Vanuatu essentials

First Timer’s Guide to Vanuatu – essentials

Whether you’re travelling solo, with family, friends or your better half, our ‘first timers series’ has the perfect list of things to point you in the right direction. At the end of the day, we want you to be EXCITED about your trip to our island paradise – not stressed!

Here’s the fourth in our series – Vanuatu essentials!


Vanuatu Essentials

Some of the stuff you should know when planning your Vanuatu Holiday.


In Vanuatu we have ‘Vatu’ (Vt or VUV). You can exchange your currency here at the resort and we also have two ATM machines in the foyer. If you need cash upon your arrival, there are currency exchange booths at the airport. At the time of writing 1 Australian Dollar is buying 77 VUV, 1 New Zealand Dollar is buying 72 VUV and 1 USD is buying 115 VUV.

Getting around Vanuatu

Taxi – We have reputable taxi drivers at the front of the resort every day. Talk to our team about how much to expect to pay for a trip and they will guide you on a fair price. A taxi is marked with a ‘T’ plate, whereas a bus is marked with a ‘B’ plate.

Walking – It’s fine to wander around Port Vila by foot; but be sure to carry water, (it’s hot out there) and avoid walking around after dark as not all roads have street lights.

Car Hire – If you’d like to drive yourself, then parking at the Resort is free. We recommend getting in touch with our friends at World Car Rentals who have a range of vehicles available to suit you and your passengers.

Private Tour – This can be arranged through our Resort Hub team and is an option we suggest for families or those wanting to really adopt the island ways and just go with the flow.

Airport Transfers

We get asked about airport transfer options all the time, so here is the low down.

There are a few ways to make your way from the airport to the Resort and vice versa. You can arrange a public transfer, private transfer or get a taxi.

The transfer service is provided by our third party provider, Evergreen, and we can arrange this for you.

Return Transfer Price is:

  • VT 3,000 per person
  • VT 2,000 per child [3-12yrs]
  • Free of Charge for Kids under 3yrs (no car seats provided).

Private Transfer Price is:

  • VT14,300 Private Transfer

Please note that prices are subject to change.

Taxis are always outside the airport terminal entrance at the fixed price of VT2000 from the airport to the Resort. Regardless of your time of arrival, there will always be a taxi available.

Please email us at to let us know if you would like to proceed with booking a transfer, as well as your arrival and departure flight details. We will book accordingly and reply with confirmation.

Safety in Vanuatu

The people of Vanuatu are some of the friendliest, most obliging and caring people you will ever meet – but, as you will find when traveling anywhere in the world, there is always a small percentage of people who don’t have your best intentions in mind. For that reason, we suggest you talk to our team if you have any questions and never walk alone after dark.


The water at the Resort is fine for consumption from the tap; however, we do have bottled water available for purchase and suggest you purchase your water when heading outside of the resort enjoying activities.


If you have any additional questions that we haven’t covered here, please get in touch and we’ll assist any way we can. Simply email the team at

Romantic Dinner

First Timer’s Guide to Vanuatu – Dining out the island way

Whether you’re travelling solo, with family, friends or your better half, our ‘first timers series’ has the perfect list of things to point you in the right direction. At the end of the day, we want you to be EXCITED about your trip to our island paradise – not stressed!

Here’s the third in our series – dining out the island way!

Dining out the island way

While you’re welcome to dine with us in-house each day and night, there are a few Vanuatu eateries restaurants and eateries we encourage you to experience during your Vanuatu holiday.

At the Resort

We have our Lobby Bar for all day dining and drinks; the Verandah Restaurant is where you’ll enjoy breakfast (the best latte’s in Villa), lunch and dinner overlooking the tranquil lagoon below; and our Pool Bar is where the finest wood fired pizzas in Vanuatu can be enjoyed (and absolutely delicious cocktails, if we do say so ourselves).

Then we have three nights (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays) where you’re able to enjoy a dining under the stars themed dinner experience which is a must-do during your stay.

But if it’s a true romantic experience you’re looking for, you can’t go past our exclusive Stay Romantic dining event where you can enjoy the superb service of your own personal waiter while dining in a private, tiki torch-lit cabana overlooking the tranquil waters of Erakor Lagoon.

