Unfortunately we had all to leave Dravuni Island after 3 weeks because the job got cancelled and we all were very sad to leave the island already.
I didn’t make further plans for Fiji so I didn’t know what I want to do now. We all went back by ferry to Suva because the weather was too bad to take the speedboat.
It took us 5 hours and we all had an own small bed to ourselves. We bought lots of fruits and veggies in the market in Suva before we made our way to my friends place up in Nausori.
I was happy that I could stay there while figuring out a new plan what to do next.
I went to the sailing club in Suva the next day to put a flyer up on the noticeboard there that I am looking for a sailboat to join!
There was hardly anything on the noticeboard & it definitely was not the most busy spot to ask around if someone needs help because there was nobody to talk with, only the workers there.
We celebrated Andrei’s 30th birthday the next day with lots of food & in the evening I got a new tattoo done. I got one on my shoulder and I didn’t know that it is such a painful spot. It was the most painful tattoo that I got so far. Fortunately it only took 1,5 hours and after that we all went to the amusement-park which was going on in Nausori town because the daughter really wanted me to go with her in that spinning-wheel. It looked super old and it was quite fast so I was scared that the whole thing will fall apart but luckily we survived. 🙂
I went back to Nadi by bus a few days later which took 5 hours in total with the traffic. I went straight to the airport where I met my new couch-surfing host who works there as a helicopter pilot. When I came into the island hopper office I saw two very friendly ladies working and asking me If I am Nicole. I was surprised that they know my name and they asked me if I would like to join Matt, my couch surfing host, on one of his flights because he has to work.
I was super surprised and said yes of course. I went into the helicopter immediately, maybe 2 minutes after I arrived at the office there and flew with the host and a couple that he had to drop of somewhere at a resort on an island.
I had literally no clue which island I went to but we flew over cloud break which is one of the world best surf spots where the world surf competition takes place since a few years. All the islands looked just incredible and the reef around was unbelievable pretty!
I got so lucky and I could also join him to do a scenic-flight with some Indian and Chinese guests so he showed them all the beautiful islands around. The driver from the company dropped me off at his place after the flight and his roommate opened the door for me. He is really nice as well, also from New Zealand, but he moved to Norway a few days after I came.
One of the next days we took his jet-ski and drove to some islands further out. It was so much fun especially because I only drove two times so far in my life and it never was longer than 20 minutes. We drove to an island where we stopped in a village and a couple who were in charge of the church there welcomed us with coconut and bananas.
They had really lovely dogs there as well! We also put a round tube on the jetski so I drove and tried to throw Matt off the Tube.
I found an animal shelter in Nadi so I walked there and ask if I can volunteer and take some dogs for walks. They gave me a form to fill in which said I need a volunteer visa in Fiji to work there and I also should pay 350 Fijian dollar per week for helping out which is 175 dollar. I told them that I won’t pay for helping out there and the manager was very okay with that. He showed me around and gave me three belgium shepherds to take them for walks. In the shelter were 10 puppies as well and some kitten, so adorable!
After I went back from the animal shelter I waited in town for the next bus back to the CS place. Two girls came to me and started talking and told me that they are living in a village up the mountains around Nadi and there is a beautiful waterfall where lots of tourists go to & they ride the horse up there and make Lovo (traditional Fijian food) and invited me to join them. They said its around 2 hours drive there and they stay one night and come back tomorrow as they have to go to school the next day.
So, I thought why not?!
I joined them and met their mum and grandmother on the market where we waited for one of those local transportations to join. We were more than 10 people in one car and they also transported lots of other stuff as well. It was already dark and the road was windy and pretty steep.
The driver drove like crazy and I thought we won’t survive that drive. After 1,5 hours we arrived in the middle of nowhere and the family told me that we have to walk now. We jumped out of the car and then we had to walk down a hill for another 30 minutes or so where it was dark, raining, super slippery and we had to cross a river on the way. There was no village or anything near by, just one small cottage.
We spread some sheets on the floor and went to bed. I couldn’t really sleep as it was super cold up in the mountains and those mosquitos were everywhere. I woke up early in the morning and was looking to find some sort of toilet outside. One of the girls heard me and came with me. There was no toilet so I went into the bushes. We collected some oranges from the trees on the farm & drank coconuts. We boiled water to cook cassava and dalo-roots. We also make rourou which is a local dish made out of dalo leaves cooked in coconut milk.
