Boat Transportation in the Solomon Islands
Replies: 7 - Last Post: Apr 12, 2012 5:32 PM Last Post By: honiarahomestay
Mar 14, 2012 8:06 PM
Boat Transportation in the Solomon IslandsI will be traveling for two weeks in the Solomon Islands this May. We want to make it to the Western Province, but I would also like to have some time spent in less touristy areas, possibly Malaita.
Does the Discovery 360 run every day between Honiara & Malaita? Does anyone know what time it usually leaves?
We arrive in Honiara May 8th. I have read that Malaita is hotter and wetter than the western province. I realize we are planning our trip just at the end of the hot & rainy season. Has anyone been in Malaita around this time?
Is it possible to catch the Solomon Express to Gizo from Malaita on Friday?
Is the Solomon Express slower than the MV Pelican or does it also take ~ 12hrs?
One idea we have is to take a boat to Gizo then work our way through Munda and Marovo Lagoon then back to Honiara. Is Seghe the last place we could get on a boat back to Honiara?
We were originally thinking we would book most of our accommodations in advance; however it seems that transportation can be inconsistent. Is it likely that we will be able to get accommodations upon arrival in a city/village?
Boat schedule information as well as any other insight you all can offer is greatly appreciated!
Mar 15, 2012 5:41 AM
1Discovery 360 does a return trip Honiara to Auki every week day and once on the weekend, unless it is being serviced. You have to book a seat in advance. I think it leaves Honiara about 8am.
Malaita is hot and humid in the interior, but so is the rest of Solomon Islands. I don't think you would notice a major difference. However, all the islands have microclimates, and can vary from one side to the other. One part of Malaita which is generally cooler than the mainland are the artificial islands of the Lau and Langa Langa Lagoons. (If you decide to go there, make sure you are staying on a smaller island, and not the mainland).
There is no direct transport between Auki and Gizo. you would need to go back to Honiara. One of the Express boats leaves Honiara for Western Province 7am Sunday. However, I am not now sure of ports of call.
The only town in Solomon Islands that is anywhere near a city is Honiara. The next two biggest are Gizo and Auki, with populations around 10,000. Not exactly cities.
It is essential to book rooms in Honiara, as they are generally in short supply. However, I have never had a problem anywhere else.
Mar 15, 2012 7:41 PM
Mar 28, 2012 9:55 PM
3Great to know you are planning on travelling to Solomon Islands and of course Malaita. I am actually from Malaita and have just recently visited Malaita travelling on the 360 Discovery owned by Silent World. The boat leaves Honiara everyday at 08:00 am and arrives Honiara at 5:00 p.m. I went up to the bush where my father is from and my kids just had a fantastic time going to the bush and well as swimming in crystal clear water's... If you want to experience life as it was in the times of our ancestors the bush is the place to go where you have food cooked in bamboos or join the men in wild pig hunting. I would not recommend people to go to a place if it is unsafe.
Boat travel to Malaita is 360 Discovery and the Solomon Express to the Western Province to Gizo . You can get a boat from Gizo to Munda - via contact at the Gizo Hotel or Sanbis or even check out Danny Kennedy. I will be more than happy to meet you at the airport on your arrival should you want me to catch up with you. Contact us on honiara homestay on our email address email@example.com
The Auki market has just recently been opened and the wharf is the best in the Solomon Islands.
Malaita is indeed still unexplored in so many ways. If you would like to visit the artificial islands i would recommend Serah Kei's at the Langalanga Lagoon. Langalanga Lagoon is the traditional mint for the Solomon Islands. I dont know why Ozie Giraffe forbids you from travelling on the mainland . People on Malaita are peace loving people it is just a pity the media has labelled them as wild so probably that is why Ozie Giraffe made the comment to avoid the mainland. i am a malaitan and dont agree why Ozie Giraffe suggest that. it is like an Australian from Sydney saying dont visit the city but stay on the country side....
let me know your travel plans as i am actually in Honiara and can better organise for you if you are interested..
Mar 29, 2012 5:23 AM
4I dont know why Ozie Giraffe forbids you from travelling on the mainland
This is not what I said at all. I have spent months staying in various parts of Malaita, and lived in Solomon Islands for a number of years. My reference was to the Lau and Langa Langa lagoons, where staying on the artificial islands is much cooler for visitors from cooler climates than the more humid mainland. The artificial islands are also free of mosquitos.
People on Malaita are peace loving people it is just a pity the media has labelled them as wild so probably that is why Ozie Giraffe made the comment to avoid the mainland. i am a malaitan and dont agree why Ozie Giraffe suggest that. it is like an Australian from Sydney saying dont visit the city but stay on the country side
Honiara homestay, you may already know me, although I am not revealing my identity on a public website. I have been an adopted member of several Malaitan families (Lau, Kwara'ae, and Are'are) for about 20 years. I would be the first person to defend the people of Malaita. I have travelled by ship and road around all of Malaita, including the times of ethnic tension, when my adopted family made sure I was safe.
Apr 3, 2012 9:32 AM
5Honiara Homestay - please be assured that Ozziegiraffe's suggestions do not reflect badly on Malaita or Malaitans. I know Ozziegiraffe and I also know that she would be the first to defend Malaita and the people of Malaita, as I would as I also have 'family' there as well as in Honiara. Malaita is out favourite place in Solomons; for me it's my second home, as it is for her. Her suggestion of staying in Lau as opposed to inland Malaita makes sense, it is purely a question of climate. No matter how many times I visit inland Malaita and Honiara, I always have a difficult time acclimating to the heat and humidity. It can take up to 3 months for those of use from colder climates to be able to cope with the heat, and most visitors don't stay in the islands long enough to acclimate properly. She certainly is not forbidding anyone from going anywhere, she is merely advising them that the coast is cooler, which it is.
As far as the depiction of Malaitans as being volatile, I have seen that in the Solomon Star before, but it referred to the occasional outbreak of violence between Malaitans and the folk from Bellona who live in Honiara; it does not mean that one has to be wary of Malaitans, if it wasn't for the Malaitans the country wouldn't run as well as it does. The residents of Malaita are some of the friendliest anywhere. IMO anyway.
Rest assured that no offence was ever intended.
Apr 12, 2012 2:23 PM
Thank you for your help! I wish I had more time to spend exploring Malaita, but sadly I will only have a couple of days.
You mentioned that the 360 Discovery leaves Honiara every day at 08:00 am and arrives Honiara at 5:00 p.m. Do you happen to know what time the boat leaves Auki?
I am hoping to stay at Serah Kei's at the Langalanga Lagoon for two nights. I would like to leave Honiara on the 8 am boat Saturday morning and return to Honiara on the boat Monday afternoon. Do you for see any problems with this plan?
Your help is greatly appreciated!
Apr 12, 2012 5:32 PM
7ASKC, the 360 Discovery departs Auki at 2:00 p.m. every day. On Tuesday, Thursdays and Sundays it goes through the beautiful Florida islands so it gets into Honiara at 6:00 p.m. On the same days too it departs Honiara at 8:00 am and through the beautiful Florida islands and gets to Auki at 12:00 in the afternoon. All the other days it leaves honiara at 8:00am and arrives Auki at 11:00am Depart Auki at 2:00 pm and arrives Honiara at 6:00 p.m.
I do not see any problems with your plans to leave on Saturday and return on Monday afternoon from Auki on the 360 Discovery.
Let me know more if you are unsure!!!
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