After the urban jungle of Suva yesterday, it was time to get into the real jungle (or at least the rainforest) of rural Fiji in the little town of Savusavu on Vanua Levu. If Suva is the modern face of Fiji, then Savusavu is like going back in time to Fiji as it used to be. The town is small, home-spun and a little shabby, but it’s a friendly place that’s now beginning to get more westernised now that a few (mainly upscale) resorts have opened up in the surrounding area.
We joined a tour that got us out into the unspoilt green countryside out of town, where we did a fun trek up to a lovely waterfall. The hills were incredibly lush as we trekked our way through the dense undergrowth, dripping with moisture. Actually, it was so humid that we were all dripping by the time that we’d stumbled our way up to the waterfall, so it was a real relief to cool down in its cold, crashing waters. The water plummeted down from a height of 15 metres, and as I swam into the cascade it was completely disorienting – it was deafening, I couldn’t see anything and I was struggling against the power of the water.
Suitably refreshed, I skipped down the rough path like a mountain gazelle (ok like an unstable rhino), and we had some lovely tropical fruits while a few locals sang some lovely songs – a very nice tour.
On the way back, the heavens opened and it rained almost as hard as it had in Suva the day before. As ever, that trusted tourist’s tactic of dealing with downpours was the perfect solution – we found a hospitable bar to sit out the deluge. With the rain clearing, we had a quick lunch (although not in the curry restaurant I had chosen, because apparently it “looked dodgy”), and then we explored the town. Seeing as Savusavu basically consists of one main high street, that didn’t take long, but the market was friendly and the shops were probably more plush than you’d expect for a little place like this.
Another place that we hadn’t been scheduled to visit, but another very pleasant stay.