Truk Lagoon is not the easiest of places to get to. However, depending on whether you're traveling from the UK, the US or Australia, you either fly to Guam or Papua New Guinea in the first place, and then on to Truk or Chuuk Lagoon. The flying time to Truk Lagoon from Guam is 1 hour 46 minutes and from Papua New Guinea it's a 3 hours flight to Chuuk International Airport.
Truk Lagoon is a divers Mecca but how do you get to Truk Lagoon?
There are a few places around the world where the wreck diving is quite what it is at Truk Lagoon (or actually its correct name Chuuk Lagoon).
If you are just beginning to research about this iconic dive spot, please read on to find out more. Plus if you're looking into flights to Truk Lagoon, this article should help.
Whether you're travelling from the UK or from the US, Truk Lagoon isn't an easy place to get to. It’s always going to be a long haul flight, or should I say a series of long flights.
Whereas if you’re looking for flights to Truk Lagoon from Australia, this flight isn’t such a long haul. All be it you’ll need two separate connecting flights to get there from Sydney.
But before I explain more about how to get to Truk Lagoon and find flights to Truk Lagoon, let me explain a bit more about it's history and what's there to discover, and why it's has the reputation of a pilgrimage for wreck divers.
Truk Lagoon diving
Diving Truk Lagoon is a real treat if you love wreck diving. The reason for this is due to the number of wrecks to scuba dive. These wrecks are all in and around what is actually called Chuuk Lagoon. Not only that, it's the close proximity of these wrecks that makes it such a great place to dive.
Many of the wrecks individually would be a great wreck dive in their own right. But you have many great wrecks to choose from all within a short boat ride from each other.
This is what makes Chuuk Lagoon so special and is why it’s on many a scuba diver’s bucket list.
It will be like being in a wreck diver’s sweet shop!
But more importantly, the wrecks are still mostly intact. You’ll be able to safely penetrate many of the wrecks too. Most of which have some fascinating artefacts. These include both military artefacts and civilian type artefacts.
The military artefacts range from battle tanks to torpedos and gun shells to bullets. The non-military artefacts include beer and sake bottles.
But there's also a more sinister side to the wreck diving at Truk Lagoon. This is the side of Truk that belies its history. There are still human remains, like skulls or other parts of human skeletons to find on some of the wrecks. You may see leg bones or arm bones and there’s even a rib bone to be seen inside the hold of one of the wrecks.
The other element to Truk Lagoon that technical divers love is the depth of the dives there. If you like or should I say if you love deep diving, then this is an added bonus. Most of the Truk Lagoon wrecks are at 30+ metres (100+ feet) deep. The deepest wreck, which is the Reiyo Maru No. 6, sits in 67 metres (220 feet) of water.
However, if you are limited to recreational diving depths, this doesn't prevent you from diving the Truk Lagoon wrecks. Although it will stop you from diving some of the more exciting ones at a depth of 40 plus metres (131+ feet).
But if you are still keen to dive Truk or Chuuk Lagoon as a recreational scuba diver, there are still 19 Truk Lagoon ship wrecks that are in 40 metres (131 feet) or less of water. This doesn’t take account of the plane wrecks you can dive.
What happened at Truk Lagoon
I have written other articles about Truk Lagoon, for example: What happened at Truk Lagoon. If you are more interested in the history, this is worth a further read.
But in brief, the reason why the wrecks are sitting on the seabed at Chuuk Lagoon is as a result of Operation Hailstone during World War II.
For more details about the alternative name to ‘Truk’, please click on the above link on what happened at Truk Lagoon too.
Operation Hailstone was an attack by American forces. American war planes and gun ships bombed and destroyed this Japanese held naval base.
This battle lasted for three days and during which, the ships you can dive and see today were mostly sunk in February 1944.
Among these Truk Lagoon wrecks there are just three purpose built war ships, which includes a submarine I-169. The rest were cargo or passenger ships commissioned by the Japanese Navy during the war.
How to get to Truk Lagoon
How you get to Truk Lagoon depends on where you are starting your journey from. But is also dependent on which airline you prefer to fly with. But let's have a look at some of the options.
Firstly starting with how to get to Truk Lagoon from the UK.
