Taveuni rental accommodations Fiji  
e-mail: info@fiji-rental-accommodations.com
 

Excursions On Taveuni Island

LAVENA VILLAGE, COASTAL WALK AND WAINIBAU WATERFALLS
A wonderfully scenic and cultural experience. You will need a total of about 5-6 hours to complete the whole trip including driving time. First the magnificent 45-minute drive to Lavena village. There you pay the village a $5 per person fee. From the village it is a leisurely walk along the beach to the river. There is a path along the river you follow for a short while longer. At the end of the path, leave your clothes and swim up stream a few hundred feet.

The water is usually shallow and you could even wade up river most of the way.
The river makes a sharp bend and lo and behold, you are now in a spectacular box canyon where two marvelous waterfalls provide the water. Enjoy your swim and shower under the falls. Either on your way to the river or en route back to the river, you should explore the superb tide pools far out on the beach. Best at low tide. Bring a lunch and your swimsuits.

Good sandals [with heel straps] or simple reef-walking shoes are adequate. Flip-flops are not adequate. Like all Fiji rivers, the water is considered pure to drink. A good way to do this excursion is to depart at 8AM via taxi and return via the afternoon 2PM bus back home. The walk takes about 1˝ hours each way with an hour for lunch and a swim at the falls.
BOUMA FALLS:
Bouma Falls is one of the most beautiful spots on Taveuni. Located in Tavaro National Park, it is a perfect half or full day trip. It takes about 30 minutes for the drive [north]. The taxi will take you to a point just past the village of Bouma from which the Falls are about a ten-minute walk from the main road. Recently Bouma has gone through a transformation. The area around the first waterfall has been "landscaped" and additional picnic tables, benches, and a changing room has been incorporated. The waterfall is approximately 80 feet in height and falls into a pool where one can go swimming and dive off the rocks. There is a small "beach" area for picnicking and relaxing. Also, a wonderful trail has been built up to a second and third waterfall which is a very worthwhile trip for the bit more energetic.


WARRIOR BURIAL CAVE: A lava tube cave which runs from about 1200 feet down to the ocean was used by ancient Fijians as a secret burial ground for warriors. It was believed that, upon death, Taveuni's greatest warriors were buried in the cave in order to keep their death a secret from enemies. Most of the large bones were removed when the cave was 'discovered' in the 1950's. Guides will proudly show you the biers where their ancestors were laid to rest. The cave is dark and usually a bit muddy. Shoes are recommended. The entire trip, which includes a look at Soqulu Plantation, takes about 3 hours. Bring a flashlight.

VIDAWA FOREST EXCURSION: An adventurous and bit more strenuous hike into Bouma National Heritage Park. 3-4 hours of wilderness walking through pristine protected rainforest, including the historic fortified site of Navuga Village. The coastal views are magnificent and the bird life abundant. The trip is fully escorted with local Fijian guides who will tell you much about the traditional uses of the forest, the flora and the fauna. Lunch is prepared and served enroute by native villagers. Trip ends with a swim at Bouma Waterfall where locals provide afternoon tea. Suitable for active people who don't mind getting a little muddy. Good sandals with heel straps, reef walkers or tennis shoes are fine. Can be slippery after a rain. Trips limited to 8 persons. Minimum age of 12 years. Trip runs once or twice a week.

BIRD WATCHING AT DES VOEUX PEAK: It has been claimed that the island of Taveuni is host to nearly all the birds to be found in Fiji. In particular, Des Voeux Peak at dawn is the place to be if you are a keen bird watcher. Professor Allen Keast and Mr. David Bishop, both respected in the field of bird watching, describe the experience here as one of their most memorable. In particular, you may catch sight of the Orange Breasted Dove and the Silktail, to be found nowhere else in the world. Keep your eyes open and binoculars poised! The entire trip takes about 4 to 5 hours and can be a bit rugged.

BIRD WATCHING AT QELENI: Another excellent site is the hills above Qeleni Village at the northern end of the island. It takes about 20 minutes to drive to Qeleni and then along a three-mile road up a mountainside. Here birds are quite easy to spot and a good time is Aug.-Sept - when the birds are actually nesting. Parrots, Orange Breasted Doves, Silktail and Ferntails inhabit this area. You will descend by walking. Bird viewing is best VERY early in the morning as daybreak begins. You should leave the house about 5AM.

LAKE TAGIMAUCIA: Perhaps the most famous geographical landmark on the island is Lake Tagimaucia which is located in an old crater 2500 feet high in the mountains. The lake is filled with floating masses of vegetation. It is also home to Fiji's most famous and beautiful flower, the "tagimaucia", which produces red blooms with white centers. Contrary to popular belief, which suggests that the tagimaucia flower grows nowhere else but on the shores of the lake, the epiphytic plant does flourish elsewhere. Still, any attempt to transplant the flower at a lower altitude has failed. The flower usually blooms from the end of September to end of December. The lake is located just below Des Voeux Peak which is the second highest of Taveuni at 3600 feet, with Uluigalau being 3750 high. These are among the highest mountains in Fiji. The hike to the lake is a bit difficult. The track is often muddy and therefore slippery. The round-trip trek takes about 8 hours, which includes rest stops and time for a picnic lunch. The track starts at Nagara. It is also possible to take a four-wheel drive vehicle [weather and road conditions permitting], which takes a slightly different route and arrives at a point from which you look down on the lake [but can't actually get to the lake]. Driving takes about one hour each way.

