Kiribati, a tiny island nation located in the central Pacific Ocean, is often overlooked by travelers. However, this beautiful country has a lot to offer, from stunning beaches to unique cultural traditions. Here are 10 fascinating facts about Kiribati that will make you want to add it to your travel bucket list.
Kiribati is made up of 33 coral atolls and islands
Kiribati is comprised of 33 coral atolls and islands spread across 3.5 million square kilometers of the central Pacific Ocean. The country is divided into three main island groups: the Gilbert Islands, the Phoenix Islands, and the Line Islands.
The International Date Line runs through Kiribati
The International Date Line runs directly through Kiribati, meaning that the country is divided between two different days. The eastern islands are one day ahead of the western islands, which can make planning travel itineraries a bit tricky.
Kiribati is the only country in the world to be located in all four hemispheres
Kiribati is the only country in the world to be located in all four hemispheres: the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western Hemispheres. The island of Caroline Atoll is the closest land mass to the geographic center of the Earth.
Kiribati is home to some of the most remote islands in the world
The Line Islands, located in the eastern part of Kiribati, are some of the most remote islands in the world. The islands are so isolated that they were used as nuclear testing sites by the United States and the United Kingdom during the Cold War.
The people of Kiribati have a unique cultural heritage
The people of Kiribati have a rich cultural heritage that includes unique music, dance, and art forms. The most famous traditional dance is called the Te-Kurawa dance, which is performed by both men and women.
Kiribati is known for its colorful traditional clothing
The people of Kiribati are known for their colorful and elaborate traditional clothing. Women wear a bae, which is a long, brightly colored dress, while men wear a lavalava, which is a colorful skirt worn over shorts.
Kiribati has some of the best diving spots in the world
Kiribati is home to some of the most spectacular diving spots in the world, including the world-famous Phoenix Islands Protected Area. Divers can see a wide variety of marine life, including manta rays, sharks, and sea turtles.
The Phoenix Islands are a UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Phoenix Islands, located in the eastern part of Kiribati, were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010. The islands are home to a diverse range of marine life and are an important nesting site for seabirds.
Kiribati is a great place to see sea turtles
Kiribati is one of the few places in the world where you can see all seven species of sea turtles. The islands are home to nesting grounds for green turtles and hawksbill turtles, while the waters are home to loggerhead turtles and leatherback turtles.
Kiribati is threatened by rising sea levels
Kiribati is one of the countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, particularly rising sea levels. The government has been working to address the issue, including relocating some communities to higher ground.
Kiribati may be a small and relatively unknown country, but it is full of fascinating history, culture, and natural wonders. From its unique position straddling the International Date Line to its vibrant traditions and stunning marine life, there is so much to discover in this Pacific island nation. By sharing these 10 interesting facts about Kiribati, we hope to inspire more people to learn about this incredible country and its people.