eco-tourism plays a significant role in attracting travelers to
the country. There are nature reserves for bird watching, unique
species of iguanas, vibrant tropical rainforest with thousands of
plants, most with medicinal value as well as the beautiful Tagimaucia
flower which is unique to the high hills of Taveuni. The promotion
of such wonderful assets not only encourages the local people to
protect their heritage but also helps support the lives of those
living in rural areas by giving them employment opportunities.
has an unspoiled, unique environment of extreme beauty and tranquility
Fiji is a nature lovers delight. Adrift for millennia in splendid
isolation in the blue of the South Pacific it has escaped the evils
of industrial progress, the incursions of dangerous animals, poisonous
snakes, spiders and pestilent diseases such as malaria. It awaits
Fiji crested iguana is a large stocky lizard, which was first
discovered in 1979. Dr John Gibbons found the iguana whilst
researching the, more common, banded iguana (B. fasciatus) that
is also found on the Fijian islands. The crested iguana is green
with 3 narrow white bands crossing its back, whilst the bands
of the banded iguana are much broader and are blue in colour.
The crested iguana is also much larger than its close relative
and has distinct crest spines along its back that can be up
to 1.2 cm long. A further distinction between the two species
occurs when the iguanas are aroused; the crested iguana is able
to change colour very rapidly from green to black.
1980 Mr Trammel Crow of Dallas Texas, donated to the National
Trust for Fiji a 13 hectare site 26km South East of Nadi with
commanding views of the surrounding coastline and reef, containing
the historic WWII Momi Bay Battery.
The site was established by the New Zealand
30th battalion in 1941, because of it’s strategic importance
overlooking the Navula passage - one of the few breaks in
the reef allowing ships access to the western centres and
Nadi airfield. The main feature of the site are the two 6
By August 1942 the New Zealand Battalion was
relieved at Momi Bay by the 148th battalion. The site was
manned by the battalion until early 1944 when all Fiji's coastal
batteries were closed.
4-mile stretch of large windswept sandunes along the coast is
a protected environment administered by the National Trust of
The park has a very informative visitor centre about the ancient
inhabitants and ecology of the region. Pottery sherd from the
Lapita Era (1000 years ago), buried in time by drifting sands,
can be found scattered amongst the sandunes and several archaeological
excavations have revealed ancient fishing settlements.
There are several official trails to explore the sandunes which
often expose these ancient pottery shards.
unique feature in Fiji is the rare Tagimaucia flower which is
found in the high rainforests of Taveuni and Vanua Levu in the
The most prolific flowering is around scenic Lake Tagimaucia
between October and December. The trail is quite arduous, especially
on a hot and humid day.
© 2006 - Ajay Amrit
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