Discover the vital role allied troops played while stationed in Noumea during World War II by visiting a museum filled with WWII artifacts and driving by some reminders of the wartime effort.
Enjoy a brief drive through New Caledonia’s capital of Noumea, which served as a headquarters for the United States military during World War II. Before the war, New Caledonia was known for little more than being a French penal colony. But in World War II, the island’s strategic location played a key role.
From 1942 until the end of the war, more than one million U.S. and Australian soldiers were stationed on the island, and their presence left a lasting impact. To better understand the important role Noumea played, you will tour a museum filled with World War II artifacts.
Drive to a nearby lookout that presents a panoramic view across the bay to Mount Dore. An Australian coastal artillery unit installed two cannons atop the lookout, which still remain. Although the cannons provided protection, they were never fired because the Japanese advance was stopped at Guadalcanal. See more reminders of the soldiers’ influence during World War II, as you drive through neighborhoods that the military named and a memorial dedicated to the American soldiers that served on New Caledonia during the war.
Tours with this activity level involve walking over relatively level terrain, possibly some cobblestone, gravel, or a few steps. Comfortable shoes are recommended.