Thursday, July 27, 2017
We had a beautiful day and perfect conditions to depart the Yasawas and return to Musket Cove in the Mamanuca Islands. This is a favorite yachtie hangout. With Island resorts offering cruisers amenities not normally available including golf, tennis, sky diving, kite flying, surfing and some very good food it is easy to understand why.
This is still one of Kaija's favorite snorkeling spots out at Sunflower reef where you are likely to see sharks, turtles, rays coral snakes...it's ALL Good.
It is also a place to meet old friends. Such was the case for us when we reunited with Patricia and Allen (Sailing Cat Nauti Nauti), Maria and Maurice (Sv Cattiva)
We met Maria and Maurice in Isle Des Saints and Patricia and Allen in Trinidad, both in 2010 during our last season in the Eastern Caribbean. How good to see them and share fond memories and get reacquainted.
We made a quick trip back to Denarau to facilitate Kaija making her provisioning sojourn to Suva. There is a Cost U Less….say no more! And they deliver. Here in Kaija’s words.
“Had an exciting day yesterday. For all those who need to do a major provisioning here in Fiji, a trip to Cost U Less in Suva is worth the travel. So I have done this trip a couple of ways. Yesterday it was the 6:50 am bus out of Nadi bus station. It was the Sunset Suva Express.
This is a four hour trip with movie. Very comfortable and relaxing. Arrive in Suva about 11 am and then a short taxi ride to the store ($7 FJ). All things wonderful are here!
There is a McDonalds next door, if you need a bit of something, there is also a New World in the same complex.
So then you shop and the best of all is they will deliver all your goods ($300 FJ or more) to you in either Vuda or Denarau. Shopping must be done by Tues for Delivery Thurs. Then back to the bus station and fresh market for any last minute shopping.
This all took about two hours. I thought I would be catching a 3:30 bus, but as I was finished earlier, there was) a 2:15 pm express bus to Latoka that stops at Nadi (Express does not mean Express).
So off I went and was back on the boat by 7pm. The total cost was $15 FJ each way.
The first time I did this was with friends. We stayed overnight at the South Pacific Hostel which was near the museum and very inexpensive, clean and enjoyable. So if you are looking for adventure and a way to spend a stress free day, this is the way to shop. Hardest part was putting it all away.
With the Admiral safe returned from her overland adventure we set off again for Musket Cove.
While Kaija has enjoyed discovering the many of the splendid hiking trails on the island, Gary has found a couple of excellent tennis partners.
Jodi and Svitlana have been playing since they were Juniors in the native New Zealand and Germany. They are both incredibly fit and very fine ball strikers and with a total combined age less then Gary’s, despite his best efforts to will away the years and morf his game into something resembling the passion of McEnroe, the pace of Nadal and the grace of Federer (which alas a wassa notta gonna aa happen… and given their skillsets there is little chance of him truly keeping it up.
With an amazing display of power and accuracy these two excellent players take bi-weekly pity on this old man and graciously place their rocket shots within reach and make sport of it. By the end of the 90 minute workout, I am happy to say, everyone is sweating equally. It is great fun, wonderful exercise and a real treat for Gary each Monday and Thursday morning.
We are now in a holding pattern as we await a weather window for our Fiji Departure. We have really enjoyed this place.
Look for our next adventure chronicle from the lovely French islands of New Caledonia.
Saturday, April 15, 2017
Savu Savu Bye Bye…Yasawas here we come.
It was time to move and so we sailed back to Savu Savu, provisioned the boat, said our fond farewells and sailed west to Yadua Island.
This has always been a good sailing/fishing area for us and once again it served to offer favorable breezes and biting fish. We tagged three fat juicy Waloo (a local favorite, much like a Wahoo but with a noticeable Blue line running the length of the fish from shoulder to tail) by the time the hook went down in Yadua.
Kaija was hoping to see and photograph the rare and elusive and indigenous to this island the Crested Iguana is one of the rarest and to some one of the world’s most attractive lizards. It is endemic to less than 10 of Fiji’s 300 islands.
We did find one of the healthiest reefs, no doubt because of this isolated location and the fish and corral were abundant and beautiful.
However, she did spot a Blue Angel, snorkelling in the adjacent reef. She was thrilled.
After three quiet peaceful days alone in this quite remote little hurricane hole we departed for our final visit to the Yasawa Islands. First stop was Champagne Beach, a 5 mile stretch of white flour fine sand.
We spent time ashore with the Chief and his wife presenting them with fresh Fish instead of the traditional Kava as he is a Assemblies of God Pastor on the Island.
We enjoyed a couple of fun days with many of the locals as they prepared for a local cruise ship to bring a few hundred tourists to their small village to by their local wares, a real boon to the economy.
The weather was cooperating and gave us perfect conditions to head south to revisit Blue Lagoon. We enjoyed the snorkelling from our previous visit and set off to see some familiar sites.
We weren’t expecting to have a visit from a lovely, lively Coral Snake who was quite determined he wanted to slither up the side of the dingy, and it took a little persuading to send him on his way. Coral snakes are venomous and should be handled with extreme care.
After stopping for a night at Manta Bay Resort we carried on ri Musket Cove as the Rays were not resident. Apparently the best chances to see them on a daily basis is during the months of September and October.
Monday, February 20, 2017
Regardless, it is something special to see these 10 foot wide sea creature swimming toward you with his 3 foot mouth wide open and into which you could easily fit…and so thankful that you know it is only filter feeding on plankton, the smallest of all marine animals. What a treat!
Our new friends Chris and Scott had never sailed, so we took a quick day trip across to Somo Somo on Taveuni Island.
We were so close to the 180 meridian we hired a cabby to get us there and he got lost…but we had fun and a lot of giggles.
Saturday, December 17, 2016
Thursday, December 08, 2016
Friday, October 14, 2016
Sunday, September 11, 2016
Gary even managed to find a new buddy...albeit he was a little standoffish...a lovely Leopard Shark allowed him to swim up close and personal.