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The top 10 beaches of Vanuatu

The top 10 beaches of Vanuatu

It's almost a bit unfair to compare the beaches of Vanuatu. Every one of them is probably 10 times more luxurious, more golden, and more postcard-worthy material than anything back home, but the thing is, how can you decide where to go otherwise?

The beach is the perfect spot for a family outing. It costs nothing (unless you hire a lounger and umbrella package), everyone can enjoy it in their own ways (from a cocktail and a book to an epic sandcastle), and you can be as lazy or as energetic as your current mood allows.

Pro tip: If you don't like sun-drenched beaches with warm waters and idyllic ocean vistas from the comfort of a silky sand spot on the shore, Vanuatu might not be for you. For everyone else, here are 10 of the best you'll find in this exceptional family holiday destination.

1. Hideaway Island Resort

The Hideaway Island Resort may be 'hidden away', but it's well worth finding just out of Port Vila. This is where you will find the famous Underwater Post office, which is just 35 metres offshore, so you can swim or kayak out to it and post your (waterproof!) letter. As it's set on a Marine Sanctuary, it offers up stunning diving and snorkelling opportunities.

2. Aore Beach

Aore Beach is located on Aore Island just off Luganville. You can get there via a quick ferry ride from the township, and it's where you'll relax by the white-coral shore, and occasionally make visits to the nearby shops at the resort for anything you might fancy snack-wise.

3. Port Olry Beach

Located on the main island of Espiritu Santo, Port Olry is a French-speaking village that's a perfect place to practice your Franglais. The beach itself is known for its superb reef snorkelling, and at low tide, there's a strip of sand that connects a small island for extra adventures. The sand itself is as white as snow but as warm as cotton socks fresh out of the dryer - and just as heavenly on your feet.

4. Champagne Beach

It's worth coming here for the name alone, but we'll tell you about it anyway. The name actually comes from the volcanic activity in the water just offshore, as gas bubbles up through the rocks at low tide and fizzes and pops like a glass of freshly poured champers. It's an easy one to get to if you have a car, as it's just 30 minutes south of Port Olry on Espiritu Santo.

5. Bokissa Beach

A little to the south of Santo island lies Bokissa Island, and there, you will discover Bokissa Beach. This is about as close to the quintessential postcard-perfect beach as you'll find, with its white sand, unearthly blue waters and palm trees woven across the shoreline. If all you're after is a simple day of natural beauty with plenty of swimming and snorkelling, this is the one for you.

6. Louniel Beach

Fancy something a bit different? Make a bee-line for Louniel Beach on Tanna Island. The sand is black instead of white due to the volcanic geography of the area, and there are a number of underwater fumaroles (a gap that emits steam and gases) just offshore. It's a good place for surfing with its crashing waves, and is a truly different experience compared to the rest of Vanuatu. A walk up the entire length of the beach would take a full hour, so there's plenty of space and scenic spots, too.

7. Erakor Beach

Erakor Beach is another one located on its very own island. It's conveniently located not far off Port Vila where this tiny isle basks in the tropical Erakor Lagoon. It's a quiet spot where you can relax in luxurious soft sand, or pop into the resort spa for some massage and pampering.

8. Velit Bay

You can imagine that Velit Bay is the kind of place to make  other beaches jealous. It's got everything - horse riding, kite surfing, swimming, beach volleyball and even a spring-fed blue hole swimming spot for a freshwater dip. Refuel with a drink and meal from the small bar and restaurant and check out the Velit plantation before you go.

9. Breakas Beach

If you're looking for a gorgeous beach break near to Port Vila, Breakas Beach has everything you need. That is, of course, if you need a cute little crescent bay, lovely soft sand and the kind of palm trees you only usually see in the movies. The area in front of the resort is adults only, so could be a good one for parents needing a 'break', or for families with older kids.

10. Paradise Cove Beach

A Paradise Cove Beach by another other name would definitely still be just as paradisiacal, but we see no point in changing this apt name. It's another close one to Port Vila on Efate Island, and is a serene spot that's just made for calm swimming and snorkelling. Fringed by manicured tropical gardens, this is one not to miss.