Travel Guide Oceania Melanesia Solomon Islands Honiara



Iron Bottom Sound

Iron Bottom Sound

© dadmin

Honiara, the capital of the Solomon Islands, was built after the Second World War to replace the former capital of Tulagi. It serves largely as a springboard for activities in remoter areas of the Solomon Islands.

The Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau can provide good tourist information once you've made it to Honiara and can radio ahead to announce your arrival at guesthouses in more remote areas. It is located on Mendana Ave between the Yacht Club and the Solomon Kitano Mendana Hotel.



Sights and Activities

National Museum & Cultural Centre

The National Museum & Cultural Centre in Honiara is a good place to go and learn about the local culture. There are also several traditional houses (including a church with a very long service with singing and dancing was Sundays at 10:00am) constructed behind the museum, each in the style of a different province. Location: Mendana Ave, Honiara. Ph: (677) 22098. Open Mon-Fri 8:00am-4:30pm, Sat 8:00am-12:00pm. Entrance by donation.

Central Market

Stretch over a block between the seafront and Mendana Ave, the central market or the food market of Honiara grab the tourist’s attention. While crossing through the market, you can smell the fragrance of local vegetables and fruits. Apart from fruits and vegetables, you can also purchase souvenir shells, Malaitan shell money and jewelry. Closed Sundays, but a market at Fishermans Village towards the airport is open on Sunday.

National Parliament

The National Parliament is a conical-shaped concrete structure located at the top of the hill above Hibiscus Ave. You can enjoy watching the court proceedings from the public gallery. You can witness a great wall-hanging of traditional art on the interior of the dome that also comprises of arching frescoes. Opened in 1993, the building of the National Parliament was funded by the United States of America (USA).

  • The Kukum market
  • Bonegi Beach is white sandy beach about 20 minutes drive out of Honiara, featuring a couple of WWII wrecks that can be explored quite easily, even by snorkellers.
  • Tenaru Falls is an impressive 60-metre-high waterfall, which cascades into a deep pool, ideal for a refreshing swim. To reach the falls, you can drive to Hailupa and then will need to walk about 9 kilometres from there.
  • Mataniko Falls is another spectacular waterfall, requiring several hours of walking to reach. Find a guide at Lili village, near Tuvaruhu to show you the way.



Events and Festivals

  • New Year's Day - January 1. Most of the celebrations for New Year are around Honiara. However, the resorts around the country, especially beach resorts, generally organize something for tourists. If visitors find themselves along Mendana Avenue in Honiara, they should keep an eye on personal possessions, particularly when a crowd is around.
  • Good Friday to Easter Monday - Easter is an important celebration in most areas of the Solomon Islands, especially in larger cities when Christianity is practiced by the majority of the population. Honiara usually hosts a fun run during this day, and going to Mass is a wonderful way to get involved with the people.
  • Queen's Birthday, June 10
  • Independence Day - This is one of the most important days of the year for locals. Independence Day in the Solomon Islands occurs on July 7 each year. Basically, thousands of natives flock to the capital city, Honiara. Here, a range of parades, performances and celebrations are held. Tourists will need to book a hotel in advance if they are going to travel to the capital during Independence Day celebrations.
  • Christmas Day - On the 25 December, Christmas brings much joy to the people of the Solomon Islands. Most locals will move back to their home towns outside of Honiara, or visit relatives who live in the rural areas. Honiara becomes quiet for a few days. Nevertheless, churches and community halls usually hold an event or gathering on Christmas, so tourists shouldn’t feel left out.
  • National Day of Thanksgiving, December 26
  • Honiara Marathon - In the month of September, Honiara will host a popular marathon. The event is organized by the local government, but is sponsored by the country’s only national carrier, Solomon Airlines. Many runners from all over the Pacific come to the capital for this run.




Honiara has a tropical climate with temperatures averaging 28 °C. May to November tends to be the drier time of the year. The northwest monsoon season is from November to March, bringing with it warmer and wetter weather and occasional cyclones.



Getting There

By Plane

Honiara International Airport (HIR), formerly known as Henderson Field, is located 10 kilometres out of town and is the main point of entry into the country. Solomon Airlines provides international connecting flights to Australia, Fiji, Vanuatu and domestic flights throughout the islands.



Getting Around

By Car

Taxis are relatively plentiful and cheap in Honiara. They can be either ordered of flagged down.

By Public Transport

Public minibuses run along the main road, Mendana Avenue. A destination card is displayed on the front window and fares are modest, from the airport to Central Market S$500, shorter distance S$300. Taxis are not metered but can be booked or flagged down in the street.




