Thursday, July 24, 2014

Cruising Vanuatu

We started in Port Vila which is the biggest "city" in all of Vanuatu. We spent a day provisioning and running errands. We had our sink go out on us so we stopped to pick up a new faucet for the galley an our head. Works like a dream now and no leaks! But the hot is cold and cold is hot and I found out the hard way while taking a shower haha... Good thing the water is perfect here not cold at all!
Some photos from the market:
There are a few of these little kitchen style restaurants at the market and for 500 vatu all 3 of is had fresh fish for lunch! That's about $5...:)
Taking care of little sister while dad drives the taxi bus. It's about $1.50 to take the taxi bus anywhere in town and $2 to take it out of town anywhere about 10-15 min away. 
We took off to the hideaway resort and dived on the reef there which was so so pretty! Then anchored and went to the cascades or waterfalls, had some drinks and met up with Iseta for sundowners at the beach bar there. The next morning we took off to The Havannah resort on the north side of the island and dove at a couple diff spots up there and had dinner at the resort which was prolly the nicest one on the island so bossman loved it:)
While Ty n boss were diving I found this drinking the last drops of a Tuskers beer
And Ty is getting every last drop of this coconut water yummm

On our way to port sandwich to drop off supplies for the schools and hospital. We met a couple who are doing great things here and so we offered to take some parcels to the islands for them! Notepads for the schools and linens and reading glasses for the hospital...
The "yacht club" in port sandwich lol...turned out to be someone's home pretty much. 
People and lots of kids hanging out and waving as we went by in the back of a transport truck. 
The pigs n cows have it good here! Roaming free with no hormone injections and happy...maybe that's why they taste so damn good!!

The doctors office...
Only one thing was out of place in the village or town...big ole red digicel top up is suppose to be where you can top up your minutes on ur prepaid SIM card but they were out that day...that's also the general store you can walk up to and buy a few items. 
Our transport vehicle taxi for the whole town. 
There was really nothing else to do in port sandwich so we went around the corner to another bay where the dougongs hang out. They are like underwater cows of the sea...they are big beastly animals that feed off the bottom grass n a walrus with no tusks and a flat square nose. Cute but rare and we didn't have great visibility in this bay to see them underwater so no pics...:( this bay was so beautiful tho!! Gaspards bay is well protected and has great holding and is gorgeous with super thick jungle around it. 
That tiny spec to the right is Ty and boss paddling around looking for dougongs. Trying to get a photo but these animals are super shy. 
Next morning we head to the spooky black magic island with the volcanos! Ooohhh ahhhhh:) they still practice black majic here and we set up a date with the chief to have a dinner and traditional dance for us this evening. It's supposed to be just for males but maybe since it's a tourist thing they will let me watch...

OOOH spooky!!!
Those aren't clouds above the mountain. That's the volcano releasing ... Whatever volcanos release haha....
We took the dinghy up a river to see bamboo and mangroves and villagers and ran into some men building a canoe for the upcoming races. On our way back out they pulled us over and gave us coconuts...all they wanted in exchange was a photo with us funky bunch of foreigners. 
The volcanic beaches have black sand instead of white. 
We finally had dolphins!!!

We went to the village where they do the Rom dance in full dress for the tourists. We had to hire a guide from the village to take us up there and ask the chief if we can see the village and the dance. 
Everyone had a machete! I feel like a total tourist cuz I don't have my own haha
This little piggies going to market haha!!
Our guides home. 
The children always stare and giggle. Kinda wish I had some bubbles. 
You get some crazy massive trees in these jungles. 

This is the burial site of the sista who recently passed away... 
Building a new roof. If done right they last over 15 years I think?...
The traditional Rom dance or black magic dance!
It was awesome that they did this for us on the side. The chief said no at first because of the recent death in the village. They normally wait 5 days to dance out of respect for the dead but they took a sizable donation and did it quietly on the side of the village. 
With the chief!!!

Our guide also set up another guide to take us to the active volcano that is oh just about 8 miles away!! Lol yeah we hiked 16 miles roughly today and it was so worth the pain! He took us through the jungle and up to the peak where you can see the lava boiling and rolling over in the center of the crater. It was the most breathtaking thing we've ever seen!!! You can also see the red glow so bright at night in the anchorage and THAT is amazing with all the stars in view as well!! By far the coolest thing we've ever witnessed! 
Drinking water from the tree branch. 

The banyon trees latch on to other trees and start taking them over until they are dead and only the banyon remains. The roots grow from the branches up high down to the ground. It's quite spectacular to see how big they can get!:)
River of black sand. 
At some points the ridge we walked along was no more that 6-8 inches wide with sheer drop offs on either side. Little nerve racking. Had to stay focuse on not stopping at one point cuz I started to psych myself out...
And then this...
After the 3-4 hour hike we find we could have taken the chopper! For about $1500 per person...
The rocks were cool up there too. 
We took a short break and ate a snack before the hike back down. 

The 6.5 hour 18 mile hike was intense and everything just hurts right now...but again so worth it!!!
With our guide after 18 miles that he did in FLIP FLOPS...

Glow of the volcano at night.