Mata’utu, known for its stunning coral reefs, is a protectorate of France and lies between beautiful Tahiti and Noumea. It is the largest urban center of Wallis Island, also locally called Uvea. The downtown area is recognised for its Cathedral, a French national monument next to the very modest “Palace of the King of Uvea." In former times the different groups on Uvea built several forts to defend themselves against aggressors from the island or from abroad. The largest of these, the Kolonui Fort, has been partially excavated and restored.