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How to Spend a Tropical Day in Vanuatu

Updated: Mar 1, 2019



We're lucky enough to travel to Vanuatu regularly for Shane's work and I'll be posting lots of different options for exploring these amazing islands as we go. But to get us started here’s how we would spend a day off out and around Port Vila….

Breakfast: One of our favourite café/restaurants in Port Vila is Café Vila at Nasama Resort – a quick 5 min drive or taxi ride to the south end of town on Pango Road. Their menu is always fabulous with loads of specials which are always changing. The chef and staff here really know how to deal with gluten freeness as well which makes for a more relaxed and easy meal for us both. We love the Pulled Pork Eggs Benedict and the Bigfala Omelette with the Lot!

Photo: Island Life Magazine

After breakfast we’d drive across town out to The Beach Bar (a great place for lazy Sunday afternoons or sunset cocktails), park the car and hop on the shuttle boat out to Hideaway Island Resort and Marine Sanctuary for a 10:30am dive. We love this place, no matter how many times we dive here there’s always new places to explore and it never disappoints. They run a 5 star PADI certified dive centre where you can try diving for the first time, complete qualification courses or come out for fun dives if you’re already certified. The team here are great and we particularly like the mid-morning dives, I struggle with the early morning wake ups otherwise!


Lunch: After a dive we’re always hungry so lunch at the Hideaway Beach Bar (still on the island) with sand under our feet is just what we need. I’m a big fan of the Hideaways Signature Coconut Curry, so tasty! And these guys know their stuff when I ask for gluten free as well.

Photo: Vanuatu Escapes

We’ll let lunch digest while lazing on the beach loungers and then maybe going for a quick snorkel. The snorkeling here is fantastic and you could spend a whole day at Hideaway just lazing, eating, swimming and snorkeling to your hearts content. And it’s the only place in the world you can send a postcard or letter from the Underwater Post Office!

Photo: Hideaway Island Resort (pretty sure this one's been Photoshopped but you get the idea...)

Given that we rarely have a full day off to relax when we’re in Port Vila our next port of call is usually some pampering. An Aromatherapy Massage at Lotus Day Spa in town has us both on cloud nine in no time. The cafe here serves great coffee and light meals as well. If you’ve still got the energy the Mele Cascades is a great place to spend the afternoon as well but we’re usually done by this point!

Photo: Lotus Day Spa and Cafe

To end the day we head to the Blue Marlin Club in town for sunset cocktails overlooking the harbour. This place has a spectacular sunset view and if it’s a cruise boat day watching the big liners leave the harbour under the dimming golden sun is really impressive. There’s a pool here as well if you’re up for another pre-dinner swim (showers and towels provided) or we just like relaxing on the lounges watching the sun go down. Make sure you bring some mosquito spray though (or they usually have some if you forget) as they can get bitey as it gets dark.

Photo: Blue Marlin Club

Dinner: We stay here for dinner and the food is always incredible. Everything is made in house here and the 5 star chef has put together an incredible kitchen team that not only produce exceptional food but are also well versed in gluten free requirements. If there’s ever any confusion the chef comes out to talk with us directly which is always reassuring and I can indulge with abandon. This place has only been open since mid-2017 but has been getting rave reviews ever since – especially from us!

And Shane can’t have a meal here without dessert and I must admit, they are impressive.

That’s one way we’d spend our day off in Port Vila. Stay tuned for more options or let me know of things you’d like us to check out for you!

#glutenfree #vanuatu #diving #travel #restaurants