Tanna Adventures has a great Tour of Blackmantown and Gian Banyan Tree

Tanna - Adventures .... Vanuatu Traveller feet logo

A tropical travel experience of untouched scenic beauty & cultural insight.

Traditional dancers with Tanna Adventures Painted girl in Kastom Colours with Tanna adventures

Tour 1 - The Classic Mount Yasur Trip.

Tour 2 - Port Resolution / Shark Bay Trip.

Tour 3 - Mt Yasur Volcano - "THE BIG DAY OUT"

Tour 4 - Blue Cave Trip.

Tour 5 - BlackManTown / Giant Banyan Trip.

Walk 1 - Second (Lenuingao) Waterfall & Beach Walk

Walk 2 - 'Kastom' Trails Walk to Esso's.

Walk 3 - 'Kastom' Trails Walk to Black Magic.

Walk 4 - First (Lenuanatuaiu) Waterfall Walk.

Walk 5 - Central Highlands River Pools & Cascades.


Home Page >> Tanna-Adventures - Great Island Tours & Inspiring Walks >> Travel Tour 5 - Blackmantown and Giant Banyan Tree.


By Greg Watt avid traveller and author of travel websites and blogs. Read Greg's thoughts on Vanuatu Travel at www.vanuatutraveller.com & on 'Real Travel', travelling, and World Destinations at www.traveller-info.com

Tanna - Adventures, a Travel Experience

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Tanna Adventures-Coffee logo ..... Lenakel, or Blackmantown.



Lenakel is the main town on Tanna and is situated on the coast near the port ...... or wharf. Its development as the main commercial and retail area of tanna would have been as a direct result of the close proximity of goods arriving by the various barges and ferries.

Virtually nothing is fabricated on the island and anything not made off the land or in a 'kastom' way needs to be imported from port Vila. This includes everything from diesel, building materials, and all manufactured goods through to food that is not grown locally. As a consequence Lenakel has developed as a scattered group of makeshift stores, small commercial enterprises and restaurants. Along with this is a number of service centres for the likes of the national bank of Vanuatu ( the only bank on Tanna), TVL and provincial council offices, along with primary and secondary schools.


Tanna Adventures - a view of Mount Mareun from the Ash plain below Mount Yasur


Throughout its history Tanna Island has resisted western influence, and has strongly kept to is historical and cultural roots. This is illustrated in the commercial development of Lenakel, where the governing group of landowners and business people have enforced the requirement that all commercial and retail is carried out by 'Man Tanna'. The fact that the almost unheard of situation of having no chinese stores and shops, has lead to the town been proudly called Blackmantown by the locals.

This can also be seen in the way different aspects of life have developed. Bread is not the light french stick style that is prevalent in Port vila, but a heavier 'loaf' that is baked in brread ovens similar to pizza ovens. While declicious - one or two slices will satisfy any hunger.

Equally interesting is the development of various aspects of life including restaurants. 'Man Tanna' is interested in westeren ways and sophistication - but rather than accept its introduction - will install what their impression of it is. Restaurants are an example of this and the ensuring result provides good meals that have a definite 'Tanna Island' spin to them.



bushwaking the trail up to one of the main villages on Mount Mareun




































Travel Tour 5 - BlackmanTown.

[Updated 12th April 2017]

Tanna Adventures walk up Mount Mareum looking over Mount Yasur

BlackmanTown. - visit a remote island Village Capital and its surrounding coastline, where 'Man Tanna' still dominate commerce and do things their way ........

'Black man Town' or the Lenakel excursion, starts with a ride along the beach road to see the dugouts (surprising how many), and then on to the Food Markets which only occur on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. If possible the tour has a look at an old broken down missionary church, following which you and have lunch in town ( meals for about Vt350) which are a real experience served on enamel plates etc ( I have done this a good number of times times and not had any stomach upsets whatever) . We also include a look at one of the coffee factories, if they are open, along with anything else which may be of interest.

