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Published on 2/22/2020 additional information available

Fanning Island


Fanning Island

If you're on Fanning Island, part of the Republic of Kiribati and officially known as Tabuaeran Island, you most likely arrived by private yacht, sailboat or one of a few cruise ships. A sibling of the better-known Christmas Island, Fanning is extremely remote with no power grid or indoor plumbing. And that means it's a once-in-a-lifetime experience for cruisers to visit this untouched atoll in the central Pacific Ocean and its 2,500 residents.

Why go to Fanning Island?

Pros: Cruise vessels that hug the coral reef's edge provides great snorkeling and beach activities.

Cons: It is a tendered port, with no established restaurants or bars.

Bottom Line: Experience a remote, tropical island with open-air community markets and beach barbecues.


Where You’re Docked

Passengers board high-speed ferries to English Harbour. You'll disembark onto a wooden pier jutting into the clear, tourquoise water of a palm-fringed lagoon. Yes, it's picture-perfect, reminiscent of a Robinson Crusoe tale or a "Gilligan's Island" episode.


Fanning Island Cruise Port Facilities

Near the pier at English Harbour, you'll find a beach compound with lounge chairs, entertainment, a local open-air market, volleyball courts and more.


Good to Know

As you should in any new place, be aware of your surroundings, and don't carry unnecessary valuables. Leave fancy jewelry and excessive amounts of cash in your stateroom's safe.


Getting Around

There are a few ways to get around Fanning Island: on foot, by bike or on the backs of open-air thatched-roof trucks. It's easy to walk from the center of activity into the heart of the island; some locals also offer bike rentals and organized walking tours. Walks and bike rides can be taken on a hard-packed dirt road that has some ruts and potholes.


Currency & Best Way to Get Money

Currency is the Australian dollar, but American dollars are also accepted. As there is no power grid on Fanning Island, there are no ATM's; be sure to get cash onboard or in another port of call before arriving.



English is the most commonly spoken language on Fanning Island.

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