Florida Islands - Solomon Islands

The Florida Islands are a small island group in the Central Province of the Solomon Islands in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. Also called the Nggela Islands, they are among the more important islands of the Florida grouping are Nggela Sule, Tulagi, Gavutu and Tanambog. The name Florida Island itself is also used to refer to Nggela Sule, the largest of the group. The Florida Islands offer sinuous waterways and enticing coves and the small town of Tulagi, the Solomons' former capital. Mangalonga Island is small island of the group, home to the Maravagi Resort. Nggela Sule was garrisoned by the Japanese in 1942 as part of their efforts to establish a seaplane base on neighboring Gavutu. Following the American liberation of the island from the Japanese, it became the site of a US seaplane base. The island subsequently served as a watering point for the US Navy, diverting water from an underground source on the island.