Melanesia: the forgotten part of the Pacific

After our recent expedition through Melanesia (sailing from New Caledonia to Fiji) our clients where entranced by the welcome smiles and genuine warmth of the Melanesian welcomes we received all the way through Vanuatu. Although very few expedition yachts spend any time in Vanuatu (those that do venture here usually pause a trans-Pacific route at Port Vila for a day or two), this tiny nation of Pacific islands has some amazing experiences to offer. In fact, we find it one of our favorite destinations anywhere on the planet and one that is most suited to luxury expedition yachts.

A safer, easier, more accessible part of Melanesia that Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu is a hidden treasure. With two international airports with daily links to Australia and New Zealand, Vanuatu is easy spot for owners to fly into (and out of) to join a yacht for an expedition cruise.

The ‘Land Divers of Pentecost’ offer one of the most awe-inspiring anthropological spectacles on Earth as diver hurl themselves of makeshift 100ft (30m) towers headfirst; their falls are only arrested by their bush-vine ‘bungee ropes’ attached to each ankle. Mt. Yassur volcano arguably the most accessible volcano in the world and allows visitors easy access to the crater rim to witness fiery lava bomb action; the perfect place to watch a sun-set. The islands of the Banks and Torres group have excellent diving, the island of Santo has fantastic day trip activities. Vanuatu is diversity; every island is different and offers something different from the last. If you’re going to be in the neighborhood during a Pacific transit, call in for a few days; you won’t be disappointed.