This morning we are holed up in the harbor of the small town of Savusavu (population: 5,000) on a grey showery day. There are internet cafes here so it’s my big chance to upload photos of the trip thus far.
We spent nearly a week at Yadua Island – hiking, beachcombing, snorkeling and diving. Elize found her own chambered nautilus on the same beach where I found mine…they are few and far between and people can spend years searching, but apparently this beach, named Nautilus Beach, is famous for them.
The diving scenery was quite spectacular as well…we found walls of yellow soft corals mixed in with irridescent purple speckled ones and big gorgonian sea fans. We spotted sea turtles as well as the white tipped reef sharks.
Day before yesterday we pulled out of Yadua and motored some 40 miles en route to Savusavu – too far for a one day trip so we anchored overnight in a big bay on the main island of Vanua Levu named Wainunu Bay. The water was glass calm with zero wind that night and we enjoyed a very peaceful evening under the stars on the foredeck, listening to music and sipping wine while fish splashed about in the quiet bay. There wasn’t really a lot of phosphorescence, but still we could look down into the dark water and see individual sparks of light like little underwater stars.
Next day we made an early start, motoring another 25 miles or so to Savusavu. I rode most of the passage astride the boom and must have seen a thousand or more flying fish – and got a sunburned as well!!!. Again the water was glassy smooth, no wind, and every few boat lengths Raven’s hull would scare up between five and twenty flying fish skittering across the water to get out of our way – for the entire 25 mile trip.
Both days we trolled for fish with great success! We caught a small mackerel, followed by a big fat barracuda with a bulging tummy that revealed his most recent meal…a small trevally. Take a look at the photo of his teeth! And the following day another walou and at the very last, as Rod was coiling in the line to stow it, a fat yellowfin tuna struck the lure and wound up as our lunch in the form of sashimi! Our freezer is packed full of fresh fish!
We have a funny bright pink squid shaped lure, gradually getting the worse for wear, that seems to have a great attraction for the fish. We have a supply of exact copy spares purchased from Bob’s Fish & Bait Shop last season in Nadi – who knows what will happen to our fishing prowess when the last of the lures wears out.
Savusavu is a quiet little town with a great feel to it…very tropical and laid back, a one-street village winding along the waterfront. We had dinner out at the Bula Re Restaurant last night, started by a German woman who arrived here by yacht some eight years ago. We have plans for Indian curry for lunch today. Fiji’s largest black pearl farm is here and offers tours. Mike and I plan to take the tour if it isn’t pouring rain when the time comes. I thought I’d buy myself a nice black pearl necklace as a souvenir, but for $6,000 – $8,000 each (a Fijian dollar is about 60 cents U.S.) I decided to pass.
There is a good market here and we are staying at least through Saturday morning which is the big day at the market and our best chance for restocking fresh produce.
There are a couple of upscale resorts nearby, including the Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort, run by the son of Jacques.