Issuu on Google+

FRANCE & EUROPE

New Caledonia

contact

New o d nia ! e l a C The

4 bis, rue Ventadour, 75001 Paris Ph: 33 (0)1 47 03 17 74 Fax: 33 (0)1 47 03 17 75 info-par@nctps.com www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.fr www.nueva-caledonia-turismo.es www.newcaledoniatourism.eu www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.eu www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.be www.nieuw-caledonie-toerisme.nl www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.ch

www.newcaledoniatourism.co.uk

ITALIA c/o Rappresentante Italia Ph: (39) 339 841 66 75 nuova-caledonia@tiscali.it www.nuovacaledoniaturismo.it

DEUTSCHLAND (Österreich & Schweiz) c/o Eyes2market Ph: (49) 4101 696 48 13 neukaledonien@eyes2market.com www.neukaledonientourismus.de

NOUMÉA Office de Tourisme 05 75 80 (N° Vert) Square Olry – Place des Cocotiers 14, rue Jean Jaurès centre-ville – Nouméa Ph: (687) 28 75 80 – Fax: (687) 28 75 85 centre.ville@office-tourisme.nc

New Caledonia Tourism www.newcaledoniatourism.uk.com

l l e e r v a r T Guide 's


summary

Welcome!

• PRACTICAL INFORMATION. . . . . . . . . . 2/9 • TOUR OF NEW CALEDONIA . . . . . . . 10/51 – Nouméa, the capital . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 – Mont Dore and Yaté, the Great South . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 – Dumbéa, a nature lover’s paradise . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 – Païta and Boulouparis, gateways to the Bush . . . . . . . . . 26 – La Foa and Moindou, pioneering and dynamic . . . . . . . . 28 – Farino and Sarraméa, in the heart of the Mountain range . 30 – Bourail, between the sea and the mountains . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 – Poya, Pouembout, Koné and Voh, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34/35 the economic crossroads of the North – Kaala-Gomen, Koumac, Poum, Bélep, . . . . . . . . 36/37 Ouégoa et Pouébo, The Far North – Hienghène, the Kanak culture heartland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 – Touho and Poindimié, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 for the spectacular lushness of the East Coast – Ponérihouen, Houaïlou, Kouaoua, Canala . . . . 40/41 and Thio, between nickel and thermal springs – The Isle of Pines, a taste of paradise . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42/45 – The Loyalty Islands: Lifou, Maré and Ouvéa, . 46/51 Nature blessed

• ACTIVE HOLIDAYS . . . . . . . . . . . . 52/79 The world’s largest lagoon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 – – – –

Underwater Diving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54/55 Escape to the islands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56/57 Fishing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Watersports: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58/59 windsurfing, kitesurfing, waterskiing and surfing

Adventures in the great outdoors . . . . . . .

60 – Hiking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60/63 – Go for a ride: horseriding, quad, mountainbiking and canoeing 63/64 – Rockclimbing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 – Hunting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 – View from the air: parachuting, helicopter, gliding . 66/67 – Golf . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68/69

A multicutural archipelago – – – – –

..................

70

Life in the Bush . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70 The Kanak world . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71/74 Artistic expression . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74/76 Local cuisine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76/77 Night life and entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78/79

• MAPS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . – – – – –

World Map . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Nouméa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16/17 Isle of Pines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 Loyalty Islands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47, 49, 51 New Caledonia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80

What better way to spend your holidays than in New Caledonia - in the very heart of the South Pacific. To make sure you get the most out of your amazing holiday, you should aim to see as much of the New Caledonian archipelago as you can, exploring the Mainland, the Isle of Pines and the Loyalty Islands. This guide will provide you with all of the practical information you will need as you meander around the various districts which make up beautiful New Caledonia. Delight in the contrasts of colour between the bold mineral rich landscapes, the deep turquoise blue of the ocean and rich emerald green of the spectacular forests. With the second longest reef in the world at approx. 1,800km (Great Barrier Reef is approx. 2000km) and the largest lagoon in the world, UNESCO has taken an important step in making sure we keep the natural wonders of New Caledonia in their true condition.” The entire New Caledonian reef stretches over 23,000 square kilometres, 15,000 square kilometres of which has been recognised by UNESCO. Many parts of the reef can be explored within a 20m diving depth, making them easily accessible to amateur divers. So take the plunge and dive into the depths of this breathtakingly beautiful lagoon New Caledonia is a unique blend of cultures including Kanak, French, Polynesian, Indonesian and also Vietnamese, resulting in a wealth of cultural diversity. Although you may initially find the New caledonian people to be a little shy and reserved, you will quickly discover just how welcoming and generous they can be.


Practical

Information

Where is New Caledonia? New Caledonia lies in the Pacific Ocean, south of Melanesia. It is 2 hours flying time from Australia, 21/2 hours from New Zealand, 9 hours from Japan, 14 hours from Los Angeles and 21 hours from France.

Geography New Caledonia is the third largest archipelago in the Pacific after Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. It boasts the largest lagoon in the world, surrounded by a 1,600 km coral reef, which stretches over approximately 24,000 square kilometres and is home to rich variety of endemic tropical fauna. The territory of New Caledonia consists of: the main island or Mainland, the Isle of Pines to the south-east, the Loyalty Islands (Maré, Lifou, Tiga and Ouvéa) to the east, and the Bélep archipelago to the northwest, as well as many other small islands. The Mainland, which is the most populated area and wealthiest of the New Caledonian archipelago, features the spectacular central mountain range “la Chaîne” along its entire length, a succession of high mountains with the highest being Mount Panié in the north (1,629m) and Mount Humboldt in the south (1,618m). High up in these mountains are fertile forests which are home to many unique species that are found nowehere else in the world.

History The first humans to settle in New Caledonia arrived arround 1,500 to 2,000 years ago, bringing with them their Melanesian languages and cultures.

In 1774… James Cook discovered a large island as his ship, The Resolution, made its way to New Zealand. He

christened this land “New Caledonia” and spent some time in Balade, where he came into contact with Melanesian tribes.

In 1853, under the reign of Napoleon III, France took possession of the island by the declaration of Admiral Febvrier-Despointes. At the same time, the discovery of substantial mineral deposits promised exciting future development possibilities. The mining of copper, cobalt and nickel contributed significantly to the growth of New Caledonia’s economy.

From 1864 to 1894, some 22,000 convicts were sent to New Caledonia’s convict settlement.

In 1894, Governor Feillet transformed the island into a voluntary immigration colony where, under contract, Malabar Indians, Vietnamese and Javanese workers arrived to provide labour for the first mines. This period was responsible for the great ethnic diversity you will find in New Caledonia’s population today.

The Second World War marked a turning point in the history of New Caledonia. It played a strategically important part in the Pacific conflict and at the same time opened itself up to the modern world. The Territory also experienced significant growth and consumerism through the

Helsinki Amsterdam London

Paris Seoul Dubaï

Los Angeles

Tokyo Osaka

Hong Kong

Singapore

Nouméa Brisbane Sydney 0

Papeete

Auckland

2 000 km

3


Practical Information Territory (TOM) until 19 March 1999, when it gained new status, becoming a territorial collective with special status incorporating three provinces (Southern, Northern and the Loyalty Islands) with a total of 33 districts.

Passport and visa requirements American G.I.s who were posted to New Caledonia.

2004, 40% of whom live in the capital Nouméa, the New Caledonian popu-

From 1968 to 1972, the nickel “Boom” transformed New Caledonia into a very prosperous country. The 1980s was a difficult period in the Territory’s history with the “events” resulting in the Matignon Accords, signed in November 1988 (by the MP for New Caledonia, Jacques Lafleur, Jean-Marie Tjibaou and the French Prime Minister). Since this time, New Caledonia has experienced strong economic growth. In 1998, in a referendum which took place on the 8th of November, New Caledonians approved the signing of the Nouméa Accords which established a stability pact for the next twenty years as well as providing for greater autonomy for New Caledonia within the French Republic.

lation is a diverse multi-cultural society comprising Melanesians, Europeans, Polynesians, Indonesians, Vietnamese, Japanese and Chinese.

Climate New Caledonia has been described as “the land of eternal spring” as it is blessed with a pleasant semi-tropical climate all year round. The rainy season runs from January to March and, according to statistics, February has the greatest rainfall. During the cool season (July, August), temperatures vary from 20 to 26 degrees celsius.

Population Estimated at 230,268 inhabitants in

Surface area 18,575 km2

Capital Nouméa

Administrative organisation

French nationals must present a current passport. The identity card is insufficient due to stopovers in other countries. No visa is required for EEC passport holders or nationals from the United States, New Zealand or Australia when the stay is for three months or less. Visitors of other nationalities can obtain the necessary information from the French Embassy in their country of residence. A “Carte de Séjour” or resident status in France is not enough to stay in New Caledonia. In these instances, you must have a visa.

Formalities and services for yachties Port Moselle is the port of entry for New Caledonia. Yachties arriving in the territory must enter at this point. Formalities are carried out at the “Capitainerie”. A VHF watch is available on Channel 67 (code “Port Moselle”) daily from 7.00am to 6.00pm. The first night’s mooring at the quay is free of charge to all boats flying the

yellow flag and arriving from overseas. Your stay here cannot exceed one month. The Capitainerie is responsible for advising Customs, the Border Police and biosecurity of the arrival of yachts at the visitors’ pontoon. The main information relative to entry and stay formalities in New Caledonia is available on the company’s internet site: www.sodemo.nc. Customs formalities can be carried

out at Pandop (Koumac) and at Wé (Lifou) however yachties must go through the other administrative formalties in Nouméa.

Health New Caledonia has a good and modern medical infrastructure. There are many hospital centres and dispensaries. Yellow fever vaccination certificate is required when coming in the country for travellers who come from an endemic area. Tourists are strongly advised to have their regular vaccinations up to date (diptheria, tetanos, polio). For more information, please contact your doctor.

Emergencies (telephone) SAMU (medical emergencies): 15 Police assistance: 17 PC sea assistance: 16 Fire brigade: 18 Police municipale de Nouméa: 25 23 23 Information for Phone Numbers: 1012

New Caledonia was a French Overseas

5


Practical Information Time difference

Media

Local time is GMT + 11, therefore 1 hour ahead of Sydney winter time and same time in daylight saving summer time, 10 hours ahead of metropolitan French winter and 9 hours ahead of summer time. The sun rises from 4.30am onwards and night falls around 7.00pm in December/January, whereas in June/July, the sun rises at 6.30am and sets at 5.30pm.

Most of the local media are in French. A daily newspaper: Les Nouvelles Calédoniennes – www.info.lnc.nc – Weeklies: Télé 7 jours (local edition), Les Infos – Bimestrials: Objectif (an economic magazine), Challenge Magazine (French/English, current events, politics and discovery) – Metropolitan French Radio: Radio France Outre-mer (RFO) broadcasts 24/24 with, from midnight to 5am, France-Inter broadcasts; Radio Rythme Bleu (RRB) broadcasts programmes from Europe 1 at certain times – local radio: RNC; NRJ; RRB; Radio Djido and Radio Océane – Television: Télé Nouvelle-Calédonie; Tempo; France O¨; Canal+ (pay channel) and Canal Satellite (pay channel).

Clothing Light, practical clothing can be worn all year round. Long sleeves are recommended for the cooler evenings from May to October. Reef shoes or an old pair of sports shoes should be included for island walks. In Melanesian areas, topless and nude bathing are forbidden on beaches, especially on the Isle of Pines and in the Loyalty Islands. Elsewhere, suitable attire is preferred.

Water and electricity Tap water is drinkable and of excellent quality. Local or imported mineral water can be purchased in shops, hotels and when eating out. The electric current is 220 volts and distributed throughout the Mainland and in the islands. In some isolated regions, generators provide electricty to villages at certain times in the morning and evening. Electric plugs are the same as those in metropolitan France.

Currency CFP franc (French Pacific Franc). The exchange rate is determined in relation to the Euro. 1,000 FCFP = 8.38 euros. 1 euro = 119,25 FCFP. Changing euros into CFP francs is free. Bank note distributors are widely available in the territory.

The cost of living New Caledonia is a developed country with a high standard of living. There are restaurants for all budgets, from the quality gourmet to the more modest, and they are all extremely convivial.

Accommodation New Caledonia has a wide variety of accommodation options ranging from 5 star hotels to the rural or tribal gite, as well as homestays and camping sites. It is recommended that you book in advance, especially during the school holidays.

Nouméa to Isle of Pines in 2h30. The hire of a motorboat or yacht is another more sedate way of reaching the Isle of Pines at your own pace, while providing you with a wonderful place to stay at the same time.

Maré, Lifou and Ouvéa are a 40 minute flight from Nouméa, and there

The distance from La Tontouta Airport to Nouméa Tontouta International Airport is situated approximately 50 kms north of Nouméa. Shuttles and taxis are available at the airport. It takes approximately 50 minutes for the trip into town.

How can you get to the islands? All regular domestic flights are provided by the domestic airline Air Calédonie. They depart from Magenta Airport in Nouméa. Tickets can be bought directly from the company or through tourist agencies. See the addresses of Air Calédonie in the Transport box in the Address Book. The Isle of Pines is 20 minutes flying time from Nouméa and serviced daily with several flights on Air Calédonie. You can also get there by helicopter (in 1 hour). Ferries « Bético 2 » and « Arémiti 4 » run from

are several flights each day on Air Calédonie. Inter-island Loyalty Tchap Tchap flights are sold at reduced prices. To benefit from these, passengers must stay in the transit zone between two flights. The Betico motorised catamaran also runs services from Nouméa to Lifou, Maré and Ouvéa several times a week.

