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Vanuatu: a day on Pele Island

May 2015: It’s been two months since category five Cyclone Pam slammed into Vanuatu, uprooting trees and hurling corrugated iron roofs through the angry sky, stripping leaves off coconut palms and generally making one hell of a mess.

I arrived yesterday and today I headed out to one of the most popular attractions from Port Vila : a day tour with Evergreen Tours combining snorkelling and a bbq lunch with the villagers of Pele Island.

This is a warts-and-all photo blog!

I could just focus on the stunning beach (Lord knows I took way too many pics of that!) and the repaired homes or I could just focus on the mess that still needs cleaning up. Instead I’m going to show you a selection of today’s photos that will give you an honest run-down. And also let you see that Pele Island is open for business!

Pele Vanuatu

The boys get the boats ready

Pele Island Vanuatu

Arriving at the beach you can see some of the damaged trees

Interestingly the driver of my tour today hadn’t been out here since the cyclone and commented on how much wider and more beautiful the beach is. Apparently the trees grew closer to the waterline, but were destroyed. The islanders have tidied it up and now he reckons, this is better than before. I thought it was pretty perfect!

Pele children

Then you meet these cuties collecting shells and happy to let me take their pic

Pele Island

Some of the local guys repair the thatched beach umbrellas

Snorkelling Pele Island

I went snorkelling on one of these boats and the fish were amazing.

Pele houses

We went for a wander through the village, supported by Evergreen Tours. While most houses have been rebuilt, here’s one that hasn’t. No one died here. They told me that when the roof blew off one house they just ran to the next!

Vanuatu Pele

Hanging out the washing

Pele satellite TV

The satellite made it! This is for French TV, I’m told, and these mattresses for lazing in the sun I guess

Pele Island

We are more than conquerors. Indeed.

Read my post on 5 great places to stay in Vanuatu!



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Hi, I'm Megan Singleton and I'm the word slinger of this travel blog as well as on radio in NZ every Sunday. Former Travel Editor at Yahoo NZ and current freelance writer for a few newspapers and mags from time to time, I set off on this travel writing journey 20 years ago and I've pretty much always got a suitcase half packed (or half un-packed!) I'd love you to join me on Facebook or Twitter and sign up for my newsletters if you want loads of travel tips, advice and deals!