The Northern Mariana Islands in conjunction with Guam, form the Mariana Islands. Northern Mariana Island is a commonwealth situated in the Pacific Ocean and the islands to the south are composed of limestone and fringed with coral reefs while the islands to the north are volcanic. There are three active volcanoes on the islands; Anatahan, Pagan and Argihan. The islands have a tropical marine climate which are influenced by seasonal northeastern trade winds, making the island temperatures quite stable.
The commonwealth of the islands is a veritable mix of nationalities, which provides a unique experience for people who visit the islands. One cultural trait that many may not know about is the “eye lift”. This gesture is done among islanders as a sign of recognition and greeting. It is often substituted for saying “hello” to acknowledge the other person.
For some visitors a traditional “boonie stomping”, may prove an interesting way to spend the afternoon. The term is indigenous to the islands and means to go trekking. There are local guides who regularly take visitors on a tour through the jungle to explore the World War II relics found there. There is a series of underground caves in Saipan that were used by the Japanese during the war, it is also an interest place of historical meaning.
When on the island of Saipan, Tinian or Rota, visitors experience a self-contained world surrounded by the ocean. The Saipan Lagoon covers twenty square miles and is mostly shallow waters separated from the Philippine Sea by a two mile long barrier reef. The lagoon, surrounded by its various flora and fauna is a principal source of recreation for tourists and locals alike.
Lau Lau Bay or Magicienne Bay its formal name, is located on the east side of Saipan and is one of the most beautiful areas and the largest natural bay in the Northern Mariana Islands. Located around the bay is a breathtaking coral reef and steep cliffs with deep caverns. This location is prime for snorkeling and swimming, both of which are popular pastimes for visitors seeking a secluded, relaxing place.
The islands are also famous for the Latte Stones. These monuments are mysterious and hidden deeply in the jungle near the shore line. The stones were built by the Chamorros and were known as the “house of the ancient”. Occurring in double rows containing between eight and twelve stones and were at one time thought to have been support structures of some kind. To this day, there are still many questions about the origins and purpose of the stones.
For recreation on the islands there are four 18-hole golf courses and one 9-hole golf course. There are also a wide variety of water based activities such as sailing, para sailing, hang gliding, water skiing, scuba diving, snorkeling and sport fishing. There are also several entertainment venues on the islands that feature Pacific island dancers, flame dancers and musicians who play traditional instruments made on the islands.
The Aquarius Beach Hotel is on the island of Saipan and renowned for its stunning beachfront location. Guests are welcomed in typical island fashion and an honorary barbecue is held at the end of the week for all the new arrivals. This hotel is located in the perfect area for sightseeing and cultural immersion. One of the most famous hotels on the island is the Pacific Islands Club. The hotel is located on the Tumon Bay and San Antonio beach and offers guests a five-star suite in the heart of the islands nightlife and shopping areas. From the moment a visitor arrives they will notice that the islands are relaxed and laid back, with a strong sense of community and endearing warmth. The Northern Mariana Islands are the perfect location for those seeking a welcome respite surrounded by astounding scenery and miles of gorgeous white sand beaches.