I rarely write reviews unless it is really good, or really bad. I am pleased to share our positive experience with you, the Internet.
This summer we went on a once in a lifetime dive trip to Beqa Lagoon resort on Beqa Island, Fiji. We went back and forth on if we should go because of the cost and the fact my husband got military orders to Japan around that time, but we’re so glad we did. We’d do it again in a heartbeat.
I could write pages but I’ll try to hit the highlights.
We went with our local dive shop’s group of 12 and there were about 10 other guests outside our group. This gave us a very low key vacation with an exclusive feel to it. I’m unsure if it is true, but I heard there was a 2 year wait list to vacation here and after our experience I would not be surprised if that were the case.
I was most impressed with the kindness and warmth of the locals who worked at the resort. We were welcomed by the staff at the shore with a traditional welcome song and were given fresh fragrant garlands. When it came time to leave we were sent off with a goodbye song and flower throwing tradition. You toss a flower into the sea as you depart the island and if the flower comes back to the shore you are said to be destined to return. I actually cried when we left. I’ve been on many a vacation and was never moved enough to cry when it was time to leave.
In fact, usually I’m ready to get back to the daily grind and see our 2 fat cats, but this time I found myself wishing the vacation would never end. I imagine it was mostly because I knew that same daily grind and packing for the move to Japan awaited us back home and there would be no freshly cut papaya every morning, no “bula!” when you greet people, and no sarongs back home.
It took me almost 2 months to get over my Post Vacation Depression Disorder. I wore my sarong at home after work for weeks afterwards and moped around the house wishing I was back in Fiji. I argue that this is a real thing that people experience when they go on wonderful vacations and am in no way making light of PTSD. I just couldn’t think of another way to describe it and later realized it sounds similar to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The food was fabulous (best resort food I’ve ever had, actually), and the staff and level of service were impeccable. They knew your names within a few days, which blew my mind since we aren’t used to that kind of service in the states.
I rarely eat desert but had it every night. We dove hard, so I figured my body could handle the extra calories. They had lean and vegetarian options.
The soups were delicious. The fish tasted wonderful. The steak was to die for; it was perfect- I wanted to lick the plate.
We had a single bure and it felt very private and romantic. The bed was comfortable and the linens felt clean and soft. We even had a few geckos visit and chirp at us. Oh- and be on the lookout for the mongoose!
Just be sure to bring the right kind of adapter for your electronics. There is internet, but you have to pay for it. It was so refreshing to be unplugged from Facebook, email, and the web. People actually talked to each other during meals and we only used our phones for pictures.
The only thing I would have liked to have was better water pressure in the shower, but it is an island resort so I’m just thankful there were modern conveniences at all.
You could throw a rock and hit the water from our hammock so one of my favorite things was waking up and falling asleep to the waves softly crashing at the end of our “yard.”
The diving was spectacular. I have never experienced anything like it and look forward to the other amazing dives in our future. We have dived at Playa del Carmen but Fiji was the perfect place to start our scuba diving bucket list.
The dive crew was very experienced and took us to wonderful dive sites. How they keep up with everyone, I”ll never know. I felt very safe in their hands.
The night and shark dives were a lot of fun, but we got just as many great pictures, video, and memories from the other boat dives. I even got to pet a shark while it was eating!
One of our dive masters even grabbed shark teeth for us at the bottom of “The Bistro” site that I turned into necklaces that look pretty awesome.
I took advantage of the complimentary welcome foot massage while David took a nap and the massage therapist was friendly and had a great sense of humor so she was delightful to talk with.
Later in the week we treated ourselves to the Beqa signature massage and that was a wonderful and relaxing. The therapists are professional, kind, and experienced.
Some other reviewers have said the property was showing signs of wear, but roofs were being re-thatched while we were there. Other than some patchy roof thatch (for decoration) I didn’t notice any signs of wear and neither did the members of our group who went last year.
The Fire Walkers and fashion shows were really interesting and neat to watch. I felt like they do a lot of the hype for the tourists, but the guys seemed to have a good time and were very kind.
The Fijians have a communal society, so you want to be sure to donate to their Christmas fund if you want to tip because tipping individuals isn’t customary there, with the exception of the dive crew. We tipped them and left our unused alcohol with them.
There were some non-divers there and they said they had a wonderful time doing things on the resort or going into the villages so there are things to do even if you don’t dive. But–it’s Fiji. Some of the most amazing dive sites in the world are in Fiji..so dive there if you can!