Through the years, the Pokemon franchise has visited a number of different locations, each home to unique species of these fascinating creatures. From the frigid snowfields of Sinnoh to the rugged Wild Area of Galar, Pokemon Trainers have traveled all around the world to discover, catalog, and catch Pokemon of all types.
However, there is one area that has unfortunately remained relatively unknown: the Southern Islands. Exclusive to the Pokemon Trading Card Game, the Southern Islands are a miniature paradise where Pokemon from Generations 1 and 2 live peacefully, splashing in the water, dancing amid the flowers, and soaring through the sky.
Come along with me and let's take a journey through this little slice of Pokemon paradise!
What are the Southern Islands?
The Southern Islands trading card sets were initially released in Japan in July 1999 as part of a tie-in with the second Pokemon feature film, Pokemon the Movie 2000: The Power of One. They were first distributed as two nine-card sets, "Rainbow Island" and "Tropical Island", and then later as six three-card sets broken down into individual parts of the islands. The Japanese versions of the sets came with exclusive decorated postcards that showed the Pokemon frolicking and enjoying their time on the islands.
Later, the Southern Islands set did see an English-language release in July of 2001. The Western release compiled the two Japanese sets into one, simply labeled "Southern Islands," removing the "Tropical" and "Rainbow" distinctions. In addition to the six postcards, the set also came with three randomized booster packs and a binder for holding cards.
Because the Southern Islands set was so limited in its distribution, it remains one of the most prized and valued Pokemon trading card sets to this day. In particular, Southern Islands is valued for being the only set to use exclusively Gen I card backs while also containing Gen II Pokemon.
Explore Tropical Island
The larger of the two Southern Islands, Tropical Island is primarily made up of deep, dense, tangled jungle where many Grass, Bug, and Poison-type Pokemon make their home. Mankey and Primeape swing through the trees while shy Paras hide in the undergrowth and Vileplume spread their toxic spores on the breeze. If enterprising Trainers venture deep enough into the jungle, they might even encounter a Lickitung climbing a palm tree!
At the edge of the island is a sprawling white sand beach where a cluster of Exeggutor stand as tall and unmoving as real palm trees. Laid-back Pokemon who are fans of relaxing, such as Slowking and Psyduck, love spending their days napping on the warm sand. A few playful Water-types, like Horsea and Wartortle, love to swim right up to the edge of the beach and prank sunbathers by squirting water at them. Other Water-types, like the mighty Lapras and the mysterious Tentacruel, prefer to stick to the deeper ocean waters further off the coast of Tropical Island. Sometimes, Marill and Magikarp even have a competition to see who can jump higher out of the water!
Tropical Island Trading Card Sets
JUNGLE - Lickitung, Primeape, Vileplume
BEACH - Exeggutor, Slowking, Wartortle
SEA - Marill, Lapras, Tentacruel
Fly to Rainbow Island
Rainbow Island is shaped just like its namesake weather phenomenon, with a volcano at each end and a curved, hidden lagoon at the center. A river winds through the island, cutting between gorgeous fields of flowers. When the morning mist off the river catches the light just right, visitors to the island can see a massive rainbow spanning the sky between the two volcanoes. Winged Pokemon such as Pidgeot, Dragonite, and Charizard love to fly between and around the rainbows, while Onix stretches its long neck into the sky to join in the fun. Particularly patient Trainers might even get to catch a glimpse of the mythical Mew!
Along the banks of the river, Togepi and Raticate play tag amidst the rainbow palms while Wartortle and Goldeen splash in the shallows and Slowpoke cools off by dipping its tail into the flowing stream. Trainers going for a stroll along the river might be surprised to realize that some of the blossoming tropical plants are actually a sneaky Ivysaur blending in perfectly! Rainbow Island's river empties into a field of multicolored blooms where Ledyba and Butterfree dance through the skies while Meowth and Diglett make flower chains and Gloom sneaks in a nap. Visitors can drift off into a relaxing sleep thanks to a lullaby sung by none other than Jigglypuff!
Tropical Island Trading Card Sets
SKY - Mew, Onix, Pidgeot
RIVERSIDE - Ivysaur, Raticate, Togepi
FIELD OF FLOWERS - Butterfree, Jigglypuff, Ledyba
A Closer Look - Sky
You can own your very own piece of the Southern Islands with this complete trading card set featuring the Sky area of Rainbow Island. Each set comes with three original Japanese language trading cards.
The cards included this set are:
Southern Islands Onix - a Fighting-type card with the abilities Slam and Body Slam
Southern Islands Pidgeot - a Colorless-type card with the abilities Supersonic Flight and Slicing Wind
Southern Islands Mew - a Psychic-type card with the ability Rainbow Wave. Rainbow Wave is a rare ability that first debuted on this card, and is able to damage all of your opponent's Pokemon at once.
Click here to visit this tropical Pokemon paradise and grab your very own Southern Islands Sky set today!