Thursday, 31 May 2018

Adventuring at Vanuatu's Mele Cascades.

We only had one full day in Vanuatu, and with Vanuatu being a collection of islands, we had to restrict ourselves to the island we were staying on, Efate. Efate is home to the capital 'city', Port Vila, a tiny little town made of concrete buildings. It's not especially pretty and there isn't much to do other than the markets, and so we chose to drive through it and on to the outer village of Mele, where the famous Mele Cascade waterfalls are located. We definitely made the right decision, and I've been so excited to tell you all about our adventure to the waterfalls!

Visiting Mele Cascades Vanuatu

We opted to take a bus to the Cascades rather than a taxi. Laura and I loved experiencing the local transport, and actually ended up hiring the bus driver, George, as our private driver. We offered to pay him a bit extra if he would wait for us at the falls and then take us back to the hotel (we weren't entirely sure how easy it would be to find a bus to take us back to the hotel). It only cost us about £15/A$30 for both of us in total, for about 3 hours of his time. On the way there we passed markets, churches, and hundreds of palm trees!

The entry fee at Mele Cascades was quite pricey to be honest (£12/A$25 each), but we felt it was worth the cost due to how beautiful the falls are and the entire experience. The 15-minute walk to the falls themselves takes you past other smaller waterfalls, through the forest, and then wading through streams. We spent the entire walk giggling and squealing at the journey, especially when we had to wade through the smaller rivers and streams and hop between slippery rocks!

Eventually we arrived at the falls, and peeled off our dresses and shoved them in our bags which were then left with two random men in a hut. One word of advice: take reef shoes. We only had flip-flops so we ditched the shoes with the bags and made our way over the rocks barefoot. They were quite slippery in places and there were times when I honestly thought I may fall off the rock and down the waterfalls, smashing my head open on the way down. We all know I over-react and fear the worst though! Luckily all was ok and this didn't happen ;)

Also soz for the onslaught of bikini photos as I don't exactly have a *ahem* insta model body because I love chocolate and cake and steak too much, but YOLO!

The cascades really are beautiful, and we kept saying over and over how we felt as though we were in Swiss Family Robinson or a similar movie. One of the pools Laura dubbed 'The Fountain of Youth' haha - we wish! We spent well over an hour flitting between pools and floating around in the refreshing waters. It was incredibly humid and they were the perfect way to cool down after our trek to find them (jokes, it's literally one path the entire way). Floating in the main pool staring up at the waterfall crashing down the rocks really was something special, and something I've never experienced on my previous travels!

Due to Vanuatu being quite an 'off the beaten path' tourist location, the falls were pretty quiet and there were only a few other tourists there - mostly New Zealanders and Australians. It was really lovely, and made a nice change to visit somewhere that still feels so untouched. We were really sad we didn't have more time there to explore the islands of Vanuatu a little more, but alas, we were very happy to have experienced Mele Cascades, Erakor Island, and the stunning Warwick Le Lagon resort in our short time there!



PIN FOR LATER: Adventuring at Vanuatu's Mele Cascades in the South Pacific Islands

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