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About Pacific Islands Of Micronesia

Micronesia comprises four archipelagos: the Federated States of Micronesia (Caroline Islands), the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands and the Republic of Palau.

The area has a turbulent history of foreign control and political change. Despite upheavals and foreign influences from Spanish, German, Japanese and US governments, many inhabitants have maintained their cultural heritage and traditions, while others have lifestyles inspired mainly by the teachings of 19th-century missionaries. Having come under UN Trusteeship, administered by the USA, at the end of World War II, all of the Pacific Micronesian states have now reached final political settlements.

Collectively, the islands are known for the dramatic tropical nature, pristine beaches and great diving opportunities. By contrast, the area has witnessed some of the darkest moments in recent history, with shipwrecks littering the sea beds, heavy nuclear weapons testing having been staged in the area, and the islet Tinian having the dubious privilege as being the launchpad from which the American B-29s set off for Japan to drop the Atom bomb. The inhabitants of the islands have nevertheless remained resilient in the face of history, and visitors can typically expect a warm welcome.

See individual country sections for further details.

Key facts

Area:

7,800,000 sq km (3,000,000 sq miles) of which 1,846 sq km (713 sq miles) is land.

Population:

 Approx. 376,000 (estimate)

Population density:

46.3 per sq km.

Capital:

Melekeok.

Government:

See individual country sections for further details.

Head of state:

President Tommy Remengesau since 2013.

Head of government:

President Tommy Remengesau since 2013.

Electricity:

110/120 volts AC, 60Hz. American-style plugs with two flat pins (with or without grounding pin) are standard.

Travel Advice

Last updated: 13 March 2017

The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. ‘We’ refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

Unexploded Ordnance

There is still a significant amount of unexploded ordnance in Palau left over from World War II, particularly in Peleliu and Angaur. Take care, particularly when diving or exploring caves.

Crime

Crime levels are low. However, you should take sensible precautions to protect your belongings.

Water sports

Wear appropriate safety equipment and take local advice on safety. There are over 60 vertical drop-offs in the diving areas and some are for experienced divers only.