Vanuatu is an archipelago nation consisting of 83 islands in the southwest Pacific Ocean, north of New Zealand and east of Australia. The pre-history of Vanuatu is obscure, but archaeological evidence supports the commonly held theory that peoples speaking Austronesian languages first came to the islands some 4,000 years ago. Pottery fragments have been found dating back to 1300–1100 BC. With such a large north-south area, Vanuatu has all the tropical variances possible, from hot and humid in the north, to mild and dry in the south. Cyclones are a natural phenomena to understand and respect. Mainstream tourism facilities are solidly built and experienced in cyclone management. Cyclones appear (in varying degrees with plenty of warning) on an average every couple of years from December to March. By following instructions given by the local authorities, you will be in no danger. Tourism peaks in the months of July to December. The months of January to June are the quietest. Experienced travelers take advantage of these tourism troughs to travel as airlines, accommodation providers and other tourism related businesses discount heavily during this period.