Taveuni Travel Blog› entry 5 of 22 › view all entries
We stayed 4 nights in Coconut Grove resort(cf review), located 500 m to the airport(not too much flights here!) for lazing (we were a bit jetlagged)and snorkelling.We did one tour to" see" the Date Line ,the main village of Taveuni with its small market and shops and another to "Garden island" for snorkelling.
Taveuni island is a nature lover paradise of 12500 inhabitants,mainly indogenous Fijians with minorities of Indian Fijians running the shops and a growing number of Expats,around Mattei Airport,mainly North Americans.
This small island(40 km long,10 wide),not overcrowded with tourists,like some other parts of Fiji has a beautiful scenery and unspoilt beaches(a majority of blacksand beaches,it's a young volcanic island believed to have been created only 2000 years ago!)
It's called The Garden Island Of Fiji:the high rainfalls(2600 mm a year around Mattei,4500 mm in the highlands) and the fertile volcanic soil
provide a large biodiversity of tropical plants and flowers(the most famous is the Tagimoucia flower)
Approximatively a third of the island has been declared a World Heritage Area(Bouma National Park)
Taveuni provides also a considerable amount of Fiji's staple crops such as copra(the dried coconut meat),taro(a tropical plant grown as a vegetable food and as a leaf vegetable),tapioca,kava,vanilla,coffee,pineapples.
Taveuni provides also an abundance of wildlife due to the no introduced mongoose,as on the other main islands of Fiji.
There are here several species of reptiles and many species of birds like parrots,collard lorry,flycatcher..
Just off the shores is one of the World most famous dive sites,the Rainbow Reef.
The 180 degree meridian divides the island in half,it is the point at which any day turns into the next.However the International Time Zone ,for convenience,passes around the Fijian islands instead of through Taveuni