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Exploring Hidden Fiji – Lau Islands

By Shane Hussein Posted 26 Mar 2014

While all the regions of Fiji are beautiful, pristine and provide a memorable holiday location, there is one area that remains largely undiscovered and offers the ultimate quiet, relaxing holiday spot – the remote Lau Group of islands.

Bay-of-Islands-Cruising

Photo credit: Tourism Fiji

If you’re looking for a holiday location where you can get off the beaten track and explore a region that has been virtually untouched by human intervention so far, then the Lau Islands is the perfect choice. Undeveloped, unspoiled, offering a unique culture, and breathtaking scenery, the Lau Group is located in the southern Pacific Ocean, east of the Koro Sea and covers an area of just under 500 square kilometres. The chain includes approximately 60 islands and islets (only about half of these are inhabited) and is the perfect destination for intimate honeymoons and romantic retreats, as well as surfing holidays or relaxing family get-togethers.
 
Accommodation

Being such an uncrowded, undeveloped region of Fiji, there are only two official accommodation options in the Lau Islands and no restaurants or large hotels to choose from. Instead, visitors can stay at an authentic, budget guesthouse on Vanua Balavu or on Lakeba.

Vanuabalavu-island-MR

Photo credit: Tourism Fiji

Moana’s Guest House is located on Vanua Balavu and consists of two large, traditional bures that are set on the beach. Each bure comes equipped with mosquito nets, solar power and private facilities, and accommodation includes three meals per day. Rates at Moana’s bungalows start from F$95 per person per night.
The other accommodation option is Jeke Qica’s Guesthouse in Tubou on Lakeba Island. The guesthouse contains one bure and three rooms with private bathrooms and costs from F$70 per person per night, including meals.

Activities

Travellers who wish to holiday at the Lau Group can enjoy a variety of activities during their time in the area. Some of the most popular options including sightseeing trips around the various islands and to meet local villagers; surfing at some of the world’s best reef breaks; swimming, diving and snorkelling in the crystal-clear waters in the region (the Bay of Islands, in particular, is a stunning location); hiking the surrounding landscape; swimming with sharks; fishing and sailing; or visiting the Qilaqila Marine Reserve on the island of Vanua Balavu.

Getting There and Away

Fly into Nadi, via Fiji Airways and then charter a yacht (apply for customs’ permission with the Ministry for Fijian Affairs) or book a ticket on a cargo/passenger boat, for the final leg of the journey to the islands.

Alternatively, tourists can fly within Fiji with regional airline Pacific Sun – it flies directly to Vanua Balavu, the second-largest island in the Lau archipelago.

Although Fiji is beautiful year-round, tourists are likely to prefer a visit during the dry season, which runs from around April through to October.

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