Vanuatu eateries

When you do decide to step out, check out our recommendations below.

La Houstelet – Traditional French Cuisine in a cosy eclectic environment. It’s a Vanuatu icon and Clement will love a chat.

La Fournil French Bakery – You’ll think you’re in downtown Paris (well, that’s if Paris was actually on a tropical island of course) when you bite into one of the exquisite French pastries from La Fournil.

Mama’s Markets – When you visit Mama’s Markets in downtown Port Vila, enjoy lunch with the locals in one of the Mama’s Kitchen eateries. They are incredibly friendly and super obliging, and your patronage will make their day.


Regardless of your dining preference, chat to our team upon arrival and let’s create a Vanuatu culinary experience for you to enjoy.

Tanna Volcano

First Timers Guide to Vanuatu – Fun!

Whether you’re travelling solo, with family, friends or your better half, our ‘first timers series’ has the perfect list of things to point you in the right direction. At the end of the day, we want you to be EXCITED about your trip to our island paradise – not stressed!

Here’s the second in our series – finding your Vanuatu FUN!

Find your Vanuatu fun!

Answer the call of Vanuatu and prepare to have fun doing it! There is so much to see and do here, or if you prefer to just ‘flop and drop’ at the resort, that’s totally fine too! Whatever you fancy, we have you covered with ‘Find your Vanuatu fun’. Waterfalls to caves, volcanoes to reefs, surf breaks to snorkel tours, if you’re up for a little exploring we have amazing activities tailor-made for you.

If you’re someone who likes to plan in advance – easy done! Get in touch via phone or email and we’ll have our very own Chief Sam create and book an itinerary to suit your pace and hand your tickets over when you arrive. If you’d rather wait to see how you feel and take it day-by-day, that’s too easy too! We can book tours and help you plan as you go when it suits you.

Here are a few Vanuatu activities that are staff favourites.

Back to Eden – This is a raw tropical paradise. Think snorkelling in crystal clear blue waters, swimming with turtles, spotting giant clams and finding Nemo and dozens of his best mates. Relax under the palm trees on your own beach or walk up to private cascades. The day is topped off with your hosts Bronny and Allen’s delicious home cooked meals and home grown smoothies. Back to Eden is a brilliant island day out experience that offers the perfect blend of relaxation and adventure.

Tanna Island – Let’s get you on a plane (or helicopter) for a day trip to Tanna, home to Mount Yasur one of the world’s most accessible active volcanoes. Hike to the top to watch the sunset and enjoy natures most spectacular fireworks show. Visit the neighboring cultural village and explore one of Vanuatu’s sacred treasures.

Kava Tasting – A traditional Kava tasting is not to be missed. Every Tuesday our very own Chief Sam will meet you on the beach at sunset and share his knowledge and experience about the ancient drink of Kava and its place in Ni-Vanuatu culture. Later that watch as our team of chefs unearth the evenings dinner from the underground oven and taste the hearty cuisine of Vanuatu. Learn more about Kava here.

Self Drive Tour – Get in touch with our friends at World Car Rentals and book yourself a Mini Moke, Quad Bike or SUV to drive yourself around the island of Efate. Our Resort Hub team will provide you with a map and help you mark off all the best stop off points as you cruise around at your leisure.

School Tour – During Port Vila school terms, our Kids’ Club host trips to one of our local schools. It’s the highlight of the students’ week and we guarantee it will be a highlight of your holiday too. We encourage guests planning to do this tour to bring items to donate to the school such as books, pens and stationery.

Dinner on the Beach – Pick one or attend all three of our themed beach dining experiences. Each Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday night, each dinner offers different entertainment and delicious cuisine. The dress code includes no shoes (they just get in the way when you start dancing!)

Waterfalls – There are many incredible waterfalls (or cascades as the locals say) in Vanuatu, each varying with ease of accessibility. Check out this article for some pointers and then let us help you get there.

Outer Island Day Trip – We can help you discover the many untouched, pristine pieces of paradise located amongst the archipelago of 83 islands that make up Vanuatu. Lelepa, Moso and Pele islands are just three that are accessible by a short boat ride from Port Vila, or if you’re feeling more adventurous, we can help you book something truly raw and unique.

