Above The Water
Truk (also known as Chuuk) Lagoon atoll consists of a protective reef, 225 kms around, enclosing a natural harbour 79 by 50 kms. Weno City on Weno Island functions as the atoll’s capital and also as the state capital and is the largest city in the Federated States of Micronesia with its 12,000 people. Truk Lagoon has a rich military history, during WWII, Japan occupied much of the Pacific and the small island of Chuuk was the key base for its perimeter defence. Over two days in February 1944, “Operation Hailstone” by the US forces saw 12 Japanese warships, 32 merchant ships and around 250 Japanese aircraft sent to the bottom. The best part of a century later these wrecks have become not only diveable museums, but also artificial reefs housing all manner of tropical fish.
Below The Water
With a myriad of wrecks on offer as a result of Operation Hailstone Truk Lagoon is arguable the world’s best wreck diving destination. You can find army tanks, gas masks, ammunition and even human remains in the shipwrecks, all of which, amongst some fantastic corals and marine life. You can see armoured tanks on the decks of Nippo Maru and San Francisco Maru, an operating theatre on Shinkoko Maru, and on the Fujikawa Maru you can even find zero fighter aircraft stacked in the hold. Most of the ships are support ships, but the Fumizuki is a warship, in fact a small destroyer. Truk Lagoon is a perfect playground for technical divers, with several deep wrecks to explore. Technical diving equipment and facilities are readily available, and rebreathers can also be supported with some forward planning.