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When planning our trip to Fiji, we wanted more than a resort experience.
In our research, we came across Taveuni Island, and boy were we glad we made the effort to visit and explore this beautiful paradise!
With friendly locals, empty beaches and untouched nature we often felt like we were the only people (or at least one of the very few!) that was discovering this island. I had to think twice before writing this post, as I enjoyed my time here so much I selfishly have wanted to keep this island all to myself.
Getting to Taveuni Island
Taveuni is a short 1 hr flight from Viti Levu, which is the main island of Fiji and where most tourists start their Fijian holidays.
As so few people visit this beautiful place, the planes are tiny and only fit approximately 15-20 passengers per flight. This was the first time I’d ever been on a such a small plane, so my camera definitely got a work-out.
Sightseeing from our flight
Why do you need to visit Taveuni Island?
I was honestly blown away by the beauty of this island.
From spending our days lying on the beach where we’d only bump into one or two other people, to the well maintained walking trails and cooling off in the rock pools, I came back feeling like I’d truly been away at an undiscovered island.
Even local residents who we met whilst we were swimming in the rock pools at Tavoro Waterfalls (see item no.2 below for more info), told us how they’d moved away for a couple of years only to miss the beautiful island and move back indefinitely.
Where else in the world do you bump into locals at the local “tourist spot”? You know you’re onto something good when residents rave about how much they love it too!
Here are a couple of highlights from this beautiful island:
1// Local beaches
Our hosts at our AirBnB let us in on a secret: one of the best beaches on the island is right in front of one of the most expensive resorts on the island, known as Tides Reach Resort.
In Taveuni, the beaches are for everyone, so you don’t need to dole out massive amounts of money to stay in these resorts in order to spend time on these beaches.
We made our way around the side of the resort (past a sign that said “private property” – as instructed by the staff out front of Tides Reach!) and got to spend time on a largely empty, but beautiful beach.
2// Tavoro Waterfalls, Bouma National Heritage Park
These are a set of 3 waterfalls, spaced walking distanced from each other.
The easiest to reach (and the biggest) is about a 15 minute walk from the entrance to the National Park, and is also a really large swimming hole and a welcome way to cool off in in sticky weather.
The last 2 waterfalls are a bit of a challenge to get to (we struggled to get to the 2nd set in our sneakers), so this great for the the keen hikers out there, but if you refer to relax and take it easy, the first waterfall (in my humble opinion) is the best and biggest!
The 15min walk to the first set of waterfalls
3// Lavena Coastal walk
I’m not going to lie, I love my walks but I’m not a super-hard-core-hiker. I don’t wear hiking boots and I don’t carry a massive backpack of supplies. I’ve also never been on a multi-day walk.
I like my walks restricted to the single day, or very short.
When researching Taveuni, we came across the Lavena Coastal Walk which is about a 6 KM walk along the coast.
It’s hot, it’s sticky, and you will be attacked by mosquitoes… BUT you will be rewarded with a lush forest that looks like something out of a Jurassic park movie and a rewarding cool swim at the end of the walk.
To see the waterfalls at the end of the walk, hang your bags and clothes on a nearby tree branch and swim through the 2 large rock pools – it’s a welcome way to cool off given you’ve sweated your way there for 6 KM (this will also prepare you for the walk back!)
The well maintained track at the Lavena Coastal Walk
It’s not very often you come across a place so untouched by major tourism.
Don’t get me wrong, there are resorts, but they’re family owned and locally run. There are no big busses shepherding hoards of tourists around.
You will come back from this island feeling refreshed, will have the opportunity to switch off, enjoy nature and spend time with your loved one. What more do you need on your holiday?