Monday, February 7, 2011

Port Denarau - Fiji

We had another enjoyable day yesterday - on another South Pacific tropical island. I don't know how much longer I can keep up this grueling pace. The island and Port(which is really just a large Marina) of Port Denarau is a recent modern artificial creation. With a backdrop of the high mountains of the main Fijian island of Viti Levu, it has been developed from swampland - and I think it is fair to say that it is not representative of the rest of the country of Fiji. However, it is a beautiful place to visit - for a day like us or for a week or so like the many International visitors we saw there enjoying their holidays. It basically consists of a flat island with lovely tropical vegetation, a Shopping centre at the Marina site and a number (about 7) of 5 star type Resorts. The resorts have all the accommodation, bars, restaurants, shops, gardens and swimming pools backing onto a beach that you would expect from such places. We took a ride in the "Bulla bus" around all of these and had a look at most of them. The Bulla bus is a hop on - hop off bus that costs 7 Fijian dollars per day. We found that some of the resorts were fancier than some others - but all would allow a very nice relaxing holiday. From them, you could take tours to discover the real Fiji. We noticed that the restaurants in the resorts - although very nice and  wonderfully located with fantastic sea views - were quite expensive (as you would expect in 5 star resorts). But there are less expensive options in the shopping village - actually quite cheap. This is definitely a place to eat fish - of very high quality. If I were to spend a week here, I would eat nothing but fish. We had a cheap lunch on the quayside - for $10 AUD each. We had Red Emperor and friends had Wahoo - delicious.

The weather was typically tropical - hot, clear and humid during the day with a thunderstorm developing in the afternoon. The ship's entertainment team had to move the sailaway party from the outside decks to inside the covered pool area - but after the storm and rain had passed, it was wonderfully refreshing to be out in the open air, with nobody around and the humidity gone. One of those "great to be alive" moments.
Today, the ship is putting on a "Round the World" lunch for the Aussies (well, we think it is only for us). P&O ships Oriana and Arcadia have already given RTW lunches to the passengers (mostly British) - as is traditionally done for the RTW cruises Southampton to Southampton. They forgot however that they have around 300 passengers who have also sailed with them RTW - Australia to Australia. They have finally realised after some gentle nudging. I would imagine that this particular market segment is significant to them and could be more so. It is always amazing to me how some companies do not think much "outside of the box" and just repeat what they traditionally do.


  1. Thanks Barry. Now I know where Port Denarau is - near Nadi, not Suva, as I imagined.

  2. Will this be your last posting Barry? A huge THANK YOU. I wonder if anyone else on board will be doing a blog from Australia back to Southampton?

  3. Wow they charge for the Bula bus now? When we stayed in the Worldmark Resort on Denarau Island for 10 days that was free.