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WorldSouth PacificVanuatuEfate
There are Port(s) of Entry here
17°40.000'S, 168°23.435'E Chart icon.png
lat=-17.66667 | lon=168.39058 | zoom=10 | y
Map of Efate

Efate is an island in Vanuatu, in the South Pacific.

It is the most populous island in Vanuatu, and contains the national capital, Port Vila.

The main areas worth visiting on Efate Island are Port Vila, Mele Bay, and Havannah Harbour (or Port Havannah). These are described below. There are also some anchorages adjacent to offshore islands.


See Vanuatu.


See Vanuatu Weather.

Note: Efate is part of the Shefa province of Vanuatu and so the local weather for Shefa will indicate the weather for Efate.


See Port Vila and Vanuatu.



Island icon Iririki [[Efate#Iririki|Iririki]] 17°44.693'S, 168°18.566'E

This is the most obvious island from Port Vila, because it's in the middle of Port Vila Harbour. It is entirely occupied by a resort, there are no other habitations on the island.

It can be visited by ferry from Port Vila. There are hobie cats and other activities on the island, there is also a restaurant.


See Vanuatu.


Assuming that you are heading for Port Vila as your first port of call, you can enter the wide Mele Bay from nearly any sea angle. There is a lighthouse on the southern entry point, Pango Point, and there are no obstacles or obstructions in the bay.

After entering Mele Bay, follow the lead lines at 078T (066M) into the outer harbour of Port Vila. From there see the notes on Navigation to Port Vila.

Havannah Harbour has to be approached through the southern Hilliard Channel which is wide and deep and contains no obstructions. There is no pass into or out of Havannah Harbour to the north, except for dinghies at high tide.


There is only one check in facility -- Port Vila. See Vanuatu Entrance.



Key to symbols: |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage ||
  • Port Vila Port Vila /wiki/Port_Vila Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |

Marinas & Yacht Clubs

See Port Vila and also the section below on Havannah Harbour.


Mele Bay

Mele Bay/wiki/Efate#Mele_Bay
Anchorage icon Mele Bay [[Efate#Mele Bay|Mele Bay]] 17°41.607'S, 168°15.707'E
There is a small anchorage just north of Mele Island, in Mele Bay. This is about the only area in the bay where the depth is shallow enough to anchor, as depths range up to 300 metres in this otherwise sheltered bay.

Havannah Harbour

Havannah Harbour/wiki/Efate#Havannah_Harbour
Anchorage icon Havannah Harbour [[Efate#Havannah Harbour|Havannah Harbour]] 17°33.558'S, 168°15.821'E

Havannah Harbour (or Port Havannah) is a large calm water harbour and sailing ground on the north western side of Efate. It lies between Efate to the east and the islands of Lelepa and Moso to the west. There are huge amounts of anchoring space in Havannah Harbour where the depths allow, close to the shore on the eastern side of the harbour, all along the shore. Up in the north east corner there is good anchoring room in shallower depths on sand. The middle of the harbour is quite deep.

Havannah Beach and Boat Club/wiki/Efate#Havannah_Beach_and_Boat_ClubBuoy icon Havannah Beach and Boat Club [[Efate#Havannah Beach and Boat Club|Havannah Beach and Boat Club]] -17.573667°zoom′13, 168°14.780'E with some moorings, marina berths and good shelter. They have toilets and showers ashore and a small yacht charter operation. Moorings cost 1000 vatu per day. Contact phone: 7799077 or 5553578

Port Havannah has quite a bit of WWII history attached to it. Some is discussed on The wikipedia page. There is a small WWII museum on the eastern shore containing a few odd relics of the era.

The snorkelling close to shore is very good. Large amounts of coral and fish can be spotted. Crayfish can also be found although with the amount of coral around they have many hiding holes and can be difficult to catch. Sea anemones and their associated colourful clown fish are fairly common and will delight any children familiar with the film Finding Nemo.

Mele Island

Mele Island/wiki/Efate#Mele_Island
Anchorage icon Mele Island [[Efate#Mele Island|Mele Island]] 17°41.608'S, 168°15.803'E

Mele Island (also known as Hideaway Island) is in Mele Bay, not too far from Port Vila. There are regular charter boat trips from Port Vila that visit the underwater post office on the island, which is what the island is best known for. There is also a resort on the island and regular dive tours which run to the resort and the surrounding marine park. Anchoring room is available to the north of the island.

Lesser known is that the Mele islanders are distinct from most of the rest of the ni-Vanuatu population, in that they are Polynesian rather than Melanesian.

Lelepa & Moso Islands

Lelepa & Moso Islands/wiki/Efate#Lelepa_.26_Moso_Islands
Anchorage icon Lelepa & Moso Islands [[Efate#Lelepa & Moso Islands|Lelepa & Moso Islands]] 17°32.989'S, 168°14.152'E
These islands form the northern and western edges of Havannah Harbour. There is apparently an anchorage on the north western side of Lelepa Island but I'm not sure that it would have any advantages over anchoring in Havannah Harbour.

Nguna Island

Nguna Island/wiki/Efate#Nguna_Island
Anchorage icon Nguna Island [[Efate#Nguna Island|Nguna Island]] 17°25.533'S, 168°19.333'E
Nguna Island forms the north eastern edge of Undine Bay on the north coast of Efate. There are anchorages off its north western corner.

Emao Island

Emao Island/wiki/Efate#Emao_Island
Anchorage icon Emao Island [[Efate#Emao Island|Emao Island]] 17°29.217'S, 168°28.263'E
This island is off the north eastern corner of Efate. There is a reported anchorage just off its western shore.


See Port Vila.


See Port Vila.

Eating out

See Port Vila.


See Port Vila.

Things to do Ashore


  • Blue Lagoon
  • Mele Cascades


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)



See Vanuatu References & Publications.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

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