The 18 new castaways are treated to a traditional Vanuatu ceremony including a sacrifice and the creation of a male and female tribe. The nine men -- Chad Crittenden, Chris Daugherty, Brady Finta, Rory Freeman, Brook Geraghty, John Kenney, Lea "Sarge" Masters, John "J.P." Palyok and Travis "Bubba" Sampson -- make up the Lopevi Tribe (wearing red). The nine women -- Julie Berry, Ami Cusack, Mia Galeotalanza, Lisa Keiffer, Scout Cloud Lee, Dolly Neely, Eliza Orlins, Leann Slaby and Twila Tanner -- make up the Yasur Tribe (wearing yellow). Once settled in camp, revelations are discovered after one of the guys (Chad) reveals he has a prosthetic leg on account of losing the lower half of his leg due to Cancer. After a victorious Immunity and Reward Challenge for the girls of Yasur, the guys of Lopevi are forced to vote someone out of the tribe.
The women divide their alliances among the young and the old while they continue their work on their camp. The women prove to be strong during the reward challenge, but lose the Immunity Challenge and are sent to their first Tribal Council. It's a tight vote, but Dolly is the first female voted out of the women tribe.
As the two tribes gather for the Immunity Challenege, Jeff tells them that regardless of the outcome, both tribes are going to seperate Tribal Councils. The tribes first fight for reward which is won by the men. Then the men battle for single immunity, won by John K. By winning immunity, John K. spends the day with the girl tribe deciding which woman will receive immunity when the tribe goes to vote. At Tribal Council, John P. is voted out of the tribe even though conflicts with Rory are present. As the men leave, John K. stays until the women arrive. Once there, he gives the single Immunity to Ami, stating she was safe anyway. The vote reveals that the women remain divided and the "younballoons" are shocked to see Mia get voted off.
When the girls return to their camp, Eliza was shocked that Lisa betrayed the "young girls" alliance by siding with the "older girls" alliance and voting Mia out. On the male tribe, the alliance of the older men remains strong. The women win the Reward Challenge, a native of the Islands will spend 24 hours with the tribe. The reward win lifts the spirits of the women as they are supplied with island food and a more comfortable shelter. The women continue their winning streak when the men are sent to Tribal Council. Although Rory continues to be a target, the alliance of the elder men are able to show their strength as Brady, a member from the "young alliance", is voted out.
The two tribes are surprised to see native men approach their campsite. Right away these natives asks both tribes to pick one cheif and they leave. Right before the Reward Challenge as the castaways are busy with their regular work at their campsites, they are all surprised when an earthquake comes out of nowhere. At the Reward Challenge, both tribes are shaken up, mixing the males and females. After the new tribes get to know each other, Yasur goes to Tribal Council after losing the challenege. A female alliance remains strong as Bubba, one of 2 guys on the new Yasur tribe, is voted off.
At Yasur, Rory begins to break down the women alliance, while Lisa's trust is questioned by Ami. Meanwhile at Lopevi, Julie sunbathes.
Lopevi continued with their original plan made by the alliance of elders. At camp it seemed John K. spent more time taking naps than helping out. Yasur wins the Reward Challenge enjoying coffee and croissants with letters from home. After losing the Immunity Challenge, Lopevi decide who to vote off.
The two tribes merge into one tribe called Alinta, and instantly, the alliances between the men and women appear. Lead by Rory, the men plan to vote Ami out, but the tables are turned when Rory is the first member of the merged tribe to get voted out.
While getting treemail, Eliza is surprised to get a live pig that comes with the mail, but the meaning of the pig remains a mystery. Fueled by their hatred for each other, Scout and Eliza try to get the other one out. Struggling for strength, the men rally the help of Twila to beat the strong female alliance. But it does them no good as "Sarge" is the 10th contestant to get voted off and becomes the first member of the jury.
With only two men remaining, Chad and Chris try to stir things up among the woman alliance. After the Immunity Challenge, Scout immediately tries to have Eliza voted out. But Ami was hesitant and wanted to stick to the previous plan by voting out all the men before any women. In the end, the Alinta women remain strong with their plan as they continue picking off the men one by one.
The remaining castaways return to camp and Chris finds himself now being the only male left. During the reward challenge, the castaways are surprised by a short visit from their loved ones. Eliza won an overnight visit from her mom and was saddened when she had to leave. The next day at the Immunity Challenge, Jeff surprises the survivors again as he reveals their loved ones will be involved in the competition. After the challenge, Chris started an alliance with Eliza, Scout and Twila to finally break the alliance of women lead by Ami.
