Vella Lavella Island Things to Do
This is a worthwhile hike near the village of Simbilando. You follow the Ulo River inland until you reach a large, open break in the forest where you find several boiling mud pools. See my travelogue for details.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
Vella Lavella Island Local Customs
There are no set meal times on this island, or presumably in most rural parts of the Solomon Islands. People eat when they're hungry. This may be different from what you do at home. It was for me, anyway. Nonetheless, you will still be given a fantastic meal in the evening should you stay here.
Vella Lavella Island Warnings and Dangers
If the weather looks ominous and you don't feel comfortable crossing the Gizo Strait, then DON'T. That's not to say that you should not trust the advice of your guides. They are very good at navigating the route. However, they will not want to disappoint you and may attempt the crossing even when not safe to ensure you get back to Gizo according to your timetable. We came upon extremely rough sees and rain on the way back. The waves were at least a couple feet tall, and there were no lifejackets in the boat at all. One of the drivers told me that just a few days earlier, they had tipped over a canoe in rough seas with another traveler onboard who was dumped into the shark-infested water. They were fine but she was shaken up quite a bit. On another occasion, he sunk a canoe and lost all of his money, which he had with him at the time. I got through OK, but I was extremely unnerved by the whole situation and had the canoe sunk, we would have faced a long swim to shore with both the dangers of drowning and sharks.
Vella Lavella Island Favorites
Favorite thing: You may wish to try megapode bird eggs while you are here. These birds lay their eggs in the warm soil near the thermal pools and the locals harvest them for food. They taste just like chicken eggs and the only noticeable difference is that they are mostly yoke with just a very thin white part on the outside.
There may be laws in some areas concerning the harvesting of megapode bird eggs. Be sure to check on these if you intend to ask around about trying the eggs.