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Nan Madol, Kolonia

4.7
#1 of 10 in Things to do in Pohnpei
World heritage site · Ruin · Tourist Spot
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Described by locals as "the city built on coral reefs," Nan Madol was inhabited as early as the 1st or 2nd century CE. Constructed within a lagoon, the city consisted of a series of artificial islands linked by canals. Today, the semi-submerged site can only be explored by taking a kayaking tour. Drive or take a boat to the island, and then paddle to the man-made islands and their ancient ruins, preserving the story of a long-lost civilization. Prepare for your adventure by wearing footwear suitable for rugged terrain, and don't forget to bring plenty of bug spray. To visit Nan Madol and get the most from your holiday in Kolonia, create itinerary details personal to you using our Kolonia day trip website.
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Nan Madol reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
119 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Awe inspiring!!!! These ruins are a sight to behold and well worth a visit. It’s hard to imagine the scale of these ruins as you only see a small portion of what is over 90 islets. If you read up... 
    Awe inspiring!!!! These ruins are a sight to behold and well worth a visit. It’s hard to imagine the scale of these ruins as you only see a small portion of what is over 90 islets. If you read up...  more »
  • Dazzled by the tropic sun reflected on me in a shallow lagoon, I made my way on foot from overnight huts on Joy Island to Nan Madol, escorted by rays with large, seemingly comprehending eyes. It was....  more
    Dazzled by the tropic sun reflected on me in a shallow lagoon, I made my way on foot from overnight huts on Joy Island to Nan Madol, escorted by rays with large, seemingly comprehending eyes. It was....  more »
Google
  • Amazing place, maybe the most amazing place I have ever been. Not easy to find - not a lot of signage and you do cross through someone's house to get to the trail. You will need to pay a couple dollars to pass. Once on the trail, it is like another planet. The only issue was that the bridges were out and only some extremely slippery logs spanned the water. Ok, so I did the 'hike' in flip flops and I was solo, so it was probably not the best idea. Once to the main site, it is super interesting to see in person and up close and super creepy at the same time. The locals will tell you with a straight face that the columns levitated to the site. Regardless, this is a special site - show respect and please don't take anything or leave anything behind.
  • Definitely worth a visit if you’ve made it all the way to Pohnpei! Note that you will be charged thrice along the way: $1/person at the entrance where you park, $3/person when you start your trek in (its the family who owns the land Nan Madol sits on) and $5/person by the keeper of Nan Mahol when you reach the actual ruins (under the employ of the local chief). No actual booth to purchase tickets etc so good to get ready small bills so you can make the payments along the way. Best to wear slippers as you need to wade across the moat to get to the actual ruins. Actual height of water would depend on the time of the day; we went at 11am and water was mid calf. Don’t recommend going barefooted as it can be slippery + alot of mangrove root growing around there and they are quite sharp. Bring a little sling bag/back pack so you can tuck your phone + waterbottle into it as you make the crossing. The ruin is a sight to behold (as you marvel at how they could have engineered this a thousand years ago) but it is also quite overgrown with plants unfortunately.

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