There is surprising variety in Honiara with many restaurants catering to expats.

  • The Lime Lounge is a popular café with free (slow) wifi. (Location: Downtown, next to the ANZ bank. Opening Hours: 7:00am to 5:00pm weekdays, less on the weekend).
  • The Taj Mahal - Located near the airport has excellent Indian and Sri Lankan food and is excellent value.
  • Korean BBQ - Located on what looks like wasteground near the Central Market. They serve excellent dishes even though the decor is quite rustic.
  • Honiara Hotel - Located overlooking Chinatown has several restaurants; an excellent French restaurant, a Chinese restaurant (planned) and a general restaurant serving sandwiches and burgers.
  • Iron Bottom Sound - There is an excellent Japanese restaurant here with a terrace where drinks can be served. An excellent place to watch the sunset.
  • The Yacht Club - The favoured hangout of expats in Honiara, the yacht club has a variety of simple and inexpensive meals available nightly.
  • Rain Tree Cafe - A beautiful sea front location on the west end of Honiara amid quiet gardens and under a thatch leaf house. Great coffee, smoothies, lassies and fresh organic food, wood fired pizzas. A great place for sunset meals, breakfasts and hanging out on weekends. Allow ample time for your order to be prepared. Locally owned and operated by local women. BYO. Rain Tree Cafe Website.
  • Lunch bars near the museum - There are a number of eateries here, on the same side of the main road as the museum, to its left if you are facing it from the main road. A range of lunch foods and drinks are on offer, including fish 'n' cassava chips and green (drinking) coconuts.

Buy your own - * The Central Market, located on the main road, is a great source of fresh fruit and vegetables. Fish and chips, as well as uncooked fish, are also sold there.




There are many hotels in Honiara, mainly catering to expats. The Honiara Hotel, the King Solomon, Iron Bottom Sound, The Airport Motel and the Casino are a few.

For more budget accommodation, the United Church Resthouse is recommended. It's located in Lower Vavaya Ridge Road. Phone: +677) 20028.

You can use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)




Keep Connected


Getting on the internet in the Solomons is starting to become more easily achieved, in particular in Honiara. Outlying areas still have limited access due to their remote locations, but this is changing quickly through a growing wifi network and solar powered internet stations.

There is an internet café called PFnet in Honiara on the 2nd floor of the NPF Plaza.

You can also purchase a prepaid wifi or dial-up service through Our Telekom's Bumblebee service. Access is granted by buying a scratch-card which will give you a username and password.

To access the dial-up service, the number is number to dial is 141, nationwide. One card will give you 120 minutes of dial-up access and is valid for 30 days. The cards can be purchased from any Telekom office.

The "Always-on" service allows you to connect by wifi from one of the hotspots around the country (currently in Honiara, Western Province and in Auki). There are two access types, either a 2-hour card or a 7-day card. Look for a "Bumblebee Broadband" logo. The cards can be purchased from any Telekom office in Honiara and from the offices in Gizo, Ringgi, Noro and Munda.

Both the prepaid dialup and "Always On" cards can also be purchased from several retailers around Honiara, including the major hotels.

If you are in the Solomons for an extended period of time, you can also sign up for post-paid plan on a minimum 12 month contract.


See also International Telephone Calls

The calling code for the Solomon Islands is +677. No area code is required to reach Honiara. To call out of the Solomon Islands, use the exit code 00, followed by the destination country's calling code.

There is a growing GSM network (900MHz) in the Solomons operated by Our Telekom. You can get prepaid SIM cards to access the service at SB$50 including $20 credit. [1] Base stations are spreading throughout the islands, even in some fairly remote areas.

Our Telekom has international roaming agreements with Australian networks Telstra and Optus as well as Papua New Guinea's Telikom PNG Limited.

Emergency numbers to know are:

  • 911 – Ambulance
  • 977 – Search & Rescue
  • 988 – Fire
  • 999 – Police Crime Stop


The main post office is off Mendana Ave in the capital Honiara, open 8:00am to noon, and 1:00pm to 4:30pm Monday to Friday, as well as Saturday mornings. There is only postal delivery to post office boxes or poste restante.



  1. 1 Prices Sourced May 2013: Our Telekom

Quick Facts


  • Latitude: -9.426761
  • Longitude: 159.948735

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This is version 31. Last edited at 13:22 on May 29, 19 by Utrecht. 22 articles link to this page.

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