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“Exactly what I expected, and needed”

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Oyster Island Resort
Mackay, Qld
Level 5 Contributor
81 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Exactly what I expected, and needed”
Reviewed January 3, 2013

Once you jump on board the boat to go over to Oyster Island (3 minute trip) the stress simply washes off. The Island is very peaceful, the service was nice, no mozzies(!), and the rooms comfortable.

I loved the outside shower/bathroom! As other reviewers have mentioned the ghekkos leave their droppings randomly but hey... big deal. Not.

The balcony directly outside the bungalows was protected and included steps down directly into the water which was clean (apart from a few leaves from the shade of the trees near the edge) and inviting. A lovely place to sit comfortably with a glass of champers and watch the sun go down in the evening.

It was a great place to base myself to visit Champagne Beach and the Blue Holes, which in my travels are up on the top of the list for the clarity of water and sensational swimming conditions. Unfortunately I didn't get to to the Mount Hope Waterfall drifting down the river which sounds awesome as I was only there for 1.5 days and ran out of time.

The Santo locals are amazing people, very friendly and welcoming who live very simply. 1.5 days was definitely not long enough and could have easily spent a lot longer. Next trip will spend less time in Efate, Port Vila (I was there for three days) and use it only as a hopping island to Tanna if needed as Santo (you can fly direct) was far more beautiful. The island of Tanna will be also included next time to see the active volcano and everything else I believe it has to offer.

No TV, which was fantastic. Free wireless available in the waterside dining area.

Great place for everyone, nothing snobbish about it, and an uncomplicated and relaxing holiday all round.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank msqMackay_Qld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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369 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (116)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Canberra, Australia
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2013 via mobile

Oyster Island was perfect for us, a couple unwinding after a busy stressful year. We sat and read on our balcony and spent hours in the water snorkeling and swimming. We were there for a week and only left the island once to kayak to the Blue Hole. As we had been to Santo before we had visited places such as Champagne Beach previously and this time we just relaxed and enjoyed the peace of the resort and the friendship of the staff.

Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank WattiesTwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mooloolaba, Queensland, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2013

Just returned from a fantastic Christmas Holiday at the beautiful Oyster Island Resort, Santo. There were 10 all up in our group, including my wife and 2 girls, may sister and her family and our Dad. We arrived on Oyster on 18th December and stayed for 9 nights. We had bungalows 8 to 11. From the time we were met at the airport by Luke, taken across to the island by Daveson, and welcomed to the island by our hosts Ollie & David we felt right at home. Helen & Maria were fantastic and along with John, John & Gasper looked after our every need. John the chef prepared five star meals that will take a while to work off I am sure. Thank you also to Greg for showing us the blue hole and our float down river to the waterfall. Apart from the beautiful people and first class service the natural beauty of the Island and surrounds was great to explore. The coral and snorkeling was the best and could be reached directly off the balcony. Our kids loved the experience and we cant wait to get back again. Would highly recommend Oyster Island resort for the best family holiday experience around.

Room Tip: No. 11 very private
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank John T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Helsinki
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

We only stayed one night... and that's a shame because the place is just beautiful! Bungalows are superb and comparing the prices in Santo this is cheap! The only place in Santo that I could just stay week in a row. There are lot's of things to do (snorkeling, kayaking...) and surroundings are perfect for romantic and relaxing holiday. The same kind of place in Fiji etc. will cost you a double. Restaurant is excellent and the staff are superb. If you visit Santo you must stay in Oyster Island at least couple of nights. I'm very happy that we decided to the check out this place.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank GranTourizmo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2012

My stay at Oyster Island was great. The staff was very helpful, the food was excellent, and the location is beautiful. I stayed at Oyster for 7 days and enjoyed relaxing on the beach, walking around the island, kayaking, and exploring Santo.

Before arriving, Olive and Helen answered my barrage of emailed questions, and I was well prepared for my stay when I arrived. Both the Frangipani and Deluxe Bungalows are comfortable and have all of the basic requirements for a relaxing vacation.

