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Details

The widely scattered nation of Kiribati, pronounced "Kir-ee-bahs," located in the Pacific Ocean along the edges of the Equator, includes the Gilbert, Phoenix and Line island groups. Most are uninhabited.

These low-lying coral atolls, (33 in all) are the protruding tips of undersea volcanoes, and extend only a few feet above sea level.

The waters surrounding Kiribati witnessed intense whaling activities in the 19th century, and the islands were an important battlefield during World War II.

Formerly part of the British colony of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands, it gained full independence from Britain in 1979, shortly before the valuable phosphate deposits on the island of Banaba were depleted. Kiribati was therefore awarded millions for the total exploitation of that major resource in 1981.

The local economy now depends on subsistence farming, fishing, and the island's prolific stands of coconut palms, and the subsequent sale of copra (coconut meat.)

The isolated location of the Kiribati islands prevents tourism from flourishing, and becoming a major business, even though the weather is consistently warm, offshore reefs teem with colorful fish, and WWII shipwrecks are commonplace, especially off the eastern edge of Kiritimati (Christmas Island.)

That island, incidentally, is the world's largest coral atoll, and was once used for the testing of nuclear weapons.

For timeline information on Kiribati, go here!

Facts and Figures

arrow Official Name Republic of Kiribati

arrow Population 103,100

arrow Capital City South Tarawa

arrow Flag here

arrow Languages I-Kiribati, English (official)

arrow Official Currency Australian Dollar

arrow Currency Converter here

arrow Religions Catholic, Protestant, others

arrow Land Area 849 sq km (328 sq miles)

arrow Latitude/Longitude 1º 33N, 172º 99E

arrow Highest Point 266 ft. (81 m)



Even though Kiribati sits in both the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, it successfully declared itself entirely a part of the Eastern Hemisphere. To see how that was done, and how it impacts the local date and time, go here!

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arrow Kiribati Large Color Map here

arrow Kiribati Map CIA version here

arrow Kiribati Maps at UT here

arrow Oceania Maps here

Suggested Links

arrow Kiribati (Complete) information on the (GDP) overall economy, imports and exports, resources, government, population, military, transportation, and more here

arrow Kiribati (International Dateline) here

arrow Kiribati Photos here

arrow Kiribati (more) Photos here

arrow Jane's Kiribati website here

arrow Banaba Island details and pictures here

arrow Banaba Island (more) details here

arrow Christmas Island info here

PASSPORTS - TRAVEL VISAS



NOTE: Before making your travel plans to any worldwide destination, we strongly recommend you authenticate important details regarding all passport and visa requirments. The people at Travel Visa Pro can answer all of your questions!

arrow Climate The tropical islands of Kiribati are hot and humid throughout the year. The Gilbert Islands receive the most rain, while rainfall is sparse in the Phoenix and Line islands, and extended periods of drought are common.

Click for Tarawa, Kiribati Forecast

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