Posted on Aug 09, 2010 | Comments 0
There’s a little island over in the western Pacific Ocean named Saipan, in the Northern Mariana Islands, about 100 miles to the north of Guam.
Saipan is only about five miles wide and 12 miles in length and is home to around 65,000 residents. While it may be a bit off the beaten track, it gets a fair share of visitors every year as they like to make their way over the clear blue water to enjoy everything the wonderful little island has to offer.
Saipan has some amazing scenery as it’s filled with a large amount of natural beauty. This includes its gorgeous white sand beaches, thick jungle, dewy meadows, colourful coral reefs, rugged rocky cliffs, and green/blue lagoons. It’s also home to the 1,560-foot high Mount Tapochau.
You shouldn’t have a problem conversing with the local residents as most of them speak English. However, they also have their own language that’s called Chamorro. But you might also have the pleasure of hearing more languages spoken as Saipan is made up of quite a variety of cultures.
You’ll find people from many places in Asia, such as China, Bangladesh, Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Korea, Japan, and China. This interesting melting pot of cultures also influences the island’s popular food, music and dance.
The island is believed to have been originally settled around 2000 BC. The Spanish became the first people from Europe to discover the island, but from 1899 up until World War I it was ruled by Germany.
Once the war started, it was taken over by the Japanese and by 1941 there were thousands of Japanese settlers living in Saipan.
The island’s a great source of diverse vegetation as you can find hot peppers, coconuts, and papayas growing in the wild.
Local residents also grow bananas, mangoes, and taro roots. Of course, the Pacific Ocean also supplies a great amount of food and nutrition as tuna, Wahoo, billfish and many other types of fish and seafood are found here in plenty.
Saipan is also a treat, as far as wildlife goes ,as you’ll find a wide variety of local native birds. These include Collared Kingfishers, Pacific Reef Herons, And Melanesian Honeyeaters. If you head over to the Bird Island you can have a lookout for these pretty creatures.
Even though it’s out in the middle of the ocean, Saipan has one international airport and you can also reach it by ferry from Tinian, a nearby island. When you reach Saipan, you can explore the island by renting a car, biking, or taking taxis.
The island has a couple of major roads to link the local beaches and villages. Officially, there are a total of 31 villages in Saipan. The capital is Capital Hill, while some of the other popular villages are Achugao, Chalan Kiya, Marpi, Fina Sisu, Papago, Oleai, Tanapag, and San Roque.
The weather is wonderful all year round because the island’s pretty near the equator. This means it’s always a superb location for surfing, swimming, diving, snorkelling, and golf.
The island also features an interesting zoo and botanical gardens to visit, along with a fun water park and soldiers memorial for the kids. Other interesting attractions are local grotto and historic cliffs.
You won’t go hungry on Saipan as it has quite a selection of restaurants that dish up an assortment of cuisine as well as fresh regional seafood. When it comes to entertainment, there are numerous bars on the beaches such as karaoke bars, cocktail lounges and dinner shows.
The island has a fine choice of resorts and hotels to stay at and they come in all price ranges.
Saipan has plenty to offer to people of all ages, including natural beauty, outdoor activities, a storied history, and friendly residents.
Posted in: TRAVEL DESTINATIONS