the site of intense World

War II naval battles

We cruised through Iron Bottom Sound, the site of intense World War II naval battles, and is named for the large numbers of Japanese and American ships and aircraft that sank beneath the sea before arriving into Honiara. During World War II the British founded Honiara as a military base. The town and the Mataniko River, which runs through it, were the front for many months during the battle of Guadalcanal. Today, it is a bustling town with lovely hibiscus and palm-tree-lined avenues. Our tour of Honara city and the surrounding environment was led by a police car which, we were told, was to get us through the busy traffic.  We travelled to Point Cruz passing the Prime Minister’s Office, the Central Bank of the Solomon Islands, the Philatelic Bureau, the Cenotah and the Kawaguchi Memorial. We visited the central market wth endless rows of fruit, vegetables and crafts. Travelled through China Town, the main shopping district, to the US War Memorial on Skyline ridge – the detailed marble plaques give an overview of the events that took place on and around the island between August, 1942 and February, 1943. We had a tour of the Solomon Island’s Parliament building which was commissioned in 1994 as a gift from the USA for the 50th Anniversary of the events of WWII. Then a visit to the National Museum to view the island;s traditions and exhibitions of weaponry, body ornaments, sculptures and paintings. Afternoon snorkelling at Bonegi Beach, the site of a sunken Japanese ship. We had a remembrance cocktail and threw a wreath overboard as we cruised out over Bottom Sound.