Vanuatu's largest island is a touch wilder than Port Vila, but the dash of adventure just makes it more exciting. On Espiritu Santo, world-class resorts are juxtaposed with dense jungle and carefully guarded ways of life, so you'll get the full scope of the Vanuatu experience.
Where to stay
There’s no better way to get the complete holiday escape experience than by staying on your own private isle. So for that reason, our most highly recommended places to sleep in the Santo area are all on exclusive islands! Staying at any of these places is guaranteed to give you the holiday of your dreams.
Aore Island Resort
This is a boutique retreat with beachfront bungalows opening right onto ideal snorkelling spots. Whether it's sipping cocktails by the pool or strolling along the beach under the shade of swaying palm trees, this resort is a taste of the luxe island life.
Ratua Private Island Resort
Here you’ll find the perfect escape from the rush of modern life. The villa-style accommodation is surrounded by 146 acres of private island, so you'll have plenty of breathing space, while the over-water spa and superb dining options give you the chance to relax in style. The resort's commitment to sustainability and the local community just adds to the perfection.
Bokissa Island Resort
Surrounded by rainforest and coral reefs, Bokissa makes the most of the pristine environment - produce is grown on the land around the resort and seafood is delivered fresh by fishermen. Plus, as well as fully relaxed guests, sea turtles and dugongs are sometimes seen in the water around the island.
What to do
From the peaks of Vanuatu's highest mountain, to some of the country's most beautiful beaches, Santo is an island of superlatives. Here are a few of the best and most exciting things to do!
Be a beach bum for a day and stretch out on the luxuriously soft white sands of Champagne Beach. The horseshoe-shaped bay is the kind of picture-perfect place where you could happily spend all day marvelling at the scenery.
Just around the corner, Lonnoc Beach is another crowd pleaser with the same outstanding coastal scenery. If you’re wanting to spend some time on the immaculate water here then Lonnoc Beach Bungalows is a local resort that runs kayaking tours for more active visitors.
Off the southern tip of Santo is Million Dollar Point. The seabed here is a graveyard of World War II paraphernalia, making it an incredible dive site for those who have a taste for adventure. You’ll find hundreds of tonnes of coral-encrusted machinery, boats, vehicles and the famous S.S. President Coolidge.
Luganville is the largest town on the island and the main arrival point, with the airport connecting visitors to Port Vila. The Luganville Markets are the hub of the town and the best place to shop for souvenirs and local handicrafts. There are also plenty of tour companies in town, who can help guide you to Santo's hidden treasures.
If you follow the East Coast Road north you'll reach Port Olry - the tiny fishing village has a distinct French charm thanks to a legacy of immigration. There isn't much to do here apart from basking on the beach and enjoying the tranquil pace of life, but that's all part of the charm.
Head into the jungle to find the epic Millennium Cave. You'll have to navigate creeks and tiptoe across bamboo bridges before shimmying down a ladder to reach the cave, but it's worth the effort. This spot is best described as purely amazing - the ceiling soars to 50 metres and the cave stretches 20 metres across, with the cavern echoing sounds of trickling water.
Espiritu Santo is also famous for its blue holes, which are limestone pools set in the riverways. Deep and cyan-blue, the water in these pools is perfectly clear and incredibly inviting. The blue holes are dotted all over the island, but some of the most easily accessible are Nanda and Matevulu – make sure you bring some snorkels to have a look at the incredible underwater sights in these gems!
Ready to be spirited off to Espiritu Santo? Give us a call and we'll make it happen.