Public and school holidays Public holidays are the same as those in metropolitan France. The long summer holiday break begins mid-December ending mid-February.

7


Practical Information was awarded the title of World Champion in 2003.

Telephone

Tourism Offices For any information concerning your stay in New-Caledonia, the Tourism Office welcomes you either on Coconut Square or Anse Vata offices. Tourist agents will advise you on the best services provided. Furthermore, Information Desk are also available in

meat products can be brought into New Caledonia. The same applies to plants and seeds. Canned or vacuumpacked foods are generally authorised.

What products can I bring into New Caledonia? For visitors over 18 years of age, the duty free allowance for alcoholic beverages into New Caledonia is 2 litres of still wine plus 1 litre of spirits/ liqueurs (more than 22%) or 2 litres of wine plus 2 litres of spirits/liqueurs (less than 22%). Like other islands in the Pacific, no fresh produce such as fruits, vegetables, primary or dairy foods or raw

Internet Internet is now widely available in New Caledonia. You can check or send your messages from your hotel or in one of the many cyber cafes and spaces open to the public.

What souvenirs can be taken out of New Caledonia? There is a wide variety of souvenirs available, including locally made arts and crafts made of wood, pandanus or bamboo, stone, soap or mother of pearl. Also sarongs, clothing and household linen sporting the colours of the Pacific, or treats made of coconut, banana and guava!

some villages (refer to the Address Book « Visitor’s Information Office »)

Telephone services are available throughout the Mainland and islands. OPT NC (Post and Telecommunications) , 9 rue Gallieni in Nouméa and in all OPT agencies. For telephone information dial 1014 (free call). The country code for New Caledonia: 687 To dial a foreign country there are two

OPT NC: Post and Telecommunications of New Caledonia Ph: 26 82 00 - Fax: 28 90 90 telecom@opt.nc – www.opt.nc The OPT NC has offices throughout the entire Territory in 3 sectors of activity: mail, financial services and telecommunications. A letter takes on average 4 to 5 days by air between New Caledonia and Australia or New Zealand, and up to one week for Europe. Postage stamps, telephone cards and superbly illustrated first-day envelopes are a delight for collectors and tourists alike. In fact, the OPT NC’s philately

company before they depart. It will connect you automatically. Otherwise you will need to buy a “Liberty” card from the Post and Telecommunications Office in Nouméa. This system involves buying a SIM card and a limited number of minutes, valid for 90 days. Telephone cards are sold at some newspaper kiosks. The Mobilis “Liberty” service is a nonsubscriber system which enables you to make calls both within and outside the territory, based on the purchase of cards sold with a quota of prepaid communication minutes.

possible options : Dial 00 + country code + required number or Dial 19 + country code + required number.

Useful phrases in French

Mobile phone

– Hello (good morning / good afternoon): Bonjour – Good evening: Bonsoir – Goodbye: Au revoir – How are you? Comment allez-vous or Comment ça va ? – Fine, thank you: Ca va (bien) merci – Please: S'il vous plaît – Thank you (very much): Merci (beaucoup) – Yes: Oui – No: Non – Excuse me: Excusez-moi (pardon) – What time is it? Quelle heure estil ? – Where is the post office ? Où se trouve la poste ? – How much is it ? Combien ça coûte ?

You can use your mobile phone in New Caledonia. The roaming system is available in association with Telstra, Optus and Vodafone Australia. Subscribers to these networks can benefit from the same advantages in New Caledonia and can also use their mobile telephone on the local Mobilis network. Other users must notify their telephone

9


n i a o d e l a C Tour of New cal colours of the far North; Hienghène and its majestic landscapes ; Touho, Poindimié and Houaïlou on the East coast for their spectacular lushness; Thio, Canala and Kouaoua between the nickel and thermal springs.

The New Caledonian archipelago is vast and blessed in terms of its diverse culture and many abundant natural attractions. The Mainland (the largest island) of New Caledonia is 400 kms long and 50 kms wide. For most of you, your holiday will begin in the capital, Nouméa. After a quick tour of this cosmopolitan city to get your bearings, you should take a one or two day excursion using the route heading towards Mont-Dore and Yaté to the Deep South.

For a tour of the Mainland by car you should allow five to six days, departing from Nouméa and heading to the north of the West coast, returning via the East coast.

You will drive through Dumbéa, a nature lover’s paradise ; Païta and Boulouparis, gateways to the Bush ; pioneering and dynamic La Foa and Moindou ; Farino and Sarraméa in the heart of the mountain range ; picturesque Bourail which is between the mountains and the ocean; Poya, Pouembout, Koné and Voh, the economic crossroads of the North ; Kaala-Gomen, Koumac, Poum, Ouegoa and Pouébo with the magi-

– carry cash (CFP francs) for any stay in rural areas on the Mainland and on the islands. Some gîtes and tour operators do not accept credit cards or travellers’cheques. – fill up with petrol before leaving each major district when travelling in rural areas.

The roads are excellent and well signposted. As in France, you drive on the right side of the road in New Caledonia. A current driver’s licence is required to drive a rental car. The wearing of Seat Belts is obligatory. The maximum speed allowed on the RT1 (Territorial Road N°1) is 110 km/h.

– book excursions at least 24 hours prior through accommodation facilities or with tourist agencies.

A tour of New Caledonia would not be complete without a trip to the Isle of Pines or the Loyalty Islands.You should plan to spend at least two days at each destination. Getting there is easy with daily flights on Air Calédonie or regular ferries services on the motorised Betico and Aremiti 4. Alternatively you could hire a boat.

– ask permission before visiting and photographing a tribe or certain sites to respect the local inhabitants. A small gift will also be appreciated. – dress appropriately. Nudity and topless bathing are strictly forbidden on beaches in these areas.

When staying in the “Bush” or on the islands, you are advised to: – book meals in advance if staying in gîtes or with tribes. The latter are not obliged to provide meals.

Have a great trip! 11


Visit…

Nouméa

The capital The cosmoplitan capital of New Caledonia is a large pensinsula named Nouméa. This city, which is just over 150 years old, is both dynamic and peaceful. Despite its 100,000 inhabitants and ongoing rapid expansion, Nouméa has lost nothing of its charm and has managed to develop many unique attractions. These include a downtown area which was designed in the 19th century, increasingly well-preserved colonial houses in the first residential areas to be built, the vestiges of the military which can be seen in several areas, beautiful sheltered bays bathed in sunshine, and so much more ! Nouméa is also the country’s administrative, political and economic centre, reflecting a multi-cultural society, nourished by generations of peaceful communal living between the archipelago’s various ethnic communities. As Nouméa is a peninsula, it is blessed with many welcoming islands around its shores, which are favourite weekend haunts…

Things to discover A tour of Nouméa’s bays “La Baie de la Moselle” and the famous market

The colourful market is open daily from 5am to 11am (closed the 3rd Monday of the month). You should also visit the American monument (erected to commemorate this valuable ally in the Pacific war). Moselle Bay shelters a large modern marina which is the departure point for boat excursions, including trips to Amédée lighthouse, îlot Maître and many other islands paradises.

“La baie de l'Orphelinat” La baie de l’Orphelinat, named in memory of the orphans of Empress Eugénie who were sent to New Caledonia to be brides for the first settlers. Orphelinat Bay has a special centenary monument, in the form of an anchor, which was erected in 1953 to celebrate a century of French presence in New Caledonia.

“La Baie du Kuendu” Just 10 minutes from downtown Nouméa lies Kuendu Bay, which is popular for its white sand beach, the water slide, the activities organised by the resort of the same name and the remains of Fort Tereka.

“La baie des Citrons” Generally a very sheltered bay, this is an extremely family-friendly bay with a lovely beach, cafés, restaurants and nightclubs.

“L’Anse Vata” A mecca for tourists and home for a wide variety of water sports, Anse Vata is also a pleasant place to go for a walk under the coconut palms. Here you will find hotels, businesses, restaurants and nightclubs, as well as the Tourism Office.

“La Baie de Sainte-Marie” The well-developed Pierre-Vernier Promenade is a pleasant place for a wide variety of leisure activities and relaxation. This is a popular meeting place for walkers, runners and family bike rides in the shade of the coconut palms. The international Sailing Centre which occupies one of the bay’s coves, played host to the world Olympic windsurfing cup in 1999.

TOURISM OFFICE Toll Free : 05 75 80 – www.office-tourisme.nc • Square Olry, Place des Cocotiers, centre-ville Ph: 28 75 80 – Fax: 28 75 85 – centre.ville@office-tourisme.nc • Promenade Roger-Laroque, Anse Vata Ph: 27 73 59 – 28 93 60 – anse.vata@office-tourisme.nc

13


Visit…

Nouméa

NATURE AND CULTURE PASS A unique way to discover New Caledonia’s rich cultural and natural diversity. One entry per person to six of Nouméa’s « must-see » venues : Aquarium, New Caledonia museum, Town museum, Maritime museum, Tjibaou Cultural Center and Zoo and Botanical Gardens, valid for six months from the first visit. Great savings of 1 000xpf on the usual entry fees. For sale in tourist places indicated by the logo.

Museums and the Cultural Centre Tjibaou Cultural Centre See page 75 of this brochure: a dramatic multicultural experience. The Museum of New Caledonia See page 74 of this brochure: dedi-

cated to the archeology and ethnology of the region. The Nouméa Municipal Museum This Museum is built in the colonial style and is situated within the walls of the Marchand bank which was constructed in 1874 and would later become the old town hall. It is located opposite Coconut Square (“la Place des Cocotiers”). The Museum’s permanent exhibition retraces the development of Nouméa. Visitors are plunged into its history,

including the establishment of the town in 1854, the convict settlement period, the foundations of New Caledonian society, Oceania’s memories of World War One and the American Myth. Included is an exhibition which tells the story of the part the New Caledonian “Poilus” (soldiers from WWI) played in the Great War. An historical garden provides an intimate and colourful space outside the Museum. Here you can smell the flora which perfumed Nouméa at the beginning of last century and you can have an introduction to the language of flowers The Maritime History Museum This Museum, opened in 1999 on the quays of the port area, owes its existence to the enthusiasm of members of the Fortunes de Mer and Salomon Associations. These people, who are passionate about underwater archeology, have made inventories of forty shipwrecks that have occurred on New Caledonia’s reefs - a painstaking task which resulted in the Museum’s creation after many years of hard work.

Within an original structure, the Museum’s permanent exhibition presents seven chronological periods relative to New Caledonia’s maritime history: the first sailors to travel the Pacific in canoes; the great navigators, James Cook and La Pérouse; the sandalwood traders and the triangular trade; the nickel route and the period of the mineral sailing ships; the American presence during the Second World War which made the Mainland of New Caledonia the largest aircraft base of the Americal division. The Geological Museum Located within the nature house in the Michel-Corbasson Zoological and Forest Park, this Museum displays the territory’s main minerals as well as those from around the world. A window is especially dedicated to nickel, still called “green gold”, as it is New Caledonia’s most lucrative resource.

Nature and discovery “La Place des Cocotiers” Coconut Square is a popular stomping ground for Noumea’s locals who pass by as they do their shopping or conduct their daily business. It is a favourite spot for relaxing on the grass in the shade of century-old flame trees. This beautiful green area is a long rectangle formed by 4 squares: the oldest, la place Feillet where there is the music rotunda; la place Courbet, in the centre with its Céleste fountain ; la place de la Marne with its market and its entertainment ; and finally Olry Square with its café and pond. The Henry Millard Horseracing track Since it reopened following renovations in 1998, New Caledonians love going here from May through to October to share their passion for horses.

Mount Ouen Toro At the far southern end of the town, Mount Ouen Toro (128 m in altitude) is an exceptional site. From its summit you can see a magnificent panorama including the whole city of Noumea. It features a signposted walking track, ideal for a hearty walk, which is situated only a short distance from the beach.

15


Visit…

Nouméa

Centre Ville / City

17


Visit… The Michel-Corbasson Zoological and Forest Park Situated on the heights of Montravel, a few minutes from downtown Noumea, the Michel-Corbasson Zoological and Forest Park offers superb walks in an enchanting location. This botanical and zoological garden possesses, amongst other things, a superb collection of birds, both in aviaries and roaming in the wild around three lakes. Here you can find the rarest of them all: the Cagou bird, the emblem of New Caledonia, as well as lots of other New Caledonian birds such as the Notou, the “Cornue” Parrot, the Ouvéa Parrot, and many more. To get to this relaxing and informative park you can take the Petit Train touristique (little tourist train) which makes four trips there daily or via the shuttles (Nouméa Explorer and Alpha Bus Pass) which depart from Anse Vata (the Palm Beach Shopping Centre or from hotels).

“L’Aquarium des Lagons” The Nouméa Aquarium, established in 1956 by Mr and Mrs Catala-Stucky, is a remarkable place. Everything here is natural, the seawater, the light and of course the huge array of marine life. It is a real window onto the New Caledonian lagoon as it shows you the splendour of the coral reefs and their inhabitants.

Nouméa

Historical circuit “L’île aux canards” (Duck Island) and its underwater path Easily accessible by taxi boat from Anse Vata beach, this is a wonderful place for an excursion for the young and old alike. After a splendid 30 minute swim along the underwater path, you can have lunch on the island which has a “faré” restaurant or hire a deck chair. The path, which has been created by the “Centre d’initiation à l’environnement” is free and can be explored independently with flippers, mask and snorkel or as part of a guided tour. “Le phare Amédée” (lighthouse) After a 45 minute crossing departing from Port Moselle, you reach an idyllic island of coconut palms, bouraos and filaos bordered by a beautiful white sand beach. A magnificent 150 yearold 56-metre lighthouse, dating from the Second Empire stands proudly, dominating the island. Full-day excursions are available with lunch and a show provided, as well as a glassbottom boat and underwater dives in a beautiful environment.