If you would like assistance with finding your Vanuatu fun, get in touch with our team on email

Holiday inn resort vanuatu accommodation

First Timers Guide to Vanuatu – Accommodation

Whether you’re travelling solo, with family, friends or your better half, our ‘first timers series’ has the perfect list of things to point you in the right direction. At the end of the day, we want you to be EXCITED about your trip to our island paradise – not stressed!

Here’s the first in our series – selecting the best style of Vanuatu accommodation!

Select the best style of Vanuatu accommodation to suit your stay

Vanuatu accommodation must-haves: Air-conditioning, comfortable bed, fridge, exterior access, and WiFi (if you want to stay connected).

At Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu, we tick all these ‘must-have’ boxes and more, with a variety of accommodation styles to suit your needs. If you’re looking for a Vanuatu honeymoon destination, travelling with small children, travelling with older kids, travelling by yourself or with your loved one, we have options galore – keep reading to see them all!

Overwater Villas – You don’t have to visit the Maldives to experience the ultimate in overwater accommodation! Positioned on our very own exclusive Erongo Island with your own private beach, our Overwater Villas here at Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu are the idyllic tropical romantic getaway that you’ve always dreamed about. With more than 47sqm of space to enjoy, you can soak in the uninterrupted views from your private balcony, which also features direct access to the lagoon’s tranquil warm waters. Perfect for a dreamy couple escape or honeymoon.
Learn more about our Overwater Villas here.

Family Villa – Now this is a place your kids will never want to leave! With only three of these exclusive villas available, you’ll need to get in quick if you’d like to treat you and your family to a holiday they’ll remember forever. It features one King Room, an en-suite bathroom with a spa bath, and space that is a living area by day and converts into a bedroom with two single beds at night. Paddle or stroll across to the main resort where you can access all the facilities you expect from an international 4 Star resort. Overwater balcony’s feature panoramic views but don’t have direct access to the water allowing you to rest easy knowing the kids are safe and dry.
Learn more about our Family Villas here.

Twin Rooms – Need a place to share? Our Twin Rooms are incredibly spacious and feature two queen size beds. With plenty of room to spread out, they offer a more affordable option if travelling with a friend and have the option of a room that interconnects with one of our King Rooms if you’re traveling with family and need some extra space close by. Choose from garden or lagoon views.
Learn more about our twin rooms here.

King Rooms – Fit for a King (or Queen or Prince or Princess), our King Rooms offer 28sqm of space and your very own private Juliet balcony or patio with a choice of views (each one as gorgeous as the next)! Our King Rooms are an exceptionally comfortable and stylish option at our resort here in Vanuatu.
Learn more about our king rooms here.

King Suite – If you’re after plenty of space to stretch out and relax, you can’t go past our King Suites. These suites combine a King Room with a separate lounge area – ideal if your travel companion loves a bit of peace and quiet for an afternoon siesta, while you prefer to chill out in front of a good movie.
Learn more about our king suites here.

Family Suite – Some would say we’ve saved the best until last, but we can’t decide which room type we love the most! Our Family Suites have been designed with the kids (both big and small) in mind. Featuring jungle themed bunk beds a banyan treehouse mural, this kid-friendly room interconnects with a King Room, where mum and dad get to enjoy their own space too. And did we mention parents’ get their own bathroom entirely separate from the kids? It’s a win-win!
Learn more about our family suites here.

Special note: If you’d like a completely hassle-free stay with us, check out our amazing new ‘All-Inclusive’ packages. Prepay for just about everything. One price, no surprises!

Answer the call

The moment Vanuatu got it so right

Vanuatu’s brand-new destination marketing campaign has launched and struck a chord with the team at local international resort, Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu.

‘Answer the Call of Vanuatu’ has been released across Australia and New Zealand and is much more than just a marketing campaign, successfully creating a connection with Vanuatu and the ‘moments’ you experience while holidaying in this unique destination.

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu General Manager, Matthew Senyard, said he is ‘thrilled’ that the new campaign shares their passion for memorable moments.

“At Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu we have long-lived the mantra of being a place ‘where experiences are created and memories are made’, so we are thrilled that the Vanuatu Tourism Office (VTO) has developed and launched a campaign that shares our passion for memorable moments,” he said.

