The Kingdom of Tonga consists of around 170 individual, sometimes extremely
different islands and is located in the southwestern part of the Pacific
Ocean. It belongs to Polynesia and, along with Samoa and Fiji, is one of the
longest-populated regions in Central Polynesia. It was from here that the
eastern Polynesian Islands such as the Cook Islands and the Marquesa Islands,
which are now part of French Polynesia, were settled.
Tonga is the only kingdom in Polynesia that existed before the European
discovery and still exists today. Fiji used to have a king, but royalty is now
abolished. The main island of the kingdom was Tongatapu. Of the approximately
170 islands in Tonga, only 63 are inhabited. In 2007 riots broke out against the
representative system of the king, as a result of which many buildings in the
capital were destroyed.
The capital of Tonga is Nuku'alofa, located on the island of Tonga Tapu. Tonga
is about 2,000 km northeast of Auckland/New Zealand. It is one of the few
South Sea islands that has never been colonized. Kings have ruled the island for
James Cook named the islands in contrast to some other islands, such as B. Fiji,
the friendly islands.
Tonga has not yet been fully discovered by tourism, although it offers very
attractive diving spots. However, there are not many beaches that match the
South Seas image that Europe loves.
Tonga is west of the international date line. This makes Tonga the first state
to start a new day. The name Tonga means south. There are a number of active
volcanoes in Tonga.
Due to the extremely unhealthy diet, around 80% of the population is
|Name of the country
||Kingdom of Tonga
|Form of government
||In the southwestern Pacific, about 2,000 km northeast of Auckland/
from around 173 ° to 177 ° west longitude, from around 13 ° to 23 °
||Koe Fasi Oe Tui Oe Otu Tonga
||approx. 110,000 (Credit:
||Polynesians and about 300 Europeans
||Christianity with the Free Wesleyan Church as the main group and
about 15% Mormons
||Nuku'alofa on Tonga Tapu Isla
||Land area: 748 km², a total of 360,000 km²
||Unnamed place on Kao Island, with a height of 1,033 m
|Largest lake in area
||Crater lake on Tofua
|International license plate
||Pa'anga = 100 Seniti
|Time difference to CET
|International phone code
|Mains voltage, frequency
||240 volts, 50 hertz
|Internet TLD (Top Level Domain)
The island was settled around 3,000 years ago from the Fiji Islands or the
Santa Cruz Islands. There is evidence of settlement by Lapita people in
Taloa around 1,100 BC. Chr.
Abbreviationfinder website, the Lapita culture has received its name from an archaeological dig near Koné on
the skin brush. The Lapita culture was characterized by pottery with special
Based on these pottery finds, migrations of ethnic groups in the Pacific region
can be determined and dated. The Lapita culture spread from New Caledonia to the
entire western Polynesian cultural area and disappeared around 300 AD. The
Lapita people were Austronesians who had great seafaring skills and were
therefore extremely mobile.
Tangaloa, the ancestor of the royal family, is said to have descended from
heaven and fathered a son with the beautiful girl Va'epopua.
Tangaloa's son later became the first king of Tonga, also known as Tu'i
Tonga, in the middle of the 10th century AD. The family was kings for over 400
years. During this time, many of the monuments on Tongatapu were erected.
The kings were all powerful. They were the only non-tattooed men in the kingdom.
The Kingdom of Tonga expanded to the neighboring islands such as Fiji, Niue,
Samoa and Tockelau and even to the far west of the Solomon Islands, which are in
the Melanesian part of the South Pacific. The kingdom had its greatest expansion
in the 13th century. The wild warriors of Tonga were greatly helped by their
double-hulled canoes, called kali, which could hold up to 200 people.
Towards the end of the 15th century, the king lost his absolute power. The
king had previously been both a secular and religious authority. These two areas
have now been divided between two people. Tu'i Tonga was the religious ruler and
Tu'i Ha'atakalaua the secular. Traditionally women had a very high position
within the family. Female descendants therefore had a higher rank than male. In
order not to endanger their brothers within the higher-ranking families, the
problem was solved by marrying the women to Fiji or Samoa.
The Europeans are coming
The first European to visit Tonga was the Dutch Abel Janszoon Tasman
(1603-1659). He reached Tonga on January 19, 1648. James Cook (1728-1779) came
to Tonga several times, namely in 1773, 1771 and 1777. He also called the
islands "friendly islands" because he was very hospitable.
However, some claim that the Tongans were about to eat James Cook during the
festival held in his honor. However, since he offered King Tu'i Tonga a
Galapagos tortoise as a gift, he escaped this fate. From then on, the turtle ran
around in the royal garden and died in 1966 at the blessed age of around 200
The Spaniard Antonia Mourelle (1754-1820) discovered Vava'u in 1781.
Tonga was so powerful that the region's sandalwood trade, e.g. B. also that of
The Europeans brought weapons to Tonga as barter goods. And here too, as on so
many other South Sea islands, the warring tribes killed each other with it. With
the new weapons, Tonga then conquered the Lau archipelago from Fiji.
In 1822 the Methodists came to the island. In 1831 they succeeded in
proselytizing Taufa'hahau. He united Tonga into a kingdom in 1845 and became
King George Tupou I. In
1875 the country was converted into a constitutional monarchy with a
A year later, Germany signed a friendship treaty with Tonga, in which Tonga was
King Tupou I died in 1893. Under him the country was unified, Christianity was
introduced and the hereditary royal title was consolidated.
20th century until today
In 1900 Tonga became a British protectorate, sealed in the Treaty of
Friendship with Great Britain. From 1918 to 1965, the popular Queen Salote
Tupou III ruled. (1900-1965).
Her son, King Taufa'ahau Tupou IV (1918-2006), inherited her after her death.
On June 4, 1970, the country gained independence from Great Britain and became a
sovereign member of the Commonwealth. This enabled Tonga to accept aid from
In 1976 Tonga became the first state in the Pacific to establish diplomatic
relations with the Soviet Union. Australia, the USA and New Zealand responded to
this rapprochement with massive financial aid.
Tonga is a monarchy that does not allow opposition. Most of the opposition
and their newspapers are based in New Zealand. The king controls the media
mercilessly, there is no freedom of the press.
Critics say Tonga unites the worst of two worlds:
the medieval absolute monarchy and Polynesian nepotism.
The result is rampant corruption. A lot of Tongans live abroad, it should be
about 100,000, whereby Tonga itself has about 110,000 residents.
On August 1st, King Taufa'ahau Tupou IV's successor - only two years after
his death - George Tupou V (born 1948) was crowned the new king. Around 5,000
international and national guests took part in the ceremony. The new king
promised to surrender part of his power and leave the rulership of the country
to the parliament and the government in the future. He kept his promise that
elections were held in 2010. He passed away unexpectedly on March 19, 2012 in a
Hong Kong hospital. Tupou VI, born in 1959, became his successor on March 18,
Kings or Queen of Tonga
|Name of the king
| King George Tupou I.
| King George Tupou II
| Queen Salote Tupou III.
| King Taufaʻahau Tupou IV
| King George Tupou V.
|King Tupou VI.
||in office since 2012