Big Nambas historical photograph, Malekula, Vanuatu
Apiyalo cave, Malekula, Vanuatu
Wiawi bay, Malekula, Vanuatu
Weso waterfall, Malekula, Vanuatu
Wala island, Malekula, Vanuatu
Lamap kastom dance, Malekula, Vanuatu
Nial Botanical Conservation Area, Malekula, Vanuatu
Tenmaru beach, Malekula, Vanuatu
Wala island beach, Malekula, Vanuatu
Uri island tam-tam, Malekula, Vanuatu

Small Nambas kastom dance video, Malekula, Vanuatu Smol Nambas, Lamap
Click on the image to see a kastom dance video clip (Right click and "Save Target As..." to download the file if you have a slow internet connection).

Libansese Conservation Area Ronevie Village Guesthouse Banam Bay Bungalows Uri and Uripiv: 2 bungalows, 1  MPA Uri Narong Marine Park Nagha mo Pineia PA Nawori Sea View Norsup Dram-dram Wiawi Guesthouse Abetaruvar Bungalow Maskelynes: 2 bungalows, 3 MPAs Tam-Tam Bungalows Juliette's Homestay

Malekula, island of diversity
Malekula has more bungalows and conservation areas than neighbouring Santo and is Vanuatu's most culturally diverse island.

The interior of Malekula is mountainous, rugged and forest-covered with good walking and bird watching. There are old cannibal sites hidden in the bush on north Malekula. The Maskelynes and the small offshore islands along the east coast of Malekula have sand beaches and coral reefs with good snorkelling and diving.

Malekula's economy is largely based on agriculture with extensive copra plantations on the eastern coastal plains around Norsup and Lakatoro.

Lakatoro is the main town in Malekula. Lakatoro has several stores, a market house, a National Bank of Vanuatu branch, an Air Vanuatu office, the main wharf and it is the administrative centre for MALAMPA province (Malekula, Ambrym, Paama). Norsup has the provincial hospital and a Telecom Vanuatu 'Internet Vilej' (internet cafe). Both Norsup and Lakatoro have 24 hour electricity. There are no credit card facilities or ATMs on Malekula.

Lamap is a faded town but important for south Malekula with a post office, medical clinic and a National Bank of Vanuatu branch.

The dry season on east Malekula is five months, July to November. Northwest Malekula is drier.

Data source: WMO-Vanuatu Meteorological Service

With two airstrips, roads and regular transport, it is relatively easy and inexpensive to tour east and north Malekula. With an 'open-jaw' air ticket you can start at Lamap and finish at Norsup or vice versa. Starting from the south, you can visit the Maskelynes then travel north to Lakatoro. From Lakatoro you can visit Uri and Uripiv islands or continue north along the east coast to Sanwir and Vao. If you like walking, it's fairly easy to go all the way around the 'dog's head' via Wiawi.

There are many Air Vanuatu flights between Port Vila and Santo via Malekula and it's easy to include Malekula as a stopover.

On mainland Malekula we feature the following bungalows and conservation areas, from south to north:
Ronevie Village Guesthouse, Libansese Conservation Area, Black Sands
Banam Bay Bungalows, Vetgot
Dram-dram Bungalow, Losinwei
Wiawi Guesthouse, Nabi Protected Area, Wiawi

Nawori Sea View Bungalows, Walarano
Pialo Small Kastom Village, Tenmaru

Abetaruvar Bungalow, Tenmaru
Tam-Tam Bungalows, Vao mainland

In the Norsup-Lakatoro area we have three bungalows:
Amel Toro Bungalows, Norsup
Nabelchel Bungalows, Norsup
Lakatoro Palm Lodge
Nanwut Bungalows

On Vao island, there's at least one place to stay:
Juliette's Homestay, Vao

In the Maskelynes there are at least three bungalows.

On Uri and Uripiv Islands there are two bungalows.

At Lamap there's at least one guesthouse at Levis store, Port Sandwich (phone?). It's 1200 Vatu per person, per night, self catering. You can buy food at Levis store.

The following two volunteer-run websites have more information on south Malekula:

For jungle trekking, you can download a brochure on the Man Bush Trail.

Also check out the call centre, a locally-based and not-for-profit service:

Air Transport
There are airports on Malekula at Norsup, Lamap and Southwest Bay. Norsup has a tarmac surface.

Air Vanuatu flies to Malekula on every day of the week. Go to the Air Vanuatu website and download a recent timetable. Routings vary and it can be a bit overwhelming, but there are many interesting options for travellers. Fares (April 2006) are summarised below.

Airport Return
Santo fare
Port Vila fare
Flights per week
Norsup 12193 25603 9
Lamap 16783 19775 2
Southwest Bay 16490 21058 2

Tourists holding a return Air Vanuatu international ticket are entitled to a 20% discount on Air Vanuatu domestic fares. Exchange Rates.

Sea Transport
There are many other ships and boats servicing Malekula. Most of them are based in Santo. It's only about 1500 Vatu from Luganville to Malekula, with departures almost everyday. Exchange Rates.

Smaller vessels go right around the island. Others stop only at Litslits, near Lakatoro, and then proceed to Vila. Enquire directly at the Melcoffee (best bet) or Simonsen wharves in Luganville, Santo.

Ships from Vila to Malekula are less common. You will have to ask around at the wharves in Port Vila and find out if there are any suitable voyages. Enquire about the Big Sista and Vanuatu Ferry.

Road Transport
Lakatoro is Malekula's road transport hub. The best place to find trucks is at the Lakatoro Trading Centre (especially for the north) where you'll find many people waiting for transport on weekdays. Trucks come to town in the mornings and return to the villages in the afternoons.

There are several trucks along the northeast coast as far as Vao with departures as late as 1600H.

There are fewer trucks servicing the south. The best days are Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons, from 1200 to 1500H. The road around Port Sandwich may be damaged if there has been heavy rain. Alternatively, you can catch a speedboat across Port Sandwich. The road north of Black Sands is better. However, some sections north of Banam Bay are prone to landslides and the Pankumu river can't be forded when in flood.

Some truck fares are presented below. Exchange Rates.

Trucks from Lakatoro to
Shared (Vatu)
Charter (Vatu)
Black Sands
Banam Bay
Wiel (Wiawi)

Last updated: October 2014 by Stephen.

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