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Make the long journey to Kosrae to be spoilt with the untouched feel of the island and to explore its magnificent fringing coral reefs.

Diving in Kosrae

Quick facts

The beauty of diving Kosrae is that you are likely to be the only divers at the site. Dive sites consist of drop-offs, hard coral gardens and sandy bottoms dotted with coral bommies which are often cleaning stations. There is also a shipwreck to visit known as the Lenore which sunk in the 19th century. Technical divers will not be left out here as there are deep sites to explore and also plane wrecks from World War II. New divers will also be able to find many protected sites which are easy to dive and still rewarding.

Many who have visited are often astounded by the health of the coral reefs at Kosrae. All of the dive sites are marked by buoys so there is no damage to the reef from anchoring boats. Expect to see pointy beds of staghorn coral, brain coral, huge table coral, cabbage coral and finger coral intermittent with giant clams, barrel sponges and anemones.

Visibility is often wonderful and can extend beyond 100ft (30m) except at sites where there is run-off from the mangrove swamps. Water temperature averages at about 82˚F (28˚C) and the best time to visit is during July to September. Trade winds blow during November to June so it is usually rainy during these months. That said, the south and west sides of the island are protected and diving here is still very good during the rainy season.

When to go

Rain and temperature

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Water temperature

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What to see

Marine life is abundant around Kosrae due to the healthy reef system. Schooling fish like fusilier, barracuda and bigeye trevally are common as are groups of large bumphead parrotfish. Out in the blue, eagle rays often pass by and sharks like grey reef sharks, whitetip sharks and blacktip sharks patrol the reefs together with giant trevally, wahoo, and Dogtooth tuna.

The sandy bottoms littered with hard coral growth are perfect cleaning stations for manta rays which are often seen in this area. There are smaller critters to find as well like lobsters, octopus, shrimp and crab. Besides that, a colorful assortment of parrotfish, angelfish and wrasse bring the reef to life. From the surface, divers often see playful spinner dolphins.

Calendar

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Area

Kosrae is the easternmost island in the scattered Caroline Islands archipelago and is one of the four states of the Federated States of Micronesia. A tiny dot in the Pacific Ocean, the island is pleasantly undeveloped and has a population of only 6,615 people. The main island of Kosrae measures 42 square miles (110 square km) and the State of Kosrae includes other nearby islands like Lelu Island and several uninhibited islands.

Kosrae has a mountainous profile and is covered in dense tropical jungle that is home to unique animal species like the Kosrae flying fox. Based on studies of archeological sites like the Menka Ruins or the Lelu Ruins, people have been living here since the first millennium AD. Local culture mixed with Christianity runs deep amongst the people of Kosrae and you are also likely to find many traditional foods still served regularly.

The main draw to Kosrae is for scuba diving and records indicate that only about 1,000 people visit on an annual basis. The island is blessed with a magnificent fringing hard coral reef that is in pristine condition due to the lack of frequent visitors. A point to note is that Sundays are rest days on Kosrae and there is often no diving or other activities available, especially in the afternoons.

Other attractions

Take a hike through the jungle on several trails available. Visit the historical sites of Menka and Lelu or see World War II artifacts on the island. Surfing and canoeing are also popular activities. During low tide there are tide pools to snorkel in or you can spend some time birdwatching.

Getting there

Fly to Kosrae International Airport via the island hopper flights offered by United Airlines which departs from Guam. You can also use Nauru Airlines if flying from Brisbane, Australia.

UTC+10:00

Time zone

USD

Currency

+691

Calling code

120 V

Electric volt

A, 

B

Plug type

KSA

Main airport
Note - Travel to any destination may be adversely affected by conditions including (but not limited) to security, entry and exit requirements, health conditions, local laws and culture, natural disasters and climate. Regardless of your destination, check your local travel advisory board or department for travel advice about that location when planning your trip and again shortly before you leave.