Extracts from the following book – Places not on Google Maps


This Spanish-speaking island in the South Pacific is surrounded by a lagoon, which often extends more than a hundred metres to the reef, then slopes steeply to deep water. Tamissi is the topmost part of a gigantic volcano, whose base is 25,000 feet down in the Pacific Ocean. The reef fronts the shore to the south of the island, making the lagoon there unsuitable for swimming and water sports, but to the north east, particularly around El Mori, the lagoon is at its widest and deepest. This part of the island is the most popular with tourists for swimming and snorkelling.

Agricultural terraces and swamps surround the central mountain area. Along the northwest coast off El Mori Beach are three small coral islets within a few hundred metres of the shore and within the fringing coral reef.  Tamassi is best known for its shark park where travellers in full scuba gear descend in cages, with flexible bars, to be attacked en masse by sharks for an hour. The sharks can’t get through the bars, but the travellers don’t know this. The last person left after all the others have chickened out is rewarded with a refund of their entrance fee.