As part of Nouméa’s 150 year commemorative celebrations and to highlight its architectural heritage, the city has organised an historical tour made up of 16 stages and totalling a distance of approximately 4 kilometres in the downtown area. To take this tour, you just need to follow the red bricks which have been dug into the earth along the itinerary.

1887, required ten years of hard labour and necessitated the efforts of “convicts” and of all the tradespeople living in Nouméa at the time. This cathedral, made of local stone and wood, has two square towers which are 25 metres in height and overlook the city of Nouméa. The Hagen Château

Each of the 16 panels, illustrated with old photos, retraces the history of a building or monument. It also has a transparent container holding an object from the period in question. A map on the side of each panel tells you where you are on the tour. The first panel starts at the Municipal museum. Within one hour or so, the visitor will discover the music rotunda, the Saint-Hubert building, the cathedral, the old police station, the Bernheim library, the village, the old temple and lots more. The Saint-Joseph Cathedral A stunning gothic cathedral in the tropics. Its construction, undertaken in

Situated in the heart of the “Valléedes-Colons” you will discover the jewel in the crown of colonial homes - a majestic family mansion that belonged to one of the great New Caledonian families. The Hagen Château was purchased by the Southern Province in 1998, and it is opened to the public for temporary exhibitions only. A Tribute to Tardy de Montravel This Monument was inaugurated on 15 July 2004, at the entrance to the Maritime History Museum, in tribute to Rear Admiral Louis Tardy de Montravel, Captain of the Fleet and Lieutenant Commander of La Constantine. On 23 June 1854 he chose the harbour of Nouméa to establish Port de France, which would change its name to Nouméa in 1866.

19


Visit…

Nouméa

The Bernheim Library A gift from former mine owner Lucien Bernheim, the library which bears his name opened in 1905. This true testament to the past has recently been extended and restored while respecting the colonial style of the period. It has more than 90,000 volumes, including many important works on New Caledonia and the Pacific islands. Convicts’ Penitentiary Come along and visit the Convicts’ Penitentiary in Nouville with Alain Fort, a well-known heritage guide. Discover the history of the prison including the Chapel, the Bakery Museum and cells

To see and do

remains. Visits every Wednesday at 2 pm. Reservations are required. French commentaries only.

Nightlife

Guided Tour of Nouméa Come along and discover different tourist sites such as Rock on the sail, Ouen Toro hill, Anse Vata beach, Pierre Vernier walk… either in air-conditioned buses or on board the motorised Little Train. Stop overs possible at the Aquarium, Botanical Gardens, Museums and city center. Information at the Tourism Office.

Later in the evening, the nightclubs open along “Anse Vata” and the “Baie des Citrons” for dancing and fun to the rhythms of the Pacific and International music.

Accommodation Nouméa has a wide range of accommodation options ranging from luxury hotels and beach resorts to the youth hostel, motels, downtown hotels and homestays. Hotel chains include: Le Meridien, Ramada, New Caledonia Hotels and Resorts.

In Nouméa at sunset, cafés, piano bars, and karaoké bars come alive at Happy Hour from 5pm to 6.30pm.

Dining In Nouméa there is something for all tastes and budgets! You can sample many types of cuisine (local, European, Asian, West Indian) at different prices. Having said this, local chefs make a point of preparing quality cuisine based on fresh lagoon produce and New Caledonian agriculture. Some hotels and restaurants also put on special Oceanic dinner and dance shows. The Tourism Office has a list of restaurants classified by cuisine type.

21


Visit…

Mont-GDreoatrSeou&thYaté The

With a population of more than 20,000 inhabitants, Mont-Dore is the second most populated district in the archipelago. This area, once considered to be a suburb of Nouméa, has developed to such an extent that it is now a town in its own right. Mont-Dore stretches along the coast and is a dynamic, sporty and pleasant place to live.

This large district encompasses the beautiful, natural area South of Noumea. It is a unique region which is both lush and barren, dominated by its red laterite soil, winding blue rivers and green vegetation. The summit of the Mont-Dore range is 800 metres high, and looks out over Nouméa’s lagoon. Behind this, the jagged relief leads to Prony where you can find remains of the convict settlement. In the cool season both sharks and whales frequent the bay. Opposite Mont-Dore lies Ouen Island, which was much-renowned for its jade in the past. Towards Yaté and Goro, heading inland, is the second largest nickel processing plant in New Caledonia.

Things to discover At Mont-Dore: “La Conception” church in Yaté which was built in 1874 as a tribute to the Virgin Mary. In Yaté: The Plum Fountain – a recreational area at the Plum Pass where you can cool down beside a pure spring water. A bottling plant has been set up a short distance from this fountain. The Mont-Dore Summit – The walk begins 200 metres after the Plum fountain. This is an energic climb but once at the top in clear weather the panoramic view of Nouméa, the southern lagoon and the mountain range, is well worth the effort. The old Plum Gendarmerie established in 1924, with its old buildings encircled by huge banian trees. “Le Parc provincial de la rivière bleue” (Blue River Park) (See page 64 and the Address Book under Parks and Natural Reserves).

“Les Bois du Sud” (The Southern Woods) camping site is near the entrance to the Blue River Park. It is located in a beautiful forest crossed by a small stream. Here you can find picnic or camping sites. This area enables you to enjoy and admire lush flora as you meander along the botanical paths. The Madeleine Falls. (See page 63 and the Address Book under Parks and Natural Reserves). The Yaté Dam, inaugurated in 1959, is 45 m high and lies 160 m above sea level. Prony Bay and its village Prony is the departure point for the GR®-NC1 Track for a 3 to 6 day hike… (See page 62 and the Address Book under Parks and Natural Reserves). Carénage Bay and its thermal springs, cape N’Doua. The underwater Prony Needle (Aiguille de Prony), a popular diving area. Casy Island – a magnificent island in the heart of Prony bay which has all the typical aspects of the southern Mainland: tropical forest, mining scrub and white sand beaches. Ouen Island – The excursion to the

old jade mine rewards you with a magnificent panoramic view over the lagoon and the Mainland. The Goro Tribe and the Wadiana Waterfall which are close to the old Japanese iron mine. The Touaourou Mission, founded in 1888. Port-Boisé – this magnificent bay is a haven of peaceful tranquility situated in the far south of the Mainland and is well worth a detour.

To see and do

Accommodation There is one hotel that belongs to Tera Group hotels and coastal Melanesian gîtes in the Yaté area.

Dining Mont-Dore has several restaurants and country inns (you are advised to book) and, like Yaté, has some nice picnic areas.

INFORMATION: SAEM Mont Dore Environnement Ph: 43 33 44 dg.semme@gmail.com

23


Visit…

Dumbéa

re lover’s paradise u t a n a The penal agricultural colonisation in the 19th century and the heyday of the little train at the beginning of the 20th Century paved the way for Dumbéa’s development. Today, this expansion covers the urban area in the south, and the rural and tourism areas in the north. It is a most unique district that combines great contrast and dynamism, and has adapted well to the diversity of its landscapes.

Vestiges of Dumbéa’s past include: the old bakery (1880), Mr Nusbaum’s lime kiln, the old gendarmerie, the old Boutan barn, the tree nursery footbridge, the Tonghoué tunnel, the Erambéré tunnel, the Dumbéa bridge (Pont Blanc), the old rum distilleries and the remains of the old railway track.

horse riding, ULM or the 18-hole golf course … the list goes on.

Things to discover The Koghi Mountain range, with its waterfall, adventure park and its magnificent panoramic view

To see and do

“Le Trou des Nurses”, in the Dumbéa River is ideal for swimming and picnics. The Dumbéa Dam, Dam which has been constructed in 1952-53 to supply Nouméa with water.

Dumbéa is also, and most importantly, a river which supplies water for the capital’s needs. Despite being a natural extension of the city of Nouméa, Dumbéa has managed to maintain its own identity, offering lots of outdoor activities just minutes from the New Caledonian capital. Dumbéa has much to offer: wild gorges and the lush valley, the river and its many places to swim, forest walks on the slopes of the Koghi mountains, the wide open spaces of the Dzumac mountains accessible by four-wheel drive, mountain bike or on foot, family outings to the Parc Fayard, go-karting,

The Dumbéa River is perfect for swimming, canoeing and jet-skiing at the rivermouth.

Inns and refuges.

Dining Several possibilities are on offer in Dumbéa: the Mont-Koghi Auberge, the Auberge de la Rhumerie, the golf course restaurant, the Katiramona taverna and snack bars.

Dumbéa’s Parc Fayard is located on one of the oldest colonial properties bordering a magnificent lake. The Dumbéa Market comes to life on the first Saturday of every month on the covered Auteuil site, between the fire station and the sports complex

Accommodation

L’Auberge de la Rhumerie, Rhumerie is housed in an old rum storehouse dating from 1860 and belonging to the Numa-Joubert settlers. It has been refitted as a restaurant and has some rooms for rent.

INFORMATION: Koutio Town Hall Ph: 41 40 00 www.dumbea.net

25


Visit…

o l u u p o a B & a t ï a P ways to the Bu ris gate

Covering some 70,000 hectares, Païta is the largest district in the greater Nouméa area, stretching from Katiramona to Tontouta and nestled between the lagoon and the mountain range.

sh

ing its pleasant bays which were for a long time largely untouched. Restaurants and the hotel infrastructure are also being developed. In November, the Beef Festival and Rodeo is one of New Caledonia’s most popular events. In Boulouparis, you really come into contact with the New Caledonian bush. This is the real bush which lives to the rhythms of hunting, cattle-rearing, agriculture and in recent years, aquaculture and the Prawn Festival which takes place every year in June.

Situated at the foot of Mou Mountain, Païta Village was the archipelago’s first centre of colonisation, in the second half of the 19th Century. The last stop for the stockmen and their goods from the north, Païta was also a vacation area and hunting ground for Nouméans from the beginning of the 20th century, and until 1940 it was linked to the capital by a railroad. Today, the district concentrates on agriculture in Tamoa and also includes the Tontouta International Airport. It is a rapidly developing area, featur-

side, la Ouenghi has a magnificent 18-hole golf course situated on the heights. Tomo, the first hamlet you come across after Nouméa, is known by the region’s locals for its market which takes place once a month.

Things to discover In Païta: Sociocultural Center. Place where meetings and cultural exchanges take place. Many events and shows are scheduled during the year. Ph : 35 44 04 The Païta Villa Museum. "Uncle Marcel house". For any visits, reservations are required.

To see and do

The beaches of Tiaré, Onghoué and Toro (on the Gadji Road). The Sanatorium Road, is a departure place for hikes to Mount Mou and a pleasant walk bordered by fruit trees and “impatiens” groundcover. The Petroglyphs (rock carvings) of the Katiramona Pass. The Ridolfi Distillery and its variety of liqueur products.

A small quiet village, Boulouparis is also a favourite place for people who love the sea and peaceful islands, such as Tenia islet. On the mountain

In Boulouparis: The Bouraké Beach in Saint-Vincent Bay: picnic area and water sports (underwater diving, tour of the bays, excursions to the islands), free and equipped municipal camping grounds. The Municipal Horseracing Track which hosts the Trotting Cup. The Tomo Market on the first Sunday of each month. The Tomo Wharf and its recreation area. The Ouenghi River is accessible from Les Paillottes de la Ouenghi Resort.

“Les Fraisiers de Païta” (Strawberry farm) and their delicious products. The Mount Mou Market which operates every second Sunday of the month.

Accommodation Non-classified hotels, country resort and airport hotel at Païta or at Boulouparis with a golf course. Small gîtes and camping site on Bouraké beach.

Dining Table d’hôtes, restaurants and hotels at Païta and Boulouparis provide a pleasant setting for lunch or dinner and offer various activities for the young and old alike.

INFORMATION: Tourism Office Toll Free : 05 75 80 Païta Town Hall Ph: 35 21 11 Boulouparis Town Hall Ph: 35 17 06

27


Visit…

La Foearin&g aMndodinynda ou pione

Moindou-Bourail area is part of New Caledonian’s lagoon zones registered by UNESCO to the World Heritage List

mic

the Téremba Fort remains - one of the last vestiges of the large military presence as well as the convict settlement in the region.

La Foa is surprisingly charming and dynamic. This is the perfect rural district, which has managed to move with the times while at the same time preserving its character. Tourists to the region of La Foa have the choice of many hotels, gîtes and restaurants.

The village was founded in 1873 by immigrants from the Alsace-Lorraine area of France, persecuted by the Frankfurt Treaty. Their descendants still live here today on their adopted land, working mainly in agriculture and cattle farming. In recent years, prawn aquaculture has also been developing. The cultural and recreational activities are also many and varied: tribal visits with the possibility to sample a bougna, parachuting above the Oua Tom plain and New Caledonian lagoon, horserides across the plains and mountains. La Foa also has a strong agricultural tradition (fruit, prawns, cattle rearing etc). Each year in June, La Foa organises a Film Festival, presided over by a French or foreign film celebrity. As well as its magnificent natural setting, Moindou has also managed to preserve its past. Like a citadel overlooking the sea and plain, and

Moindou is also known for its magnificent royal palms, some of which are 100 years old.

