Be still my heart! Fiji is stunning in so many ways, but the most sagnificant for us was the feeling of coming home and belonging.
In such subtle yet heartfelt and deeply appreciated ways, were we welcomed here.
On a spiritual note, if you feel drawn to the ancient Lemurian and Atlantean energies, then you’ll love Fiji and the South Pacific in general.
The Devine feminine energies here are evident, strong and purifying. They are also nurturing, gentle and kind.
When I stepped out of the plane I immediately felt held and supported. The beautiful nurturing space is very important for me personally to balance, harmonize and integrate some of my more intense teachings of the past months.
We spend the first week at Radisson Blu on Denarau Island. The idea was to have an awesome time relaxing, time for family adventures, swimming and a cool kids club experiences, which we have read about over and over again. Fellow travelers and bloggers recommended it over other places for the awesome pools, water slide, food, BULA kids club and cool water sports selection.
After some researching, we chose Denarau Island, which is a man made Island that sits on the west coast of Viti Levu (the largest Fijian Island) and is reachable by a gateway within a 15 min drive from Nadi airport.
It is known for its upscale resorts, Denarau Golf Club, big BULA waterclub, fishing boats and ferries to the Malolo Islands which depart from Port Denarau.
When we arrived our first impression was pleasant, clean, big and very welcoming.
The kids were immediately whisked off by the BULA Welcoming warrior and introduced to the many different options available for the kiddos.
The choices are amazing. There are three different time slots available to choose from and in addition to that private nanny services are available for an even more personalized experience.
Aviana loved having all the different creative choices like boat making, Fijian language & song lessons, shell necklace making, lei making, sand castle building or dance lessons. Her highlight was getting her hair braided. Even here, the girls were so gentle and kind and listened with attention and patience to her requests.
Raphael got a kick out of games like ball tag, three legged race and sack hop. His highlight was watching the hermit crab races in the evening.
Both kids really wanted to take part in the torch lighting ceremony at the end of each day. They got dressed up as Fijian warriors and helped to light the many torches around the resort.
It is evident to see around every corner that this resort is well organized, run and looked after.
What made a big difference for us was to experience the unbelievable service we received in the restaurant.
Not only did the chef and staff cater to our gluten free, dairy free and sugar free needs, the two chefs made sure that Aviana had variety in every meal and catered personally to her needs and preferences. This above and beyond approach really didn’t go unnoticed.
We made sure that the staff got the praise they deserved and we talked to the managers and left 5 star reviews anywhere we could. Thank you Radisson!
We had tons of fun, we played and swam, snorkeled and explored and made many new friends along the way.
Our time there came to an end after 7 days and it was time for more adventures around Fiji.
Fiji Part Two
For our next destination we chose the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort on Vanua Levu.
Being Fiji’s second largest island, but less touristy Vanua Levu came highly recommended from fellow travelers.
From the picturesque main town of Savusavu with its sheltered bay that provides a popular mooring spot for visiting yachts, to the untouched rainforest of its Wasali Nature Reserve with hiking trails leading to spectacular views, the island is called hidden paradise for a reason. She is absolutely stunning!
Jean-Michel Cousteau’s philosophy really spoke to us.
His team of conservationists believe our modern society can learn a lot about achieving a sustainable environment from the Fijian’s agricultural and fishing practices. The Fijian people have flourished for over thousand years by living off the natural bounty that surrounds them.
The luxury eco friendly resort is dedicated to the preservation of a pristine environment where physical, mental and spiritual rejuvenation come naturally.
Since it’s inception the resort has dedicated itself to taking care of the environment and the resort staff are proud that they can continue the legacy.
There is something to be said of Jean-Michel Cousteau himself. Since he has been thrown overboard at age seven and spend the last four decades exploring, protecting and educating people on his beloved water planet. He has dedicated his life to communicating to all people of all nations and generations his love and concern for the oceans.
Honoring his heritage and legacy of his dad, Jean-Yves Cousteau, he founded Oceans Future Society in 1999, a non-profit marine education and conservation organization. It serves as a voice for the ocean, to educate and reminds us of the importance of wise environmental policy and to help us understand how important the bond between people and ocean really is.
