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Solomon Islands

Getting there & away

Contents

Sea

Yacht

The Solomons is a favourite spot for yachties who take refuge in the lagoons during cyclone season. Along with Honiara, Korovou (Shortland Islands), Gizo, Ringgi, Yandina, Tulagi Island and Graciosa Bay are official ports of entry where you can clear customs and immigration. There's a S$100 fee for sailing in Solomon waters.

'Crew wanted' notices are posted at the Point Cruz Yacht Club (22500) in Honiara.

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Air

The Solomons' only international airport is Henderson Airport (code HIR), 11km east of Honiara.

There are few direct flights to the Solomons - only Brisbane and Port Moresby currently have services to Honiara, and flights from these destination are expensive.

Qantas no longer flies to Honiara. Solomon Airlines no longer has any aircraft other than its small domestic fleet. Air Nauru was flying Brisbane-Honiara four times a week with connections to Fiji, Kiribati and the Marshall Islands, but it had its solitary Boeing 737 confiscated by US authorities after reneging on financial arrangements.

At the time of research Air Nauru was looking to renegotiate leasing arrangements on aircraft and fly these sectors again.

Solomon Airlines has offices in Nadi (722 831), Fiji; and Port Moresby (325 5724), PNG. It also has sales agents in Suva (315 889), Fiji; Noumea (28 66 77), New Caledonia; and Port Vila (23838), Vanuatu.

Asia

The most direct route to/from Asia is via Port Moresby in PNG or Nadi in Fiji, though it may be simpler and cheaper and connections may be more frequent going via Brisbane.

Australia

Solomon Airlines (www.solomonairlines.com.au;in Brisbane 07-3407 7266, in Sydney 02-9244 2189, in Melbourne 03-9920 3872) sells the Brisbane- Honiara sectors (one way/return A$780/1040 plus A$190 tax) on Air Vanuatu flights to Port Vila every Saturday, Tuesday and Thursday, returning the next day.

Fiji

Air Vanuatu (www.airvanuatu.com) connects Honiara with Nadi, routed via Port Vila, on Monday. The one-way/return fare is A$890/1110 including tax. The Fiji sales agent is Air Fiji (679-672 3822).

Papua new guinea

Air Niugini (www.airniugini.com.pg) flies from Port Moresby to Honiara on Monday and Friday. One-way/return fares are A$920/1090 including tax. Contact the Port Moresby main sales office on 675-325 9084.

Vanuatu

An Air Vanuatu plane operated by Solomon Airlines (www.solomonairlines.com.au) flies from Port Vila to Honiara return on Thursday. One-way/return fares are A$650/1270 including tax. To book, contact Air Vanuatu (the Solomon Airlines agent) in Port Vila on 678-23838.

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