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Alaska, Canada, NW
Fiji to New Zealand
New Zealand to Fiji
Fiji to Australia
Papua New Guinea
Coral Sea '07
Photo Album - Fanning Island
Fanning Island, Kiribati
Seawanhaka left San Diego in April 2004 for Fanning Island, which is a group of islands called the Line Islands in country of Kiribati (pronounced "Kee-ree-bas"). Kiribati is made up of 33 low lying islands, separated into 3 groups: the Gilberts, the Phoenix, and the Line Islands. The latter named so because they are right on the equator. Most islanders have Micronesian origin but the country is closely tied to Australia through trading and uses the Australian Dollar for currency.
Fanning Island is attractive because it is so remote, has very few tourists, mostly a handful of cruising sailboats, and is largely unspoiled. We stopped in Fanning Island for four days on our way to Samoa, and had a splendid time. The island has no airfield and very few services. It's so remote that a supply ship only visits about once every 3 months. Many of the people living on Fanning Island have moved there recently from other islands that became too crowded. The population is growing rapidly throughout Kiribati: land is scarce, kids are plentiful. I think of Fanning Island as the "island of babies"...baby humans, puppies, kittens, piglets, and chicks were running around everywhere but we saw only a couple of people over age 50.
After more than 3 weeks on the ocean, we were very excited to sail into Fanning Island, locally known as Tabuaeran. This low-lying coral atoll is very small and still relatively untouched by the modern world. Two years ago, Norwegian Cruise Lines began coming to Fanning from Hawaii, bringing an influx of 2000 passengers to the island for several hours. Needless to say, it's an interesting mix of modern (temporary) facilities set up for the occasional cruise ship in stark contrast to the rest of island life. We had a fantastic time in this charming atoll.
(Click on a photo to see a larger view)
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