Vanuatu travel guide

Vanuatu Tourism | Vanuatu Guide

You're Going to Love Vanuatu

Vanuatu is an archipelago of around 80 islands that are easily accessible to each other and give visitors plenty of opportunity to explore volcanoes, jungles, underwater worlds and idyllic beaches.

What to do in Vanuatu

1. Visit Mele Cascades

The waterfall known as Mele Cascades, located just outside Port Vila, consists of a series of clear blue pools and smaller waterfalls that can be climbed. The main falls at the top cascade 115 ft into a plunge pool below.

2. Learn About Local Traditions

Take a tour to Ekasup Cultural Village where the way of life in a traditional village in Vanuatu can be witnessed. Learn about the food and watch traditional dances performed by the locals of the village.

3. Dive in a Shipwreck

Hop from Grande Terre to Santo island and take a boat out to dive and explore the wreck of the ocean liner President Coolidge and the destroyer USS Tucker, both of which sank in 1942 and are now home to a wealth of marine wildlife.

4. Explore the Local Markets

Go to the seafront in Port Vila and spend some time exploring the markets where there is a wide array of fresh fruit and vegetables, flowers and various local delicacies to eat as well as arts and crafts created locally.

5. Climb a Volcano

Mount Benbow and Mount Marum are active volcanoes on the island of Ambrym in Vanuatu. Take a guided climb to the top on a clear day and look down into a crater of glowing magma.

1. Visit Mele Cascades

The waterfall known as Mele Cascades, located just outside Port Vila, consists of a series of clear blue pools and smaller waterfalls that can be climbed. The main falls at the top cascade 115 ft into a plunge pool below.

2. Learn About Local Traditions

Take a tour to Ekasup Cultural Village where the way of life in a traditional village in Vanuatu can be witnessed. Learn about the food and watch traditional dances performed by the locals of the village.

3. Dive in a Shipwreck

Hop from Grande Terre to Santo island and take a boat out to dive and explore the wreck of the ocean liner President Coolidge and the destroyer USS Tucker, both of which sank in 1942 and are now home to a wealth of marine wildlife.

4. Explore the Local Markets

Go to the seafront in Port Vila and spend some time exploring the markets where there is a wide array of fresh fruit and vegetables, flowers and various local delicacies to eat as well as arts and crafts created locally.

5. Climb a Volcano

Mount Benbow and Mount Marum are active volcanoes on the island of Ambrym in Vanuatu. Take a guided climb to the top on a clear day and look down into a crater of glowing magma.

When to visit Vanuatu

Vanuatu in October
Estimated hotel price
$124
1 night at 3-star hotel
Vanuatu in October
Estimated hotel price
$124
1 night at 3-star hotel

The best time to visit Vanuatu is between May and September when the weather is dry and temperatures range from 64°F to 82°F. This is the high season on the island, so for those who don't mind a bit of rain, better prices can be found during the rainy season from November to March.

How to Get to Vanuatu

Entry requirements

Passport holders from the EU, Canada, UK, USA and Australia, as well as various visitors from Asia, Africa and South America, will need to hold a passport that is valid for at least six months from date of departure from Vanuatu and a valid return or onward ticket. With this in place, it is not necessary to get a visa to stay in Vanuatu for a period of up to 30 days.

Plane

Air Vanuatu is the national carrier, which operates flights from various Australian cities into Bauerfield International Airport 15min outside the capital Port Vila on the island of Efate. International carriers landing at Vanuatu include Qantas, Air New Zealand and Fiji Air.

Boat

Vanuatu is on the itinerary of various cruise liners, such as P&O Cruise, Princess Cruises and Carnival Cruises, which all stop at Port Vila.

Entry requirements

Passport holders from the EU, Canada, UK, USA and Australia, as well as various visitors from Asia, Africa and South America, will need to hold a passport that is valid for at least six months from date of departure from Vanuatu and a valid return or onward ticket. With this in place, it is not necessary to get a visa to stay in Vanuatu for a period of up to 30 days.

Plane

Air Vanuatu is the national carrier, which operates flights from various Australian cities into Bauerfield International Airport 15min outside the capital Port Vila on the island of Efate. International carriers landing at Vanuatu include Qantas, Air New Zealand and Fiji Air.

Boat

Vanuatu is on the itinerary of various cruise liners, such as P&O Cruise, Princess Cruises and Carnival Cruises, which all stop at Port Vila.

Popular airports in Vanuatu

SSRSara

Popular airlines serving Vanuatu

Qatar Airways
Good (2,411 reviews)
Singapore Airlines
Excellent (933 reviews)
Qantas Airways
Good (557 reviews)
Virgin Australia
Good (268 reviews)
Fiji Airways
Excellent (141 reviews)
Air Niugini
Excellent (1 reviews)
Aircalin
Good (8 reviews)

Where to stay in Vanuatu

On Grande Terre, especially around Port Vila, choose from family-friendly resorts with all-inclusive facilities to keep the family active or couples-only resorts to take a break away from it all. The smaller islands of Santo and Tanna have fewer resorts but there are budget and midrange guesthouses and beach bungalows to choose from.

Where to stay in popular areas of Vanuatu

Most booked hotels in Vanuatu

Erakor Island Resort & Spa
4 stars
Excellent (8.7, Excellent reviews)
$220+
Mangoes Resort
3 stars
Excellent (8.3, Excellent reviews)
$190+
Nasama Resort
4 stars
Excellent (8.2, Excellent reviews)
$244+
Grand Hotel and Casino
4 stars
Good (7.8, Good reviews)
$206+
Breakas Beach Resort
4 stars
Good (7.8, Good reviews)
$184+
Sunset Bungalows Resort
4 stars
Good (7.7, Good reviews)
$138+

How to Get Around Vanuatu

Public Transportation

Public transport in Port Vila, Malekula and Luganville consists mostly of local buses that run a door-to-door service. Etafe has an informal network of buses that transports people to various destinations.

Car

Cars can be rented in Port Vila or in Luganville from Santo Car Hire.

Boat

Travel between islands on Big Sista Cruise or Vanuatu Ferry, both of which run between Port Vila on Grande Terre and Luganville on Santo.

Plane

Flying is a quick and easy way to get around the islands of Vanuatu and domestic flights are operated by Air Vanuatu. There are also various charter companies, such as Air Safaris and Air Taxi, that operate flights between islands.

Public Transportation

Public transport in Port Vila, Malekula and Luganville consists mostly of local buses that run a door-to-door service. Etafe has an informal network of buses that transports people to various destinations.

Car

Cars can be rented in Port Vila or in Luganville from Santo Car Hire.

Boat

Travel between islands on Big Sista Cruise or Vanuatu Ferry, both of which run between Port Vila on Grande Terre and Luganville on Santo.

Plane

Flying is a quick and easy way to get around the islands of Vanuatu and domestic flights are operated by Air Vanuatu. There are also various charter companies, such as Air Safaris and Air Taxi, that operate flights between islands.

Best car hire deals in Vanuatu

Full-size SUV

5 Adults, 2 Bags

$177/day

Full-size SUV

The Cost of Living in Vanuatu

Cost of living in Vanuatu is relatively high. A gallon of milk and a dozen eggs will cost in the range of 1,344 VUV (11.80 USD) while eating at a slightly cheaper restaurant will cost around 2,000 VUV (26.30 USD) per person. Visa and Mastercard are accepted, although these will incur charges. Money can be withdrawn from ATMs at the airport and outside supermarkets and banks.

Popular cities in Vanuatu