Solomon Islands: Malaita

Langa Langa Lagoon is a natural lagoon that lies in the Solomon Islands, in the Malaita province. Its inhabitants live on artificial islands that were built over time when villagers had to flee the mainland to find refuge against headhunters. In the local culture, sons are preferred because daughters have to leave the house after marriage. When boys are teenagers, around the age of 13 years old, their fathers teach them the ancestral art of crafting canoes. Traditionally, canoes are built from a single tree, normally the sago palm tree. Canoes were very important in the local culture because they were necessary to fish and to travel from one island to the others. Each canoe had a paddle with either a rounded or square-like end. Canoes are still carved by villagers and used for the same purposes Malaita province today.