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Mataniko Falls (and River Tubing) – Behind Chinatown

  • Area: Honiara
  • Primary Phone Number: +677 8684279
  • Listed: August 3, 2016 9:36 am
  • Expires: 368 days, 15 hours


This is probably the most well-known hike in Honiara. The hike to the falls takes around one-two hours and is tough. It involves a steep climb up-hill, a tiring up-and-down walk across a shade-less ridge (wear a hat!) before a very slippery and steep descent to the falls. You will need to be reasonably fit. The Mataniko River was a front line during the Battle of Guadalcanal. Along the track, we found manholes, fragments of World War 2 bullets and shells and a Japanese bomb, so keep an eye out for these fragments of history. It is said that Japanese soldiers hid out in the Mataniko Falls caves during the War.

The double-sided Mataniko Falls are beautiful with some good swimming holes and a cave system that you can explore (you need a waterproof head-torch). Depending on the river level, you can float back to the village. We did this and it was great (take some beers!). We had to leap about 4m from the second waterfall to get in to the river, though. The river changes depths at different points so there is the occasional bump and scrape, so be careful. Towards the end, we had to give up the tubing and walk the last section back through the village.

Duration – 5- 6 hours (approximately 2 hours to waterfall, 1/2 hour at waterfall, 2-3 hour swim/walk back)

Difficulty – Difficult

Directions – Starting point is Tuvarahu/Lili village. Go the Chinatown, and if you are coming from the Honiara Hotel direction, take the left turn before the Old Mataniko Bridge, where the ʻWaltzing Matildaʼ sign is. Follow this road (and the river), pass the school and go around the bend until you get to a double story green house on the right.

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Listing ID: 17657a11f5338e73

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