I bet you did not know that only 20,000 people live on Vanuatu’s amazing Tanna Island, with the vast majority living in remote villages, living a life that has not really changed for thousands of years.
It has to be a tad challenging therefore, to be charged by the government with the responsibility of tourism development in Tanna, but I met the man with that task, John Ware, Manager Tourism Department for the Vanuatu Government and he is determined to succeed.
I asked John what his key challengers were and he confirmed that the government was trying to encourage joint venture investment in Tanna, especially from overseas and the government was also in discussion with local landowners to secure their participation.
He said this was proving to be challenge for tourism, as the island currently only had four upmarket accommodation operations, with the remainder local bungalows, so he told me if Tanna was going compete with Port Vila and Santo, it was going to have to provide more accommodation.
He also said that the length of stay was a challenge for tourism in Tanna, with many visiting the island to see the volcano and only staying one or two nights, when there was a great deal more to see and do on Tanna, with more activities planned including new tours and adventure and eco operations.
Finally, John did confirm that the issue of the rough roads in Tanna and especially to the volcano was being addressed but it was a big and expensive challenge, with this being the role of the national government to provide the required funding, in addition to the much dreamed of extension to the Tanna White Grass airport runway.
To heat what John had to say, click on the video box below:
John Alwyn-Jones reporting on location from Tok Tok in Vanuatu – brought to you by Air Vanuatu