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If you want to experience true Melanesian hospitality then Motalava is the island for you!

The people of Motalava are a close-knit, welcoming community who mostly live in villages along the island's coast. Away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, the community maintains a mostly self-sufficent lifestyle getting what they need from the their surrounding environment.

mota lava people fishing vanuatu

This is the perfect destination for a home-stay style experience - learn to weave, attend a church service or go to a local nakamal, join in on the evening fishing trip and visit a family garden to help pick fresh fruit and vegetable, which will be used to create a delicious Melanesian meal for you that night. If you are lucky, you may even be able to join in a community event in the main square!

The island itself is fringed by white sandy beaches and clear lagoons teeming with blue starfish and tropical fish. Coconut plantations, bright flower, thriving gardens and jungle cover the land all way to the island's highest point - Sleeping Mountain. Motalava is just like the classic tropical islands you dream of.

In November there is a festival that blends tradition and religious which starts with a church service and ends up with an afternoon of cultural performance, as well as traditional fishing using coconut leave woven nets.

These islands are relatively small and most attractions are easy to walk to; explore white sand beaches and coral reefs around west Mota Lava and Ra or climb the massive rocks on Ra, or climb the Sleeping Mountain on Mota Lava.

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It's a short but steep climb, but you'll be rewarded with magnificent views. There are beautiful island bungalows concentrated around west Mota Lava and Ra.

Activities and tours on Torres and Banks are eco and cultural orientated due to the nature of the island and people.

mota lava cultural dance

You can walk around Mota Lava which would take about 2.5 hours along the truck road or about 3.5 hours through the bush, or you can hire a boat, put your feet up and try your luck fishing.

The TVL tower is on Mota Lava and provides good coverage of east Vanua Lava.