate in Heketā made up of three coral limestone slabs. The trilithon measures 5.2 metres high, 1.4 metres wide, and 5.8 metres long, and the visible parts of each stone weighs approximately 30-40 tonnes. 

Tongan National Centre - The Tongan National Centre displays historical artefacts and cultural items. Cultural tours by a good-natured, patriotic local include demonstrations of weaving and basketry, tapa-making, cooking, carving, and traditional dancing.

Scuba Diving in 'Eua Island – 'Eua is Tonga's oldest island, and its diving spots are among the best in the world. There are diving tours available, as well as reef fishing, snorkelling, swimming with whales, and boat charters. 

How to get around within Tonga

Flying and sailing are the only options for travelling between the island groups. There are motorbikes, scooters, and cycles that can be rented on Tongatapu, Vava'u, and Ha'apai. Tourists are required to purchase a local Tongan driving licence in addition to your existing driving licence. Taxi service is also available; majority are based in Tongatapu. Unlike taxis in big cities, the taxis in Tonga are often unmarked and are only identifiable by the letter T at the beginning of the plate number. Taxis are also unmetered, so agree on a fare before going on the journey. It is also possible to hire a taxi for half or a full day for sightseeing.

How to get there

The primary international airport in Tonga is Fuaʻamotu International Airport. It is located on the south side of Tongatapu, 35 kilometres from Nuku'alofa. It is served by airlines Air New Zealand, Real Tonga, Fiji Airways, and Virgin Australia. There are flights that come into Fua'amotu International Airport from Auckland (New Zealand), Nadi and Nausori (Republic of Fiji), and Sydney (Australia), as well as from the domestic airports in 'Eua, Lifuka, and Vava'u. It is also possible to arrive in Tonga by yacht. 

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