Independent Review by Beautiful Pacific
The island of Makira (formerly San Cristóbal) is the largest island of Makira-Ulawa Province in Solomon Islands. The island is located east of Guadalcanal and south of Malaita. The largest and capital city is Kirakira. Makira-Ulawa people are mostly Melanesian and their traditional dances and rituals are still strongly kept, especially in the islands of Santa Ana (Owaraha), Santa Catalina (Owariki), Uki-ni-masi and Ulawa..
Land Crab Festival
Places to Visit
Makira Holidays Overview
Makira Island, is 3090 km²: 139 km long by 40 km wide at around the centre of the island. Mountains run like a spine down the island's center: the highest point reaches 1040 m, and then falls steeply to the sea along its southern shore. Many rivers penetrate the island in roughly parallel lines every two to five kilometers. Makira has more inland swamps - and saltwater crocodiles - than any other island in the Solomon Islands. Its coast is the only part of the Solomons where the rare olive, or Pacific Ridley, turtle is known to visit and nest.
Because Makira Island was isolated for long stretches of time during periods of high sea level, a wide variety of unique plants and animals evolved. For example, 12 of its 70 resident species of birds are endemic, as are two tree species, both figs. Visitors will find the two-island province, lying somewhat south of Malaita or south east of Guadalcanal, full of surprises. Some cultural practices are unique to Makira and Ulawa like ancient fishing methods, crocodile wrestling and the shark hole underneath a church altar at Suholo village in Ulawa.
Star Harbour is a well-known surf spot. Bola's break is the premiere break in the region. It's situated about 45 minutes boat ride to the north west and is closer to Tawarogha village. It's a long right hand wave that breaks over a deep reef, which seems able to handle some big swells. Kakasufe is another surf spot popular with the locals. The reef on the north of the island throws off a long left with northerly swells. But take into account that the big swells means rough seas, and so transport in Makira can sometimes be a problem if you're coming in by sea from another island.
Makira is also a fisherman's paradise, teeming with fish like mamoola (trevally) that practically jump for your bait. Fishing the mangroves can also be fun, but watch for the unfriendlies in there. Walking trips after a fun canoe trip through the teeming mangroves can be an exhilarating adventure.
Accommodation in Makira is very basic with a few guesthouses only.
Makira Travel Information
The Kirakira Airport is served by Solomon Airlines, which provides flights to and from Honiara and other nearby destinations.
Flights to this remote province are cancelled very frequently (a flight leaving on the scheduled day is truly the exception rather than the rule) making Star Harbour unsuitable for those with international connecting flights. Star Harbour can be reached via a 3-4 hour exposed boat ride from Kira Kira, or a shorter but just as treacherous trip from Gupuna village on Santa Ana Island.