The Islands of Vanuatu
Port Vila…the country’s small seaside Capital. A scenic town overlooking a delightful harbor. Port Vila is the Gateway for visitors and an important business and commercial center for Vanuatu and the South Pacific.
French influenced restaurants, lively nightlife and kava bars, good duty free shopping, diving, snorkeling, fishing, eco & adventure tours, beautiful beaches. Cultural experience of interest, vibrant markets – where the ni-Vanuatu people come to sell their produce and handicrafts, artworks etc. Varied accommodations from deluxe, mid-range and inexpensive. Boutique style beach resorts, bungalow & hotels.
These Retreats are especially suitable for Couples:
*The Havannah (Luxury tropical Retreat)
*Eratap Beach Resort (Superlative! Voted 2010 Best Boutique Hotel)
*Breakas Beach Resort (Romantic! Award-winning, Adults Only Resort)
*Mangoes (not on the beach)
Yasur Active volcano & Adventure experiences | Home of the John Frums and Kustom Villages
ACTIVITIES: Snorkel the stunning 2-3m deep and 100 metres wide blue hole. The hole is filled with colourful coral and fish and morning spent snorkeling in the amazing cobalt blue water is an unforgettable experience.
From the blue hole you can take a short boat ride to the Lemnap underwater cave. A quick duck dive will get you into the stunning 60 metre in diameter grotto with a 5 metre hole in the top letting streams of sunlight through turning the water a beautiful turquoise blue.
Volcano safaris depart at 3:00pm and go via the White Grass wild horses to get to the rim of Mt Yasur for sunset and return by 8:30 for dinner.
Other activity options can be arranged: Surf Beach & Waterfall Safari, Black Magic and Kava Tasting, Kustom Village, Tafutuna Cultural Experience, Game Fishing, Tanna Highlights Tour.
We recommend staying at:
*White Grass Ocean Resort
*Tanna Evergreen Resort
(Other properties are quite basic bungalow style, and quoted on request)
The country’s “second island” Luganville is second largest town in Vanuatu.
- Gateway to Adventure, Diving, Wrecks & Rainforest
- Excellent diving on the Wreck of The SS President Coolidge and other reefs and wrecks in and around Santo
- Snorkel pristine reefs or an aquatic American WW2 equipment grave site
- Excellent fishing – deep sea & bottom fishing – we recommend Fiesta Charters for day and overnight charters
- Adventure & tours – Millenium Cave, The World War II US Hospital, Loru National Park, Snorkel at Champagne Beach, Vilvil Cultural Village, Nanda Blue Holes
- Paddle a dugout canoe down a pristine river
- Horse ride thorough the rain-forest and along a tropical beach
- Hire a car, scooter or a quad bike and experience the spectacular vista of the island
- Accommodations – varied from 4 star island resorts to bungalow/backpack style guesthouses.
These Retreats are especially suitable for Couples:
*Moyyan House by the Sea (a gem),
*Bokissa Island Resort
*Aore Island Resort
*Ratua Private Island
Annual event: Pentecost Land Dive! | April, May & 1st week June
Pentecost Land Diving Tour only takes place between the months of April – June. This is the original bungee jump and is referred to as “the nangol”, an ancient Melanesian tradition involving both men and boys (some as young as 7 years old) diving head first from a makeshift, wooden tower from heights of up to 100 feet over land with only vines strapped to the ankles to break their fall.
Land Diving is extremely dangerous but for centuries, this ceremony has been performed by Pentecost Land Divers to prove their manhood and as a fertility rite to ensure a successful yam harvest. The practice continues to this day and is one of the most spectacular and impressive events in the Pacific. Ritual washing of the divers, last minute words or prayers for a successful jump and men, women and children stomping the ground, performing ‘kastom’ dances, singing and chanting throughout this extraordinary ceremony make for an awesome experience.
The ‘Nangol’ is a sacred ceremony and the privilege of witnessing this unique event is only extended to a limited number of tourists or outsiders each year. This fact, the thrilling nature of the ‘kastom’ ceremony itself, and the “seasonal” nature of this tour means that you need to book this tour early or risk missing out altogether!
Unity Airlines gives you the rare opportunity to experience this sacred ceremony. A 6 hour day trip by air from Port Vila. Package ex Port Vila from US$440.00 per person includes transfers, scenic flight over 3 volcanoes, greeting at Pentecost, Jump entrance fee (6-10 jumps) & refreshments.
Accommodation – very limited – guest house & bungalow, village hospitality excellent
Malekula is the second-largest island in Vanuatu. Interesting, remarkable cultural experiences, 25 different language groups. The interior is mountainous, rugged and forest-covered with good hiking, bird watching and nature.
Home of the Big and Small Nambas
Accommodation: bungalows and guesthouses – basic, island hospitality
BANKS ISLANDS – Gaua & Vanua Lava
Vanua Lava -Vanua Lava has mountains, a volcano, crocodiles, reefs, rivers, waterfalls and rainforests. There is plenty to experience, here in the northern islands of Vanuatu.
Sola is the provincial town for the Banks and Torres Islands. From Sola, each bungalow offers excursions to Mt Sere Ama, an active volcano, the Selva River and Kwakea Island. The grass field airport is sometimes closed due to rain.
West Vanua Lava is popular with yachts.
Gaua offers spectacular treks to crator lake, a volcano, falls. The highest point, Mt Garet (797m). At the base of the crator is absolutely pretty Lake Letas. You can either a day trek to Lake and return, or over night to climb volcano & waterfalls. There is no vehicle on the island most of the time, therefore you will be expected to walk anywhere.
Trek to Lake Letas & Mt Garet: Full day tour: About 3 – 4 hours from your bungalows to the Lake, canoe around the lake and return as a day trip or camp over night there then canoe across to climb the volcano next day, then trek down to the magnificent waterfall. Your guide will catch delicious fresh water prawns for your dinner.
Things to bring: Swim wear, towel, sun block, hat, insect repellent, trekking shoes, food, camera
Siri Waterfall: Full day tour: Canoe across from the camp area on the Lake Letas to climb down or make a day trip from the east coast. Recommend an over night trip to climb volcano and lake.
Things to bring: Swim wear, towel, sun block, hat, insect repellent, trekking shoes, snack, camera.
Woman’s Water Music: About 2 hours including refreshments and village string band: A long time ago, woman and children were washing in the creek near a cave. The sound of the water echoed around them, inspiring them to use both hands to slap and splash the water to create unique music.
Deadman’s tour: About 4 hours: Chief Paul will guide you into the rainforest where his ancestors used to live. Stone ruins are testament to these ancient village sites. Here you will learn the legend of three giant brothers who used magic to protect themselves from the people in from the west, but were finally defeated and turned to stone, and the legend about a big chief use to perform magic to help villagers, who died alone, turning to stone.
Things to bring: Walking shoes, sun block, hat, insect repellent and camera.
Images courtesy of Vanuatu Tourism Office, photographer David Kirkland.
Contact our Vanuatu Specialist who has been there several times – USA 1-800-227-5317 for more information on the exciting islands of Vanuatu. We will customize a package for you.
We also invite you to check out the Vanuatu tourism website below.