It is thought that Tonga has had human occupation for around 3000 years. Before European exploration approximately the late 1600s and early 1700s, Tongans were in contact with nearby Fiji and Samoa. Once western traders and missionaries arrived in the 1800s, old beliefs and habits were slowly discarded with new European customs adopted. This has been an ongoing process with many older traditions still being challenged by western customs even to this day. Read more →
Today, many Tongans have strong links to other countries such as Australia and New Zealand. While many live and work in their new adopted countries, they have to be adept in two cultures and know which culture to practice depending on who they are with.
One of the biggest western influences in Tongan culture is the presence of the Christian faith. Tongans are generally very religious and when Sunday rolls around, the country basically closes down to allow all to attend a place of worship.
Tongans love sport. Favourite games here include rugby (both union and league), boxing, and swimming.