Dec 14, 2010

FREE HONEYMOON UPGRADE ON ALL 10 DAY PACKAGES AT MATAVA!

DEAL #2 from Matava for January 2011:
 
Book any of our packages to go fishing, diving, bird watching, or indeed just hanging out at Matava – Fiji’s Premier Eco Adventure Resort during the whole month of January and get upgraded to our exclusive Honeymoon Bure free!
 

Buddy dives for FREE in January 2011 at Matava, Fiji

2 great deals in January 2011 from Matava!
DEAL #1
Your buddy dives fir FREE!Don’t miss your chance to have your buddy dive for free at Matava – Fiji’s Premier Eco Adventure Resort during the whole month of January 2011 and see the mantas on the Great Astrolabe Reef.
Use this great deal to get your one of you diving for free to get in even more diving this year.

Dec 11, 2010

Deep Blue Adventures Announces New Charity Program

Charity begins at home and with that in mind Deep Blue Adventures is announcing the creation of Good Will Diving, a new branch of Deep Blue Adventures that will be dedicated to bringing together divers with organizations or people in need. Good Will Diving will organize and participate in various benefits, fundraisers and educational programs while providing a place where anyone interested in assisting or contributing to a need can find information on a cause and participate.

Deep Blue Adventures will utilize Good Will Diving to highlight one specific cause for a set time each year to maximize the opportunities to help while also taking part in other charities. Right now Good Will Diving is putting a call out to all charities and foundations to suggest their own causes for the program as well as any individuals or dive stores. Cheryl Patterson of Deep Blue Adventures says that the program was created to serve. "Divers are a very community-oriented group of people and we often have many clients asking what they can do to help," says Patterson. "Sometimes it is the form of taking school supplies or other much needed items to a place they are visiting, other times it is looking to offer aid during a disaster or making a financial contribution. We have always provided this information whenever it has been requested, but we wanted more people to know they have a reliable contact point."

November is the official beginning of Good Will Diving. This first cause they are tackling is the need for eye glasses for Fijian Villagers. Patterson says that it is a way of giving back to some of the places that divers enjoy so much. "As divers and travelers we experience many wonderful aspects of the countries we visit," Patterson explains. "We often fall in love with the surroundings, the food, the culture and, of course, what we find there beneath the surface. More often than not, the people are what touches us the most and deepens our experiences. We felt that highlighting a need of some of the warmest people we have ever met in one of our top-selling destinations would be an appropriate place to start." Good Will Diving is not requesting money for this effort but instead– used or old reading eye glasses. "Kids and teens can be just as involved as adults and no one has to dig deep in their pockets – that's part of what Good Will Diving is all about," says Patterson. Patterson goes on to point out that while foundations often need financial support, and they won't turn that down, folks can also often make a huge difference in someone's lives without any cost.

One of the reasons Deep Blue Adventures chose the Fiji effort was because one of the team members had a personal connection. Terri Huber, Senior Sales Representative with Deep Blue Adventures felt a connection with the Fijian people. "One night, during a recent trip to Fiji, I was chatting after dinner with another guest and Matava resort owner, Richard Akhtar," says Huber. "During our conversation, the subject of the needs of the Fijian Villagers came up and Richard immediately responded without hesitation, eye glasses. Having traveled to many remote diving destinations around the world and being welcomed and treated graciously by the locals we have thought of a small gesture to say "thank you". We as divers visit and enjoy these far off countries and return home with long lasting memories, photos, and souvenirs. So, why not give back a little to help out the remote villages of Fiji?"

The glasses will be distributed to various villages in need across the country. Matava Resort on Kadavu who operates the Matava Foundation has agreed to assist Deep Blue Adventures in their first Good Will Diving venture in getting the glasses to those that need it most.

At DEMA this year Deep Blue Adventures collected glasses to send. Anyone who didn't attend DEMA can still contribute to this effort by mailing in reading glasses, and Deep Blue Adventures is willing to absorb the postage costs involved if a donor emails

GoodWillDiving@deepblueadventures.comThis e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or calls 888-266-2209 and requests a self-addressed, postage paid envelope. DBA is encouraging dive stores, clubs, schools, scouts, business and other organizations to consider becoming a collection point for Eyes for Fiji and engaging their local community in an effort on a larger scale. Once the glasses are received any interested donors will be issued a $50 travel voucher as a thank you for their donation. Glasses collected will be sent on a regular and ongoing basis to the islands through the company's various contacts. All vouchers will be distributed electronically due to conservation efforts also being made by the company.

