Kiribati Overview

Kiribati is an island nation that stretches over a huge area along the equator of the Pacific Ocean. Including the sea surface, the country is eleven times as large as Sweden, but the land surface corresponds to just over half of Öland.

Kiribati flagKiribati 2

Capital: South Tarawa
Biggest city: South Tarawa
State: republic
Language: English, Kiribati
Religion: Christianity
Surface: 811 km²
Population: 103 200 (2013)
Population density: 139 residents per km²
Life expectancy: 63 years
Illiteracy: 10%
Currency: Australian dollar (AUD)
1 dollar = 6.44 kr
GDP per capita: $ 6,200 (2010)
Time difference: +11 to +13 hours
Electricity: 240 V AC, 50 Hz
National Day: July 12
Country area code: 686
2-Letter country abbreviation: KI (See more abbreviations on Abbreviationfinder)
Business: subsistence farming, copra production and fishing
Climate: tropical, temperate by trade winds

Kiribati consists of the archipelagos Gilbert Islands, Phoenix Islands and Linje Islands. A large part of the Phoenix Islands is part of the world’s largest marine protected area, and has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2010.

Nine out of ten live on the Gilbert Islands, where the Tarawa Atoll and the capital South Tarawa are also located. Most of Kiribati consists of coral atolls, located just a few meters above sea level. According to researchers, the whole country may disappear in the future, if the forecasts for how much the water level will rise are correct.

In 2008, the Prime Minister of Kiribati took the initiative to create a long-term contingency plan for the evacuation and settlement of Kiribati’s population in other countries. The Prime Minister said that the entire population must be relocated over the next 50 years.

Although Kiribati is the world’s fourth least visited country, with only a few thousand visitors a year, tourism accounts for about a fifth of the country’s GDP.

According to the UN, Kiribati is one of the least developed countries in the world. Economic development is prevented i.a. of the shortage of skilled labor, poor infrastructure and large distances to international markets. The vast distances between the islands of Kiribati also make it difficult to develop a modern economy. A large part of the population lives mainly on what nature provides.

Kiribati used to be on both sides of the date limit, but in 1995 Kiribati decided that the date limit should no longer go between the country’s islands, but take a detour around the easternmost islands. On current maps, therefore, all the islands of Kiribati are on the same side of the line. Kiribati now has a common date, and since 1995 is the world’s easternmost country.

There are not many books about Kiribati, but in 2004 the author Jan Maarten Troost wrote the book “The Sex Lives of Cannibals”. Troost, who for two years lived on the Tarawa Atoll in Kiribati, depicts everyday life in Kiribati here.


The following objects in Kiribati are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The year in which the item was added to the list is indicated in parentheses.

  • Phoenix Islands, Marine Conservation Area (2010)


Electricity and electrical outlets in Kiribati

Voltage: 240 V

Frequency: 50 Hz

Type of plug: I

Need an adapter: Yes, Swedes need an adapter.


Weather in South Tarawa

Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Christmas Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average temperature °C 27 27 27 27 28 28 27 28 28 28 28 28
Rain (mm) 272 202 189 184 163 138 158 122 90 90 103 204

South Tarawa

According to Countryaah, South Tarawa is an atoll among the Gilbert Islands and serves as the capital of the state of Kiribati in the Pacific Ocean. The atoll comprises 24 islands with a total area of ​​about 32 square kilometers and is located on a coral reef about 35 km long. Only 8 islands are inhabited, but the entire atoll has about 45,000 residents, which corresponds to almost half of the country’s population. Administratively, the atoll is divided into three districts; Teinainanu Urban Council, Beito Town Council and Eutan Tarawa Council.

The atoll is best known for the Battle of Tarawa, which took place here during World War II. After World War II until 1971, the area was also the capital of the British colony of Gilbert and the Ellice Islands, part of the British West Pacific.