Beyond Ratua's shores, discover Vanuatu–an archipelago of 83 islands with a unique blend of intact tribal communities, resorts, coconut fringed beaches, and geography ranging from accessible volcanoes and tropical rainforests, to waterfalls and pristine underwater environments.
Ambrym Island Dance & Sand Drawing
Ambrym is considered Vanuatu’s sorcery centre famous for its black magic. The North of Ambrym is famous for some of the best woodcarvings in the Pacific and the mysterious Rom dance. These local dances feature superb masks and costumes. Sand drawings are created to depict a story as it develops and the most skilled artists can finish without lifting their hand.
Ambrym remains volcanically active. Benbow and Marum volcanoes still rumble away and smaller vents and fractures ooze steam and lava. Trekking to the Benbow and Marum active volcanoes draws most visitors to Ambrym.
Banks & Torres Islands
The Banks and Torres are Vanuatu's northernmost islands. As with all of Vanuatu, the main islands are volcanic in origin with active volcanoes on Gaua and Vanua Lava islands. Vanua Lava is the big island of the Banks and Torres, and has mountains, a volcano, crocodiles, reefs, rivers, waterfalls and rainforests well worth exploring.
Maevo Island Waterfalls
Maewo receives the largest amount of rain in Vanuatu and has some of the most beautiful rivers and waterfalls. Maewo is famous for its ancient secret societies. Magic is performed almost as much as in Ambrym and the sorcerers claim to be even more skilled. Some traditional dances performed by men are taboo for women and vice versa. The lush landscape also provides food and shelter to a variety of colorful birds.
Malakula is the second largest island and the most diverse, culturally and linguistically, with over thirty distinct languages spoken, and some of the best custom dances come from the island. The names given to the primary cultural groups are Small Nambas and Big Nambas. The interior of Malekula is mountainous, rugged and forest-covered with good walking and bird watching. There are old cannibal sites hidden in the bush on north Malekula and an estimated population of about 25,000 on the coastal areas and around 1,500 in the rugged interior.
Pentecost Island Land Diving
Pentecost Island has become famous throughout the world for the land diving ritual (Nagol or N’gol), which occurs every Saturday between April and June. The ritual, which influenced the invention of bungee jumping by New Zealander’s, sees local men and boys jump from a 20-30m high manmade tower with only a vine attached to their legs: the vines are carefully selected by jumpers who know that just 10 centimeters may be the difference between life and death. Traveling to view this magnificent ceremony is a once in a lifetime experience.
Tanna Island Yasur Volcano
A walk to the rim of Mount Yasur’s fiery volcano certainly makes a visit to Tanna unforgettable. It is regarded as one of the world’s most accessible volcanoes. Explore the island’s beautiful landscapes and the world’s largest banyan trees, visit untouched waterfalls, see wild horses and experience an ancient culture that remains largely unchanged to this day.