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Formerly called the Ellice Islands, Tuvalu consists of 5 low-lying coral atolls, 4 islands, and more than 100 islets, all spread over a very large area.

These isolated spots of land, the above water tips of undersea mountains, are famed for their beautiful lagoons, reefs, fabulous fishing, and collectible postage stamps.

The land now called Tuvalu was first settled by the Polynesians some 2,000 ago. Arrivals included those from Samoa, Tonga and Kiribati.

The Spanish explorer Mendana reportedly sighted the islands in 1568. The first Europeans arrived in the early 19th century, and the islands changed forever. In fact, some islanders were subsequently enslaved and forced to work.

In 1892 the British convinced the islanders to join the Gilbert Islands protectorate; later to be called the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Colony.

Almost fifty years later, during World War II, the U.S. used the islands as a military base to combat Japanese invasions in the Pacific.

In the mid 1970s the islands seceded from the Gilbert Ellise Colony, officially changing their collective name to Tuvalu, and became an independent nation. Its government remains a part of the British Commonwealth as a parliamentary democracy.

The economy of Tuvalu is agricultural based, and though an ideal venue for tourism, the islands are yet to fully develop that industry.

The only airport is located on the Funafuti Atoll, and transportation between islands is by boat.

For additional information regarding the history of Tuvalu, go here.

Facts and Figures

Official Name Tuvalu

arrow Population 11,810

arrow Capital Funafuti Atoll (4,492)
Note: The largest island within the Funafuti Atoll is Fongafale, and it is occassionaly referred to as the capital as government administration buildings are located there.

arrow Flag here

arrow Languages Tuvaluan, English, others

arrow Official Currency Australian Dollar

arrow Currency Converter here

arrow Religions Church of Tuvalu

arrow Land Area 26 sq km (10 sq miles)

arrow Latitude/Longitude 8º 52S, 179º 19E

arrow Highest Point 16 ft. (5 m) unnamed

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arrow Tuvalu Large Color Map here

arrow Tuvalu Map CIA version here

arrow Tuvalu Outline Map here

arrow Tuvalu Maps at UT here

arrow Oceania Maps here

Suggested Links

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

arrow Tuvalu On-Line here

arrow Tuvalu News here

arrow Tuvalu Photos here

arrow Tuvalu Photos (more) here


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 Weather is warm and somewhat humid throughout most of the year, with a average daily high temperature right at 85º.

Rain falls throughout the year, with heaviest accumulations November through April. Tuvalu is also subject to seasonal hurricanes during the rainy season.

Click for Forecast Click for Forecast

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