Kingdom of Tonga (map) is a Polynesian sovereign state and archipelago comprising 169 islands, of which 36 are inhabited. While exposed to colonial pressures, Tonga has always governed itself, which makes it unique in the Pacific. The largest island, *Tongatapu (map), on which the capital city of *Nukuʻalofa (map) is located, covers 257 square kilometres (99 sq mi).
The capital, Nuku’alofa, on the north coast, has a relaxed air, despite the troubles of a few years ago. There are some interesting places to visit, such as ancient tombs and coastal blowholes, and some nice beaches with good snorkelling. Tongatapu also provides a good opportunity to view a unique culture.