A plane from the world's smallest island nation has completed an 18,000-mile roundtrip after stopping in Norwich to be repainted in its new colour scheme. 

The Nauru Airlines Boeing 737-300 arrived at Norwich Airport on March 29, having flown 8,737 miles from the Micronesian island of Nauru.

The journey's total flying time was more than 25 hours to reach Norwich after stopping in Brisbane, Darwin, Jakarta, Colombo, Muscat and Lanarca along its seven-day journey.

Eastern Daily Press: Nauru has a population of just 12,511 peopleNauru has a population of just 12,511 people (Image: Wikimedia)

The plane arrived in the city earlier this year for essential maintenance and to be repainted into its new Naura Airlines colour scheme by Air Livery. 

A spokesman said: "Normally aircraft that have these lengthy checks are in maintenance for around three months.

READ MORE: 'She wasn't lame at all' - Rose the rescued highland cow settles into new home

"It involves stripping back panels for inspections and servicing many components such as the engines.

"This time, however, it involved major structural repairs, which extended the length of its visit."

Concluding its visit to Norfolk last Thursday, the freshly painted 737 took to the air again on its voyage back home, stopping in Cairo, Muscat, Colombo, Kuala Lumpur, and Darwin on the way.

Where and what is Nauru?

Nauru is the third-smallest country in the world behind Vatican City and Monaco - making it the smallest republic as well as the smallest island nation.

The tiny island country in Micronesia, northeast of Australia, has a population of just 12,511 people - compared to around 144,000 in Norwich.

READ MORE: Former Top Shop building up for sale just weeks after new retailer moved in

It was first inhabited by Micronesians at least 3,000 years ago, who were thought to practice aquaculture. The island is just 8.1 square miles in size.

Since 1907, phosphate has been mined on Nauru, which has made 70pc of the island uninhabitable.

Formerly known as Pleasant Island, Nauru features a coral reef, white-sand beaches and palm trees. Inland, tropical vegetation surrounds the Buada Lagoon.