Kolombangara Island is located in the western province of Solomon Islands. The people of Kolombangara believe that their ancestors came from the now dormant or semi-extinct volcano. The Kolombangara volcano is believed to have last been active about 10, 000 years ago. As more people have moved towards the coast or valleys to live, there are many village sites, burial sites and tambu sites that have been left behind in the mountains and crater. Visiting Kolombangara supports the island’s conservation, which covers 28% of the area and is the largest in the Solomons.
With a high biodiversity, you will discover undisturbed moss and valley rainforest, rivers and endemic birds and frogs. Visitors can choose from adventurous treks to the volcano crater or a quiet birdwatching and rainforest walk. Providing you are fit and well prepared, hiking through Kolombangara should be fairly easy and enjoyable. If you intend to walk into the cater, ensure that the day is clear of heavy rain. It is often humid and rains for short periods most days, but due to the elevation, it’s cooler than most parts of the country.
Depending on your fitness level, budget and itinerary, you can walk for as little or as long as you want. Choose from 1-2 hour walks, half day walks, full day walks or 2-3 overnight walks.
Short trips are ideal for those who want to discover nearby sites without too much effort. For those who are a bit fitter, hiking through rainforest and crossing rivers is a great half or full day experience. For those who are seeing the ultimate adventure and dare to reach the inside of the crater or climb the highest peak on the island while crossing rivers and narrow cliffs on a 2-3 day adventure, then you are catered for as well.
Accessible only by boat, Kolombangara offers several accommodation options including Imbu Rano Lodge, Onma Ecolodge, Ringgi Guesthouse and Hambere Village Stay. Tour guides are available at $200 per person and $150 per porter per person.
A minimum of one guide is required and meals must be provided. For more information about Kolombangara Island, please visit kolombangara.org.