Tobelo and environs is predominantly Christian and this is expressed colourfully at Christmas with bamboo poles arching over the side of the roads hung with lights and multi-coloured flags. At Easter, local church congregations hold a competition to see who can create the best Easter garden.
Tobelo is accessible by ferry from Bitung (Manado), North Sulawesi. It is accessible by a very good road from Sidangoli, the Halmahera port with hourly speedboat connections to Ternate (45 minutes journeytime). There are small airports in Kao and Galela with flights from Ternate and Manado by small plane run by Merpati Nusantara Airlines. They fly on one or two days a week and schedules vary.