Things to discover In La Foa: The Marguerite Footbridge at the entrance to La Foa village was devised by the famous engineer Gustave Eiffel. Georges Guillermet Square with its wonderful garden and fascinating monumental Kanak sculptures. The La Foa Horseracing Track is host to two annual horseracing meetings between May and October. The Lebris Peninsula and horseriding treks with La Foa Randonnée. The Pocquereux Fruit Farm. The La Foa Film Festival is held every year in June. The Oua-Tom Tribe and its Great Hut. You can take guided tours of the tribe and botanical walks in the heart of range. The Oui-Poin tribe. Guided tours of the tribe, the forest and botanical walks. The Ouano Peninsula and Beach with its many nautical activities. In Moindou: The Téremba Fort was built in 1874 with the aim of becoming the penal and administrative centre of the vast Uaraï region. A Sound and Light Show is held here every two years or so.

The Moindou Valley The Tanghy Peninsula The Garden of the Future is planted with magnificent royal palms. The “Bossu Doré” Festival is held every year in November in Moindou.

To see and do

Accommodation La Foa has several small hotels (2 star and non-classified), gîtes, bed and breakfasts and camping grounds.

Dining All tastes are catered for in La Foa. Restaurants and country inns serve refined cuisine or homely meals using produce from nearby orchards and seafood. You can also sample a bougna in a tribe, but remember to book this first. In Moindou, the Historic Auberge is well worth a detour.

INFORMATION: La Foa Tourisme RT1 Place Georges-Guillermet 98880 La Foa Ph/fax 41 69 11 lafoatourisme@canl.nc www.lafoatourisme.asso.nc

29


Visit…

Farinoe &moSuanrtarianméa

n th i h t i w

Farino is a very pleasant place to stay. Nestled in the forest on the slopes of the mountain, the smallest district of the territory is also the most lush. This native village was a never-ending source of inspiration for the famous writer Jean Mariotti.

Every month Farino hosts a popular market where you can purchase excellent local products, such as jams, honey, “achards” (a type of pickle), plants and flowers. Sarraméa is situated within the mountain range and for a long time concentrated on coffee cultivation. Today, this small district is quickly becoming popular with tourists due to its many attractions. An essential activity is to join one of the friendly and informative organised tours of a tribe. The magnificent hikes in the mountain, escorted by experienced guides, are also well worth it. Theme tours of various lengths and difficulty are possible.

range

Things to discover In Farino: Le Parc des Grandes Fougères / Ferns Park - Created in 2008, Ferns Park aims to protect a threatened and exceptional natural site. Accomodated for guided hiking. Discover a variety of endemic flora. Do not hesitate to contact hiking guides. The “ver de Bancoule” Festival takes place in September. The Ida-Marc Domaine : visit the coffee plantation and sample the produce. In Sarraméa: The 400-million years old Amborella Tripochoda, the mother of flowering plants, would have existed as far back as the time of the dinosaurs. It only exists in New Caledonia and mainly in the region of Sarraméa. Situated in the tropical forest between 600 and 800 metres in altitude, it qualifies as a living fossil because of its DNA. Every year in March, many botanists come here to

study this plant as it comes into flower. Yvette’s Garden can be found within the Sarraméa tribe, on approximately one hectare of land, in the shade of column pines and kauris, sandragons and hundred year old erythrines. Alice’s Garden features a guided tour which includes plants, anthuriums, heliconias, palms and cactus. The Amieu Pass (425 m) features a special fauna reserve and its orchards link the Négropo and Couli valleys. Mount Paaya which overlooks the village of Sarraméa. Here you can see old tribal sites, huts and taro cultivation. The Heights of Sarraméa with the Sarraméa tribe, passage through the forest, orchards and coffee plantations, tour of the coffee factory. The Grand Couli Tribe is a magnificent tribe which lives nestled in the hollow of a deep valley. The Dogny Plateau is a spectacular but fairly strenuous walk. The Table Unio Peak requires authorisation through the “Direction du développement rural de la Province Sud”.

The Fo Are Valley with its mysterious myths and legends. The Sarraméa Valley The Feillet Rock Pool (water) or the vat. The Anthurium Fair which is held in mid-November. Monthly Markets are worth visiting: La Foa 4th Saturday, Moindou 2nd Saturday, Farino 2nd Sunday and Sarraméa 4th Sunday. Here you can find all sorts of specialities from the Bush: jams, venison sausages, wild boar salted pork and lots more. The Coffee Festival in Sarraméa on the last Sunday in August.

To see and do Accommodation In Farino, in refuge or chalet . In Sarraméa, camping or hotel accommodation at the Evasion in Sarraméa, a real haven of relaxation surrounded by nature which is both comfortable and conductive to leisure activities.

Dining Sarraméa and Farino are renowned for their country restaurants. You are assured of a warm welcome and convivial atmosphere with cuisine based on local produce. You can also buy products from the Amieu Pass farm or the Sarraméa tribe.

INFORMATION: Syndicat d’Initiative de Sarraméa RP 18 – Ph/fax : 44 39 55 sarramea-decouverte@lagoon.nc www.sarramea-decouverte.com www.mairie-farino.com La Foa Tourisme Ph/fax 41 69 11

31


Visit…

Bourail

n the sea and mountains e e w t be Moindou-Bourail area is part of new caledonian lagoon zones registered by UNESCO to the World Heritage List Further north, in the heart of the Mainland, lies Bourail. This is a vast district at the intersection of three valleys, situated between the sea and the mountains. It is also an important agricultural centre, a legacy of the 19th century penal colonisation of New Caledonia.

In this area, corn, potatoes and squash – a variety of pumpkin – are grown, and animals are reared, particularly cattle. Bourail is also a dynamic economic and cultural centre, which has resulted in the building of many schools, colleges and technical institutes. The district is also a major tourist destination in its own right, with its kilometres of white sand beaches, “la Roche Percée”, “la baie des Tortues” and Poé. One must-see event is the Agricultural and Craft Fair in mid-August, which takes place on the Téné site.

Things to discover The New Zealand Cemetery, at the southern entrance to the village. The Bourail Folk and Historical Museum displays a long fresco which relates the town’s history and the major personalities involved in its foundation. With many photos and objects from the period, the exhibitions retrace the main themes constituting the district’s past: the New Zealanders, the cheese dairy, the forge… The Néra River which crosses the cattle stations, is an area where you can hunt, participate in cattle-herding, go on hikes and do canoeing. The Néméara Chapel is a unique monument in New Caledonia due to its polychrome frescoes. The Bourail Agricultural Fair takes place every year on the weekend of 15th August.This fair has a great festival atmosphere with its stands of

local produce, its competitions and spectacular rodeo. The Cyca Forest and the Three Bay Walking Track can both be reached via the Roche Percée beach. Here you will find a pretty forest crisscrossed by a botanical path. The Beach and the “Bonhomme de la Roche Percée”, an enormous monolith situated at the mouth of the Néra river. The large sandy beach and its waves are popular with surfers. The “Roche Percée” Panoramic

“L’île Verte” (Green Island) and its marine reserve. Poé Beach is excellent for windsurfing, underwater diving, surfing and jet skiing. Glass-bottom boat trips enable you to admire the wealth of sealife.

To see and do

Accommodation Lookout gives you a breathtaking view of the Bourail Pass and “la baie des Tortues”. At the summit you can see the statue of Notre-Dame-desFlots, protector of ships at sea. “La baie des Tortues” (Turtle Bay) is one of the most beautiful beaches in New Caledonia, encircled by a forest of column pines. Note that swimming here is dangerous.

Non-classified hotels, gîtes and bed and breakfasts. Equipped camping grounds on the beaches of Poé and la Roche Percée.

Dining Bourail has several hotels, restaurants and snack bars, as well as a bakery and medium-sized shops for supplying campers.

INFORMATION: Bourail Tourisme Ph: 46 46 12 – Mobile 75 68 68 info@bourailtourisme.nc

33


Visit…

Poya & Pouembout Poya is a small peaceful village whose tribes live fairly far from the centre. The district lives off nickel and agriculture, especially deer farming. People who enjoy hunting will also be able to indulge their passion in Poya as they hunt for a trophy. Pouembout is the agricultural hub of the Northern Province. The village was created in 1883 by the penal administration. Fruit and vegetables are cultivated here, especially the excellent melons. You can also sample local quality specialities such as venison and products derived from it.

Things to discover The Gohapin Tribe and its organisation with tribal hiking guides. The Escande Château in Muéo which is closed to the public. The Adio Caves.You can admire them from the outside but you are still not allowed to go inside for safety reasons. In Pouembout: The Grimigni Château where the district’s library is located. “Le Pigeonnier” (Pigeon house).

The Franko and Pindaï beaches “La Forêt Plate” (flat forest): a unique and protected site, you are advised to get information about it before visiting. This is a popular hunting area. The Tia Plateau which has a panoramic view of the district.

To see and do Accommodation In Poya: accommodation with tribes, in gîtes, camping grounds, or in a traditional hotel in Népoui (mining village). In Pouembout, discover the world of the “bush dwellers” and their lifestyle in a bed and breakfast, rural gîte or stay in a 1 star hotel.

Dining From traditional Kanak food to small refined dishes, such as a tart made from freshly picked raspberries, the Poya locals will give you a warm welcome. Stop in Pouembout and sample delicious rural fare.

Koné & Voh Koné is the administrative capital of the Northern Province. It is also the departure point for the KonéTiwaka transversal route which links the West and East coasts. At the northern exit of the village, the majestic Koniambo mountain range holds the minerals which will supply the future Northern Nickel factory.

The Koné Cultural Centre In Voh: The spectacular Heart of Voh. This famous heart has been magically drawn by nature in the mangroves and has been immortalised in the photo by Yann Arthus-Bertrand which is on the cover of his book “la Terre vue du ciel” (The Earth from the Air).

Voh was founded at the end of the 19th century by settlers from metropolitan France before being completely destroyed by a cyclone. Since that time, the inhabitants have settled between the village centre and its heights to protect themselves from flooding.

You can see the heart from the Katepaïk massif which you can get to by four wheel drive, on foot, or ULM.

The district is about to experience major change as the Northern factory will shortly be built there to transform nickel into metal.

Accommodation

Things to discover In Koné: Foué beach The Koné-Tiwaka Transversal Route is one of the most beautiful roads in the country. It has rest areas, swimming and magnificent views.

To see and do

Koné has 3 hotels situated in the village.

Dining The cuisine in this district is international: ranging from local cuisine to Vietnamese dishes or dishes from other countries.

INFORMATION:

INFORMATION:

Animateur communal

Koné Town Hall Ph: 47 22 06

Poya Town Hall – Ph: 47 12 50 Pouembout Town Hall Ph: 47 70 00

Syndicat d’Initiative de Voh Ph: 47 27 68 Voh Town Hall Ph: 47 84 00

35


Visit…

Kaala-Gomen & Koumac The village of Kaala-Gomen takes its name from Mount Kaala, situated on the right when you are approaching the village from the South, and of the Goménol (from the Niaouli tree family) which has been famous for decades, and which is a very close cousin of the eucalyptus. Koumac is the crossroads of the great North, the departure point to Poum or the East coast, crossing the mountain range and heading towards Ouégoa. An agricultural and mining district, Koumac now concentrates on industrial fishing and is preparing to expand its tourism. The village has gradually been developing and now has all the facilities necessary for tourists.

Things to discover In Kaala-Gomen: The Village of Ouaco, situated on the left, a few kilometres before KaalaGomen when arriving from the south. In Koumac: The Koumac Grottos: this is an amazing site, however visitors to the caves are advised to go with a guide.

INFORMATION: Koumac Tourisme – Ph: 42 78 42 Koumac Town Hall – Ph: 47 73 00 Kaala-Gomen Town Hall Ph: 47 67 15

The Archeological Patrimony of Koumac The Old Mining Village of Tiébaghi, is 30 minutes from Koumac. Not far from the nickel mine which still functions today, chrome was extracted from Tiébaghi until the beginning of the 1990s. The Pandop Marina

To see and do Accommodation Near Kaala-Gomen, Le Refuge du Cerf is a unique place which is well worth a detour. In Koumac, you can also stay in a hotel in the village centre or in a camping ground in Pandop, near the marina.

Dining In the hotels/restaurants on the square or in the restaurants and snack bars in Koumac.

p e l é B Poum, Ouégoa & Pouébo Poum is a small district in the far North blessed with superb landscapes of pink-tinged mountains and white sand beaches which will reward any tourist making the trip there. Bélep is located in the far north of the Mainland, a short distance from Poum. The district is comprised of three islands and other small islands with only Art and Pott being inhabited. Because of its situation far from the major centres, Bélep is virtually self-sufficient in both agriculture and fishing. Ouégoa is a village set within the mountain range whose existence is based on agriculture, farming and fishing for crabs. Balade, in the district of Pouébo, was where James Cook discovered New Caledonia in 1774. In 1853 it was also the place where, in the name of Napoleon III, Rear-Admiral Febvrier Despointes signed the taking of possession of New Caledonia by France.

Things to discover In Poum: Boat-Pass or the far north of The Mainland.

The white sand beaches Nennon. Poingam and its vegetation. The seabed.

of

In Ouégoa: The “Diahot” River where there is crab fishing. The Amos Pass with a view of the Niaouli savannah and over the lagoon. The peaceful Bondé Tribe. In Pouébo: The Yambé Tribe and their sculptures on wood or soap-stone. The Mahamate Site in Balade. The Colnett Waterfall.

To see and do Accommodation In Poum, accommodation possible in a hotel or gîte as well as bed and breakfasts or camping grounds. In Pouébo, seaside bungalow lodging.

Dining Enjoy the sea’s bounty in restaurants which are part of small hotels.

