Kosrae or Kusaie is a well developed and highly maintained diving destination, also nick named The Sleeping Lady because of the shape of one of its mountains. Several resorts and bungalows line its shores with beautiful ocean views, high coconut trees for shade and a perfect atmosphere to relax or start one of your day activities. This small ten by ten kilometer long island is ringed with some of the whitest beaches in Micronesia. Life here is still slow with not many paved roads and fishermen still use a traditional lifestyle by using dugout canoes.
There are many mangroves adding to the already phenomenal diversity of animal life. You will spot birds and butterflies you have never seen before. The interior of the island is mainly mountainous with dense tropical rainforest, lush river valleys and the highest spot on the island, the 2064ft high Mount Finkol.
The steep island Lelu in the east has several archeological ruins belonging to the ancient Malayo seafarers. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of ruins hidden in the jungle of the Lady Island. You can feel the emotion of discovering this lost civilization after walking for hours in the lush rain forest. This is the kind of place ideal for the archaeologist, the geologist, the biologist, and others curious of a mysterious reminder of Kosrae’s little know past. Other highlights are the waterfalls on the way to Mount Omah, several Japanese caves and unspoiled jungle hikes.
While diving in Kosrae you can expect plunging walls, WWII wrecks and an healthy fringing coral reef perfect for snorkeling as well. More than fifty different dive sites have been marked with buoys to prevent its well preserved coral reefs from being damaged. Some of the marine species you are likely to encounter are several types of sharks, dogtooth tunas, spinner dolphins and many of the common coral reef fish. The clean waters in Kosrae, although still remote and quiet, have already acquainted an international reputation as a diver's paradise.
The only service is via Continental Airlines. Flying through Hawaii is probably easier than Guam, although you'll have to make two extra stops in the Marshall Islands. There is an airport tax of $10-15. Visit the Continental airlines for more information.
History: Kosrae Island has been populated for several thousand years and as a result the island is a treasure trove of ancient artifacts which allow experts to draw conclusions about the original settlers on Kosrae and throughout the Pacific. The most famous site is Lelu, a small island that is almost completely man made, during a time when a lever and a strong back were the only "heavy equipment" available. Lelu was a series of walled compounds with paved streets inhabited by the royal family and other high chiefs. The walls and compounds in the center of the island are still partially intact and are considered one of the archaeological wonders of the Pacific. Starting in the early 1900s there has been a number of excavations at Lelu, including German, Japanese and American teams. In addition to Lelu there are many other sites throughout the island.
Weather: Kosrae's climate is excellent with warm sunny days and water temperatures between 27 and 30 degrees year around. The best time to go is between December and April while July and August are the months with the most rainfall.
Customs/VISA: Kosrae is highly religious, so don't be surprised that you can't go diving on Sunday or that officials might mention to dress properly and not to disturb the warm-hearted indigenous people.
Kosrae Recycles Thrash, Saving Environment & Helping Economy - The Kutkut Mwo Materials Recovery Facility is also a good example of a project funded by an external agency, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), handed over to the Kosrae state government, and then leased out to a foreign investor, the Micronesia Eco Corp...more
Renewable Energy For Micronesia - Micronesia is blessed with sun and wind, rain and mountain, ocean waves and depths; all sources of renewable energy for those with the wit and will to harvest them...more
Kosrae Joins Effort to Create Two Million-Square-Mile Shark Sanctuary - Kosrae has become the first member of the Federated States of Micronesia to establish shark protections in its waters. The unanimous vote by the legislature in Kosrae, a small island of 7,700 people in the Pacific, is an important step in the creation of the world’s first regional shark sanctuary, which will encompass 2 million square miles of ocean...more