Over the next four weeks, we’re going to bring to you all the information you’ll need to book your ticket to Namotu Island, Fiji. Alternatively, you can rely on your luck and the generosity of the kind folks at Corona Extra, who are giving away a trip for ten people! That’s you and your nine closest buddies taking over Namotu for a week! Don’t have nine friends? Bummer.
Part 1: Preparation for your trip to Namotu.
Let’s face it, if you’re thinking of heading to Fiji, it means you have the ability to balance both feet on some well-made foam and glass, with the ocean racing at break neck speeds below you while navigating the twists, turns and kooks that the ocean throws your way. You own a board that you wouldn’t ride at your home beach break. You’re on the set waves on ‘good days’ at home and generally confident in the ocean.
Not you? That’s fine. Although the surf gets big and powerful and in the winter months (April – October) as you’re looking at large, long-period swells generated from low pressure systems from the Southern Pacific Ocean, there are other waves besides the extremely powerful Cloudbreak and razor sharp Restaurants. Within close proximity of the island of Namotu is Swimming Pools and Namotu Lefts; both extremely fun waves for all ability levels.
Looking for a relaxing holiday that isn’t surf, surf, surf? If you’re happy with head-high extremely fun waves then maybe look outside the peak Winter months and aim for the Summer/Christmas period. A little less life threatening, but loads of fun.
What to bring:
Your 9 best mates thanks to Corona! All the necessities—boards (No beach break fun shapes here ladies and gents, unless you’re coming in Summer), trunks and tees. The water’s warm and the air temp is just as good. Pack a spray jacket for the boat rides and rainy days. Sun cream, Zinc, Wax, leashes, sun cure, little bit of first aid (just in case!), leg rope strings, fins, and a committed attitude.
Tavarua and Namotu, the two main islands for surfers, are barely pin drops on the map, so you’ll have too use the full extent of Google Earth’s zoom tool to hone in on these tiny pieces of land. You’ll fly to Nadi on the main island of Fiji (Viti Levu) and need transfers by car/boat to the islands. If you’re organized, you can get from the tarmac to sand in around an hour. Flights are easiest from Australia’s East Coast, requiring only a 4-hour flight from Sydney. For our North American friends you can fly direct from LAX in around 11-hours. So keep an eye on those charts and you could be in the water in no time. (East Coast U.S will require the dreaded LAX detour and travel time anywhere from 19 to 30 Hours each way, ouch). Europe is a whole other bag, long travel times and multiple stops. But hey, it’s worth it.
Where to stay (there’s more than one island!):
If your budget’s bigger than a shoe string then you could be pulling up in one of the Bure’s on Namotu (Approx $350 a night), the best spot to be. Here you have all the main waves at your disposal, requiring a short ride on the long boats to Cloudbreak, Restaurants and Namotu Lefts. If you’re staying on the mainland, it’s a much cheaper option. But, you’ll need to factor in a whole range of things. On Namotu, you’ll pay a little more but absolutely everything is included—food, accom, unlimited access and transfers to all the waves (Cloudbreak, Restaurants, Namotu Lefts, Swimming Pools.) Staying on the mainland means mosquitos, paying for food, water, drinks, transfers to the different breaks which can cost around $50 USD per round trip, and if the surf’s no good or the people you’re with want to surf, you’ll be stuck on the boat and still coughing up that $50 USD.
Next week, Part 2 of our series will be breaking down all the activities on the island, from the surf, to fishing, snorkeling, diving, sunburn and thigh chafe.
Want to find out how you could be headed to Namotu with 9 of your best pals? All you have to do is buy a Corona at any selected location this month, and bang! Head to www.coronaextra.com.au/namotu and enter your details and unique product code and you could be going! More info here.