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Vanuatu day 6 - Flying to Santo

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Vanuatu day 6 - Flying to Santo

The morning was as disappointing as every morning; cloudy and rain showers. So I made my way to Air Vanuatu sales office and enquired the cheapest flight out of here. I booked a return ticket to Espiritu Santo (Spanish=Holy spirit), the largest island of Vanuatu, up north. Vanuatu stretches over 1,100 km in a north-south direction, like Finland. And I actually thought first that it was one little island… The climate in Santo is on average 2 degrees hotter than in Port Vila. The weather forecast didn’t look any better there but I just wanted to get out of Vila, muddy, rainy town…
At the airport I talked to this Australian couple who were on their way to stay at a boarding school with the locals. This local woman, who was with them, told some funny things about dating in their culture. The local guys aren’t allowed to ‘make eyes’ at a girl until they’ve asked the girl’s father’s permission. Obviously that doesn’t concern tourists. Also, couples don’t hold hands, but instead girls hold hands and boys often hold hands. The Australian couple also helped me to find accommodation in Santo. They thought I was really brave and probably crazy to travel here by myself. Just guess how many times I’ve heard that during my trip…
After a short flight I landed onto the tiny little airport of Santo. I took a taxi to the only town on the island, Luganville, and a motel called Unity Park, and luckily they had a room available. A lot better than in Port Vila. Hot showers, very clean, big room. The town of Luganville seemed like a ghost town at 6 pm. I went for a walk to take a look around and ended up in the only little pub on the island, where else :) There were 2-4 people and me. I talked to the lady behind the bar and her boyfriend. They invited me to go to a kava bar with them the next day.
So far I really like Santo, it’s more beautiful and not as muddy as Port Vila. The people are friendly; You have to say hello to every single person you see or walk by.

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