Gizo is the scuba diving capital of the Solomon Islands and a magnet for Australian divers. There are brilliant reefs, abundant marinelife, and numerous sunken ships and planes remaining from the Second World War. Gizo is a pleasant little seaside town with a colorful market, Chinese stores, and an assortment of small hotels and guest houses.
Curiously, the island name has a different spelling than that of the town. Ghizo Island is 11 km long, with Sagheraghi village at its northwest tip. There's a nice beach at Sagheraghi, but much of Ghizo was clearcut by Levers Pacific Timbers during the 1960s, so the island's underwater sights surpass those on dry land.
Titiana and New Manra villages, just west of Gizo town, are an exception. Prior to independence in 1978, the British colonial government relocated thousands of Gilbertese people to the Solomon Islands from overcrowded areas in Kiribati, Micronesia. The Titiana and New Manra villagers retain many of their age-old Micronesian customs.
Gizo's top attractions are offshore, and companies like Dive Gizo take divers to sites like the Toa Maru, an intact Japanese transport ship in only 18 meters of water. For fish and coral, Grand Central Station off northern Ghizo is unsurpassed. An American Hellcat fighter and a Japanese Zero also await swimpast sightseers. Even the reef off Nusatupe Airstrip, on a small island near Gizo, is well worth a dive.
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