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We got married in 2010, and having only just gotten back from a European holiday only a couple of months earlier, we decided on a honeymoon a little closer to home. We chose to spend just under 2 weeks in Fiji.
It was the perfect romantic tropical honeymoon destination. As part of our honeymoon in Fiji, we did a cruise through the breathtaking Yasawa Islands to kick off our adventure.
THE YASAWA ISLANDS FIJI
The Yasawa Islands are a group of around 20 volcanic islands in Fiji’s western region, covering approximately 135 square kilometres.
The Yasawa islands are known for their exquisite natural beauty, from white sand beaches and palm trees, lined with crystal blue waters. Our experience with the Yasawa Islands was via a cruise, with Blue Lagoon Cruises over 3 nights.
The Blue Lagoon Cruise are small ship cruises that offer comfortable private rooms and loads of cruise activities and excursions each day.
Unlike many of the other island regions in Fiji, the Yasawa Islands are not overly commercialised. Land based tourism only commenced from 1987.
This was largely due to their not being a transport system in place, however there is now the Yasawa Flyer to get to and from the Yasawa Island, with a few resorts now available too.
Our Blue Lagoon Cruise To Yasawa Islands
We actually didn’t see any of the resorts, and barely another cruise ship either for the duration of our cruise. It was only on our second last day did we see anyone other than the people on our own cruise. This made it feel like we were sailing into paradise.
Yasawa Islands Village Visit
On our second afternoon we visited a traditional Fijian village and were welcomed by the friendly locals.
We were taken into their town hall, which also doubled as a church, and our cruise host gave us the history on the village and Fijian culture.
Afterwards, there was a kava ceremony and we had the chance to try it.
If I’m being honest… it tasted like dirt. Dirty water. Pretty gross really! But a cool experience to have anyway.
Afterwards the villages danced for us, showing us several of their traditional dances, and singing songs. It was lovely.
They got our cruise group up dancing too. Neither Simon or I are overly keen on dancing but it was great fun. We had a few laughs and felt very welcome.
Many of the local women set up a market area outside the hall once the dancing finished, so we could purchase handmade wares.
We were told this is an important part of their income and a big reason why they are happy to welcome cruise ships to the villages like they do. Our cruise guide told us each cruise alternates between the different villages in the area to give them the opportunity to benefit from tourists purchasing from them.
We purchased a few hand carved wooden souvenirs, before everyone hopped back in the boats to take us back to our cruise ship.
There were a couple more island excursions throughout the cruise, one of which gave us the option to go for a bit of a hike with our cruise ship host. Of the approximately 60 people on the cruise, only around 5 of us went on the hike, while the rest stayed on the beach. The hike was so worth it. These were the best views of the entire cruise.
The rest of the passengers had no idea what they were missing. Their loss! Sparkling blue water, white sand beaches. Just perfect!
The cruise ship itself has a dining area where most meals are served. You get to meet different people each meal as you sit at the different tables. This is always a great chance to meet people from other countries.
The food was incredible too and there was so much of it! It felt never ending at times!
Every afternoon on the ship deck was happy hour so we had some fun trying different cocktails each day, while watching the sun set over the water. The view was breathtaking.
The cocktails and alcoholic beverages were not included in the cruise cost like the meals and excursions, however they were competitively priced with other cruise ships, such as P&O Cruises. They had some great options too, with tropical themed names and some of their own creations.
Each meal on the cruise was presented as a buffet style feast, with an abundance of food with local influences. There was plenty of tropical fruit incorporated into the cooking. Lots of coconut. And in between meals there were always a selection of fruit and cakes. it felt like we were always eating!
And even with all the eating and adventure, there was still time to sit back and relax for a while.
Such a hard life, this cruising thing… someone’s gotta do it!
Full Beach Day At A Private Island
On our final full day, it was spent on a private island owned by Blue Lagoon Cruises. The island was set up with facilities aimed at cruise ship visitors, such as hammocks and beach lounges all the way along the beachfront, kayaks and snorkelling equipment to entertain us and of course plenty of food.
It was actually the best day of our honeymoon, even though we went on to stay at an awesome resort after our cruise, but i don’t think i have ever had such a relaxing day in my life.
We spent our time chilling out in the hammock or on the lounges, swimming, snorkelling and kayaking. We ate lots of food, in between a few fruity cocktails and just made the most of living it up. I even splurged on a massage in the afternoon (which was actually quite painful… so possibly the only downfall of the day).
That night our cruise ship staff put on a traditional Fijian feast, with several types of meat and potatoes slow cooked in the ground. They also put out massive spread of salads, sides and desserts that was simply amazing. There was so much food. The tables were set up along the beach and the food just seemed to go forever. Definitely a feast to remember!
The next day we were serenaded by the ship crew as a thank you, and were given a gift of a sarong for each passenger. We returned back to the dock around midday to continue onto the next stage of our honeymoon adventure – the Warwick Fiji Resort.
The Yasawa Islands are in the northern Fiji region and can be reached by cruise ship, the Yasawa Flyer or private boat transport.
There is accommodation on the islands, including backpacker or resort options. You can find out more at the Fiji tourism website or check TripAdvisor to compare accommodation prices.
We stayed at First Landing Beach Resort for a night before our cruise, as it is a resort nearby the Port Denarau cruise terminal. The resort was affordable and we loved having a beachfront bure room with a spa bath as a little extra splurge.