Nuku'alofa

The Royal Palace 
Pangao Si’i
Talamahu Local Market

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Nuku'alofa

A Natural Paradise off the Coast of the Pacific Ocean

In the Pacific Ocean, nestled between New Zealand, Fiji and Samoa, is the premier place in the world to see the sunrise: the kingdom of Tonga. One of the tropical paradises of Polynesia, it is made up of an archipelago of hundreds of atolls composed of white sand and wild nature that is almost completely untouched.

 
The MSC World Cruise will disembark in its capital, Nuku'alofa, starting off a dream vacation in a place where time seems to stand still in front of such beauty. 
 
Nuku'alofa is located on the island of Tongatapu, the largest in the country, and home of the Royal Palace, built in Victorian style and situated on the waterfront, though it is viewable only from the outside. You can however visit the surrounding area, which includes Pangao Si’i, a public park that houses the tombs of the royal family of Tonga.
 
The Lapaha archaeological site, in the east of the island, is also home to a group of tombs of great historical value. On your MSC Cruises excursion, you will see the historic places where Captain James Cook, who discovered the island, landed and you can visit the characteristic local market known as “Talamahu”. The people, always very warm and friendly, will help you discover local traditions and gastronomic customs: the cuisine is based on fish and coconut along with tropical fruit and vegetables.
 
The Kingdom of Tonga is the ideal destination for those seeking adventure in a remote corner of the world. Volcanoes, forests, canyons and high cliffs are combined with coral reefs, caves and rich animal fauna for an exploration into the land and its depths. This is without forgetting that here you will find the sailboat and snorkeling kingdom of the Pacific Ocean. With your MSC cruise ship, it is wonderfully easy to reach the most beautiful places on Earth.

Must see places in Nuku'alofa

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Tonga

An ancient kingdom of hundreds of islands
An ancient kingdom of hundreds of islands

Tonga consists of 150 islands, although only 40 are inhabited. The breathtaking panorama of this Polynesian archipelago, surrounded by the Pacific Ocean, is made up of wonderful stretches of sand, interspersed with palm trees and lapped by the clear waters that are home to the colourful coral reef.

On the island of Tongatapu there is the city of Nuku'alofa, the capital of the Kingdom of Tonga, a constitutional monarchy: hire a bike and enjoy the views while taking a leisurely ride around the city. Don’t miss the covered Talamahu market, where you can buy local crafts, the Royal Palace and the Ha'amonga 'A Maui, a series of tombs that make up the archaeological site of Lapaha - the Trilithon, a monument built with coral dating back to 1200 BC, is truly remarkable.

Finally, the blowholes on the island of Tongatapu are spectacular: rushing foamy waves which crash against volcanic rocks with great vehemence, creating huge walls of water.