The second largest town in Vanuatu - the former New Hebrides - Luganville is a child of World War II. When America forces arrived on Espirito Santo in 1942, there were no facilities to unload ships, house troops or land American bombers. Engineers went to work erecting both the town and the BP Wharf. The island was soon home to the largest Pacific military base outside of Hawaii. Today, Luganville remains an important copra shipping port - but more and more seasoned travelers are drawn to Espirito Santo's promise of unspoiled beauty and relaxed island ways. Luganville is handy to superb white-sand beaches, tropical rainforest and some of the finest diving and snorkeling in the Pacific.
Divers consider the wreck of the President Coolidge one of the world's top dive sites. The 654-foot liner was serving as a troop transport when she struck two mines and went down in the Segond Channel in 1942. The ship's holds are still filled with her cargo of military supplies.
Special Child Pricing Available! Children age 12 and younger, savings up to 50%.
Enchanted Water Music Performance
1.5 hours | Luganville | LU1-215
Enjoy an excursion to a traditional village and discover some of the most intriguing arts of the South Pacific. Once you arrive, sip a refreshing coconut drink as you watch a spirited performance by the village's warriors. Then, learn how one of the island's most popular drinks is made during a kava ceremony. Next, behold the beauty and history of the awe-inspiring Water Music celebration. The performance begins as women, dressed in costumes made of flowers, leaves, and coconuts wade into the pool up to their waists and form a semi-circle. Using their hands as instruments, they slap the surface in rhythmic motion. Accompanied by gentle chants, the performers play a variety of melodies, each evoking the sounds of nature. At the end of this exciting adventure you'll return to port with a camera filled with memories.
The sheltered waters of the Segond Channel are home to the inviting Coral and Clam Garden. Developed by landowners Pio and his wife Evette, the attraction offers snorkeling and swimming. Take advantage of it all during this approximately two-hour excursion. From the pier it's just a brief ride to the island's southern coast. Your hosts will greet your arrival and offer a brief snorkeling demonstration. As you slip beneath the turquoise waters experience the joy of floating through the 28o c water among an abundant array of marine life. At the conclusion of your visit, climb back aboard your mini-bus and return to the ship.
Take a step back in time and into a captivating world so different from our everyday lives with a visit to Tam Tam Cultural Village, for a glimpse into Vanuatu's fascinating culture and customs. Your tour begins with a short drive to Tam Tam Cultural Village where you'll be greeted by the village Chief. Wander through the cultural village at your own pace taking in all the signs and sounds of Vanuatu along the way. Make sure you're wearing your dancing shoes because you might be encouraged to join the locals in a custom dance. Watch as the local villagers demonstrate the traditional preparation of food and kava. You'll also have the chance to be entertained by stories of custom magic and watch traditional sand and rope drawing demonstrations. Special Notes: To ensure you thoroughly enjoy your adventure wear comfortable flat-soled shoes, clothing suited to the weather conditions, bring a hat, plenty of sunscreen and bottled water.
Upon arrival you will enjoy a short walk through the lush Vanuatu rainforest before arriving at the picturesque Runsuc Village, here you will be met by a traditional Melanesian welcome performed by the young men of the Village and the locals will provide informative commentary about the customs and traditions of village life.
Watch the warriors demonstrate their traditional dance as they share their fascinating stories, they will also demonstrate the ancient art of sand drawing and the preparation of Pentecost custom mats. You will be fortunate enough to experience master chef "Vanuatu style" as the ladies of the village demonstrate the secrets of making lap lap in an underground oven.
Soak up all the sights under the sea with a 45 minute cruise aboard a glass-bottom boat. Walk down the pier and meet your captain. After a brief safety briefing, don your life jacket and step aboard the boat. Relax under the shaded canopy and feel the ocean breeze as you head out towards B P Bon bay, a quiet spot off of Luganville's coast. As the boat makes its way around the bay be on the lookout for brilliantly colored sealife such as clownfish, parrotfish butterfly fish, and soft and hard coral. But not all the sights are below deck-a shipwreck from a 1980s storm lies upon the sand of a nearby beach. Then, feel free to dive right into the inviting waters before re-joining the boat and returning to the pier.
