Blogs from Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu, Oceania - page 2

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Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila February 2nd 2010

Vanuatu is an archipelago of 83 islands lying between New Caledonia and Fiji in the South Pacific. Port Vila is the capital and largest city of Vanuatu. Situated on the south coast of the island of Efate, in Shefa Province, where the city population is around 38,000. Port Vila is the economic and commercial center of Vanuatu. Vanuatu was a another location for Survivor. The area occupied by Port Vila has been inhabited by Melanesian people for thousands of years. After 1887, the territory was jointly administered by the French and the British. This was formalized in 1906 as an Anglo-French condominium. During World War II, Port Vila was an American and Australian airbase. In 1987, a cyclone severely damaged the city. Another powerful earthquake in January 2002 caused extensive damage in the capital and surrounding ... read more
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Welcome Sign
Our Greeter

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila August 2nd 2009

On leaving Lautoka, where we cleared out of Fiji, we headed for the most southerly reef pass in light winds. On passing between the islands at 18.30 we encountered fairly heavy, confused seas for the wind conditions which were surprising but a couple of low pressures south of us were affecting the area. Day two turned the seas a little sloppy but we had good winds and by day three it was a little more comfortable - we were flying along with the genniker at around 10 knots much of the time and enjoying a thrilling ride! Landfall was made in Port Villa on Efate at midnight which was a touch unnerving but we had reliable GPS coordinates to guide us in. On dropping the anchor we noted that our friend Leigh on Mi Querida was ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila June 30th 2009

I flew with Air Vanuatu from Brisbane to the capital city called Port Vila in the republic of Vanuatu. Let me first tell you something about the country Vanuatu before talking about my first experiences. The country consists of around 80 islands and has a total population of around 210.000 people. It has a tropical climate and lies in the South Pacific region. The first settlements of the French and English started in the 18th century and in 1906 the Anglo-French Condominium of the new Hibreidess was created. That means that British and French nationals had equal rights and retained their home country’s citizenship. Local people were officially stateless. Vanuatu became independent eventually in 1980 and is a member of many international organisations like the U.N, the French league of nations and the Commenwealth. The main ... read more
The view

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila June 12th 2009

Well everyone, it’s time to start up the ‘ol blog once again. I made it to Vanuatu after a couple hours in transit (37) and luckily all my luggage made it through too. There was a bit of hassle at the Brisbane airport that forced me to shill out a heap of cash that I didn’t want to spend but all-in-all things worked out in the end. I guess the airlines don’t like it when you travel with as many bags as I do, especially when they weigh as much as mine. Oddly, less than 25% of the gear was actually personal items like clothing, all the rest was equipment for the Project MARC expeditions (and of course a majority of our traveling office). It’s so nice to be back in Port Vila. Both Project MARC ... read more
NorCal Sendoff
Another standard view from Vanuatu
Cross Training

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila March 25th 2009

Hello all! Yes, this one is coming to you live from Port Vila as we are back in the capital for training and heading back in about a week. Even though this will seem out of order as there are still blogs I have written and sent for my sister to post, I'll go ahead with a few little news and tidbits and trust you all to put them into context with the letters yet to come via snail mail. Coming back to "civilization" was quite a process. For weeks, we've been making lists, phone calls, and plans on how to best maximize our time and access to internet, groceries, and phone. We started about a week before on a tums regimen; twice a day to coat our stomachs for the meat and dairy that we ... read more
At the airport
Refreshments
Mail time

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila February 21st 2009

Sorta, kinda didn't really know what to expect when I first went to Vanuatu as the online information isn't terribly extensive, (http://www.vanuatutourism.com/vanuatu/cms/index.html) so while I had made some plans as to things I wanted to do, there was still the very real sense of "I wonder..." as we descended into Bauerfield International. The surrounding countryside was rough grazing land covered with coconut palms, extending away into native jungle within a few kilometres. One of the features to be savoured in Vanuatu is a product of this land- the beef. Most of the beef farms are organic (there is little need for fertilizers, of course, and being an island, few introduced weeds or foreign pests, it would seem.) The sounds of a local string band welcomed us into the terminal, and this was a nice diversion as ... read more
String Band
Slit Gong
Bislama

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila December 1st 2008

Today begins the last month of the year and many things are coming to an end. Among the list of wrap-ups is my time here in the South Pacific. Tomorrow I head back to the states with a short stop in Fiji for a couple of hours. I love flying East over the dateline because gaining a day always makes me feel so time efficient. I'll spend 22 hours in transit and still land 3-4 hours before I left. Back to the Future indeed. Last month in Australia was not as productive as I would have preferred. My dream was to walk out of the country with bags full of donation cash for Project MARC, and in-kind donations lined up for next year. This dream did not become a reality this time, but I'm hopeful for ... read more
Postcard
This was a view
Bribie Island - Ocean Side

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila November 29th 2008

Here is another blog to hold you over for a few months. While all of you in the States were celebrating Thanksgiving, Justin and I were swearing in as official Peace Corps Volunteers (before, we were at the status of "trainee"). Everyone in our group was given a coordinating island dress or shirt to wear at the ceremony. It kind of felt like we were part of a big wedding, all wearing coordinating bridesmaids and groomsmen outfits. My family added an extra special accessory to my attire for the day - a scrunchie made of coordinating fabric! It is so funny to see how the host mamas try to sort of one up each other in regards to their host kids during their last few weeks in training, spoiling them with extra accessories or special food. ... read more
Getting Ready
Maewo Gang
Thanksgiving Island Style

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila October 1st 2008

Well everyone, I’m sorry for the lack of communication on my part but things have been very busy here in Vanuatu. For the past two months I’ve spent most of my time in the very remote regions of the islands and therefore haven’t had access to internet. With the expeditions wrapping up for the year, I now have a few brief moments to catch everyone up. First off, it was July of this year that I left the States again to join the Alvei in Fiji. I was returning to the South Pacific for three reasons mainly: 1} to sail on Alvei again; 2} to head up an expedition with Project MARC (an NGO that I worked with last year); and 3} to sail down to New Zealand where I would work for a year on ... read more
Superheroes
A water system
Medical Volunteers

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate » Port Vila September 27th 2008

Our last day in Port Vila before we move into our training site. Our day was packed with non-classroom style teaching, a nice break but still LOTS of information! First stop, a troop of us went running through town. I have been so lucky to find some fellow runners. I've been getting up around 5:30 am each morning, so instead of waking Justin up to chat, I have a run to look forward to. Plus it has been a great way to get a better idea of the layout of the town. Today we ran through the residential area and found two great hills. Another guy in my group joked that we must not have hills in Kansas because I was so excited about that one. Anway, running - check and therefore mental health - check. ... read more
Coconut Grinding
The View
Island Food




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