"Mystery Island" - renamed for tourists, I assume

Yesterday the Celebrity Solstice left New Caledonia territory for a few hours and sailed to the nation of Vanuatu.  The destination?  Mystery Island.

Caroline is standing on the grass runway for the island's airstrip.
Other than the beaches, the main feature is the grass runway.

Actually, I can't find much about "Mystery Island." The island we visited actually is Inyeug Island, which is uninhabited but used for a cruise destination and the regional airport for Aneityum, the southernmost island in Vanuatu.  I think "Mystery Island" runs off the tourist brochure and tongue better than "
Inyeug Island."

We spent an hour walking around the perimeter of the island. We usually walk pretty fast, and this walk should have taken us 20 minutes or so, but we kept being distracted by the thousands of little hermit crabs scurrying on the beach.

You had to be careful not to step on these little guys!
Finally, after scoping out the island, we decided to go snorkeling.  Unfortunately, a strong current had started parallel to the shore where we wanted to go, and it really kept us in an area that was suboptimal snorkeling conditions.  The highlight, however, was our first pipefish, which is related to seahorses (spied first by Caroline)!  The sandy bottom was just covered with sea cucumbers, which certainly was a commercial fishery in the past.

Our 10 cm pipefish looked something like this one.
Next visit, start snorkeling first, and walk around second.  No cats.  And no signs of sea turtle nesting (old body pits, shell remains).  I suspect all the adult female sea turtles were captured and eaten long ago.

There's a small craft fair set up on the island when cruise ships arrive.


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