A Weekend We'll Repeat
15 October 2009 | Palmlea Lodge, Vanua Levu
At the urging of cruising friends Gwen and Don, formerly of Tackless II, and Deborah and Scott aboard Viva, we took the bus this weekend to the north shore of Vanua Levu to spend a few days at Palmlea an "oeanside eco-agritourism lodge". This was a totally relaxing and thoroughly enjoyable experience. First, the property sits on a hill facing Fiji's Great Sea Reef and looks down upon a lush mangrove and coconut palm forest along the beach. The lodge which doubles as a farm is solar-power` driven and draws its own water from one of Fiji's many underground aquifers. Palmlea grows its own fruits, vegetables and herbs and is adorned by every tropical flower and blossoming plant we know of. The variety of plants and riot of colors is truly remarkable. They are also in the process of assisting the Fiji Dept. of Agriculture in raising a herd of Boer goats, renown for their size and high-quality meat.
Sujarta and Greg, our hosts, were pinch-hitting for the owners who are taking a well-deserved break in Thailand. They did a superb job of meeting our every need in a quiet unassuming way, allowing us to explore, swim in the beautiful lap pool and generally 'veg out' all we wanted. They were also excellent company as were all of the staff at the lodge. We even had instruction in preparing various curries from Malti, their Indian chef. Meals were hearty and delicious including the goat curry Malti prepared for us Saturday night - better than beef. Our bure was spacious, airy and state-of-the-art in eco sensitivity.
If this sounds like a bit of a plug, well, it is. If you're planning on Fiji, find a way to work Palmlea into your itinerary. You can learn more from their website www.palmleafarms.com. We're already planning on going back before our time in Fiji is over.