Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu, irriki island


We are day 5 of our 7 day Pacific Island cruise on board the Pacific Dawn. I am writing this update whilst sitting in the Lido Cafe on deck twelve overlooking the still blue sea’s near Vanuatu.

It has taken me a good five minutes to establish what day of the week it is, as I sip on my morning coffee. This is a sure sign that I have completely relaxed into this holiday. I am starting to find it difficult to even imagine life after the cruise. I am now in love with the gentle rocking of the sea, and I spend hours just watching the water mesmerized.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu

At 6.50am when I go for my morning coffee there is not a s sole about, so I have my own private cafe not more than 50 metres from my bedroom door. I soak up the early morning atmosphere for a few minutes before contemplating my exercise class. Although I can see Port Vila, I know I will still have time for my grueling Body Conditioning Class and the half hour stretch class.  These classes have become one of my favourite activities on board the ship. For the first time in my life I actually have time to enjoy a class every day.


Today has been a typically huge day!

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port Vila markets

After breakfast we took the children for some sightseeing through Port Vila. Mr GG, the eldest teen and I have holidayed here before so we decided to get a $10 cab into town for some quick shopping before our tour.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port vila markets-2

Last visit Hubby feel in love with the local bread. It tasted almost like sliced donut, but was in the form of a loaf. Mr GG was on a mission to locate and devour a loaf of this bread. We made a beeline for the markets but could not locate any bread.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port vila market-3

Given that we had just finished breakfast we were not really tempted by some of the other foods on offer. I have to say that seafood sitting in the sun at 40 degree heat has never really been a favourite with me. Even with this fact, I do always enjoy a trip to the markets, poking around the produce and noting unusual foods. We noted that most of fruit and vegetables looked completely foreign!

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port vila

We bought the children a coconut each to drink, and took them to a shady spot before continuing to our tour meeting place.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port vila markets-3

The teenagers were booked on the Cascade Waterfall tour which took the group inland 20 minutes to the base of a waterfall. They then hiked another 20 minutes to the top and swam in the cool water. The boys were able to slide down some of the smaller falls into the quite pools below.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, port Villa

Mr GG and I like small groups, so we had booked the Waterfall Eco-Tour. This tour was conducted on a private estate called “Eden on the River”. We were guided through the tropical gardens and were shown local fruits and flowers which are cultivated on the property.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu eco tour

We followed the guide into the cool lush rainforest. Periodically the girls would stop and explain the native uses of various trees, pods, seeds and flowers. As we descended further into the rainforest we could hear the sound of rushing water.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, eco tour vanuatu

Once we reached the gully the track opened up and we could see the water below. Each of us chose a private spot behind a tree to slip out of our hot clothing.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu eco tour-2

The children were quick to grab a tyre and float about in the water.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu eco tour-3

I find swimming in fresh mountain water so refreshing. Mr GG & I swam up to the water and stood on the ledge behind it.  We watched thousands of litres of water curtain our view and then we dived through the waterfall and swum with the current. It was such an invigorating experience.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu eco tour-4

I could have happily stayed and swum all day. The children were happy and the rainforest provided shade from the hot sun. It was a sublime feeling. Having only a small group of only ten in such a large space was ideal.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu eco tour-5

By 4.00pm we had been returned to the boat just in time for its’ departure. Predictably the children wanted to rejoin their friends in Turtle Cove. Mr GG and I were happy to take up our usual positions on the Oasis Deck. From this vantage point we could watch the slowly disappearing Islands of Vanuatu, with a glass of champagne in hand.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, vanuatu-2

Once the islands had fully disappeared from view I recommenced the book that I had almost completed “The Vintners Letters”  Who would have thought I could finish a book in just five days with four children on board.  It has been years since I have been allowed to even pick up a book!

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique-33

Mr GG and I enjoyed the romantic sunset and then decided to collect the kids from kids club for dinner.  We are booked into the Palm Court Restaurant for dinner tonight so I will be sure and keep you updated.

Pacific Dawn, week fantastique, P&O Cruise

To be continued…