Dance, Dance, Dance in Yap at Manta Fest

Story and Photos copyright Tim Rock

Yap, hammock sunset at Sunset Beach

Believe it or not, Manta Fest isn’t all mantas. Yap has the most fascinating and intact culture in Micronesia and a visit to Kaday Village is the showcase of this unique culture. To get to Kaday, one can drive along the scenic west-central main road past traditional men’s houses and playing kids.

Yap Fulaw, or men’s house

Finding both fruit and kids in trees is pretty standard stuff in Yap.

Yap girl in tree

Upon arrival at Kaday Village, one gets to wander the ancient stone paths, get a taste of local fruits and see baskets being made.

Kaday, Yap, basket making

Then a young boy will pick betel nut fresh from the high trees and scurry down. Guests are instructed by the affable village host Charles on how to have a chew. This is a staple in Yap. Some guests really like it. Others aren’t so sure. (check expressions on faces)

Manta Fest guests try betel nut

Then colorful fun starts. A traditional dance about a past historic event or person is performed by the village dancers.

Kaday Village Dance, Yap

The stick dance is an active, melodic affair full of well-choreographed movements that tell the story and entertain.

Yap Stick Dance, Kaday Village

Young and old participate, making it a full village event.

Kaday Dancers, Yap

Afterwards, people get to take photos of and with the dancers and enjoy more local treats.

Kaday hospitality, Yap

A trip to see a real Pacific Island culture in action is a must in Yap. March 1 is always Yap Day and the whole island covenes for dances and events. It lasts about 3 days and can be combined with morning dives and afternoon trips to the dance grounds. Check for availability HERE as this is always a popular event.

Tim of the Deep

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Availability & Reservations

Jim Reilly
Jim Reilly
11:27 21 Mar 18
We stayed at the hotel and dove with Manta Ray divers in early December 2017. The hotel is very comfortable, well run and staffed with wonderful employees. During our visit my wife came down with an illness and the consideration and support from the hotel and dive staff could not have been more
Sandy Stinson
Sandy Stinson
16:03 03 Mar 18
The staff couldn't be more friendly and accommodating. Food is good, (worth upgrading to include all meals). Diving is good more
Alex Divinsky
Alex Divinsky
17:24 01 Jan 18
The best place to stay in Yap. The resort is really nice and clean, the scuba diving is great, and the docked ship that houses the bar, restaurant, and movie screen is very cool. I really enjoyed my stay more
10:44 01 Jan 18
Offers one of the best accommodation service. It also has a uniquely designed restaurant.
Yi-Hsin Lin
Yi-Hsin Lin
00:53 21 Feb 17
The whole place centers around the scuba diving operation. Probably better to find somewhere else if you're not a diver. The dive operation was generally good, but a little too laid back - schedules weren't always clear, and sometimes would change without any notice. Sometimes it was hard to tell if this was really because of changing tides/weather or because of the island pace of life. Pizza is a surprisingly good option at the more
William Myers
William Myers
21:01 21 Jul 18
Great hotel. Have stayed twice.
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