Yap Photo Gallery
 


In March 2011, we traveled to Yap. Yap is one of the four states in the Federated States of Micronesia. When we told people that we were going to Yap, the usual question was "Yap? Where's that?". It is about 600 miles east of the Philippines and 2000 miles south of Japan. See the map to the right.

While there, we stayed at Traders Ridge Resort which has now been renamed Yap Pacific Dive Resort. Yap Pacific is a small boutique hotel with a lot of character. The hotel was originally a residence built by the American SeaBees at the end of the Second World War. The restaurant is built on the foundation of a WWII Japanese command post.

Yap is a small island with a population of approximately 6000. It is one of the least developed countries that we have visited. The largest settlement called Colonia consists of a grocery store, courthouse, jail, two hotels, a few small shops and a few small restaurants. The remainder of the island consists of several small villages where the locals live a very traditional lifestyle. Despite the lack of development, the island has an excellent road system.

Yap is known as "The Island of Stone Money". You see the stone money everywhere. It was made by Yapese who sailed to the Island of Palau and painstakenly quarried the stone money from a type of limestone found only on Palau. Then, they sailed these massive pieces of stone back to Yap on bamboo rafts. Each piece of stone money is owned by individual families and is still used as currency for traditional trading. Read more about this tradition in the pictures below.

Yapese culture is very interesting. We were told that it is common that local women do not wear tops. However, it is necessary for them to completely cover their thighs. We saw very few women without tops in the town of Colonia but it seemed to be common practice in the villages.

Share our experience in the following pictures:

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