Blogs from Vanuatu, Oceania


Oceania » Vanuatu » Tanna September 23rd 2018

Port Vila on Efate is a world way from our days in Papua. Port Vila is laid-back and safe. They grow coffee here so we wander along the harbour front to find ourselves a coffee shop, Nambawan Cafe. It does serve excellent coffee, Vanuatu-grown of course. The harbour setting reminds us of the Caribbean, with yachts, large and small, from all over the world . In the South Pacific many islanders speak a form of Pijin English. By phonetically saying what we read, or listening carefully to what is said, we can understand a lot. Nambawan = No 1, meaning best; U no kam insaed = Keep out; Tabu sitapon step = Don’t sit on the steps. We have a kitchen here, so shop for fruit and vegetables in the market. People are invariably friendly and ... read more
Market shopping
BOOM! Mount Yasur

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate April 23rd 2018

Blog 30 Part 1: Port Vila, Vanuatu, April 18 ,2018 – Weather forecast: partly cloudy; temperature 28°C, wind 28kts (7 Beaufort) – overnight gusting to 44kts – 2 to 3-meter swells Today’s port of call is Port Vila, the capital city of Vanuatu, which was a former French/British colony. They jointly ruled the island chain from 1906 until independence was achieved in 1980. Of the 82 islands that make up this island nation 62 are inhabited and are home to approximately 300,000 inhabitants, some of whom actually practiced cannibalism as late as the 1960’s. There are approximately 105 different indigenous dialects spoken by this population. Today the islands are a peaceful tourist destination with a rugged coastline and a rolling verdant rain forest. Our tour today took in the magical and mysterious world of ancient Melanesia ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Hideaway Island December 6th 2017

LAST STOP, VANUATU Vanuatu… I love the name; it just rolls off my tongue. When I got to Vanuatu, as usual, I was tired after traveling and just wanted to rest. Beautiful weather and a beautiful swimming pool still could not lure me from my room. I ate and browsed the internet looking for a dive resort. Many people fly to Espiritu Santo Island for diving but I had limited time and even more limited energy. I saw there was a little island resort nearby, Hideaway Island, so I packed up my luggage and changed hotels. Hideaway is only a five minute ferry ride from the mainland. The ferry runs all day. If it is not moored on your side there is a signal to press and the boat driver will return quickly to pick you ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Tanna February 15th 2017

Sorry for the week or so of not blogging, rest assured I have been celebrating in the mean time and now that I've got internet, I shall get back to daily blogging from today (and also be typing up notes from the missing days). But for now, today. Starting with the death of Buddha. Parinirvana is celebrated by Buddhists who remember the death of Buddha and think about their own mortality. I attempted meditation - I am not good at it. For starters, the guided meditations I tried annoyed me almost instantly - the soft voices speaking very, very slowly. So I learnt to breathe from a Buddhist monk's youtube video (proof the internet has everything). I read the rest of 'Introduction to Buddhism' that I began on Friday. Describing the life and death of Buddha. ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Santo February 26th 2016

New Caledonia The alarm sounded at 6.30am and we rushed up to the viewing platform to see the cruise ship approaching the harbour of Noumea, New Caledonia. As the sun rose, we watched as the captain delicately glided the giant ship into the semi circular harbour scattered with fishing boats. Drums started to beat and as we peered over the side of the boat native islanders dressed in bamboo skirts and smothered in white body paint were greeting us by singing traditional tribal songs. Having survived three choppy days at sea we were eager to get back onto solid land and explore Noumea. The majority of people from the cruise booked onto organised tours but we decided to break away and venture into the town on our own. Using a combination of Will's broken French and ... read more
Thatched housing - Lifou, New Caledonia
Xepenehe- Lifou, New Caledonia
Lagoon, Port Vila, Vanuatu

Oceania » Vanuatu » Espiritu Santo December 18th 2015

Thursday 10 December We woke at 7.45 am and gently stirred. We had been recceing our journey to the ship this morning over the last few days and basically we can get a Citycat down the river and the walks either end with our luggage should be manageable. We were due to check out by 10 am and we did so by 9.30 am. The Republic apartments were an enjoyable few days and lots of washing caught up with. We popped into Woolworths for last minute supplies and then made our way down to the Riverside walk. Note, I said downhill so this helped with our wheeled bags. Also the Australians have their kerbs sorted for disabled people so for us life was made easier, we didn't have to lift the cases once. We arrived at ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate January 3rd 2015

I'm one of those people who finds the human condition endlessly fascinating. What is it exactly that controls our emotions, the mystical trigger to determine our likes and dislikes? And yet these very preferences are different from person to person, as by definition personal taste is an individual thing. But there does seem to be a constancy in our genetic makeup, such that the things individuals like do not really change as the years go by. It has been twenty years since I last visited Vanuatu, where I stayed on Efate for a month chilling out by the beach, and discovering the rhythms of the local culture. It all seems so long ago, yet the positive memories of my time in Port Vila have always stayed with me. The years roll by and memories of past ... read more
Locals at the Blue Lagoon
Hideaway Island
The Blue Lagoon

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate July 5th 2014

This will be a short post. I have been so busy doing many things over here that i have not had time to update my blog. Today i got into an off road buggy and went 4wding through the bush and jungle to turtle bay. Whilst in turtle bay i got to release a baby turtle into the ocean and swim with the biggest turtles i have ever seen. We got to hold onto them and swim under the water with them. There was also some black tipped reef sharks that we got to swim with as well. i have put a few photos up of the adventure but it truly was an epic amazing experience.... read more
Speckles the Turtle I released
Huge Turtle
Smaller Turtle :)

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate June 22nd 2014

Finally I have made it to Vanuatu, we were welcomed by a traditional band and greeting with a shell necklace when getting off out of the We had a short 30 minute bus trip to where we are staying. Checked in and straight down to get something to eat and drink. Edgar who is a local Vanuatu man was doing sand drawings which tells the story of Vanuatu. They were simply amazing to watch him to them, I remember doing something similar on a doodle sketch when I was a child. It was amazing to hear the stories of the land, reminded me of the dream time stories the aboriginals tell. After an extremely long day of travelling I was finally able to shower and head to bed, my head did not even hit the pillow ... read more

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate June 21st 2014

So today marks the first day of full adventure in Vanuatu, to say that I am excited is the understatement of the year. We are headed to the Vanuatu History Museum where again Edgar will be doing some of the amazing sand drawings and telling us the stories of his land. He told us a story of teenagers and of love, it was amazing to be apart of that cultural experience. After the drawings we were allowed to walk around the Museum and have a look around, there was so much to see and take in in such a short amount of time. However I had to take some time out to have a look at the traditional fishing gear, it made we want to make all the anglers in the Vic Bream Classic, use this ... read more

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