Coconuts, kava and crab races in Fiji

When you think of Fiji you think of gentle lapping waves, coconuts, brightly coloured fish and palm trees.

Imagine then, waking up every morning, hearing the ocean crashing outside, feeling the lull of the waves gently rocking your boat and knowing that each day, you’ll find yourself on a different island, in a different paradise.

Such is a trip on board the MV Reef Endeavour, cruising through the islands of Fiji.

Fiji has 332 islands as well as 522 islets. We don’t make it to all the islands – we’d be there all year, come to think of it, that may not be such a bad thing….(mental note for the bucket list!) But we don’t really need to. Instead we travel up through the Mamanuca Islands and into the Yasawa Islands.

 These are some of the most beautiful islands of Fiji. So beautiful that Hollywood used Monoriki as the backdrop for the Tom Hanks’ movie Castaway – yes we stop there and yes, it’s as beautiful as you’d expect.


Cruising over lunch and by night, each morning and afternoon we stop at a different beach.

On our first full day on board the ship we stop at Brothers Island in the morning and Naviti Island in the afternoon.

But it’s not all lounging around on idyllic beaches, sometimes there are decisions to be made. Thinking to do. Shall we head out in a glass bottom boat, go snorkelling, lounge or swim on the beach or stay on the boat?

The beaches, when we arrive are deserted, except for some of the crew from our ship who have gone on ahead to set up the kayaks and paddle boards. They’ve set up the “bar” too – an esky full of drinks in case we need hydration. It’s thirsty work this lying on the beach under a cloudless sky.

We laze on the powdered white sands, summoning up the energy to walk the few metres to the clear blue ocean waters. We’re on a secluded island, just us and the crew making use of these waters, this beach.

After a few hours lazing in the sun we make our way back to the boat. It’s lunchtime, a smorgasbord of seafood and salads awaits.

By the time we’ve finished eating we’ve arrived at our next beach, Naviti Island. One of the more adventurous solo travellers pulls out a paddle board and tries gliding through the water. Taking her lead, another pair of solos, take out a kayak and investigate the waters further afield.

The next morning, for those feeling even more energetic there is a limestone cave to explore. A short walk up the side of a hill brings us to Sawa-i-lau. Inside we find a large cave and lagoon. A couple of the young men from the boat – our crew – come with us to show us the way and entertain us by climbing the walls inside the cave and jumping into the water below.

The rest of us remain happily in the water, watching in awe at the heights they climb to, but staying safely in the water.

At night we stop at Gunu and are treated to a traditional Lovo. The villagers set out a market for us on our arrival. They welcome us into their village and entertain us with traditional cultural music and dancing.

It’s one of two dinners we have on the islands, at the second we’ll be invited to take part in a kava ceremony. And will join in the dancing.

We stop at Monu Bay and are welcomed into a local church service. We wander through the surrounding village, where the children come out to greet us, pulling faces for our cameras.

On Waya Islands we stop to visit a school. We sit outside, the ocean in the distance in front of us, and watch the children as they perform local dances that tell the story of life.

When they’re finished we walk through the nearby village, visiting a health care clinic, seeing how the Fijians live, learning about their days.  We are taken inside the homes – inside a small basic hut to see what it’s like to live on a small Fijian island.

The next morning some of us get up early and climb the mountain behind the school. We take in the views over the islands, see our ship dwarfed by the vast ocean surrounding it.

At night there is a crab race. Tables bid to own a crab for the night and then coax and cajole their prized  “athlete”  to get over the line first, to be the first crab to fall off the table and to take home the winnings.

Our crew entertains us with local music and kava ceremonies.

And we finish the week wondering how it is that even though our senses have been so completely engaged, we can leave feeling so completely relaxed.

*Diane Squires is a tour host with Two’s a Crowd.

Want to experience this for yourself? Check out our Fijian cruise, for solos only, here.

What Our Clients Say

20 out of 10!

