Lifou, called ’the island of many faces’ is the largest of the Loyalty Islands and indeed offers many beautiful places to discover and enjoy – empty white sandy beaches, impressive caves and cliffs as well as its famous vanilla plantations – all your senses will be awakened during your stay!
Around 10 000 people live in Lifou, which is spread over the three ‘tribal custom’ districts – Wetr, Losi et Gaica. Wé, is the most populated area of the island and is also the administrative and economic centre of the Island. It is the main Loyalty Island. You will be delighted by your stay in Lifou – both by the local hospitality and its natural beauty.
Visit a vanilla plantation
Vanilla was brought to Lifou from Madagascar by the British vicar, Samuel Mc Farlane, and has become one of Lifou’s most renowned traditions. Several places offer a complete vanilla plantation tour with explanations of the complicated process how to obtain the famous vanilla pods (Traput, Jozip, Mu, Mucaweng).
This beautiful natural swimming pool is home to hundreds of multicolored tropical fish and coral. You can marvel at this rich variety of marine life in this protected marine reserve with your snorkeling gear. You will be amazed at the translucid coloured water.
This is a long white sandy beach in a beautiful natural cove shape. The Drehu Village hotel is right on the beach. The view is magnificient – a real picture postcard inviting you to just relax!
Santal Bay – Xepenehe
This bay, which is 50km long, got its name from the historical sandal wood trade between New Caledonia, China and Australia. Today the bay has been reconverted to welcome the cruise ship business.
Take a stroll along the cliff tops and be totally immersed in this impressive scenery with the ocean waves breaking onto the rocky cliffs. When the sky is clear you can catch a glimpse of the islands of Tiga and Mare.
These cliffs are located in the North of the island and offer a magnificient lookout point over the the sea where you can spot humpback whales between July and September.
This beach is considered one of the most beautiful in Lifou and you will no doubt agree ! Turquoise water, remarkably fine sand, rocky coral islets … another picture postcard !
Your guide will take you on a 2 ½ km walk to these magnificent blow holes. If you go early you will be rewarded with the beautiful morning light to make the most of this breathtaking landscape.
Take the track to this popular beach that visitors love. You will see the ruins of an ancient tribe who abandoned this site because of an epidemic of leprosy in 1935.
The Hnathalo chief’s tribal house
The tribal house belonging to the main chief of the district of Wetr, in Hnathalo, is one of the most beautiful traditional tribal houses in New Caledonia. It is a symbol of the local tribal customs. It is advisable to follow the customary tribal ritual (make an offering to the chief) in order to get permission to visit the house and take photos.
Albert, from the Tingeting tribe, will take you to visit the devil’s cave and will share local legends about this place with you.