The incredibly friendly locals of the traditional village of Nukubaluvu in Savusavu, Fiji, welcomed us into their home with open arms, and taught us about their traditions and daily lives – from education, leisure and clothing, to how to they get coconuts down from the towering palm trees. They sang, danced, and gave us coconuts to drink from, and opened up their village to us.
|A warm welcome from the locals|
|Welcoming us with a song|
|The colourful village|
|The gorgeous beach|
We were first treated to a kava welcoming ceremony. Kava is made by smashing the root of a kava plant, mixing it with water, and straining it through cloth into a wooden bowl called a tanoa. It is then drunk out of a communal coconut shell, and drinking the kava causes relaxation and mild euphoria.
|The kava ceremony|
The highlight of the day was the meke, telling the stories and legends of the islands through traditional song and dance. The men and women dance separately, as the rest of the village sits singing and clapping.
|Meke – the women|
|Meke –the men|
We then got a glimpse into daily village life,with a tour of the schoolhouse, and a demonstration of traditional basket weaving using palm fronds, with different designs for men and women based on their uses. The visit concluded with a wander through the craft market and a refreshing drink of freshly picked coconut.
|Young students in their classroom|
|The end of an incredible day in Fijian paradise. Bula!|