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Favorite thing: The beaches are the most beautiful I have ever seen. Many secret beaches you can find if you pull off the road and explore. Great snorkeling on any of the islands. Many big beautiful churches. All the restaurants on the main ocean front road are wonderful. Usually run by Aussies, Kiwis or Brits. A bit more expensive than downtown dining, but well worth it for the view. Don't miss interacting with the people and especially the children. The children are well behaved and still have a respect for adults and the fear of God, which is a pleasant difference from the U.S. The best and cleanest place to stay is the Lagoon Lodge. Run by a Tongan woman and a British woman. Brand new, more like American accomodations. Tonga is on it's own time, 'Tonga time', don't rush to do anything while there. The Tongans like to socialize, especially over a meal.
Fondest memory: My Best memory of Tonga is the friends I made while there. We were there in 2000 for 3 months, and in 2001 as well. We even had a child that the parents had us name. It was quite an honor.
Written Aug 26, 2002
Favorite thing: ...you must get on a bus a just go for a ride! The island music will be blasting & everybody is having a good time! Then spend some time in the remote villages & just watch how the kids wave to you!
Fondest memory: ...was getting married to my beautiful wife Lokasi on March 7th 1996. It was pouring rain! But by the time we had the ceremony the sun had come out & everyone came to our wedding!
Written Aug 26, 2002
Favorite thing: Visit the Bird Sanctuary on Tongatapu. THere is also a Sanctuary for flying Foxes (Fruit Bats with a 3-foot (1 meter) wingspan) that is also awesome.
Fondest memory: The sunsets in Nei'afu (on the Island of Vava'u) are breathtaking.
Written Aug 24, 2002
Favorite thing: Hey-
See if Billy's on Lifuka is still there. Sandy and Billy are the owners and Milika is the local gal that helps out. Sandy makes wonderful pizza and they are on the windward side of the island so when the rest of the island is broiling, they are feeling a nice cooling breeze. You can snorkel, go to a local dance, or meet a few of the wacky ex-pats that live there. In Tongatapu visit the brewery, check out the power supply, stay at Tony's as he has a mini Kava ceremony every night and offers a wonderful tour-it has been a while since I was there.Go to an umu, visit a bakery on Sunday when the businesses are closed and when cars are not allowed to be on the road. drink Kava every night with other travellers - or at a true ceremony with a load of Tongan men. I stayed for 2 months. I did not get bored and was busy busy.
Fondest memory: I miss the lack of tourists. It is not a particularly popular destination and as a result is pretty much unfettered by alot of our Western trappings-it's really cool!!!
Written Jun 23, 2008
Favorite thing: The best thing about Tonga is the people & the atmosphere there you are absorbed in where you arrive. When you finally get on the plane to go back home you're thinking, "I don't want to leave!"
Fondest memory: One of the best merories I have in Tonga is when I met THE KING OF TONGA. (I will up-load a picture soon). But I was 24 years old & had merorized 15 questions to ask him. After the 3rd I forgot everthing. I was stunned in not knowing what to do. King Tau'afahau made me feel so at ease.We talked of many wonderful things. Walking away from that experience the only thing that I could think was how much like Jesus he emulated. When you're in the presence of someone special (i.e. a movie/rockstar, etc...) they usually make you feel like you're a "nobody" & that they're at the top of the world. But Jesus (and... here, the King of Tonga) made me feel so loved & accepted. I will never forget it
If you can gain an audience with the King I would highly recomend it. God is so good!
Updated Feb 22, 2004
Favorite thing: Listening to Tongan choirs at the church while gazing at a pitch black sky full of stars and looking at the Milky Way, you can definately see the Milky Way in these islands.
Fondest memory: No McDonalds or any other fast food or convenience store to spoil the islands. Huge fruit bats, whales and a 3 day old calf, Tongans wearing their traditional tapas skirts (I believe they are called tapas). Just a world away from nothing I've ever seen.
Written May 20, 2004
Favorite thing: See the view of the Bay of Refuge in Nei'afu, on the northern Island of Vava'u.
Fondest memory: The best snorkeling I've ever done.
Updated Aug 24, 2002
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