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Just off the east cost of Pohnpei is an ancient city built of giant rocks. All the buildings were linked by canals and these grand palaces were the homes of the powerful and wealthy of the Saudeleur dynasty. The construction of Nan Madol was completed in 1200 AD, covering an area of 150 acres and was only occupied for about 400 years. There was no fresh water source or food raised in the city. The common folk, living on the island, had to bring all the food to the powerful. In 1600 an exiled warrior named Isokelekel raised an army of 333 and took over the city. After its take over the city started to fall into decline. It was slowly abandoned over the next 200 years and by 1800s no one was living there. Many people believe it is because of famines, plagues and bad weather the population of Pohnpei was reduced and could no longer support the city.
German explorers found the city in the mid 19th century but there is evidence that whalers may have looted it earlier. According to local legend the city was built by two powerful magicians and the buildings are linked to the the different clans and tribes, if a building is damaged then the tribe or clan will be harmed. Shortly after the Sokeh temple tumbled down the Germans put down a Sokeh Rebellion and banished them from the island.
Sunrise to Sunset.
Entrance cost is $4. Sometimes people do not operate the the ticket booth. If no one is there, just walk in to find someone else to pay.
The best way to get to Nan Madol is by driving. Either rent a care or hire a driver for the day. It is also possible to hire a boat for the day to take you around the ruins but they can only enter during high tide.
Take the circle Island Road east bound from Kolonia. After Sapwaplap Elementray School the road curves right by the Ice Plant sign. Continue for .0 km and turn left for Pohnpei Agriculture and Trade School. Drive across the campus and turn onto Temwen Island. turn right after Temwen Elementary School. Continue for .6 km and the trail starts on the left. There should be a person at a small standing selling tickets. If no one is there then go down the trail and ask someone else.
Don't expect to be able to buy food or water at Nan Madol. Bring everything you need for the day.
Remember to bring everything you need for the day, including water.
There are hotels in Kolonia.
We don't currently have any Travel Helpers for Nan Madol
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