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Anyone been to Vanuatu?
Old 06-11-2014, 01:31 PM   #1
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Anyone been to Vanuatu?

While in Australia this year we are looking to a week out of the country in September, flying out of Brisbane.

DW has suggested the island nation of Vanuatu and I'd never even heard of the place before she suggested it.

By chance has anyone visited there, and if so would you mind sharing your impressions.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:43 PM   #2
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I was there for a little while but it was back in the '70s. At that time, it was a dangerous place to get too far out of town. It was still New Hebrides and in the midst of a revolution of sorts. Was pretty exotic at the time. No clue what it is like now.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:51 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ronin View Post
I was there for a little while but it was back in the '70s. At that time, it was a dangerous place to get too far out of town. It was still New Hebrides and in the midst of a revolution of sorts. Was pretty exotic at the time. No clue what it is like now.
Thanks.

I checked the Australian gov travel advice and it says:

Quote:
We advise you to exercise normal safety precautions in Vanuatu.
Exercise common sense and look out for suspicious behaviour, as you would in Australia.
Vanuatu is subject to a range of natural disasters. Cyclone season in Vanuatu is from November to April, but severe tropical storms may occur in other months.
In February 2014, local authorities declared an outbreak of dengue fever in Vanuatu, including in the Port Vila and Luganville areas. We recommend that you take precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes, including using insect repellent at all times, wearing long, loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing and ensuring your accommodation is mosquito proof.
Earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions also occur. Vanuatu authorities monitor the activity of the volcanos visited by tourists and provide advice on the level of risk. Alert levels and accessibility to the volcanos can change quickly so you should always check with local authorities for the latest advice prior to travelling to volcanic areas. See the Additional information: Natural disasters, severe weather and climate section for more information.
Be a smart traveller. Before heading overseas:
  • organise comprehensive travel insurance and check what circumstances and activities are not covered by your policy
  • register your travel and contact details, so we can contact you in an emergency
  • subscribe to this travel advice to receive free email updates each time it's reissued.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:57 PM   #4
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It looks to be safe enough from the US gov traveler site.

Vanuatu

Quote:
Safety and Security Civil disorder in Vanuatu is rare; however, you should avoid public demonstrations and/or political rallies if they occur.
To stay connected:
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program so we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements.
  • Follow the Bureau of Consular Affairs on Twitter and Facebook.
  • Bookmark the Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution.
  • Follow the U.S. Embassy in Port Moresby on Twitter and visiting the Embassy’s website.
  • In the event of an emergency, contact us at [IMG]resource://skype_ff_extension-at-jetpack/skype_ff_extension/data/call_skype_logo.png[/IMG]1-888-407-4747 toll-free within the United States and Canada, or via a regular toll line, [IMG]resource://skype_ff_extension-at-jetpack/skype_ff_extension/data/call_skype_logo.png[/IMG]1-202-501-4444, from other countries.
  • Take some time before traveling to consider your personal security and checking for useful tips for traveling safely abroad.
CRIME: Although violent crime is rare in Vanuatu, there is a risk that you could be a victim of theft, burglary, sexual harassment, or sexual assault. Take reasonable precautions to avoid exposing yourself to undue risk, especially in tourist areas. Women should avoid going out alone at night or to isolated locations.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:29 PM   #5
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Sounds OK to me. I do remember the thing about Dengue Fever. The thing about sexual assault is good advice anywhere. But in the islands of the So. Pacific, I'd pay close heed to their advice on that. Should be very exciting and interesting.

I like Melanesian culture and have enjoyed visiting a variety of islands then and since. I was Peace Corps in Polynesia, so it was interesting to see the similarities and differences. It is a beautiful place. I wish I could have explored it more, but there was talk of road blocks and kidnappings at the time so I chickened out.
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Anyone been to Vanuatu?
Old 06-11-2014, 03:32 PM   #6
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Anyone been to Vanuatu?

Thanks ronin, I think we'll do it unless it is prohibitively expensive, but initial inquiries have similar prices to Fiji for a week long stay, so it looks very reasonable.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:37 PM   #7
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I have not been but dating a gal last year, who had spent a several weeks there as Coastal ecologist for the Army Corp of engineers, she was there within in the last 5-10 years.

Definitely off the beaten path, the natives were friendly according to her. Not necessarily a particularly beautiful island by South Pacific standards.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:45 PM   #8
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I have not been but dating a gal last year, who had spent a several weeks there as Coastal ecologist for the Army Corp of engineers, she was there within in the last 5-10 years.

Definitely off the beaten path, the natives were friendly according to her. Not necessarily a particularly beautiful island by South Pacific standards.

Good info, thanks.

We like off the beaten path, and chances are that we won't be back in this part of the world anytime soon, if ever.
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Old 08-02-2014, 03:39 PM   #9
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Alan,

Vanuatu is a common destination for off shore world cruisers. I've followed a lot of sailing blogs over the years and I don't recall anything alarming from this locale. It's on my list of places to go.

A google search of 'cruising Vanuatu' might lead to some detailed info. And the plus side is cruisers are a pretty frugal bunch as a general rule.
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Old 08-18-2014, 03:36 AM   #10
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I have not been to Vanuatu but I have been to the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea many times. They all have Melanesian culture.

Many friends have been to Vanuatu - they enjoyed it although they said Port Vila was a bit dull.

I am off in September to East New Britain in Papua New Guinea for the Battle of Bita Paka centenary celebrations. It was the first military battle that the Australian armed forces were engaged in and was basically the start and end of WW I in the Pacific.

Should be interesting.
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Old 08-18-2014, 07:25 AM   #11
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The snorkeling in that general area, like in Fiji, is just incredible. I don't know if I would even look above the water!

Papua New Guinea is incredible for birds.
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Old 08-18-2014, 06:53 PM   #12
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Funny you should ask. My dd departed last night for her honeymoon beginning in Vanuatu. Her flight from Fiji was cancelled, so she is spending one night in Fiji and catching an onward flight in the morning.

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Old 08-20-2014, 12:50 PM   #13
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It is much like Figi and the people are the loveliest, water is crystal clear....enjoy
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