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-   -   What islands if we had to choose? (https://www.fodors.com/community/australia-and-the-pacific/what-islands-if-we-had-to-choose-454925/)

mishottie Jun 30th, 2004 02:34 PM

What islands if we had to choose?
 
My husband and I are planning a 20th wedding anniversary/2nd honeymoon. We have never been to any islands, other than Hawaii and loved it! We are considering Moorea/Bora-Bora or Fiji or the Cook Islands. Since it will be a once in a lifetime trip for us, we are having trouble deciding. We both love the outdoors, love to snorkel, like a little adventure, but not to extreme. I want somewhere romantic, with awesome sunsets, not an overabundance of insects, decent or better food, and great snorkeling and/or water sports. And, where I can just read a good book, take and nap and relax. Any suggestions from experienced island travelers would be appreciated.

LordBalfor Jun 30th, 2004 05:09 PM

If you've read any of my posts, you probably already know what I'm going to say. Having been to both FP and the Cooks (but not Fiji), I have admit that FP is both more beautiful (though only slightly) and has better food (in general). I would still however choose the Cooks over FP because it's cheaper so I can stay longer for the same amount of money (a really BIG plus, because trust me, when the time comes you will NOT want to come home). I've also found the people in the Cooks to be friendlier - though the fact that I speak the language in the Cooks (but not in FP) may enter into that somewhat.

The good news is that both of these places (and I suspect Fiji as well) are just incredible, so there are no bad choices here.

That's my take.

Ken

tropo Jun 30th, 2004 11:12 PM

Fiji is nice, especially if you stay out on one of their outer islands. Also you could consider the Blue Lagoon Cruise.
But my choice would have to be the Cook Islands, and especially Autika (not sure of the spelling)

Kiwi_acct Jul 1st, 2004 02:14 AM

Tropo

You are right the Cooks are great.

BTW to give you a hand, the spelling is Aitutaki. The lagoon there is to me the definition of South SEa Island life.

Fiji has some great places as well. We love Navini. Very friendly great location. Fantasic reef just off the beach. 24/7 transfers to/from the airport. Usually no mosquitoes.

Whatever you choose, mishottie, enjoy. 20 years is a great milestone

Steve

mishottie Jul 1st, 2004 10:50 AM

LordBalfor,tropo & kiwi - thanks for your responses. I am going to AAA to talk about options and look at brochures and will then decide. Still interested in more comments out there, though - keep 'em comin'!

PeggyE Jul 1st, 2004 11:39 AM

Well, if it is a once in a lifetime trip then I would have to say Moorea/Bora Bora though I like Fiji the best. To you it will not seem overbuilt since you have never been. And it all depends on the amount of money you want to spend. The Cooks are great, especially Aitutaki for being comfortable immediately but I feel the food is lacking and it doesn't have the exotic feel or FP or Fiji (outer islands). But that is just my opinion.l You really will have a wonderful time wherever you go!

Lynette Jul 1st, 2004 11:56 AM

A few years ago we did Fiji for our 15th anniversary.
It was truly an exotic tropical Vacation. Spent 3 days on the coral coast at the Outrigger (that gave us a chance to see the sights on the main Island. then we went on a 4 day sailboat trip (this was like an exotic camping trip, and we had the best snorkelling on this part of the trip) and finaly 5 nights on a resort Island in the Mamanuca's.
We went in March which is the end of the rainy season. The weather was hot and humid, and it rained in the afternoons over the coral coast.
The Mamanuca's seem to get less rain, as we had no rain there. The ocean water is at it's warmest at this time also. In October for example it is much cooler.
Fiji has a well developed tourist infrastructure, and all our connections and transfers went off without a hitch.
Fiji also has quite a diverse ethnic culture with the national Fijian people, a large hindu Indian population (especially in Nadi), and also lots of Australians and New Zealanders. Because of this, there is quite a variety in cuisine.
We had a fabulous time, and if you want any more info, just ask
Lynette

nvtravel Jul 2nd, 2004 12:29 PM

I have been to Tahiti three times and once to Fiji. My trip to Fiji was centerd around scuba diving near Taveuni which was great. But for a do nothing break filled with stunning beauty, beach and book reading in a hammock, Bora Bora is a winner. The Hotel Bora Bora is lovely. Stayed there twice in the 80's....pricey but you are in paradise.
Enjoy!

susant100 Jul 5th, 2004 02:37 PM

Dear nytravel,

Where did you stay in Fiji? I am trying to put together a family dive trip at a nice resort. I am looking at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. Any comments would be appreciated or any other resort recommendations would be great!

nvtravel Jul 6th, 2004 10:29 AM

susant100

In Fiji I stayed at Matangi Island and on Tavenui at Dive Tavenui. My trip to Fiji was centered around maximizing my scuba diving time and both resorts were terrific. I have heard good things about Marlin Bay Resort from a fellow diver. The website for the Cousteau resort looks very nice as well - with a lot of activities for kids. Again, my vacation was centered around resorts with the best scuba diving possibilities. Try www.travelwizard.com as they have an extensive section on Fiji Vacations.
Good luck!

SimoneSassett Jul 13th, 2004 02:46 PM

We really enjoyed the Cook Islands for our belated honeymoon trip. We did one week on Rarotonga and one week on Aitutaki. Very relaxing. I admit, it was nice to be able to speak English with most everyone. Good luck deciding!

tropo Jul 13th, 2004 02:54 PM

I guess you haven't thought about taking a island holiday on Lord Howe Island. This small island situated off the east coast of NSW, has coral reefs, loads of palms trees, is quiet and peaceful, with only a small number of guests allowed onto the island at any given time. Most people ride bicycles around the island. Some of the permanent inhabitants are descendants of the Mutiny crew. The fishing is just fantastic. People do fish for kingfish in the deeper waters near Balls Pyramind, a giant rock formation sticking out of the ocean near Lord Howe. However, these is excellent fishing around the island foreshores, including protected fish hand feeding.
There are some great walks, especially the one up the Mountain, but take the one with the guide. I don't think you would find a more romantic island, or peaceful (book reading) place than Lord Howe Island. It now "World Heritage" status.


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