INFORMATION: Ouégoa Tourisme – Ph: 47 64 05 Poum Town Hall – Ph: 47 61 85 Ouégoa Town Hall – Ph: 47 64 05 Pouébo Town Hall – Ph: 47 64 38

37


Visit…

Hienghène

k cultural heartland a n a k e th Hienghène is the native village of Jean-Marie Tjibaou (a very famous independence leader) and is a district with grand landscapes and lots of activities. For several years now, the district has concentrated its efforts on developing tourism and the result is a delight to both New Caledonians and visitors to the region.

The Ouaré Church. High quality diving spots.

Touho & Poindimié A tranquil district on the East coast, Touho is a very peaceful place stretching along a beautiful white sand beach. It is an important nerve centre of the East coast as the district has the only aerodrome on the Eastern side of New Caledonia. The Koné-Tiwaka, is a transversal which

INFORMATION: Hienghène Tourisme Ph: 42 43 57 – Fax : 42 43 56 hienghen-tourism@mls.nc Mairie de Hienghène Ph: 42 81 19

The Goa Ma Bwarhat Cultural Centre and its Museum.

To see and do

Accommodation & Dining Hotels, gîtes, guest or tribe stays. The tribes have joined together in a product entitled “les chemins de la chaîne” (the mountain paths) and can provide you with accommodation and introduce you to the Kanak lifestyle.

Things to discover In Touho: The Naval Base The Tipindjé River In Poindimié: The Valleys of Napoémien, Ina, Névaho and Tchamba are essential viewing. It is a very popular scuba diving location with high-quality sites.

Things to discover The Ouaième Ferryboat, the last ferryboat still operating in New Caledonia. Mount Panié, at 1,629 metres, is the island’s highest point. This natural reserve is accessible with the Dayu Biik association. The Belvedere, from where you can admire “la Poule Couveuse” (Brooding Hen) which has become one of the symbollic figures of New Caledonia. “La Poule” (the Hen) and “Le Sphinx”, magnificently broken off from the chalky rocks and rising up from the sea. The Tribes of the Mountain Range. The mouth of the Ouaïème River. The Tao Waterfall. The black rock cliffs of Lindérlique, which proudly overlook the sea.

Caledonian district to grow coffee plants right in the village. The town is also proud of its beautiful “Tiéti” beach, the Tyé church and its museum devoted to the American presence.

crosses the vast mountain range and shows off magnificent landscapes in valleys and near tribes, has been developed to incorporate rest areas, picnic sites and places to swim. Poindimié is a pretty village which stretches along a large bay and is considered to be the country town of the East coast. In the centre of the district, the municipal swimming pool boasts a fresco by Vasarely. Poindimié is also the only New

To see and do Accommodation & Dining In Touho, an inn and a gîte. In a few months’ tim. In Poindimié, a hotel that belongs to Tera Group Hotels, or gîtes and eat out in small snack bars, restaurants and country inns which are very popular in the region.

INFORMATION: Touho Tourisme Ph: 42 88 07 – Fax : 42 87 51 www.commune-touho.com marie-touho@canl.nc Poindimié Town Hall Ph: 42 60 10

39


Visit…

e u n o h i r é n o P & Houaïlou Green and water are the two words which readily come to mind when describing Ponérihouen, whose name means “rivermouth”. The district stretches into fields and goes as far as the rivermouth which you can admire from the metal bridge which straddles it: this is also its emblem known as the Eiffel bridge. Bamboo and ferns grow together in a dreamlike setting. Houaïlou is mainly a mining district, however, in recent years, it has also been associated with the lychee and has become something of a capital for this delicious fruit. Not only are lychees produced in quantity here, they are also of a very particular taste and quality. Every year in December, the district organises a Lychee Festival where the producers’ association displays the most beautiful fruit of its kind.

A faire

INFORMATION: Ponérihouen Tourisme TPh: 42 85 02 Ponérihouen Town Hall Ph: 42 85 02 Houaïlou Town Hall Ph: 42 52 20

Things to discover In Ponérihouen: The Aoupinié Panorama which gives you a view of both coasts. The Tchamba Valley In Houaïlou: The magnificent Ba Waterfall.

Accommodation In Ponérihouen at the Tiakan camping ground. In Houaïlou at the Kaora camping ground.

Kouaoua, Canala & Thio The youngest municipality in the Territory (1995), Kouaoua lives off the mines. Its mineral conveyor is unique in the world as it is 12 km long and can also turn corners. Canala is nestled at the end of one of New Caledonia’s most beautiful bays. The village has managed to preserve the legends and vestiges of its rich past. Thio, the cradle of New Caledonian nickel, overlooks the East coast. “The green gold”, which has been extracted from here since 1880, and the mine is one of the largest open cast nickel exploitations in the world. There is also a museum that is totally devoted to it.

Things to discover In Kouaoua / Poro / Houaïlou: The Kouaoua Piste in Houaïlou is an energetic and under-used course through the mining scrub. The Timetabled Road: be careful to abide by the timetable as two vehicles cannot pass each other on this road. In Canala: The Ciu Waterfall. The pretty valleys of Dothio and of La Pehanno from where in clear

weather you can distinguish the Loyalty Islands. “Le Pic des Morts” (Death Summit) which perhaps owes its name to the presence of a leprosy colony at the end of the 19th century. The Hot Water Springs at La Crouen. In Thio: The Mining Museum. The Nakalé Mining Village. The small Saint-Pierre Pass with its view of the plateau’s open cast mines. The Petroglyphs, sculptures on stone of the island’s first inhabitants. The Marist Church of Thio-Mission which dates back to 1868. Port-Bouquet Bay. The Moara and Ouroué Beaches. The Borindi Road.

To see and do Accommodation Hotel Restaurant in Kouaoua. The Kuinet tribe in Canala or camping along the river. gîte, camping and bed and breakfast in Thio.

INFORMATION: Kouaoua Town Hall – Ph: 42 64 64 Syndicat d’initiative de Canala Ph: 42 60 61 Canala Town Hall – Ph: 42 31 09 Thio Tourisme – Ph: 44 25 04 thio-tourisme@canl.nc 41


Visit…

The Itseloef poafraPdiisne es a tas

White sand beaches, turquoise sheltered lagoon, clear, warm water, the Isle of Pines is a world apart, a dream place. Each bay has its own personality: Kuto, Kanuméra, Upi and the natural pool of Oro. Not only is the landscape

Getting there The Isle of Pines, which is a 20-minute flight from Nouméa, is serviced several times a day by the domestic carrier, Air Calédonie. You can also get there by helicopter (1h) or by boat with the Compagnie maritime des Iles (21/4hours). The alternative is to hire a boat and make your own way there.

Things to discover

Oumagne Cave known as Queen Hortense’s Grotto – 10 km north of Vao in the Touété tribe you can find a limestone cave crossed by a stream ,with a beautiful entrance of large treelike ferns. This was the resting place of Queen Hortense during her visits to tribes in the 19th century. Organised tours stop here and entry is payable.

enchanting, the island’s locals, the Kuniés are very kind and welcoming with their beautiful smiles. Visitors to the island will come away with special memories of traditional canoe trips and bougnas cooked on hot stones. Being here is like taking a step back in time. What was previously a convict settlement is today a paradise and never fails to impress. This beautiful shell shaped island, is 18 kilometres long and 14 across. Some people choose to explore it on bikes, while others opt for discovering its underwater life, diving with oxygen tanks or snorkelling. Hotels range from luxury to simple gîtes. The Isle of Pines caters for all tastes and budgets.

The Remains of the Ouro Convict Settlement. – A short distance from Kuto Bay, you can visit the ruins of the penal build-

Kanuméra Bay is a small white sand bay where you can swim with flippers, mask and snorkel and admire the fish at the base of the Kanuméra rock. It is strictly forbidden to climb this rock.

Upi Bay – a huge bay teeming with fish and dotted with small coral islands. Canoes glide along it daily as they take tourists out to explore the crystal clear water of the lagoon. Oro Bay – an incredible place! You can get there by car then on foot by a little narrow track, or by sea. The landscape looks like a real painting; here you can find splendid fine white sand beaches and further on the Natural Pool where you can see the bottom sculptured in coral and bordered by Column Pines.

Rouleaux Bay can be reached on foot by walking along the coast from Kuto bay. This is a large white sand beach onto which huge waves crash, leaving behind them white froth. Camping is possible here.

Kuto Bay has a long white sand beach bordered by coconut palms and Column Pines. Ouaméo Bay is the departure point for magnificent dives organised by Kunié Scuba Centre from the Kodjeue Hotel.

ings which housed 3,000 “communards” from Paris (1872). Exiled French prisoners followed in their wake up until 1912, when the last prisoners left the island. – The cemetery devoted to deportees, where there is a pyramid in memory of the 240 exiles from the Commune who died on the Isle of Pines between 1872 and 1880.

43


Visit…

Isle of Pines

– The Deportees’ Prison, built in 1894, which contained 40 vaulted cells. – The old Water Tower which is still in service. – The convent built in 1894. Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption Chapel stands proudly in the centre of Vao village. It was constructed in 1860 by the Kuniés with the help of missionaries and some deportees. It has since been enlarged to house the increasingly large congregation. N’Ga Peak is the highest point on the Isle of Pines at 262 metres high. It is about one hour’s walk to the summit,

To see and do

Accommodation Hotels (5*, 3* and 2*), Melanesian gîtes and camping grounds

Dining where you can admire one of the most beautiful panoramic views of the island. You are recommended to use the services of a guide. Nokanhui Island is an idyllic small island reached by hire boat. Peaceful Gadji Beach is a favourite mooring place for yachties. Vao Market is held every Wednesday and Saturday from 6.30am to 10am. “La Troisième” Cave and the underground grotto of Kéré where you can see lots of birds.

On the Isle of Pines, all year round you can enjoy fresh fish and grilled lobster with your feet in the sand in a small beachside restaurant or in a hotel restaurant or gîtes. Tourists particularly love eating the Isle of Pines’ snails. For a change, why not try a nice Kanak fish or chicken Bougna (meat and vegetables cooked in coconut cream) at the enchanting “rivière de sable”. Two snack bars also serve more homely or Asian meals.

INFORMATION: Isle of Pines Village de Vao Centre culturel Ph: 46 10 27

45


Visit…

Ouvéa

nearest to paradise d n a l s i the This island is a dream destination with its magnificent clear blue sea, white sand beaches and its green parrots which are unique in the world. The West coast of the island boasts the largest beach in the Loyalty Islands: 25 km of uninterrupted white sand surrounded by an emerald lagoon. Legend has it that fishermen from Wallis Island were building a canoe when an axe fell from a worker’s hand mortally wounding the chief’s son. In panic, the workmen fled on their fragile skiff and after journeying across the Pacific, they arrived on an island which they christened Ouvéa in memory of their faraway place of origin (Ouvéa is the Maori name for Wallis: Uvea). Ouvéa is comprised of three customary districts: Saint Joseph, Fayaoué and Mouli. There are also two independent “chefferies”: those of Takedji and Gossanah. Ouvéa’s inhabitants are very welcoming and happy to help you with information about this beautiful island.

Things to discover The district of Saint-Joseph Saint-Joseph Church, famous for its vaulted wooden ceiling which is like a crib and its Kohu skin (1912). Fayaoue district: The Hanawa Blue Hole: a cavity of seawater supplied by cracks on the ocean side with a film of freshwater on the surface. Some of these water holes are used as natural pools for the

island’s children, others as refuges for sea turtles. Fayaoue Beach: a magnificent 25 km white sand beach bordered by coconut palms.

Mouli district: The Mouli Bridge: completed in 1984, the bridge provides a crossing over the arm of sea which separates Mouli island from the main island. Mouli Island is approximately 8 km long. A small road leads to the western end where there is a gorgeous beach between the rocks and coral. At sea you can glimpse the Pléiades du Sud archipelago. From the Mouli bridge, there is a splendid view of Lekiny bay and Mouli island.

To see and do

Lékiny Bay and Fayawa Island: Lékiny Bay is a superb, protected expanse of water and a customary fishing reserve where swimming is strictly forbidden. Fayawa Island, situated between the Lékiny cliffs and Mouli and shelters a small white chapel, which you can see from Mouli bridge. The Lékiny Cliffs: these high grey cliffs are pierced by grottos which look out across the bay. As you go along the white sand beach eastwards, a track leads to the entrance of the marsh, between the sand tongue and the cliffs. Important: Any visit to the grotto or cliffs must be accompanied by a local guide.

Accommodation Hotels (4* and non-classified), gîtes, tribal accommodation and camping. Dining in most types of accommodation.

INFORMATION: Tourism Office Toll Free : 05 75 80

47


Visit…

Lifou

nd of many faces a l s i e h t Originally known as Drehu, Lifou is the largest of the Loyalty Islands being 1,150 km2 (larger than Martinique or Tahiti) and the most populated. Lifou was discovered by the Frenchman Dumont d’Urville who was quickly followed by dozens of Catholic and Protestant missionaries. The island is divided into three districts: - Wetr (16 tribes) with the country town being Hnathalo, Gaïcha (4 tribes) whose country town is Dueulu, Lössi (16 tribes) whose country town is Mou. Wé is the largest agglomeration of the Loyalty Islands. Three coral levels make up Lifou’s base: alternating between cliffs which plunge into the deep blue ocean and white sand beaches.