Discover a bit of WW2 military history on this fascinating tour that begins with a stop at the Japanese jail and the BP Wharf, built to support the navy's large vessels, and now home to yachts and other marine craft. Photo stops include an elevated location with views over Segond Chanel, Tutuba and Aore Islands. Your guide will point out the position of the submarine nets and the sea mines that sank the SS President Coolidge, visit Euart's Memorial, named for Capt. Elwood Euart who sacrificed his life saving some men on the SS President Coolidge after it struck two mines in the harbor and sank. The next site you'll see is known as Million Dollar Point where thousands of tons of military equipment were dumped in the ocean by the US military. Today, it's a popular dive site teeming with coral-encrusted equipment scattered across the ocean floor.
Soak up the sights of Espiritu Santo's scenic countryside as you travel past endless coconut plantations and quaint villages en route to the Blue Lagoon. Fed by a freshwater spring, the lagoon's azure waters of and the surrounding rainforest are an unmissable escape from the tropical heat. Steps leading down allow easy access to the lagoon.
Discover this fantasy island's mystical Blue Hole during an excursion that also includes free time at a picturesque tropical beach. First, you'll journey through the dense jungle to an amazing natural phenomenon known as a blue hole. An underwater sinkhole carved by a natural spring, the first thing you may notice when you arrive is the startling iridescent blue color. Approximately 160 feet in circumference, the blue hole is the picture-perfect spot for a dip. Next, enjoy free time at the beach. Roll out a towel, lie down and catch the sun's warm, welcoming rays or go for a refreshing swim or snorkel in the calm, soothing waters. At the completion of this invigorating visit, you'll return to Luganville with a camera filled with beautiful memories to share.
Take off on a voyage of discovery that begins with a scenic drive to the RiRi River. Once you arrive, you'll board an authentic dugout canoe for a leisurely cruise that glides past lush trees and ferns, rainbow-colored fish, and tropical flowers. Relish your wonderfully quiet surroundings as the crystal-clear water changes color right before your eyes. When the river water turns from light blue to sapphire, you'll know that you're getting closer to the jaw-dropping Blue Hole. Once your canoe has moored, you can dive right into the nearly 60-foot-deep, 164-foot-diameter freshwater pool that radiates light blue, teal, azure, cobalt, and sapphire. While the shades of blue are endless, you'll have time to swim, snorkel or relax and watch the palm trees sway before returning to your ship in Luganville.
Go on a certified dive into the clear, calm Pacific waters and see the impressive wreck of the SS President Coolidge. To thoroughly enjoy your adventure, please be aware that this is a strenuous, PADI-guided dive and is for certified divers only. When you slip beneath the warm waters, you'll marvel at the 654-foot long, mostly intact shipwreck, lying on the soft sand and covered in rust. Sunk when it struck two mins in 1942, the ship is a Marine Reserve and home to black coral sea whips, stony and soft coral formations, and hundreds of species of fish. Due to its immense size, it's difficult to explore every inch; however, your guide may take you underneath and around the bow and port side or along the promenade deck. At the end of your dive you'll resurface and return to your ship.
Travel along the picturesque East Coast road to Port Orly, known Jewel of the south pacific and renowned for its stunning white sand beach and crystal clear tranquil waters. Enjoy time to swim and admire the world famous Santo Blue LagoonMenu : Enjoy a packed lunch comprising of a salad roll, cake or biscuit, fruit and water on your Santo Beach Escape. The beach café at Port Orly is licenced and AUD is accepted at all stops for all additional purchases.Photography: Don't forget your camera, Santo is about to become your new Favourite cruise destination.
Ride off on an equine excursion through the island's most beautiful valleys, forests, ranches and beaches on a three-and-a-half-hour island trek that allows you to experience Espiritu Santo's unspoiled countryside. After a short mini-bus ride you'll arrive at the horse ranch and meet your experienced riding instructor/guide. Once you feel comfortable and confident, you'll don your riding helmet, saddle up and hit the trail for a leisurely trek. As you ride out, take a deep breath of crisp, refreshing air, relax and marvel at some of the world's most breathtaking scenery as your guide leads you past a typical village and a copra mill. Ride up to a scenic outlook for spectacular views and into the lush rainforest. Next, cool off a little with a refreshing ride along the beautiful white sand beach before returning to the corral and your waiting mini-bus for the return trip to Luganville. This tour is for experienced riders only and has a 100 kg weight limit.