Thanks so much!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank traci_PDX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Queensland, Australia
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2012

This place was simply beautiful in its simplicity and solitude. Perfect for those wanting to get away from the crowds. We went with our children. Our 14 year old daughter loved it. Our 12 year old son wanted a bit more action!! We stayed in 2 Frangipani bungalows, with our children staying in the next door one. Basic but beautiful. The view from your bed is enough to calm the soul. Perfect environment for a spot of morning Yoga. However, the bungalows need reroofing as ours leaked on our last night! The trip up to Mount Hope Waterfall with Greg, the self admitted horse eating Belgian (ha ha!!) tour guide, was BRILLIANT! Greg, you're a star, even if my daughter doesn't agree with your eating habits! What a great job you have. Kayaking up to the Matavula Blue Hole was simply stunning in a very magical, eerie way. I have never experienced water like that before. Amazing. As for the snorkelling? Where to start. The clarity of the water was crystal clear and the fish abundant. All in all......if you want peace and quiet, away from the tourist crowds......this is the place to go. Thank you, Oyster Island, for recharging our batteries!

Room Tip: Check that the bungalows don't leak in a torrential downpour!!
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank FabFen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2012

Just spent 5 magnificent days at Oyster Island Resort and loved every minute of it. The staff were all very friendly and eager to assist. Oli and Dave were excellent hosts, and well supported by their team, particularly Helen & Marie. Greg was also a great part of the team, very approachable and the Mount Hope Waterfall tour that he and Davson operate is an absolute must-do (refer separate review).

Our family group comprised 4 adults and 4 teenagers and occupied 3 of the bungalows. This worked very well with the adults in 2 of the rooms (#7 & #8) and the kids in the larger "family" bungalow (#6) with 4 singles. Loved the over-water (at high side) position of the rooms and the hammocks on the balcony. Word of caution: don't leave opened food / drinks in the rooms as the ghecko's loved it, and we also had a visit from a Santo "beaver".

General condition of the resort is very good. Excellent and well-maintained beach area and neat garden areas (credit to garden staff).

Food is top-quality, and we understand that a new menu is also planned to increase the offerings further - including a curry dish. We sampled a fish curry (coconut milk based) and unanimously rated it a winner - even the fussy teenagers raved about it. The chilli-chocolate ribs were also a winner. Meal sizes are large - you will not go hungry! The BBQ night with a bonfire on the beach was a great night and good chance to chat with all the guests, including visiting yachts. Only down-side here was that there was often a long wait-time for the meals - particularly in the peak dinner-time (was often >1 hour), however on balance the quality was worth the wait.

The walk around Oyster Island is also worth doing - exploring the multiple beaches and the rain forest area. Coral around the island is awesome, and great for snorkeling, however can be a little difficult to access at low tide. When snorkeling, look out for the plane wreck at the southern end of the island (ask Greg for directions on how to find it). The kayak up to the Matevulu Blue Hole is another must-do - take about 45 mins and takes you up the river with some very good scenery.

As the location is a bit removed from Luganville, transfers (eg Paradise Tours) are often the way to go, or a local taxi is also often available. However your can pay a bit less if you hail a local bus from the main road, but this can be a bit hit-and-miss. The central location makes trips up the east coast (eg Champagne Bay, Blue Holes etc accessible

In summary, a sensational place to stay whilst at Santo and highly recommended.

Room Tip: Deluxe bungalows are excellent and looked to offer a bit more room and comfort than the Frangipani r...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Marfee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Oyster Island Resort

Property: Oyster Island Resort
Address: PO Box 183, Luganville, Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu
Location: Vanuatu > Espiritu Santo > Luganville
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Luganville
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Oyster Island Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set on a private 25 hectare island just 2 minutes crossing from the mainland. Oyster Island Resort resides within a Marine Reserve, abundant in marine and wild life. Sandy beaches, tropical rainforest, coral reefs and war plane wrecks make for fantastic snorkelling. Bungalows line the waters edge, each with private decks or patio's, enjoying stunning views out over the calm lagoon waters. Family Vila allow room for parents and children to enjoy the large grounds and gardens and are set off the water for safety. Skilled Chefs serve the very best of local and western cuisine from our waterfront restaurant. Only 20 minutes from the airport and township. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Oyster Island Hotel Luganville
Oyster Island Resort Vanuatu/Luganville

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