Things to discover Wetr district: The 40 metre high Jokin Cliffs which overlook clear water teeming with fish. Take the path which leads down to the sea and respect the “chefferie”. The Vanilla Plantation in Mucaweng: A warm welcome awaits you with a tour of the vanilla plantation within the forest. The Easo Site is developed with huts and “farés” to welcome cruise ship passengers. Jinek Bay: an underwater diving site. The Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes Chapel in Easo which was built by Catholic missionnaires in 1898. The Diable Grotto: Tingeting

The big Hnathalo “chefferie”. Request permission from the customary authorities before entering the hut and respect meetings and the privacy of any people sleeping there. Santal Bay (Sandalwood Bay) is 50 kms long. Whalers built a station here in 1860/1870 for the extraction of whale oil. Lifou Nature: a botanical path in the Hunëtë tribe. Gaïca district: The Qanono Church and Temple: the Fao missionary founded the first Protestant Mission on what was once a battleground for the Lössi and Wetr warriors. Chateaubriand Bay and its viewpoint: the huge white sand beach. Peng: white sand beach, creeks and grottos. Lössi district: The “Luengoni Jewels”: hiking in the forest to large drops, holes with brackish water, brilliant blue in colour surrounded by mangroves. Luengoni Bay: white sand beach with its coral rock which emerges out of the deep blue water. The Xodre Cliffs: situated at the far

To see and do southern end of the island in Wadra Bay. In clear weather you can see Tiga Island, a dependency of the district of Lifou. The vanilla Plantation at Weniko Wejieme: warm welcome and trekking to discover the endemic palm trees, visit of the water holes. Important: All visits to the grotto or the cliffs must be in the presence of a local guide.

Accommodation Hotels (2*, 1* and non-classified), gîtes, tribal accommodation and camping. Dining is possible in most of the establishments. Restaurants and snackbars in Wé and in Wanaham.

We

INFORMATION: CEMAID à Wé Ph: (687) 45 00 32 Ph/fax: (687) 45 18 85 cemaid@cyberdidact.net

49


Visit…

Maré d that talks to your heart n a l s i e th Maré Island or Nengoné, with its cliffs high above the waves below, seems to be the most secret of the Loyalty Islands. Divided into 8 districts, the island has a wild beauty: decidedly jagged, basalt rocks (remains of the first volcanic activity), sombre forests, long beaches bordered with coconut palms. Its central plain is scattered with grottos and natural pools where fish and turtles swim.

Wabao district: Cengeite and Wabao Beaches bordered with coconut palms as well as marvellous small fine sand creeks nestled between rocky promontories. Medu district: Pethoen Grotto is situated on the outskirts of the Medu tribe, 50 metres from the edge of the road via a little path across the forest. Penelo district: “Le Bone de la Léproserie”: one of the largest sunken holes in the world with a 50 m well which emerges into a 350 000 m3 freshwater lake. The Patho and Kurine Sites have a panoramic view over long white sand beaches bordered with coconut palms. Down below are magnificent coral cliffs.

Things to discover Guahma district: The Padawa Grotto pierced into the limestone of the ancient lagoon.

cornered by his enemies, jumped across this 5 metre rift, dug out of the cliff which overlooks Allier Bay and the beautiful Kaewatine Beach.

The La Roche district: The “La Roche Village” and its Fortress: this village owes its name to the high coral rock, the Titi, which stands 90m high and served as a refuge for the local inhabitants in wartime. At the summit, you can see the remains of the old fortifications.The view stretches over 17 km between Cape Roussin and Cape Coster. The Yeiwene Yeiwene Cultural Centre: traditional Kanak art. All visits to this site must be accompanied by a local guide.

To see and do Accommodation Hotels (2* and non-classified), gîte, tribal accommodation and camping. Dining is possible in most of the accommodation types. Snack bar in Wabao and in La Roche.

Tawainedr district: “Le Saut du Guerrier”: 7 km from La Roche, legend has it that a warrior,

Bone Hole: a 40m deep hole. Roh: an historical monument dedicated to the arrival of the gospel on Maré Island. Tadine district: The Natural Aquarium which is fed by the passage of the sea under the coral and serves as a refuge for turtles and fish.

INFORMATION:

Pede Beach is located near Cape Wabao in a little creek of fine sand nestled between rocky promontories.

Syndicat d’Initiative Nengone – Tadine Ph: (687) 45 41 07 Fax: (687) 45 40 39

51


a y d s i l o h Active Experience adventure in the great outdoors as you hike the GR®-NC1 Track or head for the summit of the Mountain Range. You can explore on horseback, mountainbike, quad or canoe. New Caledonia really has something for everyone, including hunting, golf and climbing. In the world’s largest lagoon, now on the UNESCO Heritage List, you can dive into clear blue water teeming with marine life, sail to tropical islands, surf the waves, go fishing for bonefish along with professionals.

Fly as the wind takes you over the huge plains of Niaouli savannah, New Caledonian cowboy country, the waterfalls and forests of the Mountain Range, or the largest lagoon in the world and its many treasures. Experience Melanesian hospitality when you visit a tribe. You are assured of a warm, genuine welcome. Enjoy the magic of the ancestral traditions. Learn about the “coutume” (Custom) and discover the abundant traditional plants.

Celebrate your amazing journey and sample local specialities in the many restaurants at sunset on the terrace of a café or later in the evening at a night-club, to the beat of the Pacific or International music.

A land of adventure and discovery!

55


Discover…

Underwater diving New Caledonia has so much in store for you – the 24,000 km2 of lagoon protected by a huge 1,600 km coral reef, a wide variety of brilliant flora and fauna (much of this being endemic) clear, calm water … now on the UNESCO Heritage List ! On this French archipelago in the Southern Hemisphere, diving is both regulated and supervised by experienced professionals. Safety is also catered for with a modern hyperbaric chamber. Everything is here to ensure your holidays in the warm waters of the South Pacific are unique and unforgettable

Abundance on a grand scale… The New Caledonian lagoon abounds with unique treasures. It is one of the few places in the world where so many species of marine life live togeth-

Wild and unspoilt… er: parrotfish, blue rockling, grouper, leopard rays, reef sharks, tuna, “tazars”, “vivaneaux”, mullet… as well as lobster and their local cousins, “popinées”, and the amazing turtles and marine cows. The lagoon is also blessed with luxuriant marine flora: caverns carpeted in “bryozoaires” and gorgonia, sponges, fluorescent corals, tiara shaped seaeggs, starfish, crinoids. With a bit of luck, divers will also be able to admire an endemic nautilus which has strayed up to the surface.

the world’s

largest

The huge expanse of the New Caledonian lagoon and the relatively low numbers of divers to this region, have enabled the diving sites here to remain pristine. Today there are 15 diving centres spread throughout the archipelago. The types of dives

available are adapted to the levels and preferences of individual divers, and include simple introductory dives, first dives, courses and diplomas, underwater photography and night dives. In New Caledonia, diving is a real pleasure, with comfortable water temperatures of between 21° and 28° C depending on the season. (See the Address Book under Scuba diving).

Snorkelling For inexperienced divers, people accompanying divers, children or fun seekers, why not explore the seabed by snorkelling. (See the Address Book under Snorkelling)

lagoon 57


Discover…

the world’ s

largest lagoon

Escape to the islands New Caledonia is surrounded by a myriad of small coral islands and atolls which are highly seductive and often deliciously… deserted. “Robinson Crusoes” and those people who love exotic solitude will easily find “their perfect island”, as there are so many to choose from. Regular scheduled excursions depart from Nouméa, with the most famous of these being to Amédée Lighthouse. To discover the lagoon

and its islands at your own pace, beautiful yachts and motorboats are available for hire with or without a skipper. Here are some chosen from these natural pearls. (See the Address Book under Boat and Jet skiing).

“L'île aux Canards” A short distance off the coast of AnseVata opposite Nouméa, lies “Ile aux Canards” (Duck Island). This small island is the most accessible for windsurfers and taxi boats. An underwater path is suitable for anyone with flippers, mask and snorkel to explore multi-coloured fish and coral. You can have lunch in the shade of a magnificent “faré” and hire a deck chair for sunbathing.

“L'îlot Maître” A 10-15 minute boat trip from Nouméa, in the centre of a vast underwater reef, Maître Island has been developed to cater for the needs of visitors and Nouméan locals who come here to relax on weekends. A luxury hotel made up of bungalows (Escapade Island Resort) provides very comfortable hotel accommodation. A Watersports Leisure Centre offers its services near the hotel.

a protected area and its charm essentially lies in the clear, blue waters of its lagoon, its white sand and its unspoilt nature. This island is also a departure point for some beautiful dives in the special marine fauna reserve, to a shipwreck or to the barrier reef. The island has a diving centre and a faré-restaurant.

“L'îlot Larégnère”

“L'îlot du phare Amédée” (Lighthouse)

“L'îlot Ténia”

After a pleasant 13 mile boat trip (approximately 45 minutes), you arrive at an island dotted with coconut palms, “bouraos” and “filaos”. A magnificent 150-year old, 56 metre high lighthouse dating back to the Second Empire stands proudly, dominating the island. This island is part of

You can get to this island, surrounded by a beautiful beach, by hire boat (35 minutes by motorboat from Nouméa) or on a day excursion.

Situated opposite Boulouparis, Ténia is a magnificent, peaceful island in the heart of a marine reserve where manta rays, dolphins and other multicoloured fish abound. Here you can picnic, go snorkelling, dive and enjoy watersports.

“L'îlot Signal” Surrounded by a white sand beach, this island received the first navigational beacon at the entrance to Nouméa.

“L'îlot Goélands” 20 minutes from Port Moselle lies a small reef of shiny white sand in a fauna reserve. This small island is a haven for 10% of the world’s Dougall stern population.

59


Discover…

the world’ s

largest lagoon

Good fishing! Recreational fishing, in all of its forms, is one of New Caledonia’s very special leisure activities. For many years, New Caledonia has been seen as a destination for record-breaking catches, attracting keen Fishermen from the four corners of the globe. These people come to indulge their passion as they try to catch the fantastic Black Marlin or a Bonefish which can sometimes be 1 metre in length, or one of the huge “Ignobilis Carangues” which haunt the New Caledonian reefs. There is something for all tastes… from deep sea fishing off a boat, to fishing off one of the gigantic sand banks or in the lagoon aboard a small craft. From Port Boisé in the south, Malabou in the north, to Yaté, Thio, Bourail, the Isle of Pines and the Loyalty Islands, fishing is possible all year round in the world’s largest and most beautiful lagoon. You can also fish in freshwater with one of the specialised organisations – go on a package fishing camp trip, or go independently, for day or weeklong trips. (See the Address Book under Fishing).

Watersports As the tradewinds blow frequently on the world’s largest lagoon, and because the sites are amazing and relatively uncrowded, New Caledonia is an ideal destination for people who enjoy watersports.

Windsurfing The favourite world class windsurfing spots of Anse Vata and “la CôteBlanche” in Nouméa host international competitions which attract the top international windsurfers. The areas of Poé (Bourail) and Ténia (Boulouparis) are also well-known in local windsurfing circles. Hiring quality equipment is easy. (See the Address book under Windsurfing).

Kitesurfing Since 2001, the Kiteboard Pro World titles have been held in New Caledonia and the Territory has proved itself among the best in the world in this discipline. SainteMarie bay is a favourite spot all year round for people who enjoy this exciting sport.

Classes for beginners as well as more advanced levels are also available. (See the Address Book under Surfing and Kitesurfing).

Waterskiing Action lovers must go to La CôteBlanche. All ski gear is provided by the waterski school, with the best conditions for practising this sport. A school shuttle boat is organised to the SainteMarie Island ski site.

Surfing Surfing has seen a spectacular rise in popularity with the creation of the New Caledonian League (Ligue Calédonienne) which organises competitions once or twice a month on the

(See the Address Book under Waterskiing, Wakeboarding).

best spots of the West Coast: Uaräi (Bourail), Ténia (Boulouparis), Ouano (La Foa), Dumbéa Pass and Amédée Lighthouse (Nouméa). The further south you go, the higher the waves. (See the Address Book under Surfing).

61


Discover…

Hiking Hiking is the best way to discover the secret treasures of the New Caledonian countryside. To help make this as easy and enjoyable as possible, the Southern Province has marked out 12 walks to provide comfortable and safe access. Clear signage has been also placed on these tracks (road signs, main information, didactic, pictogrammes, maps…). The signposted tracks have been endorsed by the FFRP (French Hiking Federation) as well as the GR®-NC1 (Great Hiking track). Brochures, which include a description of the walking tracks, are also available from the Tourism Offices. (See the Address book under Excursions, Hiking, Tribes).

The GR®–NC1 The Grande Randonnée NC1 Track, allows hikers to experience New

Caledonia from unique angles and to have access to areas which can only be reached on foot. The first section of the track departs from Prony (in the far south of the Mainland) and goes as far as the “Parc de la Rivière Bleue” in the Yaté district. The GR®–NC1 goes as far as the Dumbéa Dam to enable the “Parc de la Rivière Bleue” to be traversed by foot. In its current configuration, the GR®– NC1 is divided into three sections. At the end of each section, a structure

n t e u v r d A in the gere

at

enables you to set up a campsite so that you can walk the GR®–NC1 during the day as departures are easily accessible. More details or download the tracks connect to the web site www.trekking-gr-sud-nc.com

The Madeleine Falls Botanical Reserve The Madeleine Falls Botanical Reserve is situated within the “Plaine des Lacs” and near the “Parc de la Rivière Bleue”.

