Tuvalu, the world's second-smallest country and, according to the United Nations, one of the least developed, fulfils the classic image of a South Sea paradise. Visitors come to the islands to enjoy the peaceful atmosphere and palm-fringed beaches. Pandanus, papaya, banana, breadfruit and coconut palms are typical. Traditional buildings with thatched roofs can be seen virtually everywhere on the islands.
Tuvalu has a very small population. In fact, its population numbers are only beaten by the Vatican City as the smallest populated sovereign nation in the world. This means there is not much opportunity for grand festivals, although when the Tuvaluans do come together, they put on a wonderful display of happiness. Most of the festivals are centered on traditional public holidays, such as New Year’s Day and Independence Day; although particularly unique holidays include Bomb Day and Hurricane Day.