Things to Do in Port Vila: COOK

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Last, but absolutely not Least in our Series of Things to Do in Port Vila is COOK. Vanuatu is blessed with stunning beaches and verdant jungle, which make the destination popular with adventure travellers.

But Vanuatu is also popular because of the rich culture and history of the Ni-Van people.  Vanuatu has repeatedly been named the happiest place on earth, and part of this happiness must come from their love of food! [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

“People who love to eat are always the best people”

– Julia Child

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]If you are looking for things to do in Port Vila and you want to do something a little different to the standard tourist options and you are a Food Lover, then this experience is for you! [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Things to Do in Port Vila with Go By Sea:


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Away from the Crowds

We will whisk you away from Port Vila; enjoy a 45-minute drive through rural Vanuatu to reach the cooking school. Your destination is a local village restaurant built directly on the sand of a stunning secluded Bay.  You will ease into the day with a fresh lime juice as you take in the serenity and beauty of the location.  Cooking and eating is all done with the back-drop of the ocean and the sound of the waves to accompany you.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2488" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Warm Welcome

The Restaurant that is home to your cooking school is run entirely by a local family that live in the adjacent village. You will be welcomed as one of the family for the day, and as you cook together you will learn a little about life in Vanuatu.  Smiles and laughter are an important part of Ni-Van culture so get ready to join in.

Every family member plays an important role in the business, and your visit helps to provide employment opportunities for the village.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2490" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Spend the Day with a Local Chef

You get to spend time with a local Chef and Assistants, learning about the techniques and traditional foods of Vanuatu.  All the food here is produced from scratch and by hand, without the powered tools that we take for granted!  You can roll up your sleeves and join in the cutting, grating, mixing and folding that goes into the preparation of your lunch.  Ask questions, watch as the chef shows you how, then have a go and you might learn a new technique that you can try when you are back home.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2491" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Go Coconuts

The Coconut Tree is an important plant in Vanuatu life.  It is often called the “Tree of a Thousand Uses”, and during your experience you will find out why!

Today your Coconut Milk will not come from a can! You can learn how to open a coconut and turn the flesh into coconut milk, and while you are cooking the local ladies will be weaving the leaves into all sorts of useful (or fun) objects.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2492" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Fresh Local Produce

Think Coconut, Seafood, local Vegetables – watch them transformed from the source to the plate!

You can reach out and touch the Coconut Palms & Pawpaw Trees that your lunch is being prepared from.  Fish is delivered direct from the local fisherman, so you will be eating the best catch of the day.  The vegetables are grown in the village garden, tended to by the villagers and harvested at their peak.  You will be preparing and eating as the locals do, from what the land and sea provide.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2493" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Enjoy the Fruits of your Labour

Once lunch is prepared, sit down to a leisurely buffet of delicious, fresh local produce.

The dishes that you have created turn your lunch into a true Vanuatu Feast, and Chef will also surprise you with a tasty dessert if you can fit any more in!

The restaurant has a licensed bar so feel free to purchase your favourite tipple to take lunch to the next level.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2494" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

Perfect for Groups

Our COOK experience is a great day out even if you don’t want to cook!

Those in your group who want to be involved in the cooking class will do so while the others can sit back and enjoy the stunning location and mingle with the village family while they weave and shuck coconuts!

Your whole group will enjoy the wonderful lunch together, and then if you can muster the energy you can choose to walk on the beach or go for a dip in the inviting waters of the bay.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2495" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

What Will I need?

All you need to enjoy this experience is a sense of fun and a love of food!

Bring along your togs, sunscreen and reef-shoes if you want to go swimming or walking after lunch.

Cash or credit card are accepted for extra bar purchases.

Your guide will collect you and drop you back at the Cruise-ship, with a stop at the duty-free on the way back if you request it.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2496" img_size="medium"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Why We Love it

  • This is an intimate and engaging experience, where you will be welcomed like family and depart with the warm feeling that good food and good company can only produce.
  • We think that one of the best ways to learn about a country is to learn about it’s food. Our COOK experience is the perfect opportunity to do both.
  • If you love cooking and love food, you get to spend the day surrounded by your favourite things in a location that is one of the best kept secrets of Port Vila.


Things to Do in Port Vila – Do you want to experience COOK?

Click the link to go to the tour page and book this experience for your next Port Day in Port Vila!


Things to Do in Port Vila: PADDLE


We understand that everyone has different ideas on what constitutes a great day out, so at Go By Sea we have 4 different experiences in Port Vila to suit a variety of interests. What you will always find with our Things to Do in Port Vila are Unique Experiences away from the crowds, with small groups going off-the-beaten-path!


