Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Roadshow with a twist!

On Tuesday 29th May, the Vanuatu Tourism Office ran a fun, interactive quiz night for travel agents in Sydney. The General Manager of the VTO Mrs Linda Kalpoi remarked, “It was a very pleasing result with the roadshow as a key event to stimulate the interest and awareness with our front line agents to sell Vanuatu.” Over 100 agents attended, as well as 7 wholesalers and 10 hotel representative from Vanuatu. The night kicked off with an introduction from Linda Kalpoi and a destination presentation by Anne Morris, one of VTO’s Australian rep, and this was followed with four fun quiz rounds during which the agents interacted and  learnt about Vanuatu to win prizes. In total the Vanuatu Tourism Office, with the support of our hotel partners gave away 10 accommodation prizes and three flights, thanks to Air Vanuatu. Futuna Fatuana also played throughout the night and they were a highlight! Many of the agents got up and danced and the night ended with a fun dance competition. The Vanuatu roadshow continues was at Melbourne, last night and will continue in Brisbane tonight.
Image: Linda Kalpoi general manager VTO, Thomas Tait Holiday Inn Vanuatu, prize winner Richard Irvine from Trans AM Travel Pty Ltd, Malcolm Pryor Air Vanuatu, Allan Kalfabun, Marketing Manager at VTO.

Vanuatu tourism delegation makes big impression at BFTE 2012

Media release 30 May 2012, by Sebastien Bador: The significant Vanuatu tourism delegation made a big impression amongst international buyers, but also other sellers, during Bula Fiji Tourism Exchange (BFTE) 2012 in Port Denarau. With 17 delegates and 9 booths, the Vanuatu Tourism corner was one of the biggest oversea seller’s delegations.  VTO Events/ Trade & Market Research Manager, Mr. Sebastien Bador, said “Even though our tourism industry faced a hard time during the first quarter of this year, it was good to see our stakeholders coming in numbers to promote Vanuatu islands and the wide range of tourism services available. Our delegation included tourism offices, inbound operators, resorts and smaller independent hotels; it was just the perfect mix. Long haul market buyers, in particular from Asian countries, don’t know much about Vanuatu. They are always amazed by our diversity of accommodations and tours.” This year BFTE welcomed 153 buyers. An increased representation from China was noted; and for the first time Russian representatives attended BFTE; they paid attention to Vanuatu products, which was quite exciting. Mr. Bador said he saw the BFTE as an important marketing tool principally to attract the long haul buyers. “By maintaining our continual presence at the BFTE, not only we keep relationships with regional wholesalers, but we give confidence to the wholesalers from Asian countries that are repeatedly seeing us. This year I witnessed a change in the past trend with Chinese, Japanese and Korean buyers requesting to have appointments with us. Previously we had to run after them to organize some awareness presentation. This time they were ready to talk about trade famils, travel agents training, and more. It’s great to see the first results after years of efforts!”  The VTO would like to warmly thank its partners for promoting Vanuatu at BFTE 2012: Adventures In Paradise, Espiritu Santo Tourism Association, Evergreen Limited, Holiday Inn Resort, Iririki Island Resort, Mangoes Resort & The Terraces, Ratua Private Island, Warwick Le Lagon Resort & Spa.
Image: VTO’s brand new tear drop banners show off a new,  rich and vibrant look for Vanuatu.

Carnival Australia picks Pele for potential stop-over

Through years of experience in cruise operation as well as over 17 years of experience within Vanuatu’s  local tourism locally and international particularly within Inbound tour operations, Evergreen Tours’ Groups & Cruise Manager, Mr. Esly Kalo has  reassured the Chief Executive Officer for Carnival Australia, Ms Anne Sherry that he was capable of the task after he brought into Vanuatu an expedition cruise Clipper Odyssey to Pele island on two calls in year 2004 and 2005. On hearing about this it was hard for Carnival’s boss to miss a visit to a potential stop spot for P & O, so on the afternoon of Sunday 27th May, Ms Sherry and her Vice President of Fleet Operations Mr Peter Little, were chauffeured to the beautiful island on helicopter to scout for opportunities. The delegation were escorted by Adrian Mooney of Adventures in Paradise, P & O Cruise Shore Excursion Agents. As they stepped out onto the beautiful white sandy beach, a conch shell was blown and the island’s chief and warriors welcomed the group with much chanting and dance, then continued to lead them straight into the harmonious serenades of “Vanuatu Smile” welcome song sung by the Vanuatu Natural Arts aggapela singers. The special guests were then taken through the welcome arch for tropical refreshments and afternoon tea where Ms Sherry & Mr Little continued to have business discussions with Mr Kalo. Another reason for the visit was to see at first-hand how the Carnival cruise business was benefiting Pele’s community right down to grass roots level, and to find other ways in how to better people’s livelihoods on the island. After discussing with Mr Kalo, a group photo was taken and the delegation departed for Vila. For more information, email Mr Kalo on or call Evergreen Tours on +678 23050. VTO would like to wish Evergreen Tours and Carnival Australia the best of success in moving forward together on a journey that matters. 

Photos top to bottom: Winning shot of Pele island which caught Carnival’s eye and group photo on the beach before delegation departed.

Tanna Evergreen Resort speaks at World ICT Day

On Friday 18th May, the organizing committee for World Information Communication Technology, invited owner/manager for Tanna Evergreen Resort Mrs Merian Numake to be a special guest speaker during an event celebrating Information Communication Technology around the world. Ms Numake spoke on seafront stage in Port Vila where speeches took place surrounded by an open exhibition from business houses, government and private sector companies to display their products that promoted the use of ICT. Ms Numake’s speech became a living example of a success story on how ICT turned her four island bungalows into a resort and renamed to Tanna Evergreen Resort and Tours within a decade. The core of her speech was especially encouraging women and girls to embrace ICT for their businesses in tourism to become another success story. In addition, Mrs Numake remarked “A supportive husband is always key to ensure goals are met and you both reach success” which closed her message. On behalf of the industry, VTO would like to congratulate Ms Numake for her participation. Photo of Merian Numake and husband Mr Samuel Numake.

Vanuatu, more than just a South Pacific destination

Online source E-Travelblackboard, Wednesday, 30 May 2012: Located less than two and a half hours away from Sydney is one of the most unique holiday spots, according to Vanuatu Tourism Office general manager Linda Kalpoi, who explained Vanuatu was more than just a tropical South Pacific destination. Made up of up to 73 islands, friendly people and rare sites to see, Ms Kalpoi told agents at the Vanuatu Tourism road show in Sydney last night that Vanuatu was made up of rare experiences. View more. Left image of the Futuna Fatuana cultural warriors who were a highlight during the show.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Vanuatu Game Fishing

By Vanuatu Game Fishing Management: Fishing grounds are only 15 minutes from port  and action can happen any time with catches that varies from Yellowfin tuna, wahoo, mahi mahi, sailfish to Giant Blue marlin. Escapade and crew will help you catch those fishes in comfort with all latest state of the art equipments. View more.

Blokart Vanuatu

By Blokart Vanuatu Management: Welcome to Blokart Vanuatu. If you like fun speed and exhilaration then Land sailing is for you! Our blokart track takes advantage of the local trade winds and sea breezes. The Blokarts are made in New Zealand to a very high standard and have been engineered to provide amazing performance. Quick off the mark, light and stable the karts allow for close exciting action like speedway or motocross. Sail sizes range from 3.0 to 5.5 meters. View more.

The Summit Vanuatu

By The Summit Management: Explore the largest tropical garden in the South Pacific.  Besides our exuberant flora, see how we grow sandalwood and other essential oil plants, watch us make our handmade beauty and health products from our own distilled oils.  Then try our fresh products at the CafĂ© and Gift Shop and take home a “Made in Vanuatu” gift for your loved ones.  You could spend from an hour to a day at The Summit and still come back for more. The Gardens is the largest tropical garden in the South Pacific.  The renowned Summit Gardens experience is unique in Vanuatu and has been developed to provide maximum pleasure to the visitor. The 11 named gardens, spread over 10 hectares, are all distinctly different, unfolding as a series of surprises as you follow the meandering pathways. The designs have been inspired by the great tropical gardens of Asia, Australia and America.  What started off as a hobby to its owners back in 2000 became a driving ambition to create something beautiful that would showcase the beauty of Vanuatu and its people.  

Port Vila Land Transport Association (PVLTA) meets Cruise Line Representative

The Port Vila Land Transport Association (PVLTA) and the Department of Tourism are working together to address transportation issues to better manage Port Vila as a cruise port of call and a tourist destination. This was an agenda in a meeting facilitated by DOT with PVLTA and Mr. John Nell an expert in the cruise shipping business. Mr. Nell has been was formerly with the Carnival Cruises in the Pacific and is now working alongside with other cruise line companies who have vested an interested in Vanuatu as a cruise destination. Mr. Nell presented views on how to improve guest experience by improving the current transportation system used at the Port Vila call. The meeting discussed way forward that would transport large number of cruise visitors on cruise ship days out of the wharf area into the town and in visiting the range of tours and tourist attractions in Port Vila and greater Efate. Mr. Donald Massing, Chairman of the PVLTA was very supportive in new plans to improve the cruise port area and for assistance to PVLTA to strengthen its role in facilitating and promoting better services to its members. Representatives of other Taxi and Bus Associations in Port Vila exchanged views on how to address the wharf issues and requested if the Government could be proactive to provide additional budget to the Department of Tourism to ensure that a permanent booth is allocated at the wharf to provide information on transfer rates and tourist information. As bigger cruise ships will be berthing into Port Vila it is of priority that all bus and taxi associations be formalized so that they can provide better transport coordination. PVLTA wants to see change in more ni-Vanuatu’s participating in the tourism sector in providing better transfer services and are urging all to stakeholders to work together in promoting Vanuatu as a the happiest place on earth.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines eyes Vanuatu

The Department of Tourism and the Vanuatu Tourism Office are proud to announce that this week the Honourable Acting Prime Minister for Vanuatu and same time Minister responsible for Tourism, Hon. Ham Lini Vanuaroroa met with Mr. John Rae, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line representative and Mr. John Nell a long time cruise ship personnel who was formerly with P & O Carnival Australia.  “RCCL is bringing in bigger ship into the southern hemisphere and we are delighted to have Vanuatu in our itinerary by 2014 says RCCL representative.” There is so much vibrancy, authenticity and cultural experience that Vanuatu can offer to an estimate of 3,600 passengers who will be onboard the ‘Voyager of the Sea’s when it set sail to Port Vila in 2014.  The Acting Prime Minister praised Royal Caribbean Cruise Line for their interest in Vanuatu and acknowledged that the Government of Vanuatu and the tourism industry will invest in new tourism activities, attractions and infrastructure to support this new development. It is an opportunity to engage more ni-vanuatu to participate in small and medium businesses in this market segment of the tourist industry. On these developments the Government will also launch its National Cruise Action Plan this year to confirm its investments and commitments to the cruise ship sector. As the world’s fastest growing tourist activities, Vanuatu is proud to have the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line as part of its cruise fleets.

Wala Tourism Board moving on with plans for Wala Cruise Ship Development

The Wala Tourism Board, Malampa Local Government and the Department of Tourism have been working hard in strengthening the management of this community cruise tourism project. The new Wala Tourism board under the chairmanship of Mr. Jean Yve Malere has already developed plans to develop new tours, activities and excursions that will accommodate for the  P & O cruises visiting the Island. Mr. Malere confirms he is supportive of the role the Government is playing through the Department of Tourism by engaging Mrs. Edna Paolo to work alongside with them in improving their tourism product. It has been quite a challenge over the years but with experience tourism in Wala will grow and expand into other areas in Malekula so that the whole island can benefit from cruise ship activities. Trainings will also be underway to train more guides and personnel to assist tours on cruise ship days. The development of good tour itineraries will be developed to promote cultural and eco tourism in Malekula. It is hoped that once this is strengthened the community project will not be seen as a cruise tour product only but also as a day tour tourism product for Wala Island. P & O Carnival has been supportive with the infrastructure developments under the Enterprise Challenge Account through Ausaid by funding a new floatable jetty, visitor information centre and toilets that can be used by visitors visiting the Island.

Above image: Cruise ship at a distance from Wala island, Malekula. Bottom image: Mamas passing time and show passengers their traditional "pleiplei" or game.

