Revealing and sexy clothing (especially wearing beach wear in the capital) is not advisable, as over 100 years of missionary work has had its effect on the perception of what is considered as respectable attire in the islands. Regardless, it’s considered disrespectful to the local people and can be interpreted by some indigenous inhabitants as an invitation for sex.
As Vanuatu is not a ‘fashion conscious’ place no-one will notice or care if you were wearing the latest from ‘the Paris Collection’ or not. We do suggest that you bring all year round: Easy to hand wash, practical tropical wardrobe such as light cotton summer clothes; a ‘sloppy joe’ pullover; light weight waterproof wind jacket. If planning to go to the outer islands, bring a good torch (with spare batteries, you will use them!), lightweight, walking shoes, sandals for wet weather or good thongs (flip flops/crooks) and old clothes.
When exploring the outer islands take all the older clothes you can carry, wear them and give them away to the islanders when you are finished wearing them. You and your children will be aptly rewarded in other ways. Instead of dumping your worn clothes in a charity collection bin at your local shopping centre and never knowing who really receives these (if they ever do…), your children will interact with the very people who would be the recipients of those clothes (most NiVanuatu people buy these second hand clothes from shops in Port Vila).
Many of our past clients have commented on how their previously "self indulgent kids" were quite different after their "giving" experience in Vanuatu. Sharing and giving is a natural course of daily life in Vanuatu. The T-shirt you give to one person will be worn by all his friends as well. Three T-shirts on top of each other will be their winter outfit…. You will provide them things that are hard for them to obtain, save them the expense of buying clothes (basic wages are quite low in Vanuatu) and you will depart with priceless memories, plus have more in your luggage for purchased local arts and crafts.
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