Things to Do in Port Vila with Go By Sea


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  • Far from the Crowds

On this Port Vila Day Tour, you will experience a couple of hours of quiet enjoyment and easy paddling along a picturesque river in the Countryside of Vanuatu.

This is a perfect escape from the hustle of a cruise ship – after a 20 minute drive you will arrive at a veritable Garden of Eden where you will embark onto the river.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2389" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

  • Water Therapy

The quiet splashes as you dip your paddle into the still clear water, gliding along the river – ahhh the serenity!

You will feel at one with nature as you kayak along this stunning river, feel the rhythm of the river unwind your soul and soothe your senses!

Watch out for the wild-life too. Herons and Eagles may be feeding from the river as you paddle past, and fish-life is prolific. It’s amazing what you can see from the quiet of the waterway.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2390" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

  • Anyone can Paddle

Even a novice will have no trouble with this easy paddle.  It really doesn’t matter if you have never tried kayaking before; this is the perfect quiet water opportunity to give it a go.

Both single and double kayaks are available, and your very experienced guide will keep a close eye on you throughout your journey.

The pace is easy and the kayaks are stable so you can relax and let the river carry you along.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2391" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

  • Take a look into Local Life

As you glide quietly along the river you get to glimpse into the lives of the local Vanuatu people – ladies washing, kids swimming, and men fishing are all scenes that you may encounter. This is just a normal day for the locals that live along the river, but a special opportunity for you to witness life in another country.

Your guides are born story-tellers and love to share snippets of life in Vanuatu with you during your journey up-river, so as you watch life go by you will also learn about it.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2393" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

  • And a Little Extra

Although the pace is easy, you will be ready for a swim after your kayaking experience.  This is the perfect way to end your paddle; the water is deep, blue, clear and invigorating.

For the adventurous, entry to the river can be via the rope swing if you dare!

Then you can spend some time in the magnificent garden by the river bank and your guide may find some fresh seasonal fruits to share with you (depending on the season).[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2394" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

  • Half Day Tour

Our PADDLE experience is from 9am-1pm, giving you plenty of time for shopping at the markets or going to the duty free in Port Vila afterwards if you want to.

Your guide will pick you up from the Wharf, and you can be dropped back at the wharf or in town if you prefer.

After a morning paddling you will have earned yourself a Cold Tusker Beer overlooking the harbour… Ask your guide to drop you at a good spot if this idea appeals![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]

  • What will I Need?

Although the kayaking is on a gentle river, you will still get wet so bring a towel and a change of clothes if you don’t want to go back to the ship wet.  There is a change room and toilet (island style) that you can use in the garden by the river.

The sun can be brutal in Vanuatu and at times you will be exposed so make sure you slip, slop, slap!

This experience is possible due to the generosity of local land owners, allowing us access to the river via their land.  Your guide collects $25 AUD per couple that he pays directly to the land-owner for this privilege.

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Why We Love It

Nothing beats time on the Water, and being in a Kayak you really feel a part of the natural environment.

Vanuatu can be hot and humid all year round, but being on the water in a kayak you avoid the worst of the sticky heat so this is a perfect experience for those that don’t handle the heat well.

The River is the lifeblood of the people who live along it and during this experience you enjoy a front-row seat into daily life along the river.

You can’t get more off-the-beaten path than our PADDLE experience – if you can imagine yourself as an intrepid adventurer exploring the wilds of Vanuatu, this experience is for you!


Things to Do in Port Vila – Do you want to PADDLE?

Click the link to go to the tour page and book this experience for your next Port Day in Port Vila!


Things to Do in Port Vila: WALK

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Welcome to our “Things to Do in Port Vila” Series – where we introduce you to what we think are the best ways to spend your Port Days while on a Cruise Holiday. 

We have scoured the lands from top to toe, searching out off-the-beaten path experiences for you to enjoy.  Our clients have returned from their cruises telling us their Go By Sea Experience has been the highlight of their holiday! So come on Board with Go By Sea and we will help you to make the most of your day in Port with one of our Unique Shore Experiences!

Over the coming weeks we will cover all the experiences we offer in both Port Vila and Noumea. We will outline the features of each tour and tell you why we love them, and why we think you will too!

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Things to do in Port Vila

Port Vila is the capital city of Vanuatu, but to really appreciate the beauty of this country you need to get out of town, and away from the crowds. Port Vila is always full of tourists (not just from the cruise ships), and many of the popular attractions can be disappointing when you have to share them with hundreds of other people. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="1672" img_size="medium" alignment="right"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Things to do in Port Vila with Go By Sea:


[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Stretch Your Legs

What better way to explore a new destination than by foot – if you have been on a cruise ship for a few days, this is a fantastic way to stretch your legs.