After we had breakfast we made our way to the “close by” waterfall which is supposed to be very touristic. We walked one hour through the middle of nowhere, there was some sort of path but very overgrown. The waterfall it self is big and very beautiful. Such an amazingly peaceful spot but I cannot imagine that some tourists go up there. For lunch we walked to their cousins house which was the only house “close by” – around 40 minutes walk away. 15 fijians were living there and they shared their delicious food with me. After that I went to the road and waited for a car to take me back to Nadi.
I was waiting for 2 hours without seeing a car so I asked them to call me a taxi. They walked up a hill and tried to get reception but for some reason they were just laughing on the phone and told me that the taxi driver can’t come. I felt a bit awkward there.
Anyway, after they told me I heard a car coming, a really fancy one actually. I stopped the car and a couple from New Zealand was in there. Luckily they could take me back to Nadi.
I was sooo happy about that!
Normally you only see local transportation going on those crazy roads but no tourists. They told me that they wanted a change of scenery and decided to go all the way inland which was a 3 hour detour. I arrived back in Nadi in the evening and I have never been so happy about a bed before as I almost couldn’t keep my eyes open anymore.
The next day my couch surfing hosts friends brought their puppy over to dog-sit him as they were going away for the week. The host had to work the whole day so I took care of the dog. I went for a walk with him and after we came back he took a shit inside on the carpet. I went for a long walk for sunset as well and he didn’t pee or poop outside. Only when I came back inside again he took a poo again, on the carpet same spot as before. Such a well behaved dog.
I found a small island were I can go to volunteer.
It’s not far away from the capital, Suva – maybe 2 hours drive away. I took the bus from Nadi to Suva again and thought that I can go to this island straight away but the owner of the island also runs a backpackers in Suva and told me that I need to stay a night there and its only 38 fijian dollar. I told her I am staying with a friend in suva because I don’t want to pay as I thought that I go to the island straight away and I am also not a fan of Suva at all. She said if I clean her garden I can stay for free.
I didn’t even had lunch yet as I came all the way from Nadi which took 4 hours but I started to clean her garden in the rain. Not so much fun! I went to the market in the evening and bought all the food that I need for staying one week on the island. I found a nice men who was selling cassava cake and some local dishes outside of the market. I bought some stuff from him which was so cheap and good. He made banana-coconut-cassava-cake which was delicious.
The next day the lady dropped me at the bus stop early in the morning. I also had to pay 40 dollar for the petrol to the island. I didn’t know how far the island was away from the mainland at that stage otherwise I wouldn’t have paid so much.
The island is literally only 5 minutes drive away from the main island and you can even hear the big trucks sometimes. The lady gave me lots of boxes full with food for her son on the bus as well and I was just happy that I didn’t have to change the bus. When I arrived at the jetty her Son who is the only one who lives on the small island picked me up and some locals who were in the bus as well helped me to carry all of my stuff outside of the bus.
I joined other 10 people in the boat as a group decided to come to the island for one hour for snorkeling and kayaking. I actually don’t really know why I had to pay so much for petrol.
The island is amazing. Very small and full of mangroves. There is one very nice treehouse and two tents. The son of the owner is living in the treehouse and I got to stay in a big 10 person tent where there were two bunkbeds inside.
I slept so good in the tent every night.
Unfortunately there was lots of rain when I was there but we did the beach clean up and collected all the plastic that got washed to the island.
We also put all the driftwood on big piles and burned it. The beach looked amazing afterwards. The snorkeling there was great as well and I could use the kayaks, snorkeling gear and stand-up paddle board every time in wanted.
Once we went out with the boat and tied a rope to it to hold on and try to surf on the surfboard behind the boat holding the rope. It was very difficult but fun!
A german woman with her 15 year old son came on my third day on the island so we were 4 people most of the time. We cooked lots of delicious meals and run out of food on my last day on the island. It was such a great time that we had, playing monopoly, playing ukulele, cooking together and talking about all things in life. I felt very relaxed and grateful after my stay on the island which was 8 days.
On my last day we all jumped on the boat and were supposed to drive to the main-island which only takes 5 minutes maximum. As we wanted to start the engine the rope broke and we couldn’t use the boat to go back. We had to wait 4 hours until another boat came to pick us up and we could finally make our way back to Suva.
Back in Suva i bought cassava-cake again and was so happy to be able to buy fruits as we run out of fruits on the island.
I caught the bus back to Nadi which took me another 4 hours in the bus so I spent the whole day sitting in the bus and looking outside of the window and watching the rain.