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Viani Bay

Shortly after 7am we were off out of Fawn Harbour. As we made our left turn into the cut we put out two fishing lines and once out of the cut out out two more. The sea was flat and the westerly wind we’d had forecast was there, but it was just one knot. So we motored all the way to Viani Bay. We had one catch, a small Barracuda, just out of Fawn Harbour which we put back. Despite hearing that other boats caught Mahis we did not.

Viani Bay is famous for it’s encircling reef – Rainbow Reef. Famous for it’s clear water making for excellent diving and snorkeling. As we approached we noticed Jackster exiting the reef so we hailed them. It turned out they had the Tahinas and Garimars aboard and were all off diving with the local guide, Jack Fisher. We asked if we could follow them to their first spot and upon consultation with Jack it was deemed ok.

We were soon anchored on a shallow patch on the outside of the reef and then into the dinghy with our gear following the divers up the reef. We were in 20-100s+ feet of clear blue water with a health reef below us. We had the company of a lone white tipped reef shark and thousands of other fish. At one point we saw a turtle. We had intended to snorkel the reef so this lucky opportunity got us in and wet without having to sort out a guide.

Helen and I made the swim all the way back to the boat getting a little stung at the end by jelly fish larvae. A little irritating but ok once you know it calms down fairly quickly. Judy and Colin stayed near our dinghy allowing the current to take them down the reef.

Back on the boat we headed into Viani Bay and anchored near Stray Kitty where we quickly readied lunch. We shared a bottle of wine with lunch setting the stage for a sleepy afternoon. Later in the afternoon our guests headed off in the kayak. It was funny seeing Judy doing all the paddling for a while while Colin messed with his fishing line. I would never get away with that with Helen.

In the evening Helen cooked up another portion of the mahi we’d caught on the way to Fiji – quite delicious.

Now that we’ve snorkeled the reef here we have the opportunity to press eastwards. We like the idea of reaching Matagi to the east of Taveuni and staying there a couple of nights before heading (and perhaps even sailing) back west to the tip of Taveuni and going for some hikes ashore.

I’ve managed to upload four albums of photos for my regular readers a short trip back through the last few entries will reveal them.


After a bit of a lie in my first chore was to top up the starboard diesel tank. I emptied three jerry cans in then dinghied off to fill five leaving them on the deck to complete the fill later in the day. We’d heard from the Kilkeas that there was a bazaar in town with local dancing. We could see something had been set up ashore from the boat so we headed off to town with the Kilkeas to see what was up.

It turned out there was a fund raiser for a women’s community hall. Arts and crafts from villages around the island were on display and for sale. We were considered invited guests and given a shaded place to sit together. Frank from Tahina showed up as did the Dreamtimes and Stray Kitties. After some speeches we were taken to see the local craft work before sitting down again for a hot drink, cakes and to watch the dancing.

As we’ve crossed the Pacific the dancing has always very interesting, in particular how it has changed from region to region. Invariably the dancing is performed by young ladies and men. The male dancing is always warlike and the female dancing expressive and alluring. East of Tonga the dancing always involved a lot of vigourous bottom wiggling. In Tonga and NZ the female dancing was less vigorous and more nuanced. Today we were treated to toothless old ladies dancing randomly on their feet and a little more organized sitting down on a mat. However, they were hilarious at times making gestures that made the local crowd roar with infectious laughter and us in turn. The troup of senior citizens danced through intermittent rain and ended up inviting a few of us to dance with them.

Then the heavens opened big time turning the field into a pond. We sat through the deluge under our shelter. Once the skies cleared we went to the market to pick up some curios and some kava for future sevusevu ceremonies before heading back to the boat.

We relaxed for much of the afternoon. I spent a little while researching alternate advertising possibilities for the website and have kicked off a couple of new applications. For my regular readers here is my request. If you see ads reappear on the site, please only click on them if you have genuine interest in the product or service being advertised. The ad services are ultra sensitive to behaviors that may be construed as attempts to generate false revenue so clicking on ads to give us beer money will ultimately have the opposite effect. The good news is I’ve learned a little more about all this which can only be a good thing. Later in the afternoon I emptied another couple of gerry cans into the main tank before refilling those two and storing all the filled containers away.

In the evening we joined the Tahinas aboard Stray Kitty for grilled Mahi Mahi which they’d caught on the way in. We ended up staying quite late.

We’re beginning to feel very much partied out and are looking forward to taking a break from Savusavu. We’re looking at a Sunday departure so we’ll sort out our coastal clearance today.