What is the Solomon Islands?


I am Yushi Yamada, 1st year of a master student.

I visited the Solomon Islands for two weeks in March to see the waterworks in the island. Thanks to Taki foundation, I could see a lot of things beyond my expectation. I made a report about the visit to the Solomon Island Water Authority. If you are interested in it, please feel free to contact me.


The staple food is rice. There are some restaurants in Honiara, which is the capital of the Solomon Islands. It is expensive to eat out so I somehow survived having free breakfast in my hotel. These are my breakfast

Fig.1 breakfast in my hotel

[Betel nut]

When you walk on the street, you probably see something like this on the street everywhere.

Fig.2 spit on the street

     When I see it at the first time, I thought someone was killed at the point. Of course, this does not mean someone was killed. This is caused by betel nuts.

What is a betel nut?

These are the betel nuts.

Fig.3 betel nuts

     The local people like to chew this nut like chewing gum. While chewing the nut, people eat the green stick with lime powder.

Fig.4 betel nuts and green stick

     I do not know the chemical reaction but when the stuffs are mixed up in a mouse, the stuffs become red like the picture.

Fig.5 red mouth

     The stuffs in a mouth taste bitter and hot. They are not tasty enough to swallow so people spit on the street. Therefore, you can see the red mark like the previous picture. While chewing it, you can get a kind of drunk so people like to chew it.


The local people are friendly. When I passed the people on the street and lifted my eyebrow to them, they did the same thing to me as well. (If I do so in Japan, I guess everyone thinks me strange…) I saw two children playing at beach side. They were brothers and their relationship was so nice. I just played with them for one hour but they called me “dad”. When I needed to say goodbye to them, I went back to the car where some of my friends are. “My children” could not approach to our car because there are a lot of foreign adults and “my children” fear such a lot of foreign adults. However, they kept waving their small hands to me from the beach until I left there. I was crying a bit to be honest because I did not exchange my contact (of course) and I cannot see “my children” forever. People are so friendly that it is hard to say goodbye to them. I hope I will see them somewhere.

Fig.6 with two brothers

     Some people do not wear their shoes because it is hot to wear shoes and they are not used to wearing it.

Fig.7 walking without shoes


There are lots of Japanese second hand cars in the island. Japanese cars are very tough so the local people like to use Japanese cars whatever kind of cars is.

Fig.8 a Japanese used car

[Sea and river]

When you hear “sea or river around the islands”, you might come up with blue, clear and beautiful one. Of course, the image is not wrong but when it comes to the sea near the city center, it is not clean and sometimes smelly because people throw away garbage to the sea or river.

Fig.9 river with garbage


Before going there, I could not image anything about the Solomon Islands to be honest because I had not been to such a poor country from the PPP perspective. It is a cliché but everything was totally new to me and my common sense sometimes did not fit the country. If you have a chance to go to the Solomon Islands, I absolutely recommend it. Feel free to ask me;)

Fig.10 a picture with co-workers