Explore Vanuatu in Oceania

Country Guide

Map of the area of  in

Vanuatu with its capital Port Vila is located in Oceania (Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean). It covers some 12,201 square kilometres (slightly larger than Connecticut) with 215,000 citizens. Bislama, English and French are the languages spoken by people in Vanuatu (consider regional differences).

Vanuatu is an archipelago nation consisting of 83 islands in the southwest Pacific Ocean, north of New Zealand and east of Australia. The Vanuatu people are a delight to photograph, friendly, co-operative and photogenic especially the children who are simply gorgeous. Yes, they love to be photographed but please do not offer to pay to photograph local people as this will quickly discourage spontaneity and encourage commercialisation. Always ask before taking photos of local people.


Landscape, climate and basic hints for travelling

National Tourism office

Website: Vanuatu Tourism

P.O. Box 209
Port Vila

Phone: +678 22515
Phone: +678 23889

The terrain offers mostly mountainous islands of volcanic origin having narrow coastal plains. The average density of population is about 18 per km². The climate in Vanuatu can be described as tropical with moderated by southeast trade winds from May to October, moderate rainfall from November to April, may be affected by cyclones from December to April. Possible natural disasters include tropical cyclones or typhoons (January to April) or volcanic eruption on Aoba (Ambae) island began on 27 November 2005, volcanism also causes minor earthquakes or tsunamis.

To reach someone in Vanuatu dial +678 prior to a number. There are 7,200 installed telephones. And there are 126,500 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks operate on frequencies of 900 Mhz. Websites typically end with the top level domain ".vu". If you want to bring electric appliances (e.g. battery charger), keep in mind the local 230V - 50Hz.

Learn more on our Ni-Vanuatu Facts page.

Description of the flag of Vanuatu

Two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and green with a black isosceles triangle (based on the hoist side) all separated by a black-edged yellow stripe in the shape of a horizontal Y (the two points of the Y face the hoist side and enclose the triangle); centered in the triangle is a boar's tusk encircling two crossed namele fern fronds, all in yellow; red represents the blood of boars and men, green the richness of the islands, and black the ni-Vanuatu people; the yellow Y-shape - which reflects the pattern of the islands in the Pacific Ocean - symbolizes the light of the Gospel spreading through the islands; the boar's tusk is a symbol of prosperity frequently worn as a pendant on the islands; the fern fronds represent peace.

National administrative regions of Vanuatu

Historical background information

Multiple waves of colonizers, each speaking a distinct language, migrated to the New Hebrides in the millennia preceding European exploration in the 18th century. This settlement pattern accounts for the complex linguistic diversity found on the archipelago to this day. The British and French, who settled the New Hebrides in the 19th century, agreed in 1906 to an Anglo-French Condominium, which administered the islands until independence in 1980, when the new name of Vanuatu was adopted.

Learn more on our Ni-Vanuatu Facts page.

Based on the content from wikitravel.org. The original article can be found here based on the work of these users. Geography information is based on the data provided by geonames.org, CIA world facts book Edition 2010 and 2013, Unesco, DBpedia, wikipedia and others.