Vanuatu Islands Travel Info

Mysterious Maewo

CLICK TO GET THE MAPMaewo is an island in Penama province; 105 km to the east of Espiritu Santo . It is 47 km long and 6 km wide, with an area of 269 km². Its highest point is 795 m above sea level. Maewo is very thin and rugged island stretching 56 km; the mountainous central chain and the south eastern coast are good places for bird-watching. Both coastlines are covered with black sand beaches. Most of the islanders live on the sheltered west coast. Maewo receives the largest amount of rain in Vanuatu and has some of the most beautiful waterfalls.

Maewo is famous for its ancient secret societies. Magic is performed almost as much as in Ambrym and the sorcerers claim to be even more skilled. Some traditional dances performed by men are tabu for women. They must not see any of the dances and the dancing ground will remain forbidden for some time after the dance. In return, the women have their own dances which cannot be seen by men. Please note that visitors will face the same restrictions.

There are two thermal springs on Maewo but no signs of recent volcanic activity. Touring Maewo is more affordable via Santo —Maewo has only a few commercial guesthouses. There is transportation accessible near every bungalow that belong to either owners of the bungalows or the village community where the accommodation is located. Highlight activities whilst on Maewo are the River & Waterfall tours, Cultural Village tour, and bird watching is also recommended. All other tours can be arranged on request.

Touring Maewo is more affordable from Santo. To save backtracking, start at Laone airfield (north Maewo) and finish at Sara airfield (on north Pentecost) or travel in the reverse direction. Maewo has one airstrip, on the plateau above Naone village. There are two flights a week from Santo, via Ambae.

Few ships visit Maewo and they do not run to any schedule. From south Maewo, you could cross over to Pentecost or Lolowai (Ambae) to find a ship. Speedboats are used around south Maewo. Maewo has only a few trucks and no regular public transport. If you want to travel by truck, expect to pay a full charter.

Home | About Us