Friday, October 7, 2016

Tanna Island

It is difficult to stop in Port Resolution as it is not a regular Port of Entry, so one must organise and pay transport for Customs and Immigration for checking into the country. In addition, there are no banks or ATMs in Port Resolution. Many cruisers found it difficult to obtain Vanuatu currency (vatu) in Fiji, so most of us arrived with no local currency. Stanley, from the "Yacht Club", helped many of us by convincing transport drivers and others to accept USD. 

We decided to travel to the capital of Tanna Island, Lenakel, on the West side of the island to exchange our USD, or take money out of an ATM. The trip involved crossing the ashfields on the downwind side of the volcano. Due to some confusion about whether a bank was open in Lenakel (it was a provincial holiday) or if a large hotel would change money for us, we ended up crossing the island and the ashfields 4 times! Most of them were while riding in the back of a pick-up truck.
Local girls we met while waiting for a ride

Dina heading down the gully to get to the truck which stopped to give us a ride
Ash field view with Mt Yasur adding some more ash to it all


We were unable to change money, so were unable to purchase lunch, and had to convince an older gentleman of the value of USDs to get a ride back to Port Resolution. We arrived back to the boat very dirty, with black streaks of soot everywhere, and too tired to go to the weekly John Frum ceremony in a nearby village. We heard afterwards from Norm and Willie on SV Dream Catcher that the John Frum ceremony was disappointing.

With so much more to explore in Vanuatu, we hoisted anchor and began making our way north.
Looking back at Mt Yasur doing it's thing