Welcome to Hideaway Island: home of the world’s first underwater postbox

You may have noticed a craze for all things mermaid sweeping social media recently, affecting children and adults alike. One, somewhat surprising, early advocate of ‘devoting full time to floating’ was Vanuatu’s postal service! Back in 2003, Vanuatu Post decided to create the world’s first underwater post office.

A post shared by Andy Hugglestone (@a_huggz) on Aug 17, 2015 at 11:49pm PDT

The unusual location was created in recognition of the sea’s importance for the 83 islands that make up the archipelago of Vanuatu, a veritable marine paradise. Maybe less astonishingly, the idea was borne of alcohol, over a few drinks between the local postmaster and one of the island resort owners.

Situated roughly 50 metres from the scenic coast of Hideaway Island, Vanuatu, the post office sits about three metres deep in the water, where visitors can dive down to post special waterproof postcards complete with an indelible stamp. The postcards are available on the island and customers can tell when the post office is manned by a flag bobbing at the surface of the water. The office is made from a large modified fibreglass tank and, out of hours, postcards can be deposited in the attached underwater post box.

A post shared by Supa Tony (@supa_tony) on Aug 7, 2015 at 8:31pm PDT

The station is serviced by a rotation of specially trained postal staff and local dive masters who are happy to help out with both supervising the station and assisting anyone struggling to hold their breath long enough to get their postcard safely away. Vanuatu is a perfect location for snorkelling and diving and so thankfully there are quite a few able bodies about to give you a tour of the local sea life, or to help you let your granny know you wish she was there!

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Welcome to Hideaway Island: home of the world’s first underwater postbox
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