Fiji October 2009
We've been waiting for 6 years to go back to Fiji.  This time we decided to maximize our airfare by trading out a timeshare week and extending our time by visiting another island and resort for a 2nd week.  Next time (oh yes, we'll be back) we hope to stay 3 weeks or more. 

First resort Beqa Lagoon Resort, Beqa, Fiji.  Second resort Naigani Resort, Naigiani, Fiji

07/24/2008

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Arriving at Beqa...

Our luggage arrived, waiting for the bus

Our bus for the cross country trek

2 hours on a bus now 30 minutes on a boat

The welcoming committee is ready for us

Some people know how to start off a vacation right

Our first sunset from our bure

 

Visiting the school...

We walked to the village of Raviravi and visited the school.  This is 1st thru 8th grades.  They sang to us, entertained us for an hour.  We thoroughly enjoyed it all.  Here they are waiting for us to arrive.

 

Diving...

So many colors, it's hard to pick the ones to show. 

See the tiny blue fish that live in the coral?

Nemo is alive and well

This little guy looks surprised

Fiji has more crinoids than anywhere we have ever been

Blue ribbon eel

Black ribbon eel (juvenile blue ribbon)

Clown trigger

Lion fish

Black lion fish

One of the many odd nudibrandts

 

Something different

We saw many of this tiny guy

Vibrant sea fans and crinoids

Very tiny shrimp

Leaf scorpion fish

Dawn, Pete, Cindy, Byron

Nudibrandt

Another blue ribbon

More colors

This lion was guarding a sunken ship

Huge sea fans

Why is this hoard of fish coming at me?

Oh, because our dive master is feeding them

A magnificient specimen

We called these the Pillsbury Dough Boys

See the brown coral

See it change color when you touch it

Vibrant soft coral

More beauty

Anemones look funny when they are closed

 

Walking to the waterfall...

There is a local waterfall that is close by.  We were escorted by Tiemo who was good to explain the things we saw and the reasons for many things as we went.

On the way up...

Local pineapple grows wild, mmmmm...

some farming along the way

more farming

Queued up to get up the rocks

The waterfall is beautiful

Don coming back down

 

A visit to Rukua village...

One afternoon we had the opportunity to walk to another village and see their village and talk with their members.

On the way

Rukua village

The village chief

The chief's wife

Scene in the village

A boy up in the coconut tree

Don & Donna under a magnificient tree

The path back to the resort

 

The Firewalkers...

Beqa Island is the only place that the Firewalkers come from.  They are able to walk across hot rocks with no pain, injury or discomfort.

The fire has been burning since early morning.

Preparing for the walk

Beginning.....

They're all at it now.

 

Don is Ratu...

Don was elected as honorary chief for the group or, Ratu.  The workers in the restaurant referred to him as "Ratu" until we left.  It was an honor and his head did swell appropriately with it.

Don is the honoree...

Mixing the kava

Ready to serve the Ratu

Byron has kava

 

Naigani Island/Resort...

Naigani (pronounced Nahn ga' nee) Resort was our 2nd stop.  Beqa Lagoon put us on a taxi for a one hour ride to Suva (the capitol of Fiji).  From there another one hour plus ride to a boat jetty on the eastern side of the island and a 30 minute boat ride to a tiny island.  Naigani is only about 540 acres with one native village and the resort.  The island does have its own fresh water springs and the local people do some farming and grow most of their own food.

This was our bure, a 2 bed 2 bath house with a large front & back yard.   

We had a small welcomer in the main bathroom when we arrived. 

 

Diving...

Diving on Naigani was different as we were the only divers this week.  A number of other guests, but none were divers, so we had the boat and the dive masters to ourselves.  The diving was better than at Beqa.  More color, more fish and less current.

A huge crinoid clutching the coral

Hard coral feeding

Bright soft corals

A large school of barracuda waiting as we jumped off the boat

Little tiny fish hiding in the coral

This guy followed for 2 days

An elusive pair

Blue soft coral

More coral

One of many swim thrus

More sea fans

This is a Stone Fish

He's not too big, but he puffed up when we arrived

Another of the varied nudibrandts

Giant clam, there were many of these

Fan, coral, crinoid & fish

This couple stuck together

Starfish

A tiny coral out feeding

Soft coral variety

Huge white sea fan

Just lovely

Saw lots, but hard to get a picture

Fan & crinoid

Another star variety

 

A trip to the old capitol...

We had an opportunity to take a boat trip to a nearby island where the old capitol of Levuka is.  A trip experience not to be missed.

Tide is out so we have to wade to the boat

We dock at a small village and this little guy was the first to greet us

This little one was the next to greet us

The village we docked at

One more greeter

This is our taxi across 2 small mountains and the island to the capitol

See the road below

We're almost to the to

Going down to the town

Site of the initial transference of the Fijian Islands to Britain

Commemerative spot

Don & Donna at the commemorative site in Levuka

Beautiful island

Local flora

City streets

Not unlike many other places

Oops as we leave we have to stop for waves over the road as the tide comes in

Our taxi is for us and for locals

Rain has muddied the road for the return trip

 

Nightly entertainment....

Every night the local group played.  Not only local music, but Dylan and other western artists.  It was an eclectic blend and very enjoyable.

Sam, Toka and David take a kava break

Now we're playing again

 

A visit to the village...

We took a visit to the local village.  Most enjoyable and informative.

Don is in his sulu as we are walking to the village

Our guide Stephen leads us into the village

Our welcoming committee

Romoly gives us history and culture of the village

The village conch

The women are working the the community center when we arrive

The men are drinking kava and Don is made Ratu AGAIN!!

The walking path back to the resort

 

They sing as we depart once again...

First, our favorite guy David...  and this is most of the staff including our local host, Epi...

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