The Yasawa Islands

Trip Start Mar 18, 2007
Trip End Mar 16, 2008

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Flag of Fiji  ,
Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Bula Bula Bula!!

We arrived into Nadi and noticed immediately the difference in temperature. Lovely sunshine and temps around 30-35 degrees met us as we left the plane. From a previous blog by one of Rhona's friends we stayed at Mama's Tropic of Capricorn hostel about 10mins from the airport. This was a great suggestion and it was indeed an honour to say hello to the lovable hostess and owner: Mama! Thanks for always making us feel at home and all the cooked dinners and breakfasts!

After staying a few days at Mama's we decided on going island hopping to the Yasawas for the remaining 2 weeks of our stay in Fiji. We booked them through the hostel and were very glad after talking to fellow backpackers who had a very bad experience booking with another hostel nearby called EDGEWATER BAY. Whatever you do, NEVER book anything with this place as the owner (a lady... can't remember her name) consistantly asks for 100% of the money (10-20% deposits are usual... not 100%) and never pays the places... hence they refuse anyone who booked through her. The police have arrested her numerous times... be warned!!

Well, we intended on going to the following islands and resorts in the Yasawas, and then as a special treat for Rhona's 30th B-day we booked a beachfront Bure (Hut) in The Walu Beach Resort for two nights. Thanks to Poni who knew the manager and gave us an unbelievable 60% off the normal price!

Yasawa Islands:
2 ngts on Nacula Island, Nabua Lodge
2 ngts on Matacawalevu Island, Bay of Plenty
3 ngts on Naviti Island, White Sandy Beach
3 ngts on Waya Island, Sunset Waya Resort

Mamanuca Islands:
2 ngts on Mololo Island, The Resort Walu Beach.

All the Yasawa Islands were great and the atmosphere was generally great. All the people working on the islands really made the places hospitable and made the events such as bula dancing, hermit crab racing and prawn fishing all the more enjoyable.

Nabua Lodge was a great start for the island hopping and the bure was great. Also, the people were a complete range of backpackers and everyone got on very well, with one thing in common... to have a fun relaxing time and soak up the sun. Some of the main events here were going to the enclosed cave (where you have to hold your breath and dive under the water for 2 metres to come up into a dark cave which is illuminated by the guide's torch), fishing off the reef (we all caught nothing, but all had a great time anyway! The guide caught 4 fish... naturally!!) and scuba diving (another underwater cave 18m underwater and then dived along the reef wall). Also, I walked around the island to the other resort called Oarsmans Bay Lodge and met a couple of friendly Aussies, borrowed their snorkelling equipment, went for a snorkel at the amazing coral in the bay, said thanks and made my way back to the Nabua Lodge before the high tide blocked my route back!!

From here we went to Bay of Plenty and were greeted by a very nice bunch of Fijians and realised that there were only 3 of us at the resort (us and a very nice german girl). It was nice and we visited the nearby village where we watched them playing touch rugby. Great place but perhaps a bit too tranquil for us... also, due to the high tide the beach disappeared for half the day. Nevertheless the staff were great (esp Jacob and Duncan) and the mongolian dinner was amazing... especially eating the clams we had dug out earlier in the day. Here we also visited the Blue Lagoon (from the Brooke Shields movie) and had a great snorkelling day.

White Sandy beach was a great place and the beach was the nicest so far. Also, the staff were probably the best on the Yasawas and were hilarious. The greeting dance was fun as was the touristy bula dance we all had to take part in (a bit like the macarana!). On Waya the Sunset Waya resort was also great especially with the bit of sand joining Waya and Wayalailai islands. You could walk from one island to the other at low tide. The prawn fishing was billiant and after catching 2 prawns myself I had them cooked for me for my lunch. If you have a chance to prawn fish amongst the freshwater rock-pools, it's a must do! After 3 days we set sail on the large Yasawa Flyer catamaran to go to Mololo Island via Beachcomber island. We felt like filmstars when we were picked up from Beachcomber to Mololo by a speedboat just for us two!! Very flash! Indeed, the Mololo Island's Walu Beach Resort was a level up from the backpacker resorts on the Yasawas and our Bure was unbelievably comfortable. The staff were good fun and when asked for a cake for Rhona's birthday they made a big cake and (when the signal was given... :-) ) they arrived at the bar with the cake and played on the guitars a Fijian style happy birthday! A good night and Paul the barman was good company for watching the rugby world cup at 4am in the pool bar!

So, after a great time island hopping we headed back for the mainland, stayed one more night at Mama's and caught the plane to Sydney on the 11th Sept... on flight FJ911... mmmmmm... glad we all made it safely!!
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