Wednesday, July 8, 2009
A Fond Farewell
Well, my time on Malekula has come to an end, and most of the new posts on this blog will probably come from someone other than myself. What can I say? It was a wild ride. After two years on the island, here are my recommendations when it comes to tourism in south Malekula:
Trekking along the south of the island is great, but there are some spots I would avoid. I think my ideal trip would be something like:
Day 1: (Monday) Fly into Lamap, and take a walk around the different villages. Lamap has a lot of custom still, and is a great place to see custom dancing simply because of the sheer number of participants. This can be arranged in advance if you contact Joseph Soksok (see the video clip or Lamap tourism link for more information). After half a day in Lamap arrange for a truck to take you to Aruev Bridge, and then do the short trek across to the village of Hokai. From Hokai a canoe or boat could be arranged to travel to Akamb Island.
Day 2: (Tuesday) Take an early boat back to the mainland, landing in Farun village (it is not far, and a canoe would be sufficient). Hike from Farun to Malfahkal village. This is a really nice hike with a lot of pristine beaches and smaller villages along the way.
Day 3: (Wednesday) Hike from Malfahkal to Southwest Bay. This hike can be accomplished in one day if you take the trail that leads up the Matanoi River, and then over a ridge. It would be best to have a local guide for this trip, but it would get you into Southwest Bay in time for a shell of kava and the plane on Thursday. It may be best to avoid the village of Melip due to ongoing concerns within the Vanuatu police community (marijuana farming), and this road would bypass that area.
Day 4: (Thursday) Catch the plane out of Southwest Bay (Wintua). If it is the rainy season odds are the plane will not be able to land. If this is the case boats can be arranged to go up the coast towards Vinmavis, near the 'dog's neck' where it is only a short truck ride to Lakatoro.
Day 1: (Monday) Alternative route to Akamb. Take a canoe across Port Sandwich and hike to the Akamb canoe landing. This is a really fun hike. There are some difficult sections, and a tough climb, but once on top the road is generally good. If you go with some guides who hunt there are chances of them catching wild pigs.
Now that I have more computer time I hope to add some more pictures and tourism links.
Till next time.