South Pacific Islands

Sooo much to explore!

How Many Awesome Islands Can One Explore?

There are Literally 1000's of Gorgeous South Pacific Islands

The South Pacific lies within the Pacific ocean south of the latitude of Panama. It was called “Mar del Sur” (Southern Ocean) by its discoverer, Vasco Núñez de Balboa in 1513.

The South Pacific is divided into Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia.


South Pacific Islands in the World

The South Pacific is littered with many paradise islands of all sizes. As we write these paragraphs, new islands are being formed through volcanic activities in the Tongan oceans. They are creating even more islands to explore in the future.

Three Groups of South Pacific Island States

Culturally and ethnically, the South Pacific divides into three regions: Polynesia, Melanesia, and parts of Micronesia.

This entire island area covers an ocean surface of around 78 million kilometers2/ 30 million miles2.

South Pacific Map

Eastern & Central South Pacific Islands


Polynesia is what one would imagine paradise to be: turquoise lagoons, magnificent atolls, rugged volcanic landscapes, and ancient Maori traditions with their beautiful Hula dancers.

The land area of these more than 1,000 fantastic islands adds up to about 26,000 kilometers2/ 10,000 miles2.

PS: Hawaii is also part of Polynesia, but this group of islands is located in the northern hemisphere.

Here are the individual island states:

Maori Girl
map of polynesia

Cook Islands

Click here for a closer look at the Cook Islands. The Cook Islands is the first Polynesian Island State we explored in its entirety.

Western South Pacific Islands


Melanesia comes from Greek and means “the region of the dark-skinned people”. Because this is where the locals differ significantly from the lighter-skinned Polynesians.

The region is known for its large number of active volcanoes, unexplored caves, pristine reefs, beautiful beaches, and centuries-old cultures.

Melanesia has approximately 2,000 islands, making up 940,000 kilometers2/ 363,000 miles2 of land.

The Melanesian islands states include:

Melanesian man
map of melanesia

North Western South Pacific Islands


Micronesia translates from Greek as the “small islands”. They are known for their pristine waters and some of the world’s best dive spots.

Micronesia hosts around 2,000 islands, with a land surface of just around 3,000 kilometers2/ 1,150 miles2.

However, only some parts of Micronesia belong to the South Pacific, all others are located in the Western Pacific.

These are the Micronesian island states:


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