Though Nauru is only 21 square kilometres, the island is scattered with plenty of war history dotted around the island. During WWII, Nauru was occupied by the Japanese for approx three years. The Japanese used the island as a stronghold and increased warfare infrastructure by building tunnels, a war prison and placing powerful guns at the top points of Nauru.
Three of these guns are still in place and can be found with your guide in the wilderness at Topside, the area known for its heavy phosphate mining and recognisable rock pinnacles caused by it.
On the road towards Buada Lagoon, remnants of train tracks can be found hidden underneath a well-groomed, sandy path. The train tracks were originally used for carrying phosphate down to the shore to be transferred onto ships, but are now almost hidden. You will need the assistance of your expert guide to find the prison as you walk down a jungle like path. The hike in is beautiful but rife with mosquitos. Trees and vines choke rocks and boulders before you reach the entrance of the prison. The remains of a Japanese prison from the war are still there holding their place in history. Three isolated prison cells used to house enemies of the Japanese in WWII.
Command Ridge Gun
Seeing one of these guns left over from WWII is pretty impressive. The gun has dents in the barrels near the top, meaning it can no longer be used effectively. You will also see a tunnel here which was originally used to climb inside the gun. If you continue past the gun and clamber down amongst the pinnacles, you may find the remains of an aircraft which was shot down during the war. These are harder to find and really do require the far limits of your imagination as they are almost unidentifiable as aircraft now.
These guns are surrounded by greenery and are still in incredible condition. Up here, you will also see the remnants of tunnels which are said to have once crossed from one side of the island to the other.
If you would like to explore more of Nauru’s WWII history, check our small group tour!
This category of tours involves light trekking, walking, cycling, rafting or kayaking for a few hours each day with a small amount of inclines and declines. You will require a reasonable level of fitness and good health to participate. It is important to note that due to the nature of some of our trips, they may take place in remote areas (with basic facilities) and can involve long travelling days on various modes of transport.
Suggested preparation : At least 3 months prior to departure, it is recommended that you undertake aerobic exercise (this may include jogging, cycling or fast walking) for 30 minutes, three times a week. It is also advised to walk on variable terrain and in variable weather conditions. For a cycling adventure, road cycling twice a week is recommended and for adventures which involve paddling and kayaking, it is important to gain confidence and rhythm rather than speed prior to departure.
This category of tours involve trekking, kayaking and cycling for period of 6 to 8 hours a day at a fairly consistent pace. Ideal for people looking to slightly increase the heart rate. For our moderately rated tours, you must have a good level of fitness and also be in good health. It is also important to be prepared for variable weather conditions. Altitude may also come into play. This category of tours may involve visiting remote areas where facilities can be quite basic. Accommodation may also involve camping, homestays or basic accommodation where facilities may not be considered of western standards. To enjoy this style of travel, it is suggested for travellers to have a reasonable level of fitness and health, a positive attitude, as well as a fairly active lifestyle. An open mind is also required.
Suggested preparation: At least 3 months prior to departure, it is recommended that you undertake 45mins – 1 hour of aerobic exercise, three to four times a week. Some potential exercises that could be beneficial include hill walking with a backpack on over variable terrain and weather conditions, as well as running and cycling dependent on the activity you plan on undertaking.
This category of tours involves trekking, kayaking, cycling or other adventure activities in remote areas for up to 8 to 10 hours a day. It is important to note that with the remoteness of some regions comes a variety of other challenges such as variable weather conditions, accommodation as well as facilities. You must have an excellent level of fitness and good health to be able to partake in this category of tour. You must have confidence in your own ability and be in good physical condition. Includes extended periods of endurance.
Suggested preparation: At least 3 to 4 months of strenuous exercise, four times a week. When preparing for treks it would be beneficial to participate in hill walks with a weighted day pack (approximately 5-8 kg) once a week for aerobic fitness and strengthening of leg muscles. It is also important to do this on variable terrain to prepare for challenging adventures. When preparing for cycling adventures, regular bike riding (at least 4 to 5 times a week for 1-4 hours is essential). It is also important to cycle on uneven surfaces or even participate in other aerobic exercises such as running or swimming to build up strength and stamina. Altitude may also be a factor in these tours.
This category of tour often involves extreme trekking, cycling or other extreme adventure activities. It is important to expect remote and poorly defined tracks and to be prepared for variable weather conditions for 10 to 12 hours per day (may sometimes be more depending on weather and altitude). These adventures are suitable for travellers who have prior experience in strenuous travel and activities, are extremely fit and have excellent health. It is also important to note that some of the terrain on these adventures will involve trekking in snow, at high attitude levels and may require technical equipment.
Suggested preparation: It is important to note that physical fitness should be an ongoing activity, commencing around 5-6 months prior to departure, or even before if you have no prior fitness. Exercise should focus on building maximum endurance and stamina. Four to five hard sessions of 40-60 mins per week should be completed and can include exercises such as going to the gym, running, swimming or cycling to focus on building aerobic stamina. It could also be beneficial to prepare by hiking on rough terrain, in extreme weather conditions or partake in altitude training.