We arrived in Fiji to the steaming hot Nadi airport in the middle of the afternoon last Saturday. Surfers Dean Morrison and Jay Phillips joined us on the trip, as well as our friends Anthony and Courtney Marcotti (who, fun story, met at a nightclub appearance Brody did a year ago in Australia and are now married!). We have friends living on Viti Levo (the main island) who are building a spectacular luxury resort and residential development called Vunabaka on the nearby island of Mololo (more on this later), so our first few days the whole gang stayed in a home on the main island in the town of Denarau.
Denarau is a development in which several resorts, golf courses and residential areas are located. The town also has a really cute port area and marina filled with cute shops, spas and restaurants. Each night we would get dinner in the port at either Lulu’s or Cardos — both had the most diverse and extensive menus, but Cardos had insane calamari. I’m not much of a calamari fan usually but this was so lightly battered and I think they throw some cinnamon in the mix. It was the best I’ve ever had. Lulu’s had the perfect breakfast burrito and they serve it with some sort of sweet syrup that I couldn’t get enough of.
To get to the ocean from our house each morning, we had a boat out back (above) that we’d run up a little inlet about 5 minutes. From there it was a 20 minute run out to some of the greatest surf spots in the world.
We spent time at the infamous “Cloudbreak” and at another wave, nicknamed “Restaurants.” There are several others nearby but the guys stuck to these two while the girls and I snorkeled and swam.
That was the coolest part about Restaurants, in particular: the wave breaks pretty far offshore because there’s a reef there (BTW super sketchy!), so we could be snorkeling and hanging on the boat off the side of the wave, in about 12 feet of water, while the guys surfed just feet away.
Our second day in Fiji, we were up at 6 a.m., grabbed a chicken pie from Hot Bread Kitchen for breakfast(a huge thing in Australia and Fiji is meat pie, and the chicken ones are basically pot pies.. AMAZING!), and were on the boat by 7 a.m. headed to Restaurants. After about 6 hours (and a lot of sunscreen) our friends took us to one of the coolest places I’ve ever been!
It is called Cloud 9, and it is a floating bar and restaurant in the middle of the ocean. You can only access it by boat and there is literally nothing around it for miles. The bar is fully stocked and some local men use a brick oven to make fresh pizzas. They also have day beds in the sun and shade so you can swim off the bar and then get a tan or rest.
One of the nearest islands to Cloud 9 is Mololo, where our friends are building their luxury resort, Vunabaka Island Grace. We went to check out the work that’s been done so far. OMG this place is going to be insane. You can check it out here. Island Grace should be up and running by next year and I can’t wait to stay!
Stay tuned for part two on Fiji where you’ll read about the incredible resort we discovered and stayed at for the second half of our trip to paradise, as well as all the clothing I wore on vacation!