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Hi I am a chef. I would like to find places to stay in the budget range where there is flexibilty in dining options with an emphasis on local food. I would also like to snorkel, get a taste of the local culture (not the touristy stuff) andifpossible do a scuba dive.
I am a member of Fiji Guide, for about 3 years now. I have been reading the forums and posts here about your interests in Fiji, especially about snorkeling and culture. In the past 2 years, I have stayed on Taveuni Island for 5 weeks, and for those 2 exact reasons. I am proud to say that I have done a lot of snorkeling in my life, covering all the Caribbean Islands, Belize, Honduras, just about every island in the Caribbean. Then in 2002, I branched out my snorkeling adventures to the South Pacific ocean starting with Bora Bora, Hawaii, Tahiti, Moorea, and I am happy to say that of all my travels I finally found my snorkeling paradise in Taveuni. I do not enjoy the touristy trap locations one bit. Been there way to many times only to be treated like just another tourist and nothing made me feel special. UNTIL I found Makaira By the Sea located on Taveuni Island, Fiji. This particular place opened their arms to me and included me into their family, teaching me all about their culture such as food, dancing, music, and especially their love for the ocean. I am telling you all this from the goodness of my heart and not as an advertisement. Please look over my profile as I have many pictures and even a couple movies of my snorkeling adventures. And for more details about my stay at Makaira and time spent with the locals of Taveuni Island, please look up my videos and pictures on YouTube, search for my name of appymom on there.
I have come to be very close to 17 of the Fijian family members, cousins, uncles, aunts, and even the little children, all of which I have come to love as my own and all of them by their names! It took me awhile but eventually I did it. I am a mother of 5 grown children, and 10 grandchildren. I am planning on taking my entire family to Makaira because I want them to experience Fiji in it's true form and not as tourists. I read on your profile that you are a chef. A main attraction I was drawn to was that Makaira's Bure's (huts-rooms) have their own kitchenettes and I could do my own cooking, and then when I wanted, owners of Makaira, have a very sweet restaurant which they will cook some delicious meals for you if you like.
The very top of the list for me is the snorkeling, and please believe me when I tell you that staying at Makaira cannot be beat!!!!! The Yasawa's and Mamanuca's are great for sandy beaches. But if you are wanting to see the most vibrant colors and varieties of corals and fishes, then Taveuni is the side of the main Fiji Island area you must see. Owner of Makaira, is quite knowledgeable about all the corals and knows those secret sweet spots you must see. The Bure's are very clean, the staff is friendly and I am sure you will get to hear them sing and enjoy in their kava drinks with them. The staff love doing things with the guests like showing you the lava slides, a local swimming spot, and be sure to have them take you to Bouma Falls. Buba will probably pick you up at the airport or at least tell you a few stories and guide you to whatever you may need as local grocery stores, etc. He is one remarkable young man and can't help himself for laughing! He will keep you smiling no doubt about it!
One last thing I cannot express enough is the snorkeling. If you really want to see and actually get involved in coral gardening she is the princess of the ocean and she loves her reefs! In the touristy motels, you are left on your own to find that special reef. But if you stay at Makaira, she is more than ready, anxious, and willing to guide you to see something amazing that you have never seen before. Or you can simply walk down to the beach and head out on your own, either way.
I am sorry to talk so much about this remarkable place, but I also hate seeing and knowing that when people take a vacation or trip, that it can be just another trip or a vacation you will never forget and can't wait to go back again. For myself, I will do a
(got cut off),,,,,, For myself I will do a regular yearly trip to Makaira so that I can see the growth and changes in the corals. Roberta knows exactly where I like to go and what I want to see. I honestly think that in her past life she must have been a mermaid. haha. To watch her do a deep dive is breath taking to me. She flows with grace, and is always well aware of our surroundings. I hope I have helped answer some of your questions and wonders about Taveuni. The fauna is stunning all around the 4 acre property and fresh flowers in your room is a special touch I love. The sunsets are stunning, and the quietness is soothing to my soul. If you are looking for nightlife and fast pace, Makaira is not for you. But if you are looking for a beautiful tropical peace of mind vacation, then get to know Roberta, husband John, and the magical place that Makaira truly is. Please feel free to ask me any questions and if I can help you I am here to answer them. Enjoy your Fiji vacation no matter your choice. You will love it!
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