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Noumea is the capital and largest city in New Caledonia and has a total population of roughly 100,000 inhabitants. The city is located in the southwest of the country on a peninsula on the main island Grande Terre. It forms the administrative, cultural, economical and industrial centre of the country and most people arriving by plane will eventually spend a day or so in lively and ethnically mixed Noumea. It has good facilities, with hotels, restaurants and transport to suit all budgets, but it lacks charm in general.
Although Noumea has a rather warm and humid climate, it is not as hot as places further north in the Pacific. The warmer period is from October to May, with temperatures around 26° C to 28 °C on average during the day and around 20 °C at night. Rain is common throughout the year. The driest period of the year is from September to December, while January to June is a wetter period. Even then, rainfall is not high - March is the wettest month and only gets around 140 mm of rain. Between June to August, the nights are relatively cool, but it rarely gets cold.
Tontouta International Airport is located some 45 kilometers from Nouméa. The national carrier is Air Calin, which mainly serves destinations throughout the Pacific region, Asia and New Zealand. Destinations include Auckland, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Brisbane, Hong Kong, Honolulu, Guam, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Melbourne, Nadi, Osaka-Kansai, Papeete, Port Vila, Seoul-Incheon, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo-Narita.
Air Calédonie provides domestic services between Nouméa and Touho, Koné, Koumac and Belep, all on the main island, Grande Terre. Other destinations include outer islands like Ile des Pins and the Loyalty Islands: Maré, Ouvéa, Lifou and Tiga. Air Alize, Air Loyaute and Helicocean and Helitourisme have light aircraft and helicopter services, some of them chartered.
There is an inter-island, high-speed catamaran, ‘Betico’, which runs regularly to Ile des Pins and the Loyalty Islands from Nouméa.
There is a comprehensive airconditioned public bus service that serves Noumea. Some services end in the early evening, bus stops generally have timetables on their pillar. Many services pass through or near to Place des Cocotiers, the main square of Noumea.
The centre of the city is quite compact and walkable.
It is possible to rent a bicycle from a store in the Gare Maritime complex on the sea front. The centre of Noumea is flat, but you do meet some hills as you leave city heading inland.
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Internet cafes are common in the capital Noumea, with prices reasonable. Many hotels offer wi fi and or internet services.
See also International Telephone Calls
The OPT post offices are available in Noumea.
We have a comprehensive list of accommodation in Noumea searchable right here on Travellerspoint. You can use our map to quickly compare budget, mid-range or top of the range accommodation in Noumea and areas nearby.
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