The botanical path is a showcase for the prolific flora of the New Caledonian scrub and the surrounding native vegetation. The reserve’s flora is especially remarkable due to the seven ancient conifers, remnants of the secondary era, as well as underwater where a unique plant species provides the habitat for the Nesogalaxias fish – a true fossil of Gondwana.

outdoors 63


Adventure in the great

Discover…

s r o o ut d o

Access to here is strictly on foot and swimming is forbidden. Nearby the Netcha site is a relaxing place to stop for a swim or picnic. (See the Address Book under Parks and nature reserves).

Parc Provincial de la Rivière Bleue (The Blue River Park) This 9,045 hectare natural forest reserve is a hiker’s paradise and home to numerous plants and animals which are endemic to New Caledonia. The Park has been developed to include swimming areas, picnic sites and

several walking tracks. The giant Kauri tree, which stands 40 metres high and is almost 1,000 years old, is one of the Blue River Park’s major attractions. Visitors will also have the opportunity to admire Cagou birds roaming wild. (See the Address Book under Parks and nature reserves).

Parc des Grandes Fougères (The Ferns Park) Created in 2008, Ferns Park aims to protect a threatened and exceptional natural site. Acoomodated for guided hiking. Discover a variety of endemic flora. Do not hesitate to contact hiking guides.

Hiking independently For people who love the great outdoors and adventure, New Caledonia has old mining slopes and forest tracks to explore, as well as Kanak trails which have been left to their own devices and become covered in vegetation. In fact, many tracks have not

been cleared and signposted, so you are recommended to use experienced guides or certified instructors who will show you New Caledonia from the ground to the tops of the trees and who will share with you their historic and botanical knowledge of the terrain. Excursions to tribes are also organised to show you the old customary trails, and the originality of New Caledonia’s flora and fauna. Near Nouméa, the Dumbéa Gorges are favourite spots in summer for walks and swimming: the Mount Koghi range (1,061 m) has a splendid view of Nouméa and the Dumbéa Plain. Mont Dore and the region of Prony in the south are well-know hiking areas as is, further north, Mount Humboldt (1,618m) and Mount Mou (1,220m). The areas around Sarraméa, La Foa and Farino,“la vallée des B” (B valley) are perfect for good walkers wanting to discover the old coffee plantations and the historic remains of colonisation. Other great hiking options include The La Fo-Ouïa walk along the river and the Amieu Pass and its magnificent orchards, the Oua Tom Tribe, its

botanical tour, the discovery of customary paths and the Great Hut. In the north of the Mainland, the Mount Panié range (1,628 m), which shelters a botanical reserve that is exceptionally rich in endemic plants, is

Go for a ride… On horseback, mountain bike, quad bike or canoe, discover how generous and welcoming the great outdoors of New Caledonia really is.

On horseback in Cowboy Country accessible from Hienghène on the east coast. The Gohapin (Poya), Ouate (Pouembout), Kuinet (Canala) and Néami (Koné) tribes organise good walks. From the overlooking viewpoint, you can admire the famous “Cœur de Voh” whose contours are delineated in the mangroves.

On horseback you can admire the Niaouli savannah of the West coast plains, cross the Mountain Range and its Primary Forest, ride along Poé Beach or the Lebris Peninsula, or explore the prolific New Caledonian flora and fauna. You can also come

On the Isle of Pines, after only an hour’s walk to the top of the Ngâ Peak (262 m), the highest point on the island, you are rewarded with a spectacular panoramic view of the magnificent lagoon. In the Loyalty Islands, Maré and Lifou are the best places for hiking. On Maré you can discover the marvellous Shabadran site and on Lifou the botanical trail of Lifou Nature, the Antoine Geihazé path and the Bernard-l’Hermite track. (See the Address Book under Excursions, Hiking, Tribes).

into contact with the Bush and New Caledonian cowboys, meet welcoming tribes and share a “bougna” or venison ragoût cooked on a campfire. When camping in the mountains, you could also go fishing for creek prawns – in the right season of course.

65


Adventure in the great

Discover… From simple walks to guided hikes lasting several days accompanied by a certified guide, you can discover another side of New Caledonia… with passion. Suggested activities include: a two day crossing of the Mountain Range, departing from Bourail or La Foa and heading towards Thio, or departing from Koné. Many villages and tribes in the north of the Mainland also offer horserides to original places such as near Hienghène.

s r o o ut d o

Mountainbiking for pleasure! Mountainbiking is very popular in New Caledonia and inspires a real passion for the sport.

Rockclimbing

A short distance from Nouméa, bikers can head for the Dzumac Slopes or explore the Bush. In the south, the Dumbéa Dam and the forests of the Mountain Range are sources of amazement.

Canoeing - following the current !

To explore on the Isle of Pines: “la baie des crabes” and the tricentenary forest near Gadji. (See the Address Book under Horseriding).

Quad biking for fun Straddled over your four-wheeled machine, go on a discovery of the Great South and the regions of Farino or Sarraméa, accompanied by an experienced guide. (See the Address Book under Quad Bikes).

Canyoning and tree walking

The Blue River Park and the Ni Valley with its 100km circuit will provide unforgettable memories for t h o s e people who like getting o f f the beaten track. For mountainbiking around Nouméa, the Blue River Park, Ouvéa or on the Isle of Pines, mountainbikes are available for hire with or without a guide. (See the Address Book under Bikes).

Whether canoeing alone or with your family, you can glide along the Blue River, Yaté Lake or the Dumbéa, Tontouta and La Foa Rivers at your own speed. For the more adventurous, you can join one of the full moon trips on the “forêt noyée” (Sunken Forest) in the Blue River Park. You are guaranteed of an amazing experience! For a truly spectacular trip, try canoeing beneath the base of the Lindéralique Rocks in Hienghène or following the current along the Diahot, the longest river in New Caledonia, departing from Ouégoa. (See the Address Book under Canoeing/ Kayaking).

Thrills are guaranteed when you find yourself in the hollow of a high waterfall or a cave with black limestone walls and discover, from the ground to the treetops, the tropical forests of New Caledonia in the regions of Mount-Koghi (Dumbéa), Yaté, Farino, Canala, Houaïlou and Hienghène with certified instructors. Trips are offered for all levels, from beginners to the most athletic and experienced.

On Mount Koghi you are guaranteed to spend a pleasant and relaxing time as you go from tree to tree on a unique and safe circuit incorporating monkey bridges, footbridges, flying fox and swings. (See the Address Book under Canyoning and climbing,Tree-walking)

67


Adventure in the great

Discover…

s r o o ut d o

Hunting Hunting is an integral part of New Caledonian culture. Both New Caledonians of European descent and Melanesians enjoy this sport. They hunt on the large rural stations of the interior, as well as in the forests of the central Mountain Range.

Rusa deer, turkey and wild pig The usual weapon for hunting is a rifle, however the bow and arrow is becoming increasingly popular. The game is quite varied, ranging from Rusa deer to the “roussette” (a large fruit bat) as well as the “notou”, wild pig and turkey.

View from the air To appreciate the full extent of the territory, the variety and beauty of its landscapes, the contrasts of its colours and also the exceptional brilliance of the sky there, treat yourself to a view of New Caledonia from the air.

Parachuting This is one of the major extreme sports available in New Caledonia. Whether it be as a response to a challenge or a genuine passion, a parachute jump is an amazingly intense experience. Hunting trips are organised by several professionals in the regions of La Foa, Boulouparis, Bourail, Poya, Koné, Pouembout and Hienghène. Tourists can bring their own equipment or hire it in New Caledonia. You can also combine your passion for hunting with another passion dear to New Caledonian hearts, fishing. For information, contact “The Fédération territoriale de chasse de NouvelleCalédonie” (FTCNC) – the New Caledonian Territorial Federation of Hunting. (See the Address Book under Hunting).

The La Foa Parachuting School, whose director has been world champion of this discipline several times

running, offers tandem or solo parachute jumps, depending on your choice and level. (See the Address Book under Parachuting).

Helicopter rides

Gliding

For an unforgettable experience go on a 15-minute helicopter flight to discover Nouméa, its beaches, “l’île aux Canards” and “l’îlot Maître”.

Accessible to everyone ranging from amateurs to the experienced, gliding is practised in New Caledonia by a small group of people who are passionate about the sport and eager to share their experience of flying above the world’s largest lagoon. (See the Address Book under Gliding).

A 30-minute flight will show you the most beautiful lagoon in the world as you travel towards Amédée Lighthouse, the coral reef and its small islands. A 60-minute flight will take you on a spectacular tour revealing the contrasts in the New Caledonian landscape with several exceptional circuits over the southern lagoon, the Great South and the Isle of Pines. Personalised tours are also available on request to whalewatch or to drop you off at a departure point for a trip… (See the Address Book under Helicopter flight).

69


Adventure in the great

Discover…

s r o o ut d o

Golf New Caledonia is an incredibly sporty destination which has 3 international Golf Courses: the Tina Golf Course in Nouméa, the Dumbéa Golf Course and la Ouenghi in Boulouparis. (See the Address Book under Golf).

The Tina international Golf Course Location: Nouméa Opened: 1994 18 holes Par 72 of 5,889 metres SSS(*) men: 69.7 SSS(*) women: 74.8 This private golf course, which is open to the public, is situated on an 80 hectare park nestled between the sea and the mountains. Situated only 10 minutes from downtown Nouméa, and open since February 1994, the course is par 72 of 5,889 metres and makes the most of the diverse local geography. The course is divided into two areas: there are 9 holes on undulating terrain inland and 9 holes along the riverbank,

mangroves and beach.The course is fairly windy, varied and quite challenging. For a team of 4 people you should allow approximately 41/2 hours to complete the 18 hole course using a small golf cart. You can choose to do only 9 holes if you wish, train at the practice range or take lessons (in French or in

English). The Tina golf course and its club-house which overlooks the practice bassin, is considered by experienced golfers to be one of the most beautiful French golf courses in the world.

participated in the New Caledonia Open since 1991. Par 72 of 6,279 metres and a 125 slope (back-tees) this flat course has many features.

The Dumbéa Golf Course Location: Dumbéa Opened: 1971 18 holes Par 72 of 6,279 metres SSS(*) men:72 SSS(*) women: 73 Municipal golf course This golf course is located 25 minutes from the capital and stretches over a green area between the mountains and rivers. Spread over 75 hectares, this course, which was created in 1971, is surprising both because of its exceptional location and its golfing qualities. The course has developed over the years, following advice from international referees and golf professionals from the Pacific who have

course, created in 1990, is flat and has many trees. It can be completed in 3 hours (on foot) as it is mainly on flat terrain with only 2 or 3 holes being on undulating land. The first 5 holes are particularly challenging. The course adjoins the Paillotes de La Ouenghi hotel-restaurant situated near the Ouenghi river. The complex has 15 bungalows, a restaurant and offers various activities in addition to golf. As with the other golf courses, you can book via Internet.

After the first 9 holes which are particularly technical with many obstacles (bunkers, rivers) you can use all your power on the final 9 holes. All the greens must be approached with care, it is better to remain short to avoid extra hits. All types of players will enjoy the course and be delighted to finish off at the 19th Clubhouse, a bar and restaurant open to golfers and visitors for refreshments or lunch in a pleasant and relaxing environment.

La Ouenghi Golf Course Location: Boulouparis Opened: 1990 18 holes Par 72 of 6,151 metres SSS(*): 72 This is a private golf course that is also open to the public, situated one hour from Nouméa and 10 minutes from Tontouta International Airport. The

(*) SSS: Scratch Score Standard

71


Discover…

Life in the Bush New Caledonians living in the Bush, also known as “Broussards”, are often pictured as being cowboys who live to the rhythm of the sun, striding their cattle ranches, hunting, fishing and generally having fun ! This is not far from reality, except that both men and women cultivate the land and raise their cattle on vast properties. At Agricultural Fairs and Festivals (such as the Bourail Fair in August), the rodeo is often the highlight event: the atmosphere is original and good-natured. It perfectly illustrates life in the bush, with its stories of “Uncle Marcel” and “Dame Blanche”, their amazing deer hunting exploits and fishing stories. You will discover the bush through members of "Bienvenue à la ferme" network. Meals are copious, relaxing and will more than satisfy you. (See the Address Book under Guest Houses, Accomodations at Gites, Farms).

The Kanak world The Melanesian or Kanak culture, is an ancestral culture of mainly oral tradition. All of the belief systems and legends are passed on by the “elders” who, in doing so, perpetuate these important traditions and customs. There are different ways to learn about this unique lifestyle. You can visit museums which tell the story of this population and display their works, or actually meet tribal people

A multi-

who will be happy to welcome you and share a moment.

“La coutume” (The Custom) The Custom holds the social organisation together. Kanak society has its own particular social structure where each person participates in the life of the tribe. The key person in Kanak family life is the maternal uncle, called the “uterine” uncle. Within the structure, subjects respect the ‘little chief’ and the ‘great chief’ and listen to the advice of the elders. The custom and the rules of politeness are still alive and well in the

Bush and in the islands, and necessitate some propriety. When visiting a tribe, you are expected to “faire la coutume”, which means offer the chief a small gift as a sign of respect – a sarong, cigarettes or a bank note. Some places can only be visited once

cuarlcthiupelraagol 73


Discover…

a

multi-cultural

archipelago

you have requested permission from their ritual guardian. Any paths which are barred, even symbolically, should not be used as they remain the tribe’s property and lead to sacred places.

The mission dress This dress came into being in the 1860s. Originally it symbolised religious adherence, a sign that the person had been baptised. With the passing of time, the mission dress has undergone several changes, and has

even become a sign of identity as it is also known as the “popinée” dress (the name which designates a Kanak woman) and different tribes have different colours. The mission dress is evolving as designers are now producing dresses of various styles and colours.

