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The largest of the Solomon Islands, Guadalcanal is a high, rugged island with mountains reaching up to 2400m and, of course, the setting for one of the most fiercely fought battles of WW2. The Guadalcanal Campaign of 1942-3 is regarded as one of the most crucial Allied victories, if not the actual turning point of the war in the Pacific. The evidence of this campaign can be seen in many sights on and around Guadalcanal, including Bloody Ridge, Henderson Field (now the Solomon's international airport), Mataniko River, Red Beach, Western and Eastern Battlefields, and the huge number of divable shipwrecks and aircraft. In addition to the being the subject of numerous books, the battle featured in the film "The Thin Red Line", which was shot partly on Guadalcanal.
Honiara, on the northwest coast of the island, is the capital and largest city of the Solomon Islands. In Honiara, backstreet quonset huts and an occasional, rusty wreckage provide grim reminders of World War II; over 25,000 Japanese and American soldiers were killed or wounded on Guadalcanal.
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