To my dearest friends, family and fellow culture cravers,
I have now been in Fiji for just over a week and can safely say this place is pure paradise.￼
It’s a lot less touristy than I’d expected, very easy and non-stressful to get around (thanks to the Yasawa Flyer) and has some of the clearest, bluest water and whitest sand I have ever seen.
Everywhere you go, friendly locals serenade you with the Fijian welcome song, living in a bikini 24/7 is the norm, wearing shoes is a rarity, being lulled to sleep by the sound of the sea is standard, power is limited to certain hours of the day, wifi is pretty much non-existent and swinging in hammocks and snorkelling the colourful reefs are your productive activities for the day.
I have now visited four of the Yasawa Islands – Nacula, Matacawalevu, Naviti and Drawaqa, which have all been bliss.
Each island tends to offer one or two secluded resorts right on the beach front where you sleep, eat and relax. There are zero shops or restaurants on the islands so all meals are included in the price of your accommodation (which ent cheap) and activities are organised by the staff to keep you busy.
As I mentioned in my last Postcards Home, I started my week at a homestay on the furthest Yasawa Island – Nacula for a couple of nights (read about my experience here) before hopping on the Yasawa Flyer to be whizzed to yet another slice of picture perfect sand.
Next, I arrived at Long Beach Resort on Matacawalevu. Boasting an intimate family feel, this resort was great for meeting other travellers, chatting with the staff and doing what Fiji does best – absolutely nothing.
Whilst I was there, I trekked to one of the many mountain peaks, which unveiled breathtaking panoramic views across the Yasawa Islands, played volleyball, learnt how to source coconut milk from a coconut (I’m pretty much Tom Hanks in Castaway) as well as, how to make jewellery out of a coconut!
It was a really relaxing stay with a heck load of activities thrown in for good measure.
I then travelled half an hour further South to White Sandy Beach Resort on Naviti Island. Here, I met a great group of people who I frolicked around in the water, snorkelled, chatted, ate and watched the sunsets with.
It was very similar to Long Beach in how remote, tranquil and small it was. The workers would teach us Fijian dances (think Fijian Macarena) and then join us by the bonfire in the evenings to tell us jokes, riddles and stories about the surrounding villages.
Finally, I jumped back on the boat (for all of 5 minutes) to Barefoot Manta Resort on Drawaqa. This accommodation was a little on the luxurious side (for a backpacker) so, was entirely different to the other places I had stayed. I stayed in a deluxe dorm overlooking the island’s sunrise beach, which was divineeeee…
I enjoyed a couple of days indulging in the vast food choices on offer for breakfast, lunch and dinner, being a beached whale on their three gorgeous beaches and watching the sunrise and set each day.
I had hoped to swim with the giant manta rays, which glide gracefully past the Fijian waters at this time of year. However, I was one of the unlucky people who they hid from the day I was supposed to go out (booo) – maybe next time mantas.
This week I will be heading even further South towards the Mamanuca Islands before arriving back on the main island.
Until next week…