|There may be nearly 1,000 islands in the Solomon Islands and they may be situated in a popular location, but surprisingly tourism is not as yet a big business in the Solomon Islands, and many of the visitors who pass through are backpackers or divers, or have come by boat. This means that there is not a great infrastructure in place and services and facilities may be lacking by Western standards.
Despite this, the Solomon Islands are a beautiful destination and are particularly well known for their diving opportunities. Scuba diving hotspots include Munda, Gizo and Uepi island. Other popular activities include hiking – the Solomon Islands are largely undeveloped, so if you don’t know what you’re doing it may be best to join a tour group, but if you’re confident out on your own you’ll be able to experience some remote and beautiful areas.
The capital city, Honiara, is another popular place for visitors to stop. The Solomon Islands were the site of some terrible battles during the Second World War and the legacy of this remains in many places. There are a variety of WW2 sites around Honiara, for example, which are mainly in the hills where battles took place.
A great place to interact with the locals is the Central Market which is said to be particularly good on Saturday mornings. Here you can experience the lively bustle which goes on and you can also buy some excellent gifts to take back home. Many items are handmade, such as jewellery and crafts.
If you want to see more than just the main island you can fairly easily travel around the archipelago. Solomon Airlines serves the country well with links between 31 different airfields. The alternative, which is cheaper and possibly more fun, is to travel by ferry ship. This is significantly cheaper than by air although the conditions are not so good and the ships are usually very crowded!