Travel Tour Overview from Esso's Nima:

• leaving by about 8.30am, after a tropical breakfast, travel via 4WD over unsealed roads down to the West Coast from Middlebush, where Rachel and Esso are located.

• On the way down over the whitegrass plains, see the extensive views out over the eastern seaboard. At the coast, divert into the bush and travel along the coast seeing the many dugouts, and various settlemts along the beach front.

• Get to the food market to have a look at the extensive tropical fruit and vegetables that are grown. Tanna Island, possessing a highlands region with thick volcanic soil, and ample rainfall, enables just abouty anything to be grown.

• Enjoy a basic meal in town served on enamel plates - full of flavour. Experience restaurant food ..... remote island style.

• If combining this tour along with the Giant Bayan Trip, or 'kastom village' this would be done at this point.


Blackmantown Trip Travel Timeframe:

• Approximate time frame is about 3-4 hours

• Approximate travel time by 4WD from Esso's Nima to Blackmantown is 45minutes to 1 hour depending on what there is to see along the way ( beach and coffee etc).

• Approximate time in Blackmantown 1-2 hours, with luch being about another 30 minutes.

• Other combined tours are obviously extra in time.


4WD vehicles are used by Tanna Adventures to traverse the ash plain and onto the base of Mt Mareun
Tanna Adventures- viewing bush on the Mt Yasur Ash plain looking towards Mt Mareun
You meet al sorts when you travel with Tanna adventures
Bush tracks on Mount Mareun with Tanna Adventures
view of Mount Yasur from Mount Mareun

Tanna adventures-Coffee logo Ways to Book Tanna Island Tours & Walks.

Check out our 'no obligation' Personalized Booking Service which will give you a number of personalized options from us, to suit your requirements. Click the buttom below to be taken to our booking queries page.

Check Out Our Personalized Booking Service

If you would like to know about our booking process, and all the options which are available to you - have a look at our Making a Booking Guide.

Tanna adventures-Coffee logo Tour Rates - BlackmanTown Tour.

Tour rates are in Vanuatu Vatu for the following Participant numbers. You will pay the rate in Vatu as shown - the displayed amount in AU$ is indiicative (* see below) and the actual rate will be based on the exchange rate at the time of booking.

Please note that the Single Participant rate applies if there is only one person in the Vehicle ( person must be over 18 yrs old). If a single traveller does the tour when there are other Participants, then the rate will reduce to that of the two or more Participant rate. The Single Rate applies due to the extremely high running costs of Vehicles on Tanna Island.

• ONLINE BOOKINGS - Rates specified in table below apply. A deposit of is required at the time of booking, with the balance paid in Vatu (Cash) to Esso at the time of departure.

• CASUAL (IMPROMPTU, NON-ONLINE) BOOKINGS - Rates specified in table below PLUS a 15% surcharge apply. Full payment rquired in Vatu (Cash) to Esso at the time of departure.

• TOUR START/FINISH POINT - Rates apply from Departures from Esso and Rachel's accommodation, or from Whitegrass Coast near to Tanna Airport ( and including Evergreen or Whitegrass Accommodation's). Other localities may incur additional pickup/dropoff costs).

- per Adult. [18 yrs and older] Vatu 4,700 (AU$ 62.00)
- per Adult. [13 yrs and older with
adult 18yr or older]
Vatu 3,500 (AU$ 46.00)
  - per Child. [5 yrs - 12 yrs ] Vatu
46.00 )
  - per Infant. [5 yrs and under] Vatu
(AU$ ask )

Please Note : The "Giant Banyan" is an add-on to "Blackmantown". If you would like to include this as a part of this tour, please ask."

Yes - I want to make a Booking please

* Approximate equivalent rates are given in Australian Dollars to provides prospective guests with an FX comparision. Australian FX Rates given here are per Average of ANZ Bank and Westpac Bank Published Rate Dated 12th April 2017 ( 1 AU$ = 75.80 Vatu).