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YJ0VK Vanuatu 2024

YJ0VK Team will be active from Vanuatu, 20 - 27 August 2024.
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Vanuatu: land for good

When a traveler wants real exoticism, he goes to Vanuatu. This small state is located not far from Australia. A significant part of the inhabitants of the Earth does not even suspect its existence. The exceptions are the aforementioned exotic lovers and businessmen who would like to reduce their taxes.

YJ0VK Vanuatu 2020Vanuatu. Author - Gerard.

Since 1980 - Vanuatu

The modern state of Vanuatu is spread over 83 islands. When English explorer James Cook arrived here in 1774, the landscape reminded him of the Hebrides Islands, which are located near Scotland. Thus was born the name New Hebrides, which was used until 1980.

The first people arrived in Vanuatu more than three thousand years ago. Europeans learned about this land thanks to what is called the last great navigator. In 1606, Pedro Fernandez Quiros, a Portuguese in the service of the Spanish crown, undertook a large-scale expedition. During this expedition, a number of islands were discovered, including Vanuatu.

During the Age of Exploration, several new continents appeared on the world map. The rulers of European powers sought first to conquer large territories. Smaller booty was often out of their focus - there were simply no resources or people left to conquer the islands.

The Spanish tried to build a settlement here, but it did not last long. In 1768, explorer Louis Antoine de Bougainville came to the islands. He even decided to give them the name Great Cyclades - in honor of the archipelago in the Aegean Sea. In 1774, Cook reached Vanuatu, thanks to whom the islands of Vanuatu were given the name New Hebrides.

The first serious wave of resettlement did not begin until 1825, after it became known that there was sandalwood on the islands. Polynesian workers faced opposition from the local population, and soon gave up trying to make money from the sandalwood trade.

In the nineteenth century, the region suffered greatly from slave traders who kidnapped the natives. By some estimates, the male population of the islands was halved during this period.

The same century was marked by the arrival of missionaries. A kind of competition developed between them: Protestant and Catholic priests sought to lure pagans into their denomination.

Settlers established plantations on Vanuatu. Initially, they wanted to grow cotton, but after prices plummeted, they were forced to switch to coffee and coconuts.

Vanuatu was favored by the French and British. In 1906, the European states agreed to establish joint control over the islands. At the same time, the flag of the New Hebrides appeared, representing the crossed flags of Great Britain and France on a blue field. The agreement was not easy: the European states created separate governing bodies on the islands, only the court was common. At the same time, the indigenous population was not granted the status of citizens of either Great Britain or France.

This strange state of affairs soon ceased to suit the locals. In the middle of the twentieth century, nationalist parties began to emerge on the islands, which achieved the right to self-government peacefully. In 1980, the state became independent and was renamed Vanuatu, which means "This land is forever". The roots by which the word was formed are found in several Austronesian languages.

Efate Island Vanuatu YJ0VK DX News 2012

Volcanoes, offshore and the cult of Elizabeth II's consort

The population of Vanuatu is only 272 thousand people, but the young republic is widely known to rich businessmen. Despite the fact that the full independence of the state was proclaimed in 1980, the local offshore zone began to operate in 1971. As local politicians like to point out, this gave a new impetus to the development of the economy.

In many ways, the island state is similar to its fellow members of the club of former colonies. The leadership is trying to transfer the agrarian economy on modern rails, but it does not work out too well. The bet on offshore revenues has partially justified itself: the country can afford good infrastructure. At the same time, the share of the state in the economy is 65%, which significantly hinders the development of entrepreneurship.

Agriculture accounts for another 25%. There is a great shortage of skilled labor in the country. However, tourism can be a real salvation for the republic.

Vanuatu has something to attract travelers. Fans of extreme sports will enjoy climbing to the volcano Yasur. The active volcano is called the most accessible in the world. In order to get to its top, you need to walk a few hundred meters down a gentle slope. It is a unique experience that you cannot get in other parts of the world.

The belief system in Vanuatu islands is diverse and unusual. Formally, the majority of the population considers themselves Christians, but the locals have not abandoned the ancient beliefs of their ancestors, but have incorporated them into new spiritual practices. The local version of Christianity has its own peculiarities, such as the veneration of spirits and animals.

In remote areas, cargo cults are widespread. It is believed that about 5% of the population of the islands are their adherents. Examples of such cults are the veneration of John Frum and Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

The cult of the American John Frum originated after the First World War. The locals believed that the pale-faced military man would come and give them prosperity. It is unclear whether John Frum actually existed.

In the second half of the XX century, local tribes began to honor the spouse of Elizabeth II. According to the belief, the son of the mountains was supposed to travel across the seas, marry a worthy woman and then return to Vanuatu. At some point, tribal leaders recognized that the legend referred to Prince Philip. Belief in his connection to the islands was reinforced after the royal couple's visit to Vanuatu, which took place in 1974. The locals were able to see the British aristocrat and his wife with their own eyes, and began to revere the Duke with renewed vigor. Philip himself is aware of the cult that exists around him. In the eighties, he sent photographic portraits of himself to the islanders, which later became an important part of this peculiar belief system.

Efate Island Vanuatu YJ0VK 2012

Interesting facts about Vanuatu

The official state languages are English, French and Bislama. However, it is not a fact that the locals can support a conversation in one of them - Vanuatu ranks first in the world in terms of the density of languages: there are 113 of them in the island republic.

Vanuatu has no standing army. In the event of an attack on the state will be declared mobilization.

Tourists should not take pictures of the locals without their permission. Some of them believe that photography takes away part of the soul.

In rural areas there is still a tribal system. The chiefs decide matters concerning daily life. Locals are more likely to turn to elders than to official authorities.

Athletes from Vanuatu regularly participate in the Olympic Games, but so far none of them has managed to win a single medal.

There is an underwater post office near the country's capital. In it sits a scuba diving employee accepting letters for mailing. The branch was built as a tourist attraction.

YJ0VK. Where is Vanuatu located. Map.

YJ0VK Vanuatu 2024. Sunrise 07-18-2024 at 19:17 GMT sunset at 06:39 GMT
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