Lelu Island

Lelu is a small satellite island in the state of Kosrae just off of Kosrae Island in the northeast. The island consists of the village of Lelu with a population of about 2,500 people. Everything on the island is closed on Sundays. The entire village is church-going and part of the protestant Congregationalists. You’ll find a few cheap motels here where you can stay, and some grocery stores and local eateries.

Lelu Island is perhaps most famous for the Lelu ruins, the site of a 13th and 14th century walled city built for Tokosra, a Kosraean chief of chiefs who ruled the island. It is difficult to find these ruins, as they have been overgrown by coconut trees and other tropical vegetation. The ruins include stone-laid walls, dwellings, burial mounds, sacred compounds, public plazas, ceremonial graves, vertical columns, and huge hexagonal basalt logs. You’ll even find a network of canals built for the canoe transport. The Micronesians built this city using only stone tools, and the basalt stones had to be transported from the mainland to Lelu Island without the aid of the wheel.