I spent four nights here, and sorry about the long review but this is a difficult place to rate. It is by any measure 1-star accommodation. It's little more than shacks with fly-screened windows near the beach, set in a nice garden, with power only on from 5.30-11pm each night. There is no power point in your bungalows, so to charge your camera or iDevices you may have to battle with other guests for the ONE powerpoint in the restaurant. It goes without saying, no air-con. You can't drink the tap water and have to buy bottled water. The shower is sometimes a bit warm, but mostly cold, and the floor of the shower/toilet is broken coral. There are no shops or any services of any kind nearby, and the only restaurant has only one thing on the menu each day at a fixed price.
BUT, nevertheless I enjoyed my stay. The mosquito-netted bed is quite comfortable, and going to sleep by the sound of the nearby waves crashing on the beach was wonderful. And whilst the restaurant had only one choice (so be sure to email through any dietary requirements beforehand) from the breakfast, lunch, and dinner 'menu' each night, it was really good food, varied each day, and was as good as some I'd had in Vila. Some have complained about the dinner price, currently 3000VT, but that is for a three course meal in a remote location with often only a couple of guests staying. Fair price. A good range of drinks available also at reasonable prices.
The staff all try and make you comfortable, especially the charming host Mary. The other big plus staying here is the volcano is only 30 mins away, compared to what must be close on 2-hours from the east coast. I was very thankful I was staying here on the way back from the volcano tour, in the dark, and what are very rough dirt roads.
In short, Friendly Bungalows does its utmost to make guests comfortable in what is a very remote location, with zero infrustrature, and they succeed at that. If you can handle it a bit rough, and if chilling out for a few days in a hammock with a book with the occasion swim and no distractions of any type, then this place is 5-star for that!
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- Also Known As:
- Friendly Bungalows Hotel Tanna Island
- Friendly Hotel Tanna