The incredible natural experiences you’ll only find in Vanuatu


Less than four hours’ flight from Australia’s eastern capitals, Vanuatu is a diverse and surprising escape with more than 80 islands to explore. Best of all, many of its most memorable experiences can be found just there and there alone.

If you’re looking to relax, recharge and even make a positive tourism impact too, here are some of the incredible natural experiences you’ll only find in Vanuatu.

Kayak to the Matevulu Blue Hole

If there’s anything that embodies the unique beauty of Vanuatu, it’s the blue holes.

Like portals into another world, these circular freshwater pools are formed by underground streams that have slowly cut their way through limestone karst to reach the surface.

On Espiritu Santo, the largest of Vanuatu’s islands, Matevulu Blue Hole is one of the most beautiful and accessible. Plus, getting there is a big part of the experience.

Though you could take a hire car or a taxi, where’s the fun in that? Island Time Kayaking is the way to go. On a locally guided tour you’ll paddle along a crystal-clear river, through thick jungle straight out of an Indiana Jones film, and right up to the dazzling blue hole itself.

While you’re there, you can even take the adventure a step further by launching into the pool on a Tarzan-style rope swing – both terrifying and amazing all at the same time.

The beach where every day is a celebration

On the lush east coast of Espiritu Santo, Champagne Beach is no mere stretch of sand. Though this half-moon of powder white sand and its turquoise bay are indeed enchanting, there’s another reason that this is one of Vanuatu and the world’s most famous beaches.

At low tide, the shallow waters fizz with an effervescence like the finest French champagne. Created by tiny gas bubbles as they escape the volcanic rock below, this phenomenon makes every day feel like a celebration.

Kick back on the warm sands of the beach or don your snorkel and fins to get a closer look at the bubbles and marine life (green sea turtles are just the start) that call the bay home.

A small entrance fee per person is charged to visit the beach, so take some cash with you. Funds raised go towards maintaining the beach and supporting local villages.

Explore a hidden sea cave filled with light

An aqua-blue grotto accessed via a swim-through passageway, a single shaft of light illuminating the darkness within. The Blue Cave sounds like a fairy tale, but it’s 100% real.

Hidden in the sea cliffs on the island of Tanna, this magical cave is accessible only by boat, followed by a short metre-long swim through a shadowy underwater passage.

Once you emerge into the cathedral-like space, your eyes drawn to the vivid blue water around you, you know you’ve entered somewhere truly special. Find a space on a rock to view the ebb and flow of the sea, still your mind and embrace the moment.

If you feel a little nervous about swimming into the cave, you can also enter at low tide. READ MORE