The trip was just great - I can't really think of any negatives. Diane will back me up when I say I usually give 10/10s - I gave her 20/10. Trish, Canada/Alaska

Excellent trip

I found the overall trip excellent. I believe Diane's professionalism, inclusive personality and ability to relate to all contributed to this. She worked to ensure the group was cohesive without individuals impinging on the personal space of others etc. a good skill to have and one she applied effectively. Kate, Canada/Alaska

Fantastic value for money

Fantastic value for money paid. Russell our guide is an asset to your company... he was fantastic! Overall the trip was magical from start to finish. Well done Two's a Crowd ... the best trip ever. Barbara, Canada/Alaska

Fantastic first solo trip

I had a fantastic trip. Absolutely loved Canada and Alaska. It's the first time I have travelled solo and was pleasantly surprised to find a bunch of people that all got on so well. Diane our host was great. She did a good job of getting us altogether for meals, excursions, shopping trips etc. I liked that she quietly got things done without being loud or "in-your-face". She was good at being one of us as well as our leader. Wendy, Canada/Alaska

Good balance of activities and spare time

Had a great time. Good mixture of organised activities and spare time. Diane was an excellent tour host. Russell the tour guide was great, very knowledgeable and personable with his insights into growing up and living in Canada. Sharon, Canada/Alaska

Well organised trip with an excellent host

The trip was well organised, with a good mix of activity and free time. The scenery was spectacular and fellow travellers were a great bunch. Diane is a excellent host - helpful, courteous and above all a pleasure to know. I found her bubbly personality a bonus and can only speak highly of her. Gary, Canada/Alaska

I had a fabulous time

I had a fabulous time. Lake Louise and the hotel were magnificent. The cruise was excellent. Diane made sure that she was available for group meals and sightseeing, and was alway in good humour and great fun. I would recommend your company to everyone and am very interested in the Scandinavia  tour at the end of 2017.

Cathy, Adelaide - Canada/Alaska May 2016

Great holiday

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In good company

I thought the suggestions for optional things to do, in the "free" time were very good. So good, we really ended up with very little free time. So much to do! - Mary on Vietnam

Great time together

I found the trip interesting and eye opening with a great overview of both Vietnam and Cambodia. The other travellers on the trip were fabulous and we had a great time together. - Anonymous on Vietnam/Cambodia

Fantastic first experience!

Extremely well organised with fabulous guides throughout - especially in Vietnam! First holiday with your company and certainly not the last. - Glenys on Vietnam

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Can’t stop talking about my experience

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Best holiday I’ve been on!

One of the best holidays that I have been on - really well organised. I would never have travelled to Vietnam or Cambodia on my own. Bronwyn

Well organised

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Great time together

I found the trip interesting and eye opening with a great overview of both Vietnam and Cambodia. The other travellers on the trip were fabulous and we had a great time together.

Great value

Well done. No complaints. Very pleased with this trip. Great value for my hard earned dollars! Really enjoyed the [Vietnam/Cambodia] tour. 

Fabulous rapport filled with much humour!

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The (Uniworld River) cruise was great, I met up with some wonderful people who treated me like part of the family !
The ship & crew were fantastic & the excursions were very good, I couldn't fault anything. I'd recommend this cruise to anyone.  Peter

Informative and educational

The entire trip was one of the most enjoyable and exciting. Also so informative and educational. I was so pleased to make the trip. Wish I was over there in that magical place.  Marjorie


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A wonderful experience

It was a wonderful experience visiting Cambodia and Vietnam and gave me a better understanding of these countries. I had a great time with new friends, we had a good bunch and Leonie was the perfect host. Eric

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An awesome adventure for my first time overseas alone.  Leonie was excellent and both guides were also fantastic.  At all times I felt safe and secure and totally looked after.  Melinda

Well done Two’s a Crowd.

Leonie was an excellent host, the ideal person. I never felt any pressure to  be involved in every activity so I could explore alone during free time. Having 2 or 3 nights in most places was great – you could rest up or party. Well done Two’s a Crowd. Jenny

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