The episodes starts off with Twila fighting with Amy over on how the last Tribal Council votes went. When the castaways arrived at the Reward Challenge, Jeff arrived in a new Pontiac saying that the Reward Challenge was to swim across the water onto a platform, walk across the beam, back on the platform, into the water, go under and grab a flag and do the obstical back onto the beach and put the flag on a pole, they then had to repeat it until the first 3 Survivors had 3 flags on their pole. The first one won the car and a very big clean up including a shower, food, and an over night stay. The other 2 would join the winner in the stay overnight. Ami had the lead most of the way, while Twila and Scout stayed very behind. Eliza was right behind Ami. Julie and Chris fought for 3rd. In a close race, Ami fell off her platform giving Eliza the first place and car, while Ami got second joining Eliza on the trip. In a tight race for the third spot on the trip, Chris beat Julie by just a little bit. The 3 Survivors jumped in the car and headed out.
Back at camp, Scout and Twila were mad about the reward, while Julie just chilled. At the resort, Ami tried pursuading Eliza and Chris to join her saying how she always had their back. Chris didnt believe her for a second, while Eliza started to wonder. When they returned, there was tension about how Eliza was chilling with Ami and Julie. Eliza was saying how they were sisters to each other.
At immunity the survivors found out their challenge featured a shuffleboard with differnt islands on them. They would slide their chips down the board, and it had to hit an island for a point. The others could either try and get their own point or try knocking each others chips off the board. The end featured a close tie between Ami and Chris, but in the end, Chris had won his first immunity. Before tribal council, Ami, Julie, and Eliza were discussing how Scout had never had a vote against her and it would be a shock if she was the one to go. Meanwhile, Chris thought about the chances of a tie.
When they arrived at Tribal Council, Jeff mentioned to Scout how she said she wanted the girls to stick together days before. Eliza and Ami got emotional about how they thought of each other as sisters. It looked like it would be a tie between Scout and Ami. But in the end Eliza stuck with her final four team and voted out Ami in a 2-4 vote.
After a grueling tribal council Eliza was still eyeing Twila.
But it would have to wait when reward came. It turned out to be a tournament type challenge. Scout was eliminated first, Eliza second and Chris third. In a match between Julie and Twila, Julie slipped past an easy win. She was able to select somebody and chose Chris. They enjoyed hotdogs, wine, and beer, along with a beautiful view of the Mount Yasur eruption. Julie also got her chance to talk to Chris about voting out Twila and taking her and Eliza to the final 3, Chris never said no.
Meanwhile, Scout and Twila had an awesome time tourturing Eliza, making Eliza say how much she wanted Twila gone.
Chris and Julie returned and informed Eliza of their plan. She was pleased with it and agreed to write Twila's name.
Immunity came and Jeff told them a story, he said that the survivors would run to a hut, unscramble a puzzle, answer a question, grab a trunk-like object. If it was white, they could hang it on a hook with their name on it, if it was black, it meant they were wrong and had to run back to their name, burn it and start again. It was mainly a close race between Eliza, Julie, and Chris. It then turned out to be a race to the end with Eliza and Julie. Eliza got her 5th trunk on the pole and won immunity. As happy as she was, back at camp, Twila caught her and Chris planning strategy. Chris told Eliza he would vote Julie out and told Julie he would vote out Twila. But when it came to immunity, Chris said it was very hard and he didnt want to vote. It became down to a tie between Twila and Julie. The last vote was read and it was Julie. Eliza had a shocked look on her face as Julie had her torched burned out. Chris bowed his head down as Eliza looked out at him....
As night 36 took hold, the four remaining Alinta tribe members took stock of their situation. Angry at some of the things said about her at Tribal Council, Eliza vented her frustration. Final Four converged for an Immunity Challenge that was the first-ever Survivor vertical maze. The Castaways must navigate through a huge, eight-level vertical maze. The challenge started in a flurry as all four tribemates hurried into the massive vertical labyrinth. It was a close competition as each Castaway collected their letter pairs.
The next day the remaining Alinta members were instructed to paddle across the way to Chief Roy Matta's resting place, where they would pay their respects to their fallen tribemates. The final Immunity Challenge was a test of endurance. The Survivors must stand on two small platforms; each must hold a bow and arrow and strike a warrior pose. Whoever falls off the platform or releases the arrow to pierce a paper marker is eliminated.
After the final survivor is announced as the winner, the rest of the Survivor contestants join the winner to answer questions from the audience, the host and questions that were e-mailed in. They talked about scenes from the show that stood out, and talked about some things that happened but did not make it to the airing of a show. After watching the show with the rest of the world the contestants had some questions for each other as well.