WHY: Hike to the crater rim of a steaming volcano, snorkel among sea turtles, and swim in underwater caves on the refreshingly untamed island of Tanna. Home to jungle-shrouded villages, wild horses, black sand beaches, and moonscape ash plains, the remote Vanuatu island remains relatively undeveloped. It’s also on the rebound after Cyclone Pam wreaked havoc in March 2015. Tanna’s main resorts, such as Tanna Lodge and White Grass Ocean Resort & Spa, are fully operational and eager to welcome any visitors undeterred by the destruction. The island’s main attraction—the active Mount Yasur volcano—sizzles nightly, producing a spectacular lava light show best viewed on one of the organized sunset volcano safaris. “Mount Yasur volcano is one of the most accessible volcanoes in the world, [and] has been continuously erupting for over 800 years,” says longtime Tanna resident and White Grass manager Wayne Fitzgerald. “Nowhere else can you stay on the rim of a live volcano [and] hear, see, smell, breathe, and feel Mother Nature as its rawest.”
WHERE: Vanuatu is an island nation in the South Pacific Ocean, located between Fiji and New Guinea, about 1,090 miles (1,754 kilometers) east of northern Australia. Tanna is near the southern end of the 83-island Vanuatu archipelago. The main international airport is in the capital city Port Vila on Efate Island. Read more.
SOURCE: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC.