The Best Places To Stay In Vanuatu (Don’t Do What I Did!)

Tristan Balme The best places to stay in vanuatu port vila and around

There is a ton of accommodation to choose from when planning your trip to Vanuatu, especially on the main island of Efate, but they’re not all created equal.

Some are pretty basic and won’t provide the comfortable stay you’re looking for (think old and run down) while others cost a premium with limited services and leave you stranded miles away from other destinations.

I spent a week in Port Vila earlier in the year and hired a scooter to explore the island. While we only stayed at a couple of the spots listed here, we visited the rest for a drink, a meal, or even just to swim at the pool and check out the vibes – making note of where I’d stay when I visit Vanuatu again.

Here are my top 7 best places to stay in Port Vila and wider Efate. 

Let’s get stuck in!

1️⃣ Best Budget Option 1: Coconut Palms Resort
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2️⃣ Best Budget Option 2: Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu
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3️⃣ Best Mid-Range Hotel: Breakas Beach Resort
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4️⃣ Best High End Resort For Families: Eratap Beach Resort
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5️⃣ Best Boutique Resort For Couples: Paradise Cove Resort
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6️⃣ Best Luxury Resort: The Havannah Vanuatu
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7️⃣ Best Luxury Resort 2: Tamanu On The Beach
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TLDR; What I’d Recommend Doing.

I’d skip the ‘budget’ options as I found by paying slightly more you can get a much better experience in Vanuatu. Our first accommodation was one of these (not listed here) and we wished we booked somewhere slightly nicer!

A good all-round hotel is Breakas Beach Resort, and I’d probably stay there again on my next trip to the Island. The food is good, it’s close enough to town, and you’re right on the beach.

If you’re planning a cute couples trip, don’t look past Paradise Cove Resort. Down towards Pango, it’s charming, secluded, and the snorkeling right off the beach was phenominal (better than the snokelling we experienced on our Pele island trip!)

For a taste of luxury (and the service Vanuatu is renowned for) it’s a toss-up for me between The Havana Vanuatu and Tamanu On The Beach. Havana is the more premium option, and puts you up on the north side of Efate close to the island tours and Blue lagoon (both must dos while there). However, you’re a long way from town and will be stuck without transport. Tamanu on the other hand is probably a little more humble (I felt less out of place lol), you’re a short drive to town, and there’s more to do in the immediate vicinity.

Best Budget Option 1: Coconut Palms Resort


Tristan Balme best hotels Vanuatu Coconut Palms Resort

This budget-friendly option is not far from the town center and makes it convenient to explore the city and take the ferry to other islands. It’s pretty average overall, but the rooms were clean and the staff I interacted with was always friendly.

The restaurant is decent and reasonable, but the food items aren’t varied. I paid around 800 vatu ($7 USD) for a continental breakfast. And if you decide to have lunch and dinner, expect to pay anything from 1200 vatu ($10 USD). 

Of all the budget options on Efate, Vanuatu, this would be my recommendation,.

Highlights

  • A Pool and Games room
  • Evening entertainment on most niights (apart from Mondays)
  • Restaurant and bar
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Airport transfers
  • Water activities–snorkeling, kayaking, cultural tours
  • A good basic place to stay but you can do a lot better if you’re prepared to pay slightly more.

Best Budget Option 2: Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu


Tristan Balme best hotels Vanuatu Holiday Inn Resort

Holiday Inn is not the grandest of places, but it still makes for a decent stay. This family-friendly resort is located on the lagoon, about 10 minutes from Port Vila. They often host nighttime entertainment with live music which you can enjoy over your favorite cocktail. One of my pressing concerns was that most of the doors wouldn’t lock properly. 

The food was basic and a little pricey – I found myself dining out a lot more than expected–but reasonably priced. One of the highlights is the varying breakfast options, and the buffet averages 1800 vatu ($15 USD). Despite the minor faults, the staff was friendly and accommodating. 

Highlights

  • A Pool and Games room
  • Good resturant and bar
  • Casino on site
  • Kids club
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Airport transfers
  • Fitness Centre
  • A good basic place to stay but you can do a lot better if you’re prepared to pay slightly more.

Best Mid-Range Hotel: Breakas Beach Resort


Tristan Balme best hotels Breakas Beach Resort
Tristan Balme breakas beach resort vanuatu

For an ideal getaway from the hustle and bustle of life, do check out this adults-only resort. It’s quite a drive from town, but you’ll be rewarded with the most relaxing stay. It has cozy tropical-themed bungalows, with the only downside being no air conditioning. Also, as intended by the owners to offer their guests a rejuvenating experience, there’s no Wi-Fi in the rooms. But you can access it in the lobby.

The meals are varied and always delicious, and I payed 2000 vatu (~$17 USD) for tasty and large plate of fish and chips on our visit.

Recommendation: If you’re on a budget, but still looking for a comfy stay, then this is my pick!

Highlights

  • Infinity pool looking over the beach
  • Beach access (Directly on the beach)
  • Good resturant with cheaper (and better) food than some of the other hotels I checked out
  • Airport transfers
  • Spa facility
  • About a 10min drive from town.. and a little too far to walk. Be prepared to have to organise transport to go anywhere..
  • Free Wi-Fi (although doesn’t extend to the rooms)

Best High-End Resort For Families: Eratap Beach Resort

Tristan Balme best hotels Vanuatu Eratap Beach Resort

Eratap is a high-end resort with spacious, comfortable, and well-furnished villas. It boasts stunning views and an extremely peaceful environment. In fact, there’s nothing not to love about this place. Most of the staff went above and beyond in making my stay as pleasant as possible.

They serve tasty meals, too. But these come at a premium. While almost every meal is worth trying, I have to say; they make the juiciest and tastiest steak, for which I paid around 6000 vatu ($51 USD). 

Highlights

  • Private and outdoor pool
  • Great Beach access (Its directly on the beach)
  • Good resturant
  • Evening entertainment
  • Snorkeling, kayaking, fishing, diving, etc, with equipment provided
  • About a 25min drive from town.. down a pretty knarly road. Be prepared to have to organise transport to go anywhere.

Best Boutique Resort For Couples: Paradise Cove Resort

Tristan Balme best hotels Vanuatu Paradise Cove Resort
Tristan Balme Paradise Beach Vanuatu

This boutique resort is located about 20 minutes from Port Vila. It’s serene, with cozy bungalows, beautiful gardens, and welcoming staff. Every meal I sampled was delicious. Especially their seafood. I tried their seafood platter (which is shareable, by the way) for 3500 vatu ($30). 

You honestly cant beat sitting on the beach here, sipping a lemon tusker (or two!) and going for the occasional snorkle mission right off the beach.

Hotel staff are helpful for organising transport into town, or booking tours like Pele island or Blue lagoon.

Tip: rent a scooter and you’ll have autonomy to explore all Efate has to offer at your own pace!

Highlights

  • Seriously good snorkelling right off the beach!
  • Lots of Activities – diving, snorkeling, fishing, cultural tours
  • Dive Centre
  • Pool and poolside bar
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • You’re about 15min from town. Ask the hotel staff to arange you a taxi or local bus picku (cheap!)

Best Luxury Resort: The Havannah Vanuatu

Tristan Balme best things to do in vanuatu go resort crashing 1
Tristan Balme Havannah resort vanuatu

This intimate resort is perfect for a romantic getaway. You’ll find it on Port Havannah, about 30 minutes from Port Vila, and it boasts elegant rooms with views of stunning sunsets. The food is excellent and the menu rotates on a daily basis. You can expect to pay 3000 vatu ($26) for a gourmet breakfast, and anything from 4500 ($38) for a filling meal. 

I didn’t stay here but spent an afternoon enjoying their cocktails and their views.

Why choose Havannah?

The Havannah is renowned for being by far the best accommodation on Efate, no doubt about it. When you enter you’ll feel like you’re entering a winery rather than a hotel lobby. The grounds are immaculate, service professional, and the experience is second to none.

It’s also close to other attractions on the north side of Efate like Top Rock, Lelepa, and Pele Island as well as being a short drive to Blue Lagoon.

Tristan Balme Havannah resort vanuatu

Drawbacks:

This resort is on the other side of the island to Port Vila, so you’ll need to spend an hour in a taxi or shuttle bus to get there. It also means that you’ll need to arrange transport for any outings and need to allow for a lot of

Highlights

  • Seriously good snorkelling right off the beach!
  • Lots of Activities – snorkeling, kayaking, boating, canoeing
  • Dive Centre
  • Pool and Private pools
  • Spa Facilities
  • Close to the attractions on the north of the island
  • You’re 50 min drive from town. And getting transprt can be time consuming.

Best Luxury Resort 2: Tamanu On The Beach

Tristan Balme best hotels Vanuatu Tamanu on the Beach
Tristan Balme Tamanu on the beach vanuatu

One of the many beachfront resorts in Vanuatu, this gem is located on the south coast of Efate. It has minimalistic yet stunning villas with private facilities. The staff is fantastic too. They ensured all my needs were met, and some even went as far as recommending amazing destinations to explore. 

The food was amazing, but not cheap. I’m big on curries, so I tried theirs. The 4000 vatu ($34 USD) I forked out was worth the price.

Amenities

  • Airport transfers
  • Kids area
  • Free breakfast
  • Shuttle bus
  • Concierge
  • Activities–kayaking, surfing
  • Spa 
  • Pools

Highlights

  • Probably the most aesthetic accom on the island (White villas)
  • Lots of Activities – snorkeling, kayaking, boating, canoeing
  • Pools and Spa Facilities
  • Close to the attractions on the east side of the island
  • You’re 25 min drive from town.

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