Vuda Point Marina and beyond…

Vuda Point Marina is not your typical marina set up….at least nothing that Trevor or I have seen before.  It has no docks and is circular!  There is a pass that has been blasted out to get inside the marina.  The boat yard is behind all the boats…and this is where some vessels stay for cyclone season on land and IN the land!

This marina specializes in cyclone “pits”. You can see this empty one, which will be full, I am sure of it, before November 1st when cyclone season officially starts.

We had purchased a promotional haul out way back in/at Moorea, French Polynesia at the Pacific Puddle Jump Rendezvous for a cheaper price.  We had been in contact with Adam, the marina manager, for a week before we arrived to make sure they had room for us and to schedule the lift out of the water.  As usually, things happen!  Schedules got confused, marina staff was turned over, and worst of all….our friends on SV All Day (Vlad and Nicole) hit a reef and needed to come into the yard to do rudder and keel repair.  SV Me Too and us we schedule to be hauled out on Tuesday but we gave up our spot for SV All Day as they are in need to make it to Australia and have a much tighter sailing schedule.  Additionally, SV Me Too had a guest flying in in a week and they needed to get their work done before we needed to so we arranged for them to haul out before us.  Nothing happens as you expect them too : )  Me Too hauled out after us due to a miscommunication and SV All Day is still in the yard….

There was a white buoy just outside the marina entrance where Me Too tied up…we decided to tie up to them (lol) to wait for the marina to clear us into the yard.
While we waited, we said “well…let’s have lunch at the restaurant”…so we dinghy to the marina and shared a beer and burger. Here is the view of our boats tied together at the white mooring ball outside the marina. There were some other people who were surprised we did this…..they almost thought it a good idea..for the short term.

Well we finally got into the yard…but I will post what we accomplished and bore you on a later post : )

Slow Flight finding her “land” home for about 10-12 days.

For now I will share some of the fun we had even while living on the “hard”…. we all need to take a break at some point!

The BBQ-Slow Flights new Galley (kitchen) – So….our boat has all United States A/C plugs (110 volt) and so is our stove (yes it’s electric)….while the electrical hook ups are all 220 volts….we could not easily cook while we were on the hard but…there was this nice little BBQ with picnic tables where you could cook.  We would pack up dinner makings and beverages and have dinner there in the breeze and away from the dust and dirt.

Slow Flight preparing a fried rice meal for 7 people! You cound’t ask for a better view while cooking!
Trevor doing his chef THANG!
Holy RICE!
The dining room table is set and ready
SV All Day, Nicole and Vlad, with an amazing spread complied by all of us!
We found Mayo again!!!! She stayed on our boat on the hard for a few days while she finalized her plans to sail west. She was so helpful and would go to the market for us (we were busy working) and she cooked for us…this was a special treat as she would make meals with new local flavors and create new foods/flavors for us!
Mayos dinner she cooked for us…I wish I could explain what all this was! All I know is that it was DELICIOUS! Thank you Mayo : )
After Mayo’s dinner we all hung out in the cool breeze and had a knot tying lesson…I should of paid more attention to this!

Since we couldn’t cook and to add, Vuda Point is a bit far from any town, we were kind of stuck there so we would frequent the restaurant, The Boat Shed, for their lunch specials ($5 usd for lunch) almost everyday and depending on the group’s day, we would eat dinner there too (Tuesday evenings were 1/2 off pizza…yeah I was there)!  Let’s just say they know us on a first name basis right now : )

Walking into the Boat Shed restaurant and bar. There were picnic tables on the grass and the farther shack was the main bar where you can watch boat come in and out of the marina. Photo courtesy of the internet.
Wow…is liquor expensive here in FIji (beer is not)..but we had to try/share a taster of each of the Fiji Rums…
OMG…this boat is from KOREA?!

Port Denarau –  Is a port about a 40 minute cab ride from Vuda Point.  We took many trips here but one of them was to celebrate SV All Day 1 year anniversary of leaving the states to cruise!

The Port Denarau complex sign
SV All Day (Nicole and Vlad) on Slow Flight headed to Port Denarua…a late morning “cheers” was in order
So there was a Hardrock Cafe at Port Denarua, lots of shops, restaurants…..I tried to buy this wig from a store….she had to ask and then call the manager..I was so close but they finally said no…I did buy the dress : )
Dinner at the Port Denarua Yacht Club over looking the marina there.
Had oyster on the half shell..its been years since I have had these little guys!
We weren’t quite ready to go home so Nicole provided Cards against humanity….. This was my turn! Guess which one was Trevor’s card that I picked?!
We are a crazy bunch! SV All Day brought some peanut butter for SV Me Too so Clay was carrying it around in his shorts pocket all day, Briley and Vlad photo bombing…the night is still young!

We took a liking to Veer, a taxi driver, who would take us to Port Denarau for a good price…he would wait for us while we ran errands, make special stops for us along the way, and almost everyday would come by to say hi to all of us (probably to see if we needed his services but it was nice in any case!)

See anything different? Yes they drive on the opposite side of the road….. Veer driving us to Port Denarua
Lots of sugar cane grows on this side of the island. There is a town, Latoka, which we have yet to visit, but there is where all the sugar cane is processed and shipped.
Goats!
Port Denarua is a much more upscale place than Vuda Point and has lots of the shops we needed…too bad it was a $50 taxi ride there and back
Fijians have a good sense of humor! A sign outside a chandlery we visitied
Veer would stop for us to do other errands on the way back to Vuda…here we stopped at the market to grab fresh veggies and Kava root
The market
Veer even stopped for us to pick up lunch to bring back for everyone at yes….BURGERKING! We had so many bags of food, it was hilarious!

Sunday fun day – Sunday is generally time for rest..right?  The yard has a rule that in we can’t use power tools on Sunday so we all decided to take a break and eat Yum Cha (dim sum, chinese lunch style eating) and then go see a movie, Blade Runner.

Yum Cha! I had to call 5 different restaurants to find a place who was serving this yummy food on a Sunday. We finally made in a cab (7 of us) and 3 of us sat in the trunk : )
Walked to the movie theater…opps movie starts later than we thought so Trevor decided to get a massage, lucky guy
The rest of us hung out in the waiting area of the movie theater for the movie to start…here is Clay and his daughter Briley sitting in these MASSIVE couches…
Ummmm…and yes they had a bar! Jill and I split a small bottle of red wine while we waited

First Landing resort – So there is a resort right next “door/reef” to Vuda Point Marina.  It is in a shape of a barefoot.  We can walk around the reef under a fence and have access to their pool.  We buy beer and had dinner there one night after a hard day’s work!

You can maybe see the First Landing resort in the shape of a bare foot right next to Vuda Point Marina….if you go during high tide…you’ll get wet : )
Went to the pool to cool off and had dinner there with SV All Day…..we were treated to a show (for the resort guests of course) to polynesian dancing…here Nicole and I are tying out our skills…again, we won’t quit our day jobs!

Over all Vuda Point Marina has been wonderful for us and it was so great to catch up with old friends and loving meeting new ones!

Aboard SV Spill the Wine (Chris and Nancy, crew member Hoop) for a pre-dinner drink; SV All Day, SV Fathom and friend, SV Slow Flight

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