Port Vila

windsurfer in Port Vila - Vanuatu vacation activitiesPort Vila, the lively capital located on the main island Efate, is the core of all Vanuatu island life. The town is where most commercial activities take place, but the real bustle comes from Port Vila’s tourism sector. As you get to know this wonderful place, you won’t have any doubt as to why so many visitors choose to flock here for a few days of ultimate fun.
A Brief History
Having been initially overshadowed by Havannah Harbour as Efate’s center, Port Vila took the center stage in 1906, when it was declared as the national capital. Being proclaimed as the capital did not improve much of the town’s condition, which appeared seedy and somewhat sinister throughout the years. All that changed in 1970 when the establishment of the tax haven fueled a boom in construction, giving rise to concrete structures and paved streets. When the main wharf was built in 1972, Port Vila’s role as a great tourist destination started.

The Main Attractions
So aside from its concrete structures and paved streets, what does Port Vila have to offer? If you want the answer in just one phrase, then the response would be: lots and lots of fun! For more details, check out the following main attractions.

Diving and Other Water Activities
For those seeking it, Port Vila is packed with oodles of water escapades. There are numerous dive sites, such as the Tasman Flying Boat and the Star of Russia, where you can explore the ship wrecks to your heart’s content. Ship wrecks not your thing? Don’t worry; there is also Pango Wall, a reef that is home to an assortment of fantastic sea creatures like anemones and barracuda.

For a more tranquil water activity, choose a charter and cast your lines for marlin, mackerel, tuna, and a host of other fish you can catch, or you can head on down to Mele Cascades for a refreshing dip in the falls while admiring the beauty of the surrounding vegetation. Kayaking can also be an enjoyable option, whether it is done in the ocean or the river.

Hassle-Free Shopping and Exciting Night Life
With the absence of pushy salesmen and the non-existence of the hard sell concept, shopping in Vila is loads of fun, without the hassle! Prices are fixed; the friendly and easygoing nature of the town’s lifestyle has no room for bargaining. Aside from indulging in easy shopping, you can also check out the blooming night life and hit the town’s casinos, clubs, and a range of other scintillating spots. The town is quite safe even at night, so feel free to wander about!

World-Class Dining
Port Vila is a melting pot of various culinary influences. In fact, it is fast becoming the South Pacific’s gourmet capital. It has over 40 restaurants and cafes where you can order an American chili dog, choose an Aussie meat dish, or buy an item belonging to many other cultures.

How to Get to Port Vila
Port Vila is a port of entry for boats, so if you plan to get there on your own yacht, contact Yachting World (yachtingworld@iname.com) at Waterfront Bar & Grill. For a fee, they can contact the authorities for your yacht clearance. Flying in? Port Vila is about 6 kilometers away from Vanuatu’s international airport, Bauerfield.

Now that you have gotten to know a little about Port Vila, it is time to get a firsthand experience of all its splendors. Fly or sail – it does not matter which method you choose to get to this paradise. Let the fun commence!