Ambae is an island of the southwest Pacific New Hebrides and part of the island republic of Vanuatu. She is one of the three main islands of the province Penama and the sixth largest island in the country and measures 608 km ².
Until the independence of Vanuatu ( 1980), the island still called Aoba.
Geography and society
Ambae is located 50 kilometers east of Espiritu Santo and every 25 kilometers southwest of Maéwo and northwest of the Pentecost Island. The island is oval in shape with a length ( northeast to southwest ) of about 38 kilometers and an average width of 16 kilometers. It is densely forested inland and is the centrally located 1,496 meters high shield volcano Lombenben, which is sometimes also still called Aoba, dominates. The basaltic volcano with a volume of 2,500 cubic kilometers of the most massive of the archipelago of the New Hebrides. The summit is supported by three crater lakes formed with a diameter of up to 6 km. The two summit crater Lake and Lake Voui Manaro Ngoru originated from an eruption 360 years ago. On November 27, 2005 began an ash and steam eruption, which led to evacuation preparations of population, two hospitals. On December 8, the outbreak was intense, leading to the evacuation of 5,000 residents of the island. The last volcanic eruption took place in 2006.
Ambae has about 10,000 residents who live in small villages mainly on the west coast. Capital of the island and the province Penama is Saratamata on the northeast coast. There and at two other places of Ambae are simple start and runways for small airplanes.
For traditional ( kastom Bislama ) Music includes three different sizes, horizontal slit played drums. In the drum ensembles dingidingi in the east and in the west of the island tingitingi are the largest slit drum ratahigi the rhythm. The dingidingi ensemble occurs in pig killing ceremony na huqe, a rite of passage.