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Tabuaeran in a NASA photo from Earth orbit

Tabuaeran, also known as Fanning Island or Fanning Atoll, is one of the Northern Line Islands in Kiribati.

Get in[edit]

The most common way to get into Fanning Island is by taking a boat from Christmas Island (Kiritimati). You can also visit the atoll as a port of call from a cruise line. Holland America has it as a humanitarian stop on their way to French Polynesia.

Get around[edit]

There is a dirt road that completely circles the lagoon. There are small dirt trails running in every direction from the road, but be mindful of the native population's personal property and space when hiking the trails. There is a modest collection of bicycles near the lagoon's main dock and you'll be able to rent one for a small fee.


There is a beautiful beach to swim in that has an area with soft sand. Other areas have large coral pieces that can be difficult to walk on. There are also areas that farm seaweed.


View of the lagoon entrance from sea level

There is a concrete basketball court on the island that was built by a cruise line years ago. The men of the island enjoy a pick-up game and are friendly when approached about playing. They carry on smoking their hand-rolled cigarettes, even while playing the game.


There are no shops on the island in the conventional sense. There are natives that are willing to sell you certain trinkets, with a popular item with visitors being woman's "defence knife" which is made from palm wood and is studded with shark teeth and other decorations scavenged from the sea. US dollars are generally accepted.




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