Luganville, Vanuatu

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Champagne Bay, named so because the water bubbles up at low tide, is on the northeast coast of Espiritu Santo, the largest island in Vanuatu. The island's fascinating blend of Pacific island culture and World War II history explains its allure for some visitors; the immaculate white-sand beaches and azure seas attract divers and snorkelers; and the tropical rain forests bring hikers and bird-watchers.Many physical traces of the American forces that arrived here in 1942 have become compelling attractions, too, such as the distinctive Quonset huts dotted around the town; the 200-meter (654-foot) shipwreck of the ss President Coolidge, which sank when it hit two mines in 1942; and Million Dollar Point, where the U.S. Army deliberately dumped a million dollars' worth of military machinery and goods into the sea, and which divers can still explore today. The town's port and adjacent markets are busy and vibrant, as is the bustling high street, and the diverse population includes many indigenous Ni-Vanuatu as well as residents of Chinese and European descent.