As of today, they have already collected 115 pairs of glasses! For more info visit Deep Blue Adventures' website at www.deepblueadventures.com


Deep Blue Adventures Announces New Charity Program

Dec 3, 2010

Recognition for Matava at the Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards 2010

MEDIA RELEASE: 29th November 2010
Recognition for Matava at the
Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards 2010

Matava has won in the Best in the Marine Environment category at this year’s Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards 2010 organised by responsibletravel.com.
The Judges said “Matava is a beacon for responsible tourism and an example to other dive sites. They maintain a strong commitment to both the conservation of the marine environment and the development of the local Fijian community. All staff and dive guides are from local villages, they have signed an agreement with local villages designating 3 established marine reserves as 100% no-take zones, across large geographic areas, and even succeeded in assisted in getting marine conservation on to the Fijian National Curriculum.”
At a ceremony hosted at World Travel Market (WTM), Docklands, London, on Wednesday 10th November, the Awards were handed out by Justin Francis, managing director of responsibletravel.com, organisers and founders of the Awards, and Amanda Wills, managing director of Virgin Holidays, headline sponsor of the Awards.
Justin Francis, founder of The Responsible Tourism Awards and managing director, responsibletravel.com, organisers of the Awards said:
"
This year I have been heartened by the depth of commitment and connection our winners have shown to the local communities in their destinations. Their successes and pioneering spirits are remarkable and the very real and authentic experiences they have created, set responsible tourism apart. They also remind us that holidays can be both luxurious for visitor and enhancing for local people - helping build schools, water pumps, clinics and conserving cultural and natural heritage.”
Lorna Young accepting Matava's Award at WTM 2010
 Richard Akhtar, Director of Matava – Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort said:

"At Matava, we are of course both happy and proud to receive this prestigious global award. We find it even more important that the industry, by rewarding similar efforts, choose to take a stand for the environment we depend on. We also see it as an important continuing signal to the community which at the same time can serve to inspire the numerous individuals and companies who have been doing so much, and continue to do even more in the field of environmental enlightenment and conservation. This award has highlighted Fiji's leading role and efforts in this regard especially."
Amanda Wills, managing director, Virgin Holidays, headline sponsor of the Awards said:
I’m once again humbled by the commitment, drive and ingenuity of today’s winners. They have shown us all what can be achieved by the people and places seeking to benefit from tourism, even when the economic climate continues to challenge us all. Their’s is truly an example for the rest of the industry to follow, and I’m delighted that Virgin Holidays is again able to be a part of this celebration.
Launched in 2004, the Awards are run in association with partners World Travel Market, Metro Newspaper and Geographical Magazine.

In 2010 Simon Reeve, best-selling author, presenter and broadcaster launched the Awards with an exclusive interview in Metro Newspaper:
"The Responsible Tourism Awards focus attention on travel firms that are providing us all with amazing trips that make a difference to a local community while still protecting the environment and our planet. And they remind us that responsible travel is not only better for our world, it’s also more interesting and memorable. Responsible tourism is the future of travel."
For a full list of finalists, see www.responsibletourismawards.com
- Ends -
Notes to editors
About Matava – Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort

Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, is an eco adventure getaway offering you a fun and unique blend of cultural experiences and adventure activities in the environmentally pristine and remote island of Kadavu in the Fiji Islands. Matava - Fiji Premier Eco Adventure Resort is a PADI 5 Star Dive Resort as well as a Project AWARE GoEco Operator. With more than 14 years experience in the Fiji Islands, Matava is recognized as a leading educational dive centre. Matava offers accommodation for up to 22 guests in lush tropical surroundings in traditional thatched Fijian 'bures' with hardwood polished floors, louvre windows and private decks offering privacy, comfort and superb ocean views. 

For interviews, images or further information please contact Stuart Gow, Stuart@Matava.com, t: 679-997-5416

About The Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards
The Awards are the most prestigious and competitive of their kind in the world and are a collaboration between online travel directory responsibletravel.com; UK media partners Metro Newspaper and Geographical Magazine and World Travel Market who host the ceremony. The central tenet of the Awards is that all types of tourism - from niche to mainstream - can and should be operated in a way that respects and benefits destinations and local people.

About responsibletravel.com:
responsibletravel.com is the world’s leading travel agent for responsible holidays. The site offers over 3,500 richer, deeper and more locally distinctive travel experiences that are better for destinations and local communities.
Whether you’re after an action-packed adventure, a relaxing beach escape or a charming countryside getaway closer to home, there’s something to suit all tastes and budgets.
Co-founder, Justin Francis had the original idea for the website on his travels through Africa having completed his MSc in Responsible Tourism. He launched the site with backing from Dame Anita Roddick in 2001 and since then has been included in Courvoisier’s The Future 500, Thames and Hudson’s 60 Innovators Shaping Our Creative Future and taken his place on the Advisory Board of The International Centre for Responsible Tourism at Leeds Metropolitan University. Based in Brighton, England responsibletravel.com also campaigns for positive change in the travel and tourism industry.