How to get to Truk lagoon from UK
How you get to Truk Lagoon from the UK includes two routings. The first route to Truk Lagoon from the UK is begins with a flight from London Heathrow or Gatwick to Singapore (13 hour 20 minute flight). Then you take a flight from Singapore to Sydney, Australia (7 hour 40 minute flight).
This route then takes you via Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, which is a further four hours flying time. This is followed by a three hour flight from Port Moresby to Chuuk International Airport, which is in Weno.
From Weno you then get a transfer either to your land-based resort or onto your liveaboard dive boat.
This route to get to Truk Lagoon takes a total of 27 hours of flying. But remember, this doesn't take into account the transiting times in the various airports along your journey.
I suggest that if you decide on this route to visit Chuuk Lagoon, you break your journey and enjoy time in either Singapore and/or Sydney.
Flights to Truk Lagoon going west
One further option would be to fly west from the UK and go via the United States of America. If you choose to go this route, you need to take a flight to Los Angeles and then join the route that is describe below of how you get to Truk Lagoon from the US.
One further option would be to opt for a round-the-world flight ticket.
The second route to get to Truk lagoon from UK
The other route to get to Truk Lagoon travels from London to Seoul, Korea (11 hour flight). From Korea you then fly to Guam (4 hours 25 minute flight).
It’s important to note that you must have a valid ESTA before you transit through the US protectorate of Guam.
From Guam it's a short one hour 46 minute flight to Weno, Chuuk Lagoon. This route is a total of 17 hours 11 minutes flying time, which is a more acceptable time. This is still a very long-haul flight and you may choose to lay-over in Seoul or Guam to break the journey time up.
One other alternative would be to fly to Manila, the Philippines, but you will have to go via either Bangkok, Singapore or China. Which means there are a number of routes of how to get to Truk lagoon from the UK, it just depends on your choice of airline and where and if you'd like to stop and enjoy another country on your way there.
How to get to Truk lagoon from US
There are many routes of how to get to Truk lagoon from the US, many of which involve many stops along the way. All flights begin on the west coast of America, so if you live on the East Coast in for example New York, you will first need to get a flight to say Los Angeles.
Probably the most straight forward flight journey from Los Angeles would be to fly to Honolulu, Hawaii (just under 6 hours flying time). From Hawaii you can then fly down to Guam (7 hours 45 minutes flight).
Then from Guam to Truk (Chuuk) Lagoon its the same one hour 46 minutes flight as it is to fly from the UK.
This more straight forward route to get to Truk Lagoon from the US is a total flying time of 15 and half hours (plus if you don't already live in LA, your flying to to get to the West Coast of America in the first place).
Other routings to get from the US to Truk Lagoon include going via Manila, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Tokyo or Incheon, Korea.
How to get to Truk Lagoon from Australia
How you get to Truk Lagoon from Australia is fairly straight forward. As describe in how you get to Truk Lagoon from the UK, one of the routes went via Sydney.
So if you're an Australian, you first need to get to Sydney on the East Coast of Australia. Then take a flight to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, which is four hours flying time. This is followed by a three hour flight from Port Moresby to Chuuk International Airport, Weno.
Booking a Liveaboard trip to Truk Lagoon
Now you've read a bit more about getting to Truk (Chuuk) Lagoon, your decision is then about either liveaboard boat accommodation or resort-based accomodation.
If your choices is to go the full-hog and do a liveaboard dive trip to Truk Lagoon, one of the top liveaboard companies to book through who deal with Truk Lagoon all the time is Liveaboard.com.
To see a wreck location map, please follow this link to: Truk Lagoon wreck map.
I hope you enjoyed this article about how do you get to Truk Lagoon
I’d love to hear from you. Tell us about your adventures of diving and snorkeling, in the comments below. Please also share your photos. Either from your underwater cameras or videos from your waterproof Gopro’s!
If this article hasn’t answered all of your questions. If you have more questions either about snorkeling or scuba diving (or specifically about how do you get to Truk Lagoon), please comment below with your questions.
There will also be many more articles about scuba diving (and snorkeling) for you to read and learn about these fabulous sports.
Have fun and be safe!