Jul
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Hammock Camping in Nadi Bay Fiji

Author G3NADMIN    Category Hammock     Tags
Nadi Bay is an excellent and affordable gateway to the tropical paradise of Fiji, replete with possibilities in a small area, and close to the airport.The daily Air Pacific flight from Los Angeles to Nadi airport awakens me at 5:30a.m. Although I am never really sure if the plane is before or after the rooster, I don't mind as the expansive beach beckons and the earlier the better in these latitudes. Fresh coconut juice will be available, and the sunrise at Wailoaloa Beach, like the sunset is, spectacular.

Anything else in between is a bonus, and there are a lot of them here. Fiji has such an intoxicating effect that even being roused by the sound of a very low jet could not be in the slightest way irritating, and I haven't even been introduced to the local Kava yet.Escaping to Fiji from my

Nadi Bay Hammock

Rope Hammock

native New Zealand winter, I've found a place to stay within a sanctuary of excellently priced accommodation, mostly situated on the beach. There is a pool, a bar, great food and an assortment of outdoor furniture of which a hammock under coconut trees is a central piece. It is a very welcoming setting and one that begins on arrival at the airport (20 minutes away) with the friendly "Bula", or "Hello" in Fijian. You will hear it a lot. You may also find yourself saying "Vinaka", "Thank you", a lot to the local people for their warm smiles, and Vinaka for the paradise you have stumbled into.

It's my first time to Fiji, and I'm happy to have arrived via Air New Zealand, one of only two airlines flying out due to the volcanic ash cloud that limited aviation at the time. The locals occasionally greet me with "Kia Ora" followed by "All Blacks", a broad smile and amazement that I will not be at home for the rugby world cup. They are a rugby-mad nation and it leaves them perplexed to hear that I like the idea of watching it from here, with them. One of the All Blacks comes from a village nearhere, so that makes more sense to me, right now.The Nadi Bay area is a very nice entry point to Fiji, and the longer you can stay the better, for many possibilities abound.

There are after all 333 islands in Fiji. If time is limited however, Nadi Bay serves as a great appetizer for a taste of things to come, or brief insight into Fiji. There is the freedom to explore activities and lounge on outdoor furniture without going far, talking a walk suffused with the scent of frangipani.This is a no worries situation, you are free to wander. On Sunday you may go to Lovo night, a must-do, traditional Fijian underground cooked food at Bamboo. Across the road at Smugglers Cove there is fire and knife dancing, a must-see as the finale ends on the beach by the water, and is a spectacular sight.

Be prepared to hear a lot of laughter; the locals are spirited people and there are many happy visitors. The environment is uplifting. The laughter may increase in the evening as you pass a Kava session, accompanied by guitar or ukulele playing or both, and much singing where you will see friends you have made the day before.Wailoaloa means black water, and although the water here is not as clear as further out in the islands, like the air, it is a perfect temperature and you may find it hard to get out. The beach is also close to excellent surf spots including Cloudbreak, the world famous Tavarua surf break in the Mamanuca islands, which can be accessed by boat in less than an hour. Kelly Slater and other pro surfers were there a few weeks ago, when conditions conspired to deliver the best surf in a decade.The swells in this region are good at the best of times, and there is an abundance of boat operators going there, as well as a sea plane.

The hammock will always be waiting for you. It's a perfectly sensible spot to sip on a pina colada, mango nectar or Vonu (the local Nadi brew), gaze out to sea, and really getinto the zone of island time. If you need to add a soundtrack, it is a fitting place to hear Jack Johnson, Eddie Vedder playing ukulele, or hear many of the talented music that this region in the Pacific inspires. Towards sundown, watch the Nadi Bay Canoe Club, based here glide out in their outrigger canoes, or paddle boarding.Just be mindful of the odd flying volleyball, and an urge to go horse riding on the beach. Be prepared for an increase in both local and international Facebook friends, and a verystrong desire to delay your return flights out of here. When the locals say, "You are welcome" here, they really do mean it. In the meantime, just have your camera ready forthe sunset.

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