Visits to tribes These are becoming increasingly popular and provide a unique opportunity to gain a better understanding of the Melanesian way of life and a lifestyle where traditions live on. Visits are possible on the Mainland and in the islands and are generally organised by local tourist agencies or by local guides.

Apart from learning about ancestral myths and legends, these visits provide the opportunity to sample the “bougna", a traditional Melanesian dish prepared before you by the women of the tribe. Some tribes are opening up more to tourism. Tourist guides which belong to an association, offer their services to the Oua Tom and Oui Poin tribes as well as to Sarraméa, Hienghène and the islands. (See the Address Book under Tribes, Excursions).

The Museum of New Caledonia A real voyage to the heart of the traditions of this wonderful land. The Museum of New Caledonia, which opened in Nouméa in 1971, concentrates on the ethnography of the Kanak and Oceanic populations. The vigilant guardian of an ancient civilisation, several thousand years old, which is both magical and mysterious, the Museum transports you to the heart of Melanesia with all its symbolism and spirituality. Its rooms display a magnificent collection of ancient sculptures, funeral masks and various objects retracing all aspects of social life: pottery, finery, jade and shell jewellery, Kanak money, “sagaies,” models of canoes, arrows, door frames and other objects. In the courtyard stands a large Melanesian hut bordered by an alley of araucarias. (See the Address Book under Museum and Cultural Centre).

The Tjibaou Cultural Centre Designed by Renzo Piano, one of the masters of modern architecture, the Tjibaou Cultural Centre, built on the Tina Peninsula 10 minutes from downtown Nouméa, is imposing, with its very contemporary style inspired by traditional Kanak architecture. As a dramatic introduction to the exploration of the Centre, the Kanak trail tells the story of the creation of the first man in an original and involving spectacle featuring narration and actors. The Tjibaou Cultural Centre also bears witness to the vividness of oceanic cultures. The Kanak artefacts displayed in the Bwénaado Hut and the monumental Oceanic works designed especially for the Jinu Hut, present the visitor with an exploratory voyage through these plurimillennium civilisations. The Bérétara Room displays a collection of contemporary art from the Pacific region which is unique in the world. (See the Address Book under Museum and Cultural Centre).

75


Discover…

a

multi-cultural

archipelago

The Goa Ma Bwarath Cultural Centre Situated in Hienghène, this museum contains a collection of Kanak objects, temporary exhibitions, a library, two large traditional huts symbolising the two large districts of Hienghène, a scene and a craft village.

The Koné Cultural Centre Temporary exhibitions (photos, Kanak art and traditions…), shows and entertainment.

Artistic expression Amical network Members offer initiation n to acquire expertise in specific different cultures of New Caledonia. « Amical » aims to promote a quality service for New Caledonia toursitim cultural services and guarantee they meet ethic criterias by respecting traditions. A guide is available at the Tourism Office.

Crafts The beauty of New Caledonian nature is a constant source of inspiration for its craftspeople, both on the islands and on the Mainland. Whether it be on a small bamboo stall, at the market or in a boutique, you can find a souvenir which will bring back memories of your trip to New Caledonia. Local sculptors, artists of all types and artisans will be only too happy and proud to share their passion with you. (See the Address Book under Handicrafts)

customary areas of the Territory. Whether it be a performance during a guided tour of the Kanak Trail at the Tjibaou Cultural Centre or at a dinnershow in one of Nouméa’s restaurants, there is always an occasion to appreciate a performance by We Ce Ca, whose choreographer Tim Saméke is also a composer and performer.

Dance

Wood and soapstone sculpture is very popular today with Kanak artists.

In Melanesian culture, dancing is very important. The “Pilou”, the name given to the Melanesian dance by the first French missionaries, represents on stage the most important events and

Music

“Place des Cocotiers”, at the Atelier des femmes de Nouvelle-Calédonie you will find various basketry items for sale. A more picturesque way of purchasing this craft is from one of the markets or at a little roadside stall in the country.

In addition to the oral tradition of Melanesian culture, literature has found its place through writers and poets. Among these, Déwé Gorodé, stands out as being the most accomplished in recent contemporary Kanak literature. Réséda Ponga is well-known in young people’s literature with Méyénô, with a second album in a series of contemporary Kanak stories. Most of the local literature is in French.

NATURE AND CULTURE PASS

Because of its ethnic mix, New Caledonia has a wide range of music including traditional New Caledonian, Polynesian, and Asian. In New Caledonia you can find an excellent range of CDs of traditional Melanesian music. As well as traditional songs, the country’s musical culture developed in the mid-80s with the birth of Kanéka, inspired by the traditional “Pilou” and brought up-to-date with modern rhythms influenced by reggae.

Sculpture

Literature In New Caledonia there are both small and large bookshops selling many books on New Caledonia and the Pacific. You can also find poetry anthologies, novels, tourist guides, comics and superb quality photographic books.

legends of a tribe or clan. The We Ce Ca dance group (pronounced Oué tché tcha), which translates into “first light of day”, is made up of young dancers from different

A unique way to discover New Caledonia’s rich cultural and natural diversity. One entry per person to six of Nouméa’s « must-see » venues : Aquarium, New Caledonia museum, Town museum, Maritime museum, Tjibaou Cultural Center and Zoo and Botanical Gardens, valid for six months from the first visit. Great savings of 1 000xpf on the usual entry fees. For sale in tourist places indicated by the logo.

77


Discover…

a

multi-cultural

archipelago

Local cuisine Dishes prepared from local produce can be sampled in the many great restaurants in Nouméa and also the country. You cannot leave New Caledonia without tasting a “bougna,” the traditional Melanesian dish cooked in the Kanak oven which has been prepared with hot stones placed at the bottom of a sand or earth hole. New Caledonia also has a large variety of international cuisine on offer, especially Chinese and Vietnamese.

New Caledonian country produce Creamy Niaouli honey, jams and tropical crystallised fruit, venison sausage, vegetable “achards” (a type of pickle), “troca” or bénitier,” Niaouli flower or Blackwood liqueurs are all delicious treats to savour while on holiday and to take back as souvenirs.

Chicken “Bougna” recipe Ingredients for 4 people: 1.5 kgs of chicken 4 pieces of white yams 4 pieces of purple yams 4 pieces of taros 4 pieces of manioc (cassava) 4 green bananas 1 piece of squash 2 leeks 1 stick of celery 2 tins of coconut cream 1 bunch of parsley salt and pepper Cut the chicken into pieces and simmer in a large casserole dish for 45mn then drain. Add the coconut cream to the casserole and put the chicken back in along with the pieces of white yams, pieces of manioc, green bananas and the taro. Grate the piece of squash above these vegetables and then add the leeks, the bunch of parsley, salt and pepper. Cover and let simmer 50 mns. Add the pieces of purple yams and cook for 20 more minutes.

New Caledonian curried prawns

Ingredients for 4 people: 1.5 kg of raw prawns 1 tin of coconut cream 1 very ripe tomato 1 teaspoon of tomato concentrate 1 strand of fresh saffron 1 onion 3 cloves of garlic 4 dessertspoons of oil 4 red chilli peppers Salt Put the 4 spoonfuls of oil in a casserole dish and brown the onions then add the crushed cloves of garlic, the peppers and salt. Mix together, add the coconut cream and let simmer for 5 minutes. Shell the prawns and cut them in half lengthways. Add them to the sauce and leave to simmer gently for 5 minutes.

79


Discover…

a

multi-cultural

archipelago

New Caledonia is the stage for many and varied forms of entertainment throughout the year – theatre, dance, concerts, cinema, shows… For more information, the Tourism Office publishes the monthly “NC Pocket” (French/English), which is distributed free in various places around Nouméa and in the main tourist areas of the Southern Province.

Nightlife In Nouméa, especially at sunset, cafés, piano-bars, and karaokés come alive with Happy Hour from 5pm to 6.30pm. Restaurants serve cuisine from around the world, both à la carte and theme buffets with a show. Chefs make a point of preparing quality cuisine using fresh New Caledonian lagoon and agricultural produce. Later in the evening, discos open their

Entertainment "Mercredi Passions" Organised by the Tourism Office, « Mercredi Passions » takes place every first wednesday of the month from 5pm to 7 :30pm (7pm during cool season) on Anse Vata beach opposite the « Palm Beach » mall While admiring the sunset, meet an original local handicraft market where music, food tasting, culinary specialities sales are melt with 100% local crafts. Program events is available at the Tourism Office(Anse Vata and city center offices)

Calendar of Events March Women’s Day Mardi Gras Yam Fair (Isle of Pines) April Nouméa International Triathlon International Car Rallye Giant Omelette Fair (Dumbéa)

Agricultural Fair in Bourail

May Avocado Fair (Maré) « Diahot » Fair (Ouégoa) Prawn and Deer Fair (Boulouparis) Plant Fair (Ponérihouen) June Sea Fair

doors to those who love dancing to the rhythms of the Pacific or international music along “Anse Vata” and the “Baie des Citrons”. Usual restaurant opening hours are from 11.30am to 2.30pm and from 5pm to 11pm. Most restaurants are open on Sundays.

“Jeudis du Centre-Ville”

Cinema Festival

(Thursdays downtown)

Yaté Fair

The Nouméa Downtown association organises a large event every Thursday, from 5pm to 8pm on the “Place des Cocotiers” in downtown Nouméa.

August

Music Festival Mandarin Fair July

Clark’s Horse Racing August Live Music International Open Golf Yam and Coffee Fair (Ponérihouen) Crafts and Agricultural Fair (Touho) Nouméa International Marathon September Heritage Month Islands Fair (Maré) « Ver de Bancoule » (worm) Fair (Farino) Koumac Fair Funk Women Festival

Crafts and Agricultural Fair (Thio) TransCaledonia Race Poindimié Fair Rodéo in Pouembout Yam Fair (Ouvéa) Wadrawa Fair (Maré)

October Gigawatt Race (Yaté) Amaryllis Fair Beef Fair (Païta) November « Wajuju » Fair (Maré)

www.sortir.nc

Gypsy Jazz Festival

81


Pictos

The Map

of New Caledonia

Boat excursions Glass-bottom boat trips Motorboats Taxi boats Jet skiing

Windsurfing Canoeing and kayaking Waterskiing Kitesurfing Surfing

...................................................................

................................................................... ...................................................................

Snorkelling, Free diving Scuba diving Fishing (line, fly, surf-casting)

............................................................. ...................................................... ............................................... ........................................

Deep sea fishing Aquatic Centre Thalassotherapy

................................. .......................... ....................

Horse riding Hiking

ATV (Bike)

Traditional Canoes

...................................................................

Tribes (welcome and visit)

Bike

Yachts

...................................................................

Farm and local produce

Canyoning, and Climbing Tree walking Hunting, Ball Trap Golf Helicopter flights Parachuting, Paragliding, and Kite flying Gliding Museum and Cultural Centre Handicraft Games and amusements Night Clubs, Bars, Karaoke… Internet

Whales and dolphins (watching)

Parks and natural reserves

............. ......

Ask for the Address Book

May 2009 – Non-contractual document. The information contained in this guide is intended for use as a general guide only. It has been checked for accuracy at the time of printing, and is subject to change without notice. Whilst we have exercised reasonable care and skill to ensure that the contents are correct, accurate and up-todate at the time of printing, based on information supplied to us by the tourist plant in New Caledonia, circumstances can and inevitably do change, and therefore no liability can be accepted. The authors and publishers of this guide can in no way be held responsible for such changes. All rights reserved. PHOTOGRAPHIC CREDITS: P-A. PANTZ, F. WENGHER, C. SFALLY, S. MERION, HONO, E. AUBRY, C. BAUDEMOULIN, PLAGES LOISIRS, A. PRIETO, E. RIGHETTI, M. DOSDANE, R. LE GUEN, E. LUIDER, L. SAVARIELLO, J. CASSOU, MEGAJET, POISSON BANANE, R. BERTIN, Y. SAINT-YVES, Y. BROWN, P. HENDRIE, E. DELL'ERBA, S. ARNAL, V. AUDET, BABOU PLONGÉE, PARADISE NAVIGATOR, TJIBAOU CULTURAL CENTRE – RENZO PIANO ARCHITECT, DESTINATION LOYALTY ISLANDS, TOURISME PROVINCE NORD, NEW CALEDONIA TOURISM POINT SOUTH.


FRANCE & EUROPE

New Caledonia

contact

New o d nia ! e l a C The

4 bis, rue Ventadour, 75001 Paris Ph: 33 (0)1 47 03 17 74 Fax: 33 (0)1 47 03 17 75 info-par@nctps.com www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.fr www.nueva-caledonia-turismo.es www.newcaledoniatourism.eu www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.eu www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.be www.nieuw-caledonie-toerisme.nl www.nouvelle-caledonie-tourisme.ch

www.newcaledoniatourism.co.uk

ITALIA c/o Rappresentante Italia Ph: (39) 339 841 66 75 nuova-caledonia@tiscali.it www.nuovacaledoniaturismo.it

DEUTSCHLAND (Österreich & Schweiz) c/o Eyes2market Ph: (49) 4101 696 48 13 neukaledonien@eyes2market.com www.neukaledonientourismus.de

NOUMÉA Office de Tourisme 05 75 80 (N° Vert) Square Olry – Place des Cocotiers 14, rue Jean Jaurès centre-ville – Nouméa Ph: (687) 28 75 80 – Fax: (687) 28 75 85 centre.ville@office-tourisme.nc

New Caledonia Tourism www.newcaledoniatourism.uk.com

l l e e r v a r T Guide 's


NEW CALEDONIA_ Traveller's Guide 2009