“As Vanuatu’s best family Resort, creating memories and delivering special moments is something that our team strive to do every day, as family is an important part of the Vanuatu way of life, and we want all of our guests to take home with them, memories of what was, not dreams of what could have been,” said Mr Senyard. “The new campaign speaks so beautifully to the myriad of unique, authentic and enriching experiences that Vanuatu has to offer, particularly in the archipelago’s outer islands which are pristine, untouched and just waiting to be explored.”

Mr Senyard continues by sending the message to visitors who are looking to visit Vanuatu, “For your sake, I urge you to please, Answer the call of Vanuatu.”

To book your holiday moment and answer the call of Vanuatu go to:

To view accommodation options at the resort, click here.

luana marchi

Luana Marchi Travel Blog

Luana Marchi is a Health & Wellness Coach, Wholesome Recipe Developer and Writer. She loves to inspire people to improve their health and well-being and believes that food has an impact on our lives in so many ways, ranging from nutritional nourishment to physical, emotional, and social well-being.

Earlier this year Luana and her husband Luccas Pereira enjoyed their first visit to Vanuatu and we had the pleasure of hosting them. Check out Luana’s blog post below and click through to her site for the full read.

Over to you Luana…


After coming back from my trip to Vanuatu in April I’ve had so many requests for recommendations on where to visit/stay, what to do and my personal favourite spots that I decided to do a blog about it to cover everything. Hope you like it 🙂

Our travel Itinerary: 3 Nights in Port Vila; 4 Nights in Espiritu Santo, 3 Nights Tanna Island and back to Port Vila for another 2 Nights.

To get to Vanuatu from Sydney it takes somewhere around three and half hours. We flew from Sydney to Port Vila arriving there on the evening, so we went straight to our Resort which was less than ten minutes driving from the Airport.

Our resort was the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu, and to be honest we couldn’t have picked a better place to stay.

Read the post in full here.

Instagram: @luamarchi
Facebook: Luana Marchi

Luana Marchi

Luana Marchi

overwater villas

3 Must Visit Islands in Vanuatu by Cleo Codrington

We had the pleasure of hosting travel blogger and social influencer, Cleo Codrington, during her recent trip to Vanuatu.
Here is what she had to say about her stay with us in island paradise and overall visit to Vanautu.


Vanuatu has never been at the Top of my ‘To Travel’ List, but deciding to explore this Pacific Island Nation was one of our best decisions yet!

If you are flying into Vanuatu via an international flight, then your first stop will be in Port Vila on Efate Island. We heard very mixed emotions about this city, whilst it is the main hub of the island it is nowhere near as big as cities you and I would have ever seen – it’s more like a main town!

Staying in Port Vila to get your bearings on the island, and of the culture and lifestyle of the Vanuatu people was the way to go, but deciding where to stay can prove a challenge as there are many options in the area.

Being close to town, but not in the hustle and bustle of the main shops – we decided that Holiday Inn Resort was at a perfect location to explore this forgotten island. The resort was incredibly hospitable and welcoming, and not to mention STUNNING – we put our packs down for our stay in one of their Overwater Villas and didn’t want to ever leave.

I couldn’t recommend this place for a base enough, an amazing and relaxing start to an adventurous holiday.

To read the article in full and learn more about Cleo’s trip, click here.

overwater villas

HIRVanuatu Overwater Villa

Resort Review: Natalie Kessell, Karryon

It has always been a dream of mine to stay in an overwater villa in a tropical island paradise, this dream came true at the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu. By Natalie Kessell

Located a short 15-minute drive from the centre of town, the Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu is close enough to feel a part of the bustling island vibe of Port Vila and far away enough to feel like you are in a world of your own.

Peppered with swaying palm trees and sitting on the crystal-clear Erakor Lagoon, the resort offers something for everyone whether it be a romantic getaway or some quality time with the family.

To read the article in full, click here.

VRL jersey 720x450 1

Vanuatu Rugby League Sponsorship 2018

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu the Gold Standard for VRL

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu, the Gold Standard for Resorts in Vanuatu, has continued its long standing relationship with the Interchange Vanuatu Rugby League(VRL), with a Gold and Back of Jersey Sponsorship for the upcoming Rugby League Emerging Nations World Championship in Sydney. The Sponsorship of the Men’s National team continues on from first association back in 2016.