Jean-Michel Cousteau has travelled the world, sat with the president at the White House, has produced over 80 movies to educate and preserve our oceans worldwide. He serves as a passionate diplomat and advocate for the environment.
All of this and much more brought us to this very special place.
Natural, gracious hospitality greeted us upon arrival and it only kept getting better from there.
The staff represent the epitome of the Fijian culture and community values.
The Fijian people play guitar and sing at any opportunity. Music seems to be everywhere. In the evenings the resorts guitar players perform a traditional Kava ceremony and you are always welcome to join.
What made this resort extra special besides it’s stunning location, small size (only 25 bures total) and warm and welcoming hospitality was the fact that every child upto 6 has its own dedicated nanny who is with them from 8am to 9pm. And every child age 6-12 is always accompanied by a buddy. How awesome is that?
You get to relax, chill, swim, dive and explore while your kiddos are more than taken care of.
Aviana’s nanny Linda was a very special soul. We as a family grew so fond of her genuine and gentle spirit that it was one of the hardest things for us to say good bye. Many many tears of joy, happiness and overwhelming gratitude were falling during our time there.
Robin got a chance to renew his diving skills and explored some of the stunning surrounding reefs.
Even Raphael was able to get a taste of the amazing diving by taking part in an introductory bubble maker class.
Since The Resort is all inclusive, the activities and excursions included really made the experience extra special. From snorkeling, diving, fishing, glass bottom boat riding, reef walks, Fijian story telling, tennis, paddle boarding, kayaking, volleyball, eco tours, medicine walks, yoga, sailing and much more the offers were endless.
For kids it is an adventurous experience in paradise full of cool things to do and see while parents get to choose how to spend their day.
The restaurant and food option were plenty and the best part was, that food options were available 24/7.
We were able to participate in a village excursion to the nearby village of Nukubalavu where most of the staff working at the resort come from.
2 years ago the resort and village were hit by a devastating cyclone and have since rebuild, restored and bettered the housing structures in the villages.
It was humbling to see many guests return with stories on active involvement on their part, helping and rebuilding the villages. One guest provided tents for the villagers to keep them dry and safe after the storm hit. Others kept coming back for ten years total helping to grow and preserve the mangroves surrounding the resort.
I think it is evident to see how taken we were by this special place and the people.
It was in the many little things that we got to experience and how many souls touched us deeply.
Viri, a very gifted massage therapist and traditional Fijian healer touched us deeply with her powerful ability to help our bodies heal, relax and be still. She prides herself having healing hands and is eager to pass them on and down her family line. What a beautiful thing to be able to witness and experience.
Lounging in and around the pool one afternoon, we made the acquaintance of Andrew and Effi, two very special men from Sidney. They visited with their four kids. After talking for a while and sharing about life’s precious choices I recalled something that I had forgotten for 22 years.
When I lived in New York and modeled for IMG I had a shoot scheduled with an up and coming photographer. The shoot was for Elle and the photographers name was Effi Cohen. Unfortunately the job was canceled due to sickness and I never got to work with this creative soul.
Well oh well, 22 years later and while lounging in a pool in Fiji, as the universe so eloquently orchestrated, we got to meet after all. Serendipity at its best. We found out that we have so much in common and share so many friends. What a beautiful gift. It doesn’t end here though.
Robin and Effi got to talk for a while as well and as it turned out, through Effi’s generous and welcoming personality and ability to invite, Robin was able to heal an old and very painful childhood wound that revolved around the ongoing hatred between German and Jewish.
The experience was so humbling and profound for both of us, it left us speechless and full of gratitude.
The memories made here will stay with us forever and we already made promises of returning soon.
My favorite was the trip to Naviavia, a private island just 10 minutes away by boat.
Perfect powdered sand, a special prepared picnic, kayaking around the island and hanging out with baby reef sharks awaited us for my birthday.
Seeing our kids build a castle while a was lounging in the hammock, frolicking and simply enjoying being on our own little slice of heaven was so beautiful.
It was unforgettable and just an amazing experience I will be forever grateful for.
So long and Vinaka Vakalevu Fiji, you have imprinted our hearts forever.
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