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Yachts Are Welcomed At Daku Bay

By doina — last modified Dec 15, 2005 11:13 PM

Published: 2005-12-15 23:13:13
Countries: Fiji

In September 05', a little by chance we met Epi and his wife Kata, who have welcomed yachts for over 15 yrs, including Jimmy & Gwenda Cornell as we were surprised to find in Epi's Visitors Book.

Epi has urged his and two neighboring villages to agree to establish a marine reserve area and to preserve native birds and an endemic forest found only here. The village has started a giant Clam reserve, bee-keeping, coffee making, and sandalwood tree reforestation with the help of Peace Corp volunteers.

Epi now offers tours and cultural activities to try to raise money for the village to prove that protecting their lands and seas can also bring income. Visionaries in a short-sighted world are rare. One tour takes you up a mangrove river, through the organic garden, the endemic forest, a panorama of the bay, and to a picnic beach where you can snorkel on the marine reserve's very vibrant and healthy hard coral reefs. Kata gives tapa cloth-making demonstrations and will also do a multi-day workshop where one can learn the skill and have a self-made souvenir(s) to take back. Buying some of Epi's organic garden vegetables or ginger will feed both you and his cause.

During our visit we took plenty of digital photos for Epi to make a small pamphlet to attract visitors and we told him about the benefits of having a wordwide presence on the internet via Noonsite. "The more cruisers and tourists know about what you do when planning their voyages, the more visitors you will get :)"

What a nice surprise to receive an email from John & Amanda Neal from s/v Mahina offering to sponsor Epi's Daku Bay Eco Tours on Noonsite! What a nice thing to do: sponsoring both Epi's activities and Noonsite! Another cruiser we sent there helped Epi write a new text to explain the goals and activities of Daku Bay Eco Tours and another cruiser thousands of miles away (but having visited Epi a long time ago) designed the logo for DBET! Once again sailors offer help and skills to thank Epi and Kata for their genuine welcome and generous hospitality.

Jimmy was excited to have Epi's activities presented on Noonsite. It is amazing and great when the cruising community pools their talents together to assist in a worthwile project.

Long life to your projects, Epi ... that many more cruisers enjoy your hospitality and your sharing of village life and activities!

For more details, look at the Daku Bay Eco Tour gold page in the Kadavu Island section.

Luc Callebaut, Noonsite regional editor

"Of all the South Pacific villages I've visited over the last 20 years, Daku remains my favorite. A sincere welcome and enthusiastic sharing of their culture makes for lasting friendships and memories."

Barbara Marrett

West Coast Contributing Editor Cruising World Magazine