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu boasts 148 guest accommodation rooms including three unique Family Suites including themed Family Suites and unique Overwater Villas [with dedicated Villas for families and exclusive Villas for couples with direct access into the tranquil lagoon]. Resort facilities include two stunning pool areas, kids club, day spa, nine-hole golf course, Verandah Restaurant, Lobby Bar and Pool Bar featuring a wood-fired pizza oven.

“It’s great to continue our strong relationship with the VRL and support the team for the Rugby League Emerging Nations World Championship but also into the future. We’ve been impressed by the way the VRL have focused on not only growing the game domestically across both women and men but also having a long term strategic priority of investing in Vanuatu through a soon to be finalised Sports Tourism Strategy that will encourage more sporting teams, their family and friends to visit Vanuatu and have Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu as the accommodation destination of choice is truly exciting,” commented Holiday Inn Resort General Manager Matthew Senyard.

In addition to sponsoring the Men’s National team, Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu has also contributed to other areas of the Vanuatu Rugby League including being official sponsor of the VRL Head Coach, Lionel Harbin. Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu also hosted the first ever Rugby League Coaching course earlier this year and supported the Vanuatu Rugby League Community programs that began this year under Head Coach Lionel Harbin, also an NRL Development Officer in Australia.

“Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu has been the home of our staff and players for the past three years and we’re very grateful that Vanuatu’s leading resort would continue to support us on our journey. We greatly value our long term supporters and we look forward to working with Matthew Senyard and his team to promoteVanuatu as a destination and Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu as the place to stay,” added Vanuatu Rugby League President, Mr Tom Carlo.

The Resort Kids Stay and Eat FREE program, Kids club and interactive kids’ pool area ensure that families enjoy a fun-filled holiday. There is also a complete activities program for all resort children including Teens. Couples looking forward to a romantic escape can enjoy the peaceful surrounds of the Terrace Pool area and make the most of the Resorts private Erongo Island.


Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu General Manager

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu General Manager, Matthew Senyard with participants of VRL’s first ever Coaching Course at Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu

For more information please contact:

The Vanuatu Rugby League still has some exciting player sponsorships available, where for AUD $500 (40,000 Vatu) you can be the personal sponsor of a player and receive a team signed jersey, $100 worth of Vanuatu Rugby League merchandise as well as a range of other exciting benefits. Join Dynamic Supply Company that is supporting Avia Allan and the Brewery Bar & Restuarant that is supporting Daniel Kaltapnag in representing their country at the Rugby League Emerging Nations World Championship. Anyone interested in supporting the Vanuatu Rugby League should contact us via the following channels:



Further Information or Quotes please contact:

Australia – Ben Howard (VRL Media Spokesperson): +61 414 775 703 (Australia)
Vanuatu – Tom Carlo (VRL President): +678 555 0205
Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu – | +678 22040 ||

HIRV Conference Room

Creating Memorable Events For Vanuatu

Daily Post: Business Review

Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu featured in the Vanuatu Daily Post ‘Business Review’ publication where our Director of Sales & Marketing, Seema Goundar, talks about some of the fantastic meeting and event features at the Resort.

There’s no doubt that when you think of big name Resorts in Vanuatu, that Holiday Inn Resort is on top of the list. It’s renowned for its family-friendly environment, as well as fantastic attentive staff. However, in addition to offering great facilities, the Resort has firmly positioned itself as market leader when it comes to hosting events and corporate meetings.

Resort Director of Sales and Marketing, Seema Goundar, believes that it’s the team’s willingness to be flexible and think outside the square that has encouraged event organisers to lock in events and meetings at the Resort.

‘When we are approached by event organisers, both local and from overseas, we quickly establish what it is they want to achieve and then work together to discover ways that we can create a truly memorable experience for their delegates,’ she said. ‘The stunning tropical location we have here is a plus, we have so much space to work with.’

While the Resort boasts 138 accommodation rooms and 10 Overwater Villas to accommodate delegates for international events, Miss Goundar said that the Resort warmly welcomes smaller meeting groups as well. Our experienced team understands the demands of organising any event and are focused to ensure every aspect runs seamlessly.

To read the story in full on the Daily Post website, click here and head straight to page 10.

Thank you to the Vanuatu Daily Post for sharing our story.