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Wonders of the Federated States of Micronesia

Reef in Pohnpei
Reef in Pohnpei / David Burdick, NOAA, / CC BY 2.0

WorldBlue  Highlights

The most amazing wonders of the Federated States of Micronesia are:

  • Archaeological heritage. These small islands are very rich with very interesting monuments of the past. Two monuments are true "stars" of world importance – Nan Madol and the Rai of Yap, but there are many more.
  • Biodiversity above the water and below it. On the hilltops of Pohnpei and Kosrae still grow some of the lowest montane cloud forests in the world with multiple species of plants and animals found only there. Even more amazing is the underwater life with countless species of sea animals.

Map with the described wonders

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WorldViolet Top 24 wonders of the Federated States of Micronesia

Geological wonders

Pohndollap (Sokehs Rock)


Spectacular monolith – some 275 m tall cliff. It was used as a fortress during the uprising against the German colonial government in 1910.

Sawarlap and Sawartik Falls


Two beautiful, tall waterfalls located close to each other.

Kepirohi Falls


A magnificent cascade, some 15 m tall.

Kepirohi Falls, Pohnpei
Kepirohi Falls, Pohnpei / Tony Tolley, / CC BY-SA 2.0
Tonata Guns and Caves


Natural caves, fortified by the Japanese in World War II and used to house large guns.

Pahntakai Falls


Very tall cascade – a thin stream forming more than 30 m tall falls over an overhanging cliff. Behind the falls are small caves.

Pahntakai Falls in Pohnpei rainforest
Pahntakai Falls in Pohnpei rainforest / Tony Tolley, / CC BY-SA 2.0
Liduhduhniap Falls (Liduduhniap Waterfall)


Spectacular waterfall with two cascades – approximately 4.5 m and 15 m tall. An interesting detail is a natural hollow at the base of the falls. Water in this hollow was used for the preparation of sakau – a ceremonial drink. After the rain, this stream becomes wild and may be dangerous.

Biological wonders

Kosrae montane cloud forest


One of the lower elevation cloud forests in the world, starting already at the height of 450 m. Contains numerous endemic species of plants and animals found only here.

Sacred Lasialap Eel Pond (Pwuodoi Eel Pond)


A site with a unique tradition – a pond where large, tame eels live. It is forbidden to harm these fishes and tourists can admire how some local people call the eels and keep them in their hands.

Pohnpei montane cloud forest


One of the lower elevation cloud forests in the world, starting already at the height of 450 m. Here are numerous endemic species of plants and animals found only here. One of them – the beautiful palm Clinostigma ponapensis – forms pure stands.

Mount Winipat (Winipot, Uinipot)


Unique tropical forest with endemic species of plants and animals. The forest is dominated by Chuuk Poisontree (Semecarpus kraemeri) and only here lives a Teardrop White-eye (Rukia ruki) – a bird that depends on poisontree. Here lives also the Chuuk Islands Giant Millipede – a 15.5 cm long millipede and several more plants found only here (Schefflera kraemeri, Semecarpus kraemeri, Randia carolinensis).

Archaeological wonders

Nan Madol


Unique archaeological monument in this part of the world – ruins of a prehistoric city. Consists of nearly 100 artificial islets with massive stone walls, with the largest stones weighing up to 50 tons. The capital of the Saudeleur dynasty. The megalithic structures were built in the 12th – 13th century and inhabited until the early 14th century.

Nan Madol, Pohnpei
Nan Madol, Pohnpei / CT Snow, / CC BY 2.0
Lelu ruins (Leluh)


The former capital of Kosrae. It developed sometime around 1400 AD and was inhabited until the coming of Europeans in the 19th century when some 1,500 people lived in the city. This large island city now has ruins of more than 100 walled enclosures made of stone, royal burial compounds, and shrines.

Pohnpaid petroglyphs


A rich petroglyph find with more than 750 carved drawings and symbols. Part of the petroglyphs is on a large cliff, and part (in a different style) – on the nearby boulders. It is possible that the oldest petroglyphs here were made sometime around 0 AD.

Tonachau petroglyphs


At the foot of this legendary mountain – the abode of God Souwoniras and his son – in basalt cliff have been etched numerous petroglyphs.

Finol Tokosra stone statues


A group of large stones shaped like fish (manta rays), turtles, and geometric figures. Also on the southern coast of Kosrae has been found a large slab of basalt that might be an ancient statue that is similar to the statues of Rapa Nui. There are stories about large statues that existed in Kosrae in earlier times.



Site of an ancient village. On this site was developed an industry of coral fishhooks.



Site of an ancient royal village in the southwest of Kosrae. Remnants of stone walls.

Dinay Village site


Abandoned historical village with numerous remnants of stone structures, and terraces. This village is located inland.



An archaeological site that is considered to be an important religious site with the ruins of diverse structures.

Architecture wonders

Rai of Yap


Limestone discs with a hole in the middle, and a diameter of up to 3 meters, used as money over the last 500 years. In 1929 there were registered 13,281 stone discs all over the island, now many have been looted and some thousands remain. The largest "coins" are on Rumung Island – one coin here has a diameter of 3.6 m.

Rai of Yap in the front of meeting house
Rai of Yap in the front of meeting house / CT Snow, / CC BY 2.0
Truk Lagoon (Chuuk Lagoon)


One of the largest ship graveyards in the world. In 1944 here were bombed and sunk 60 Japanese ships and 275 airplanes.



On this small island live 250 people with their own language and cultural traditions. Many people on this island have a rare disease – achromatopsia – they are color blind.

Ancient footpaths of Yap


The villages of Yap island are connected by a network of ancient footpaths. Paths are laid with stones and are slightly elevated above the surrounding ground. These footpaths have been well preserved over the centuries and often are beautified with flowers and decorative shrubs.

Ancient footpath, Yap in Micronesia
Ancient footpath, Yap / David Weekly, / CC BY 2.0
Bechiyal Meeting House


Old, very large meeting house that has been built in a characteristic local style. There are more structures in the traditional style on the island but Rebhiel rural house might be the most interesting one.

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Barbra Barwell Amon
Barbra Barwell Amon
3 years ago

wow..this place look really beautiful

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