Where is TONGA located on the map?
Tonga, in long form the Kingdom of Tonga, is a state of Polynesia, in the Pacific Ocean , 744 km east-southeast of Fiji and 875 km south of Wallis and Futuna. The country is divided into three main archipelagos with more than 170 islands and islets.
Centered at 20 ° South Latitude and 175 ° West Longitude, formerly known as the Friends’ Islands, they now form an independent Commonwealth Kingdom. The climate is subtropical, hot and humid; precipitation can reach 2,000 mm per year. Tonga has an area of 748 km2 and the capital is Nuku’alofa (“the fatherland of love” in Tongan) on Tongatapu Island.
The Tongan Islands constitute an archipelago of about 170 islands scattered in the Pacific Ocean divided into three main groups:
- the Tongatapu group (in the south);
- the Ha’apai group (north);
- the Vava’u group consisting of forty or so islands.
The Tongan archipelago was the first country in the world to move into the year 2000 and also to move into 2001 in the twenty-first century.
The climate is tropical with a distinct warm period (December-April) during which temperatures exceed 32 ° C and a cooler period (May-November) with temperatures rarely exceeding 27 ° C. The temperature rises from 23 ° C to 27 ° C and the annual precipitation ranges from 1,700 to 2970 millimeters as one travels from Tongatapu in the south to the more northerly islands. The wettest average period is around March with an average of 263 mm for that month. The average daily humidity is 80%.
The tropical cyclone season runs from November 1 to April 30, although some may train and affect Tonga out of season. In February 2018, Tonga experienced the passing of Hurricane Gita, the most intense cyclone in their modern history.
The Tongan Archipelago is divided into two parts (parallel meridian alignments):
- in the west: volcanic origin;
- to the east: limestone nature.
The archipelago is affected by violent earthquakes.