Difference between revisions of "Wallis and Futuna"
Revision as of 09:23, 5 September 2012
Wallis and Futuna comprises two archipelagoes:
Hoorn Islands group (also known as the Futuna Islands, and as Îles Horne)
Alofi Island is the smaller of the two. According to legend it was as densely inhabited as Futuna up until the 19th century, when the Futuna people slaughtered and ate the population in a single raid.
Wallis Islands group (also known as ʻUvea, as is Wallis Island)
Wallis Island is surrounded by 15 smaller islands, all of which are uninhabited.
Although discovered by the Dutch and the British in the 17th and 18th centuries, it was the French who declared a protectorate over the islands in 1842. In 1959, the inhabitants of the islands voted to become a French overseas territory. There are still three ceremonial kingdoms within the territory: Alo, Sigave, Wallis.
The islands are volcanic in origin, with low hills, and fringing reefs. The highest point is Mont Singavi, at 765 m. The climate is tropical: hot, rainy season (November to April); cool, dry season (May to October); rains 2,500-3,000 mm per year (80% humidity); average temperature 26.6 degrees C.
Uvea and Futuna each have an airport. The only airline that flies to Wallis Futuna is Aircalin.
The port of Mata-Utu is on Uvea. Leava (Sigave) is on Futuna.
Uvea has 120km of roads, much of which is paved. All the main villages on Futuna can be accessed on paved but rough roads.
Banking facilities are limited, with no bank located on Futuna. Also, the BWF bank in Wallis will not directly change US $100 bills. Travelers are advised to do their currency exchanges in Noumea, New Caledonia or Nadi, Fiji prior to arrival.