Your guide will choose a walking trail to suit the fitness of the group.  Anyone with a reasonable level of fitness can join in; the walking is at an easy pace giving you time to really soak up your surroundings.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2343" img_size="full" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Local Guide

You are in good hands with a local guide who will share his life and his country with you. One-on-One time with a local is a sure way to immerse yourself into a destination in a short time.

As you walk there are frequent stops where the guide will entertain you with tales of life in Vanuatu. He loves to share his culture so ask as many questions as you like.  The people of Vanuatu are known as the friendliest people on earth, and you will get to see this first-hand during your walk.

Natural Beauty and Rural Life

You will be driven to a rural location and then you will spend a few hours far from any evidence of modern life.  Touch, smell, feel and experience the unique countryside and the lives of the local people.

Your guide will lead you through a myriad of paths and trails far from the towns, crowds and noise - here you will learn about living on the land – Vanuatu style![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Off-the-Beaten-Path

Every walk is unique – you never know what will be revealed around the next corner – there could be a garden with exotic vegetables to be unearthed, a tranquil bay overlooking distant islands, ladies preparing their daily meal, local produce for sale, tropical rainforest grottos, children playing with homemade toys, interesting plants, flowers, insects and fruits to be discovered.

In season, your guide may even pluck ripe fruits from the trees for you to enjoy.

Perfect for Families

Our WALK experience is the perfect family activity!  Not only do you get quality time together, but our guide will impart his love of the land onto your children, and they will get to see how other people live - such a rewarding experience for all ages! You will find the local people you encounter will be just as interested in you, as you are of them, such a wonderful opportunity to broaden your family’s horizons![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2333" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][vc_single_image image="2348" img_size="medium" alignment="right" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Half Day Tour

Our WALK experience is from 9am-1pm, so you will have plenty of time for shopping at the markets, or going to the duty free in Port Vila afterwards if you want.

Your guide will pick you up from the Wharf, but you can be dropped back at the wharf or in town if you prefer.

Want to Swim?

Let your guide know at the beginning of the day if you would like to include a swimming stop during your WALK experience.

If you don’t like the idea of changing into your bathers behind a Palm tree, wear them on the walk – remember this is the real country-side!

What will I need?

Good Walking Shoes are a must!  You will be walking through a varied natural landscape – don’t expect paved walkways where we will take you.

You will be walking through locally owned private properties (with the landowners permission of course) so our guide will collect $25 AUD from each couple as a tribute that is made direct to the landowner.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="2331" img_size="large" alignment="center" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][vc_single_image image="1550" img_size="large" onclick="img_link_large" img_link_target="_blank"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Why We Love it

You get to be IN this experience, not just witness it from the sidelines.

This is the REAL Vanuatu; you get to experience local life as it is lived every day. We guarantee you will come away with a new appreciation for what you have in life, and we think this is one of the true rewards of travel.

This is not a tourist activity! You will not see other tourists on your walk, and you get to share this intimate experience in a small group making it all the more special.


Shore Tours - Why you Should Use Go By Sea

Cruising to a New Destination?  

Exotic Ports await you! 

What are you going to do when you get there?

Exploration and New Experiences are what motivate us to travel, and our desire to share our passion for off-the-beaten path and Unique Experiences is what prompted us to begin Go By Sea!

Noumea go explore


A single day in Port is not long – so seize the day and make the most of it!

If you think leaving the ship and “winging it” is the way to go you may return at the end of your day somewhat disappointed.

If you think staying on-board when you have come all that way to a new place is a good choice, well, we think you have missed the entire point of travel!

If you think walking around a town centre will give you an idea of a destination, you will probably leave thinking you hate the place without knowing anything about it!


However, if you want to make the most of your day, and you want to experience the best of a destination we can help!

At Go By Sea we have done all the leg-work for you in searching out the very best Unique Experiences in Port Vila and Noumea. 


At Go By Sea This is What We Will Do For You When you Book With Us:


  • You Won’t Miss your Ship!

You will always be back to the ship well before the last call! We want you to have an amazing day but also be back on board to enjoy your sail-away!

All of our Experiences have been developed for Cruise Ship Passengers, so your day in Port has been specifically designed to suit the hours available.  We have personally timed all of our experiences so we know you will get back at the time required.

Our operators are all locals, and they understand the importance of Cruise Passengers to their livelihood – they would never risk their business by missing the ship!

Our operators are also completely familiar with the area and road conditions, so they know exactly how long it will take to get you from place to place and they can plan their day accordingly.