NASELESELE and QELENI VILLAGES: Neselesele is about a 20-minute walk down the road from the house. A taxi is needed to get to Qeleni, which is certainly our favorite local village to visit. You can visit these villages anytime, especially if you have a bag of pounded grog (kava) with you Ladies should wear a skirt covering to the knee or a sulu. Men can wear long shorts. No hats, please! Upon arriving, you need to contact one of the villagers to request a meeting with one of the chiefs for permission. Request a tour of the village and don't hesitate to take pictures.


VATUSOGOSOGO VILLAGE:

It is indeed a treat to visit one of Fiji's most traditional and most spectacularly situated villages is located on the island of Qamea, just a few miles off the coast of Taveuni. Their Sunday morning church service is a beautifully memorable experience. You will need a boat to get there.


VUNA VILLAGE, BLOW HOLE AND NAVAKAWAU (END OF THE ROAD): At the southern end of the island is located the village of Vuna, which played an important role in the settlement of the first Europeans on Taveuni. The original plantations and homes of these white people were within the jurisdiction of Vuna and thus the land was either purchased or bartered from the Tui Vuna (the chief of that area). Some of this land is still owned by the descendants of the original settlers. Beyond Vuna is a village (Navakawau) which has the distinction of literally being at the "end of the road" - this is where the road ends at the southern end of the island. It is a beautiful drive along rugged coastline down to Navakawau. One of the highlights is the "Blow Hole" which is quite impressive to see and makes for wonderful photos. There are several spots along the way where you can stop for a picnic lunch - sandy beaches and secluded lagoons. The entire trip takes a minimum of four hours.

WAIRIKI MISSION: About a 30-minute drive (which crosses the International Dateline) takes you to the lovely old Catholic mission at Wairiki. The drive crosses the official dateline marker. Be certain to stop and take a picture. The mission sits on the hill and overlooks the site where Taveuni warriors turned back thousands of Tongans in a battle, which was fought in canoes just off the beach. This battle was of historical significance in the history of Fiji, in that Tonga had gained control of all of the rest of Fiji through a series of battles. The Taveuni warriors saved Fiji from the Tongans. The warriors then celebrated by cooking the Tongans in a lovo and eating them with breadfruit! The French Missionary priest who advised the Taveuni warriors on fighting strategy was "rewarded" when the grateful people of Taveuni built the large mission. Guests are welcome to attend Mass on Sunday mornings at 7:00 or 9:00 A.M. The singing is absolutely wonderful. Please remove your shoes before entering. Money is scarce on Taveuni, so you are encouraged to contribute to the offering. The school's rugby practice begins around 4:30 P.M. Mon.-Fri. Ask the children to show you their dormitory living quarters, and their outdoor cooking facilities catering to over 250 children. Saturdays the children often gather at Big Cimba Cimba waterfall and swimming hole, just a minute walk from the mission. The children will also show you the path for a beautiful walk through Tavuke village. Sunday morning mass here should not be missed. When you hear the Fijian voices, you will see why. Since the service is in Fijian, do not think of this as religion but more like a concert. A very special event. Stop at the dateline on return.

WAITAVALA WATERSLIDE: About a 20-minute taxi ride south from the house, or you can go by bus. This natural waterslide is a picturesque spot - secluded, verdant and fun to explore. The waterslide is a little tricky but worth the ride. Wear some old shorts. Maybe stop at the Cannibal Café for lunch. Trip is easily combined with a tour to Wairiki Mission (above). BUS TOUR: Get on our local bus and see the island for a real Fijian 'slice of life'.

VILLAGE VISITS:
IT IS ALWAYS PROPER TO FIRST ASK ONE OF THE VILLAGE CHIEFS PERMISSION TO TOUR HIS VILLAGE. HE WILL NORMALLY THEN REQUEST ONE OF THE VILLAGE MEMBERS TO ESCORT YOU AROUND THE VILLAGE AND EXPLAIN THINGS TO YOU. PLEASE REMEMBER THE DRESS CODE WHEN PARTAKING IN VILLAGE ACTIVITIES. PLEASE NO HATS NOR SUNGLASSES SHOULD BE WORN IN VILLAGES. WOMEN MUST BE COVERED TO THE KNEE AND NO BARE SHOULDERS IN THE VILLAGE. WHILE VISITING A VILLAGE NEVER POINT AT ANOTHER PERSON AND NEVER TOUCH THEM ON THE HEAD. CAMERAS ARE MOST WELCOME AS FIJIANS FEEL IT AN HONOR TO HAVE THEIR PICTURES TAKEN. MAYBE BRING SOME HARD CANDIES FOR THE CHILDREN AND ABOUT ONE-KILO OF YAQONA AS A GIFT TO THE CHIEF. IF VISITING QELENI OR VATUSOGOSOGO IT WOULD BE A NICE GESTURE TO CONTRIBUTE ABOUT $5 PERSON TO THEIR SCHOOL OR CHURCH FUND.



 
     
   

E-mail: info@fiji-rental-accommodations.com