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Tinian

Travel Guide Oceania Micronesia Northern Mariana Islands Tinian

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Introduction

Tinian is one of the Northern Mariana Islands and is located just south of Saipan.

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Geography

Tinian is a small island 80 kilometres north of Guam and about 8 kilometres southwest of its sister island, Saipan, from which it is separated by the Saipan Channel. The island has a land area of 101 km².

Tinian is the least populated of the three main Mariana Islands that constitute the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Federated States of Micronesia.

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Cities

Tinian's main village is San Jose.

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Sights and Activities

Tinian's main attractions are the airstrips used by the US military during World War II. The airfield was earlier known as West Field, or Gurguan Point Airfield following massive re-building of the original Japanese constructed airfield in 1945. The newly expanded airfield became operationally ready in the early spring of 1945, and the US 20th Air Force XXI Bomber Command 58th Bombardment Wing was based there.

  • North Field is where the remains of the US bomber base and Atom Bomb Pits are located. The remains of Japanese fortifications, can also be found there. There is a memorial on the old airfield at the loading pits. These historic Atom Bomb loading pits had previously been filled in for safety. Both pits were recently reopened in conjunction with the 60th Anniversary Commemoration of the Battles of Saipan and Tinian. The United States Navy leases the Northwest Field area north of the Airport for artillery training, and offers tours of the area when not being used for training
  • Enola Gay monument - At the north end of Tinian there is a monument where the B-29 bomber Enola Gay took off carrying the first atomic bomb, later released over Hiroshima, Japan on 6 August 1945.
  • Shinto shrine - Tinian is home to the only remaining Shinto shrine in the Mariana Islands, an artifact from the days of Japanese colonisation.
  • Chief Taga's House is a traditional Micronesian island chief's house.
  • Limestone pillars and capstones - Latte Stone structures produced by the island's ancient inhabitants around 1500 B.C are still puzzling as to their origins and meaning.
  • The Blow Hole - massive columns of water shoot up to 10 m high, a result of waves entering cavities under a limestone ledge and forcing sea water upwards under pressure.

Other activities include swimming, diving, snorkelling and fishing.

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Weather

Tropical marine; moderated by northeast trade winds, little seasonal temperature variation. Dry season December to June, rainy season July to October. The typhoon, or hurricane, season lasts several months and starts in late August to early September.

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Getting There

By Plane

Tinian is served by propeller aircraft from Saipan during daylight hours:

  • Freedom Air, ☎ +1 670 433-3288. First flight from Siapan arrives in Titian at 6:45am and the last one at 6:40pm. The last flight departs for Siapan at 6:05pm. 13 flights per day, check in 30 minutes before departure, connections to Guam and Rota 1 way US$42, return US$84, discounts for military personnel and children.

By Boat

There is a ferry between Tinian and Saipan taking slightly less than an hour one way.

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Getting Around

Car, scooter and MoPed rentals are available. Enquire at one of the outlets across the road from the Dynasty hotel and casino or elsewhere on the island.

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Eat

  • Minako's Cafe, Broadway - Serves a mixture of Japanese, Filipino, Chamorro and American food at reasonable prices

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Sleep

Tinian has few options besides Tinian Dynasty Hotel & Casino, but since the hotel suffers from low occupancy rates, deep discounts may be available.

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This is version 1. Last edited at 12:42 on Jun 26, 15 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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