Monday, 10 April 2017

Cruise Ship Destination: Mystery Island, Vanuatu

The thing (or things) I like about cruising is the way one is treated so special. No need to make a bed or cook or clean up after, just do as one pleases. So, after another day at sea, relaxing around the pool, reading, trivia, and practicing our new 'dabbing' move (Peter is still working on it) we arrived at Mystery Island.

We have been to Mystery Island before and absolutely love it.
It is a tiny, tiny island on the southern most tip of Vanuatu. It is a tendering port and the island consists an air strip, and some makeshift huts used on cruise ship days as markets and massage areas. Mystery Island is really named Inyeug Island and the first time we were to go there, way back in 2009, there was nothing but pristine white beaches, and the ship offered beach cricket. 
Today there are many local snorkelling tours and visits to the villages on the bigger island nearby. Tours can be booked on board ship, or with the locals at a cheaper price. We just go to enjoy the cool waters and to have a walk around the markets and along the beautiful beach.
Mystery Island is uninhabited, and comes alive on cruise ship days.
There are local markets, and if one is wanting to buy 'island' type souvenirs, this is the best place to get them. They are not only cheaper than the other islands (including Vila), it also helps the local population who are very poor. In the centre of the market stalls there are hair braiding stalls and local dances. Last time we were here it was a Sunday and the school children were singing. Donation boxes are set up.
There are also a few photo opportunities and for $5 one can take as many photos as one wants.
The water is warm and the snorkelling, even close to the shore, is good. The snorkelling was great, lots of fish of different sizes and colours. I would recommend reef shoes as the sand along the beach is mostly broken shells.The island is small and can easily be walked around. When walking from the jetty, it is a short two minute walk across sand to the other side of the island. There is plenty of room to snorkel or lie on the beach, even plenty of shade. We now take a beach mat, which has been great for relaxing and keeps a lot of the sand out of the towels.
The last time we were here the ship provided a bar near the tendering jetty, but this trip the locals have taken over with limited drinks available for sale. 
Apparently the ship provides the ice to keep the drinks cold.
My lovely sister and her wonderful husband.
Mystery Island is one place I would not get tired of visiting. Remember to take water, snorkel gear, and sun screen - and what ever you want to make it comfortable. Maybe next time I will pack a fold up chair 😊

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