Vanuatu Travel Blog (Part 1 - Port Vila)

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After coming back from my trip to Vanuatu in April I’ve had so many requestes for recommendations on where to visit/stay, what to do and my personal favourite spots that I decided to do a blog about it to cover everything. Hope you like it :)

Our travel Itinerary: 3 Nights in Port Vila; 4 Nights in Espiritu Santo, 3 Nights Tanna Island and back to Port Vila for another 2 Night.

Full Moon view from our first night at the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu

Full Moon view from our first night at the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu

To get to Vanuatu from Sydney it takes somewhere around three and half hours. We flew from Sydney to Port Vila arriving there on the evening, so we went straight to our Resort which was less than ten minutes driving from the Airport.

Our resort was the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu, and to be honest we couldn’t have picked a better place to stay. We stayed the first night in one of their Overwater accomodation, each of them has a private balcony with direct access to the tortoise blue lagoon. Waking up with that view was the best way to start our holiday.

Usually when we travel staying on a big resort is the last thing on our minds. We want to be immersed in the country’s culture, explore and spend as much time in contact with nature as we can. But after an intense start of the year we decided to take the first few days of our holidays to relax and enjoy ourselves. The Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu all inclusive packages and environmentally friendly facilities was everything we needed.

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First day - We started our first day there enjoying a delicious seasonal fruit platter and fresh coconut water on our private balcony and spent pretty much the entire day enjoying the resort’s facilities; sailing and paddling at their private beach, swimming, soccer with the kids (for Luccas) and to finish it up in style we had a banquet dinner at the Resort’s Verandah Restaurant listening to live music followed by South Pacific dancers show and fireworks .

Overwater Cabine at the Holiday Inn Resort

Overwater Cabine at the Holiday Inn Resort

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Second Day - I went for a sunrise run with a local running group. On the way back we stoped for a coffee at the K2 Cafe. Back to the hotel Luccas was already waiting for me at the reception for breakfast. Our friends Tom and Gerald arrived from Sydney the night before and we decided to pay for a local driver to drive us around the Island. So many beautiful spots to see, our favourite so far was the Crystal Blue Lagoon, where the boys spent almost the entire afternoon playing on the rope swings with the locals.

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Crystal Blue Lagoon

Crystal Blue Lagoon

Picnic on the go!

Picnic on the go!

Yoga at the Holiday Inn Resort

Yoga at the Holiday Inn Resort

Third Day - Another beautiful sunrise run with the Port Vila running group. On the way back I did Yoga at the resort (complementary for guests every Thursday and Saturday morning at 7am). After that we took the day to explore the city. The 24 hours food market is amazing; giant avocados, fresh peanuts, cacao fruit, the sweetest bananas we ever had and super friendly Vanuatu people to chat with. We ended up discovering the Gaston Chocolate Factory where we almost had a chocolate overdose trying their handmade chocolate (their cacao nibs covered with 70% chocolate is honestly the best creation), made friends and organised a surf afternoon for the boys with Olivier on our last day in Vanuatu coming back from the other Islands. Back to the resort, the four of us Luccas, Gerald, Tom and I spent the rest of the afternoon kayaking. All of our dinners while in Port Vila where at the Holiday Inn Restaurant while playing Truco (Brazilian Card Game)

24/7 Local Fruit Market

24/7 Local Fruit Market

Gerald and Tom at the Market

Gerald and Tom at the Market

About the food - I personally love the South Pacific cuisine, with plenty of fresh produce such as root vegetables, fruits, coconut milk, lemon, spices and organic meat.

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Bellow you can find a Banana and Coconut Tart recipe that I created inspired by my Vanuatu’s local cuisine:

Banana and Coconut Tart

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Ingredients for the Crust

-2 cups coconut flakes

-1/4 cup rice syrup

-2 tbsp tapioca starch

-4 tbsp coconut oil melted

-pinch of salt

How to make it: Grease a round baking pan with coconut oil. In a bowl mix all the ingredients together. Spread the mixture evenly around the pan and press into tin to make the base. Bake it for 20 minutes on a pre-heated oven to 180C.

Filling ingredients

-3 medium bananas sliced

-1 cup coconut cream

How to make it: Spread the banana slices into the base in a clockwise direction so they can layer on top of each other. Pour the coconut cream over the bananas. Bake again for extra 10-15 minutes.

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PART 2 COMING SOON - Lot’s to share with you about the stunning Blue Holes in Espiritu Santo and our Volcano / Tribe stay adventure in Tanna.

*Thanks to Luccas, Gerald and Tom for taking the beautiful photos that I’m sharing here with you!