The country’s capital is Port Vila, which is located on the island of Efate. This is a popular cruise ship port with a heavy French influence, and home to a rich multicultural community. Development is low key with a variety of low-rise hotels and resorts. About an hour’s flight from Port Vila is the more remote island of Espiritu Santo, where the spectacular wreck dive The President Coolidge lies just off the beach.
Vanuatu is a great destination for many kinds of travellers. Most Port Vila hotels have an ideal set up for families, and Santo hotels also cater for children. Budget travellers can find quad share dorm rooms in both Vila and Santo, with Hideaway Island and Deco Stop Lodge two of our most popular Vanuatu group diving holiday destinations. Luxury resorts are plentiful in Port Vila.
Entry Requirements: Australian passport holders require a valid passport with at least 6 months validity beyond their intended stay. All travellers must have return or onward tickets and sufficient funds for their stay. For more information and for holders of other passports, please refer to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website for the latest travel advice.
Money: The Vatu (VUV) is the unit of currency. One Australian Dollar is worth approximately 80 Vatu. ATMs are available in Port Vila and Santo, and money can be exchanged at the airport or in town. Most resorts accept major credit cards and may charge a fee.
Language: French and English are widely spoken, as well as the native language of Bislama. Over 100 native dialects are spoken throughout the country.
Electricity: 220 – 240V and uses the Australian plug type.
Time Zone: GMT + 11 (1 hour ahead of Sydney)
Clothing: Light casual clothing is recommended. Women should dress modestly in public places.
Climate: Warm and tropical. Average temperature April – October 23°C, November to March 28°C.
Water Temperature: Vila 23-26°C. Santo 25-28°C.
Departure Tax: None at 1 July 2012.
Tipping: Tipping and bargaining are not part of the culture and visitors should refrain from these practices.
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