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Espiritu Santo to Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu: 9 Days

The 83 islands of Vanuatu, or "Land Eternal", are home to towering volcanoes untouched rainforests, waterfalls and incredible coral reefs. Vanuatu is a land that is never hurried; it is a peaceful place where visitors and natives alike take the time to enjoy the natural beauty of the islands.

Day 1: Espiritu Santo Island

Depart from Espiritu Santo, the largest island of Vanuatu, which was named by De Quiros in the 17th Century when he made a navigational error of some thousands of miles in a vain attempt to find Australia. Despite the passing of three centuries, Santo's majestic beauty has changed very little. Anchor at Aore Island, just across the channel from Espiritu Santo, for the night.

Day 2: Aese Island

Depart for Aese Island, a picturesque island with powdery white sand beaches. An excellent place to enjoy watersports and a very good anchorage.

Day 3: Champagne Beach

Visit Champagne Beach near Hog Harbour on the northeast end of Espiritu Santo. This beautiful white sand beach takes its name from the fact that the water is so clear it looks "bubbly". After dinner, overnight to Loh Island, in the Torres Islands, among the last South Pacific islands to be charted.

Day 4: Loh Island

Far flung from the rest on Vanuatu, Loh Island has a distinct culture with many Solomon Island influences. You may spend the day exploring the islands magnificent caves, viewing a native warrior dance, snorkeling or diving. A nature walk id highly recommended, as the island is also home to unusual megapode birds, whose brooding behavior resembles that of reptiles.

Day 5: Torres

Spend the day cruising Torres, Vanuatu's northernmost group of six islands. Most of the islands are relatively low, either sandy cays built on volcanic basalt, or on the reef that has now elevated above the surrounding seas, where you can find dazzling white sand beaches.

Day 6: Ureparapara Island

Cruise to Ureparapara Island, an extinct volcano. The island has an unusual shape with steep headlands at the entrance to a spectacular harbor. Enjoy a bat cave tour or a nature walk and explore the rim of the crater.

Day 7: Vanua Lava

Cruise to Vanua Lava, the largest island in the Banks Group. It has mountains, a volcano, crocodiles, reefs, rivers, waterfalls and rainforests so there's plenty to see. You can walk from Sola to Vureas Bay and onwards to Waterfall Bay where the Sasara River falls into a pool by the ocean. You can see the spectacular snake dance, take a bush walk, tour an incredible cave of skulls, or snorkel and dive off the bay.

Day 8: Maewo

Cruise to Maewo, which receives the largest number amount of rain in Vanuatu and has some of the most beautiful waterfalls. This thin and rugged island is famous for its ancient secret societies and its sorcerers skilled in magic. Here you can view traditional Maewo dances and magic rituals.

Day 9: Espiritu Santo Island

Depart early morning to Espiritu Santo Island for a day of diving in famous wrecks amidst spectacular marine life. During World War IIthe 30,000 ton President Coolidge sank in the Santo Harbor after striking a mine and still lies structurally intact. This is the largest accessible shipwreck in the world, together with the USS Tucker, Million Dollar Point, shark feeding dives and many pristine reef sites make it a divers dream.