Village Life: Notes from Fiji
Our Exploration Australia, New Zealand, & Fiji group leaders provide insights into the lifestyle of communities in Fiji, highlighting their warmth, hospitality, and strong sense of community.
Today we got to spend the entire day in a local Fijian village. We were driven over by Nafeez, the coolest driver in Fiji, early in the morning and were welcomed into the village by the whole community singing a beautiful song of welcome. We then went into the large community hall where we sat together in a big circle and introduced ourselves. We then got to participate in a Kava ceremony which is a traditional way to welcome visitors into the village. The kava tasted like nothing we’ve ever had before and left our mouth feeling tingly and slightly numb.
After the ceremony, we had tea and treats that the women of the community made for us. Some of us continued to hang out with the men while they continued to drink kava and make music, while the rest of us played with some of the younger kids from the village.
We then went on a tour of the village which was very interesting. We got to see all of the the houses that make up the village and began to get a sense of what life in the village is like. After the tour, we had an amazing traditional Fijian lunch, which was probably the best meal we’ve had our entire time here. All of us were pretty sleepy after lunch and spent some time resting in the community center building and listening to the music of the men who continued their kava ceremony.
After our impromptu siesta, we learned how to weave traditional Fijian mats, construct palm frond fans, and Fijian brooms. The day went by really quickly and before we knew it, we were on our way home to change, grab some dinner at a local restaurant, have our nightly meeting and head to bed.
The next day we headed back to the village where we had our morning tea with the “mamas” and then went on a river boat up a mangrove river into the jungle. We then hiked up the Fijian hillside through dense bush. The plants were diverse and vibrant. We came down the other side and were back in the village. We then walked out to the outer reef and went swimming and body surfing where the waves were breaking. After the swim, we headed back into the village where we washed off and had another lovely Fijian lunch. After lunch we danced and sang farewell with our lovely hosts.
We then mounted up into our vans and headed back to our resort to grab our bags before beginning the journey to Nadi where we will be snorkeling and scuba diving tomorrow!
Fiji just keeps on getting better!
-Neal and Devon
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