Destination

South Pacific

Destination Vanuatu Paradise logo
29th edition
        2019

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Efate: 1st port of call in Paradise...

 

Christened Sandwich Island by James Cook
Efate (900 km2) is home to the capital city
Port Vila, a shopping paradise, and is the
gate to the other islands of the country

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

10

 

 

Port Vila, Capital city...

is a small cosmopolitan town, a melting pot of Melanesian, European and Asian cultures. There are approximately 66,000 people living there, when including the outskirts and neighbouring villages. This is where most of the luxury hotels, businesses and tourist activities can be found. One of visitors’ favourite pastimes is to walk along the main street – Lini Highway – checking out every single shop on the way, then, once at the end, to retrace their steps on the other side, again seeking out the least little shop. Lini Highway is also the main banking and trading street, not forgetting its famous Vila market.
Just a few meters away from this street, you can board the ferry to Iririki Island, a charming haven of peace, with its hotel where the British hospital used to be in the Condominium days.
Vila’s other claim to fame is to be the gastronomic capital of the South Pacific. The food is excellent and very diverse with a wide choice of Pacific, Vietnamese, Italian, Japanese, Indian, Chinese and authentic French restaurants... 

South of the town, on the road towards Pango Point, Erakor offers different styles of accommodation, from the family bed-and-breakfast to the fourstar hotel. It is the ideal place to go and rest after a shopping marathon, to do snorkelling gear and go and discover the fish in the lagoon, or to sip a cocktail while reading the latest adventures of Mino, the young hero of a very popular comic, the brainchild of the ni-Vanuatu writer, Guy Deroin.

A must see, must do in Port Vila

- the market: located on the main street, on the right just after the Post Office. Best to go there in the morning. Take your pick of the fruit (banana, pineapple, watermelon, soursop…), flowers and vegetables
and fill your basket to your heart’s content. Try laplap, a national dish made with grated root vegetables (taro, manioc, breadfruit or sweet potato) steeped in coconut milk, then cooked with chicken or beef
in banana or heliconia leaves (lap-lap leaves in Bislama). The market is open every day, all day, except on Saturday afternoon and Sunday.

 

- the Cultural Centre: opposite Parliament. It houses a significant collection of Melanesian and South Pacific artifacts (masks, canoes, carvings…) and old photographs. Open Monday to Friday 9:00 am to
4:30 pm, and Saturday until midday.


- the Michoutouchkine & Pilioko Foundation: on the road to Pango. Collections of rare items of Melanesian art. A way of paying tribute to the Vanuatu-naturalised French painter of Russian descent, Nicolaï Michoutouchkine, who died in May 2010 in Noumea.


- sailing, diving, kayaking,
trekking, horse-riding: a large number of outfits in town offer a wide range of sporting activities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Efate: 1st port of call in Paradise...

Christened Sandwich Island by James Cook, Efate (900 km2) is home to the capital city, Port Vila, a shopping paradise, and is the gate to the other islands of the country

Port Vila, Capital city...

is a small cosmopolitan town, a melting pot of Melanesian, European and Asian cultures. There are approximately 66,000 people living there, when including the outskirts and neighbouring villages. This is where most of the luxury hotels, businesses and tourist activities can be found. One of visitors’ favourite pastimes is to walk along the main street – Lini Highway – checking out every single shop on the way, then, once at the end, to retrace their steps on the other side, again seeking out the least little shop. Lini Highway is also the main banking and trading street, not forgetting its famous Vila market.
Just a few meters away from this street, you can board the ferry to Iririki Island, a charming haven of peace, with its hotel where the British hospital used to be in the Condominium days.
Vila’s other claim to fame is to be the gastronomic capital of the South Pacific. The food is excellent and very diverse with a wide choice of Pacific, Vietnamese, Italian, Japanese, Indian, Chinese and authentic French restaurants... 
South of the town, on the road towards Pango Point, Erakor offers different styles of accommodation, from the family bed-and-breakfast to the fourstar hotel. It is the ideal place to go and rest after a shopping marathon, to do snorkelling gear and go and discover the fish in the lagoon, or to sip a cocktail while reading the latest adventures of Mino, the young hero of a very popular comic, the brainchild of the ni-Vanuatu writer, Guy Deroin.

A must see, must do in Port Vila

- the market: located on the main street, on the right just after the Post Office. Best to go there in the morning. Take your pick of the fruit (banana, pineapple, watermelon, soursop…), flowers and vegetables and fill your basket to your heart’s content. Try laplap, a national dish made with grated root vegetables (taro, manioc, breadfruit or sweet potato) steeped in coconut milk, then cooked with chicken or beef in banana or heliconia leaves (lap-lap leaves in Bislama). The market is open every day, all day, except on Saturday afternoon and Sunday.

- the Cultural Centre: opposite Parliament. It houses a significant collection of Melanesian and South Pacific artifacts (masks, canoes, carvings…) and old photographs. Open Monday to Friday 9:00 am to 4:30 pm, and Saturday until midday.

- the Michoutouchkine & Pilioko Foundation: on the road to Pango. Collections of rare items of Melanesian art. A way of paying tribute to the Vanuatu-naturalised French painter of Russian descent, Nicolaï Michoutouchkine, who died in May 2010 in Noumea.

- sailing, diving, kayaking, trekking, horse-riding: a large number of outfits in town offer a wide range of sporting activities.