Reaching out to the operators in Famous Tanna Islands of Fire

The Government of Vanuatu has donated a tool to assist tourism development in Tanna Island. A new vehicle has been provided to the Department of Tourism and was officially launched by the Hon. Ham Lini Vanuaroroa, Minister for Tourism, seen with delegation in adjacent image. Tanna Island is very famous for the yasur volcano that is on the eastern side of the Island. Today operators can be visited and provided advice and support through the use of the vehicle by the Acting Manager for Tafea Tourism Office, Mr. John Enock Ware. The launching program was celebrated at one of Tanna’s up market accommodation provider, Tanna Lodge where a light reception was celebrated afterwards to mark the milestone achievement. This was a development challenge for some time with tourism numbers increasing in Tanna Island by visiting the cultural villages, tree top accommodation and the famous volcano tour but today changes will be seen with this new tool to assist the tourism operators in Tanna. Mrs. Merian Numake Chairlady for the Tafea Tourism Council (TTC) was also instrumental to ensure that this tool will reach her operators in Tanna and praised the Government for making this investment to support tourism development in Tanna Island.

Island Time Kayaking

For the complete kayaking & snorkeling experience. From 3 hour tours to full day, overnight/camping or accommodation. Catering for all fitness levels from beginners to the most experienced. ‘Snorkel only’ tours also available. Knowledgeable local guides, quality gear, amazing scenery, small groups, big fun! Our fully guided eco tours are with experienced local Ni Vanuatu guides who are both passionate and enthusiastic about their Homeland! Using the best 'sit in' sea kayaks in Vanuatu, our guides will take you on a unique experience on the open ocean around the islands and small solitary rock formations that dot the coastline. Blue holes are in abundance so prime snorkeling spots are waiting for you on these rare adventures. Swim, snorkel and feed the colourful tropical fish on the beautiful reefs. View more.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Vanuatu taking the lead

Participants Cultural Exchange Experience.
Expo 2012, Yeosu South Korea, press release No. 1: Vanuatu is seen again taking the lead in the Mini Expo 2012 in Yeosu South Korea. Nick Issachar, Expo Coordinator and Booth Manager representing Vanuatu attended the Team Leader’s Expo Operational Training from the 25th of April to the 1st of May was nominated to make the closing remarks on behalf of all participating from countries. It was truly an honour he said to be nominated amongst the 115 participants who have attended this operational training and to have media coverage on Vanuatu. This mini expo is already deemed to be seen as a successful one as it has already captured the hearts of all the participants in the cultural exchange they had experienced throughout the training program. Pacific Pavilion’s theme “Paradise” in its ocean color and the vibrant images designers had created really captured the eyes of visitors from the first expo’s rehearsal on the 28 of April. The second rehearsal is scheduled for the 2nd and the final one on the 5thof May. Vanuatu’s booth is coming up together nicely and our main feature in the booth is the world’s only underwater post which already attracted over 100,000 visitors from the date of its operation and had raised curiosity from the expo visitors and will be the high light of the Pacific Pavilion because of its uniqueness. The Expo Coordinator is looking forward to his team to be on the site to finalize the logistics of their preparation before the official opening ceremony on the night of the 11th of May. The team consist of Mr. Joe Pakoa, Ms. Brenda Andre & Mr. John Mark Poilapa who are expected to arrive a week before the opening ceremony. The Expo Coordinator would like to thank the Commissioner General, Mrs Linda Kalpoi & the Vanuatu Expo Committee 2012 for their continuous support in ensuring that our objectives in this expo participation can be achieved and reflect on service delivery to benefit the people of Vanuatu.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Women's Vanuatu Beach Volleyball News

By WVBV Management: Hello Vanuatu BVB Friends, please find the latest film update featuring the Women's Vanuatu Beach Volleyball team as part of their London 2012 Pre Games Training Camps. As their journey to qualify for London 2012 comes towards a climax the Vanuatu Women's Beach Volleyball team were back in the UK as part of their training programme in the North West. Linline, Miller, Joyce, Henriette and Lauren spoke to The Reporters Academy about their progress and what life on the road is really like. They last spoke to the team during the 2011 FIVA event in London. To see part one of their journey captured by The Reporters' Academy view (Serving up a Legacy). Please feel free to share, embed and feature this video. This film was produced by Dan, Connor and Lewis of The Reporters' Academy, a media production company run by young people, tasked with the mission of telling the stories of all the North West's 2012 activity. The Reporters' Academy is integrated into the world of media, education and employment, based in two great sporting cities, Manchester and Melbourne and is officially Inspired by London 2012.