Photographs, Vanuatu

Photographs of Espiritu Santo (Vanuatu) to inspire you to visit

Photographs of Espiritu Santo (Vanuatu)

to inspire you to visit

If you are seeking white sand, aqua water, great snorkeling, coconut trees, freshwater swimming holes and a simpler way of life……the island of Espiritu Santo in Vanuatu might be for you!

I spent a week on the island of Santo with my husband and young kids, staying at Lonnoc Beach near Port Olry.  It’s an hours drive from the main town of Luganville and mains power doesn’t make it that far down the island.  The locals are self sufficient, with family owned and run bungalows using solar power and generators.

Accommodation down this end of the island is wonderfully basic.  You still have water for toilets and showers but don’t expect anything more than four walls, a thatched roof, cold water and basic lighting provided by solar energy.

This shouldn’t put you off though!  The quiet location is stunningly beautiful and more often than not; you have the whole beach to yourself other than a few random cows who might wander down to say hello.




The few restaurants that are available do a fantastic job with the locally grown and caught produce.  You cannot leave without trying a coconut crab or Santo beef dish.

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The lovely coconut lined road as your leave Luganville and head towards Port Olry
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Learning about the Cacao plant at Freshwater Plantation, Aore Island
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Entering a bat cave via a suspension bridge at Freshwater Plantation, Aore Island
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Drinking straight out of the coconut!
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The cruise ships stop here at Champagne Beach. The downside to visiting on a cruise ship day is sharing the beach, the upside is the market that pops up to greet the passengers.
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Horse riding through crystal clear waters
Lonnoc Beach – our bungalow was less than 30m from this clear and calm beach.  It’s a perfect swimming spot for anyone with young kids.
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You can catch your own fish for dinner! A decent sized coral trout on only the second cast. The chef at the restaurant was happy to cook it up for us however you can also self cook yourself on an open flame BBQ here.
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Sunset at Lonnoc Beach
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The lovely view from my bungalow at Lonnoc Beach Bungalows.  Its the first time in my life I haven’t minded that my kids think that 5am is a perfectly acceptable wake up time.  It’s also the most sleep that I have had since the kids were born, I think this is mainly due to the lack of electricity and internet.
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Million Dollar Point – where if you snorkel 20m out from the shore, you can see the millions of dollars worth of equipment the army dumped into the ocean after WWII. It’s absolutely amazing! The equipment was too expensive (for a number of reasons) to ship back home so they apparently put bricks on the accelerator pedals, lifted the handbrake and rolled the equipment into the ocean. If you are into diving……even better!
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This looks like a pool right ? It’s not….its the amazing freshwater Nanda Blue Hole. There are three blue holes on the island accessible to visitors and this one is by far the bluest. The land owners have built decking all around it as well as an onsite cafe and toilets. Its around 13 metres at the deepest and the water is so clear, you can see the bottom clear as day if you are floating on top with a snorkel.
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Coconut crab and hot chips……I’m not particularly into seafood but this was YUMMY!
You can relax on this hammock whilst you wait for your coconut crab to cook at Port Olry
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These outrigger canoes are on literally every beach in Santo. I can’t work out if they are abandoned and have been left for show, or if the locals actually use them.
The intriguing tree house bungalows at Port Olry
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The stunning beach at Port Olry. You can see how close the tree house bungalow is to the water in this picture. It’s just amazing!
Espiritu Santo.
Riri Blue Hole. Whilst not as clear as Nanda Blue hole, it is surrounded by lush jungle which gives it a whole different amazing feel. It’s deep enough to use the rope swing or jump off the platform. Unlike the ocean here, the blue holes are pretty cold to swim in.

Looking for some inspiration for your next family getaway?

For more blog posts and information on my travels through Espiritu Santo in Vanuatu, please check out this page: Vanuatu

For information on all of my destinations, check out this page: My travel destinations

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espiritu santo
Nanda Blue Hole as seen when peeking through the lush green garden surrounds

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