We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Trip report - November 2013

Newcastle, Australia
Level Contributor
40 posts
21 reviews
Save Topic
Trip report - November 2013

My husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary on our week long trip in November 2013 – ahh Vanuatu you now have our hearts.

With a glass of wine in hand it was a very pleasant Air Vanuatu flight just over three hours from Sydney – it includes a meal and drinks but no movie , just tv shows and music. Going through customs was simple and quick and our transport was waiting to whisk us away.

Iced champagne and petals on the bed in the shape of a heart greeted us on arrival at our overwater villa at Holiday Inn (I have done a review) which was just all kinds of wonderful – it had a spa bath and separate lounge room and bedroom with a king bed and of course the balcony with lounge chairs overlooking the lagoon.

We walked into Port Villa a few times – about 30-40 minutes which was interesting but not my kind of shopping. We bought some bananas and nuts at the fabulous markets and bought some wine at the French supermarket and a couple of beers (and an opener) from another supermarket on the way home.

I’m not at all fazed by others’ shock reaction that we did not venture out of the resort to eat – it was divine. It was our most relaxing trip ever – first time since we have had our three children (now adults) that we had holidayed alone. Some nights we ordered off the menu and other nights, despite agreeing beforehand we would not, we would have the buffet. The only reason I say we would say we were not having the buffet was we would invariably eat too much! I am sure next time we go to Vanuatu we will venture out more to eat but like I said – this was a complete chill time not like our usual holidays.

I withdrew what I thought was the equivalent of $500 from the ATM at the airport but it was only $50 – we spent all that and the rest of my purchases went on our hotel tab which I settled with my card (28 degrees Mastercard no fees).

We had a trip to a local school which was wonderful and the sound of cherubs singing “This little light of mine” made me cry. I took some supplies over for a school donation but once we saw the school my husband said we could have taken a whole suitcase of supplies.

We did the cascade waterfalls which was terrific and the young couples we were with were so lovely holding my glasses while I got a nice photo which our tour guide Lulu took. Glad I had my $10 kmart reef shoes for that one! I’m not completely fit but found the walk pretty easy – some of the climbs up the higher rocks weren’t easy but I managed.

It did rain a lot when we were there but it was a pleasant 28 degrees and when the sun did come out it was very hot! So I didn’t come home with the tan I thought I would and didn’t get to use all my new swimsuits but just being above the water was actually enough!

The only thing I didn’t really like was the local coffee and tea (thought it was just the plane’s until we got to the resort) but plenty of earl grey etc tea bags to make your own!

We had insect repellent but did not see a mossie and only a few flies.

Glad I took: 50+ sunscreen; hats; reef shoes; plastic bags for taking home dampish clothes and shoes;

Wish I had of taken: more school supplies.

I cannot wait to go back!

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,441 posts
40 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Trip report - November 2013

Thanks Mrsmex for your trip report. I for one an glad you did it "your way", to us, that is what Vanuatu is all about. If Vanuatu has your heart, you'll venture further afield next time. The AirVan flight over is a great start, the staff are always friendly, and generous to a fault with the wine in the 3 hours aloft. I loved your comment about getting the Vatu wrong, many people do so. You see all these zeros and think wow there is a lot of them, but basically the Vatu is a cent. OK 1.1 cents but it is easier to think of removing the 2 last zeros and call it dollars :-)

I'm a bit surprised by your dislike of the coffee, as we live on Tanna coffee while there, and bring home 5kgs each trip. I hope next time you'll incorporate a visit to the Tanna Coffee factory out past Hideaway Island for a cuppa and to buy the bag or two for home.

The good thing about Vanuatu is it is close, friendly and easy to get around, and every trip you find more to do if you want, and plenty of places to just do nothing if that's your plan.

Thanks again for getting back and to the Forum and telling us about your trip,

Cheerz Wabster.

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
678 posts
57 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Trip report - November 2013

Thanks for the lovely trip report. I can hear the relaxation coming through your words. Bliss.

Wabster, I bet the resort wasn't serving Tanna Coffee.


Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
381 posts
72 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Trip report - November 2013

Great trip report!

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Denarau Island
Level Contributor
2,131 posts
48 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Trip report - November 2013

Thanks Mrsmex, it sounds like a great trip.

On our first trip we barely left the resort also, sometimes you need to just keep it simple.

I had to laugh at you ATM experience-I now actually write myself a note with how many zero's I need to press before I go near an ATM, as once I get there I just lose the plot.

Glad you enjoyed your trip.


5. Re: Trip report - November 2013

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 1:19 am, November 28, 2014
Get answers to your questions about Port Vila