Few people travel to Yap, a small island in Micronesia that's basically hidden in the Pacific, closest to Palau and Guam. But those who do travel to Yap find an amazing culture rich with traditions like the famous stone money. For the September/October 2009 issue of ISLANDS magazine, writer Edward Readicker-Henderson explores Yap to see if it truly is a whole other dream. See the article and advice to plan your trip below.
Fly to Yap (YAP) on Continental Airlines via Guam (GUM) or Palau (ROR).
Eat at the Mnuw: Ship's Bar & Grill at Manta Ray Bay, which is a converted ship and a great hangout restaurant. Order delicious seafood and drink a fresh microbrew from the Stone Money Brewing Company.
Dive with Manta Ray Bay's dive masters; divers of all levels are welcome. Some 14 feet across, the giant mantas are the main draw. Lionfish Wall drops to 130 feet, and Yap Caverns is good for whitetip reef sharks.
Explore with kayaking trips in the mangrove swamp & tours of Yap's World War II ruins. On Tuesdays and Saturdays, the Manta Ray's Village Cultural Tour of Kaday highlights traditions, from the men's house and village house to dancing and betel-nut tasting. If you hike on your own, remember paths go through people's yards, so ask permission to pass.