  • 100% Refund if your Ship is Unable to Berth.

Sometimes your ship might not make it into Port.

It doesn’t matter what the reason is, we understand this is the nature of cruising and if your ship doesn’t make it, or is too late for the tour to go ahead we will refund your tour cost 100%.

  • Just Relax

All of the details of the day are taken care of for you, and all of our experiences allow you to make the most of your one day in Port.

Know that we have arranged every aspect of your day tour; your guide will meet you as you come off your ship and look after your every need for the day.

We provide you with a list of everything you will need to bring along for the day, and we email you easy to follow instructions on how to meet your guide.

All you need to do is book & pay on our secure website, then look forward to your Unique Experience!

  • Done In Advance

You can book and pay in Australia before you travel, making budgeting much easier, and spreading the cost of your holiday further.

You don’t need to worry about cash or foreign currency when you get to Port, as you have already paid for your experience before you leave. (Of course it’s always nice to have some cash for extras like drinks & souvenirs, and for each experience we will let you know what is appropriate to bring so that you don’t have to guess).

  • Contact Point in Australia

We are here to help; we can answer your questions and help you to make the right tour choice for you.  You can call or message us any time and we will look after you personally.

  • Support Small Local Operators

We believe in promoting small independent operators who benefit directly from your booking.

All of our operators have set their own prices, and we pay them exactly that.

Most of our operators do not have the means to market their business in Australia, but they would all like to be able to share their experiences with Cruise Passengers.

By booking through us you know your money is going straight to the locals who look after you.

  • Only the Best

We have personally tried and tested all the experiences here – we will not list a tour if we can’t recommend it.

During our time setting up Go By Sea, we visited these destinations multiple times, we looked beyond the tourist traps and sought out Unique Experiences that we thought were worthy of your limited time in Port.  So you get the best experiences without the hassle of having to research yourself.

You will be looked after by locals who want to show you the best of their place. You get the benefit of their local knowledge, their passion and experience.

  • Small Groups Away from the Crowds

The best experiences are had in small groups and off-the-beaten path so our tours will always be in small groups and away from the crowds.

We won’t take you to the tourist traps & we won’t take you places where animals are mistreated.  We won’t take you where everyone else is going, but we will take you on a Unique Experience that you will remember as a highlight of your holiday.


So come on a Journey of Discovery with Go By Sea as your Guide – you won’t regret it!

Over the following weeks we want to show-case our Unique Experiences to you in our Blog. Keep reading to learn all about the amazing experiences that we have developed especially for cruisers.

Sign up here to receive our Blog to your inbox every week:



The Beauty of Using Local Operators


Why do we travel? To Explore, To Discover, To Learn, To Experience, TO LIVE!

Whether you are a frequent traveller or a dreamer with a desire – the answer is the same, isn’t it?




We love to travel, we live to travel, we travel as often as we can.

We love to discover new places, new cultures, new food and new ideas.


Think about it – who is best suited to show you their place?

Imagine a friend of a friend was going to visit your home-town.  This person is from a faraway land, they have never been to your country.  Would you put them in a taxi and wish them well? No!  You would show them your place with your eyes!  You would help them to understand and experience your place like no-one else can.  Not only that, but you would take great pride in doing this.

When you travel you can always find local people who want to share their place with you, the traveller.

Take advantage of this opportunity – I guarantee you will have a richer experience for it!

Here are the BIG reasons that we like to use local operators when we travel:

  1. We know we are going to get the most authentic experience.
  2. A local guide loves to talk and share stories of their life.
  3. Locals always know the off-the-beaten path secret spots.
  4. Support of a small local business. Our travel dollar goes straight to the person who has earned it.
  5. A local knows the best places to eat, can suggest local delicacies and things to avoid!
  6. Help with local language – you will find a local guide is happy to translate for you and will willingly teach you some words in their language.
  7. A personal experience is a more rewarding way to travel.

What About GoBySea?

When we developed our concept of GoBySea we had two main aims:

  • To help cruise passengers discover unique experiences at Ports: off-the-beaten path and in small groups led by passionate locals.
  • To help small local operators to connect with Cruise Passengers, and to provide a place where they could earn what they deserve, instead of having to pay the huge commissions taken from them elsewhere.

We have now developed close relationships with small local business operators who have the same philosophy towards travel experiences as we do.

We know & trust our operators, and we have personally researched, tested & hand-picked the best Unique Experiences to be found.  So you don’t have to!

With GoBySea you can book a Unique Experience run by dedicated, passionate locals - knowing that we have taken care of all the details for you AND your dollar is going directly to the right person!