Contact: Stuart Gow
+679 603 0685

Alex Lyonspress@responsibletravel.com
+44 (0)1273 648 519

Nov 22, 2010

Get Away from it All at Matava Fiji's Premier Eco-Resort | Peachy Green

4:11 AM
11 300x201 Get Away from it All at Matava Fijis Premier Eco Resort

Matava Fiji's Premier Eco-Resort

So, I posted several days ago about my trip to Fiji. Where did I go, you might be wondering!

I was staying at the remotely located Matava Fiji’s Premier Eco-Resort. Here, you can experience “real Fiji,” according to one of its owners, Adrian Weeks.

Matava is located on Kadavu, about a 1-hour plane ride south of Nadi on the main island of Fiji. Once you disembark the plane, you’ll travel about 1 mile over the only roads on the island to a very small marina. Hop on an exposed fishing boat and get ready to travel over fringe and barrier coral reefs to a vacation spot that will really take you away from it all!

Matava Fiji’s Premier Eco-Resort is 100% off-grid, running primarily on solar power. The property is nestled among the mangroves and palm trees in a secluded bay. Forget about making cell phone calls or logging into Facebook. All this means is that I’ve been delayed in writing posts for Peachy Green about my experiences.

But, after all, isn’t that what vacation is all about?

14 300x201 Get Away from it All at Matava Fijis Premier Eco Resort

Matava Fiji runs on solar power, with a generator back-up

Matava is a wonderful place to stay in Fiji, but be prepared for a truly off-grid vacation, in every sense of the phrase. For eco-conscious travelers, this is the place to go. Aside from being able to enjoy the natural, unspoiled beauty, consider:

  • Sustainably grown, organic crops used to prepare every meal
  • Natural setting without unnecessary clearing
  • Native plants
  • No use of chemicals or pesticides
  • Minimal electricity usage and demands: kerosene lamps at night, no electrical outlets in rooms, no wireless internet, no air conditioning
  • Louvre windows to allow sea breezes in at night
  • Amazingly friendly staff to help you with any need

What can you do at Matava Fiji’s Premier Eco-Resort? Plenty! The resort can accommodate about 20 guests at a time. Individual bures (rooms) allow for your own private get-away, but meals are served community style at the same time, with the same offerings – just let the resort know in advance of any dietary restrictions.

221 300x201 Get Away from it All at Matava Fijis Premier Eco Resort

Matava Fiji's Premier Eco-Resort from low tide

People who enjoy Matava come for:

  • Fishing
  • Diving
  • Relaxing
  • Hiking
  • Kayaking
  • Adventure
  • Weddings and reunions

When you are at Matava Fiji’s Premier Eco-Resort, you really feel like you are a world away.

Relax and enjoy the environment. Get to know a few of the other guests without the interruptions and distractions of cell phones and computers.

Perhaps finally, you’ll see what you’ve been missing!


Get Away from it All at Matava Fiji's Premier Eco-Resort | Peachy Green

Nov 1, 2010

Perfect escape - TripAdvisor

If you want a relaxing holiday with great diving in a small, secluded resort then Matava is for you.

The staff are fabulous (especially Maggie!) and the accommodation is very comfortable - the views from the Honeymoon Bures are definitely worth the extra few dollars.

If you want cocktails by the pool and large crowds of people stay on the big island - Matava is about getting away from the rat race.

Snorkelling off the beach, awesome diving on the Astrolabe Reef (Naigoro Passage is one of the best dives I've done), and relaxing afternoons on the deck of your bure.

Overall, very highly recommended, and the sort of place we would definitely return to.

perfect escape - Review of Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, Kadavu Island, Fiji - TripAdvisor

Oct 30, 2010

Eyes for Fiji - A Good Will Diving Featured Cause

November 2010 marks the official beginning of Good Will Diving, and for this Deep Blue Adventures is highlighting the need for eye glasses for Fijian Villagers.
Some of the children Terri met in Fiji photo by Terri HuberCEO & Founder of Deep Blue Adventures explains “We chose this cause for a number of reasons. As divers and travelers we experience many wonderful aspects of the countries we visit. We often fall in love with the surroundings, the food, the culture and of course what we find there beneath the surface. More often than not, the people are what touches us the most and deepens our experiences. We felt that highlighting a need of some of the warmest people we have ever met in one of our top-selling destinations would be an appropriate place to start. This is also something everyone can be involved in – we are not asking for money, we are asking for something very simple that many people are able to give – used or old reading eye glasses. Kids and teens can be just as involved as adults and no one has to dig deep in their pockets – that’s part of what Good Will Diving is all about. While foundations often desperately need financial support, and we will always encourage and be part of that, many of us are not aware that we can often make a huge difference in someone’s lives without it costing a penny. Finally, another reason we selected this program is it struck a very personal chord with one of our team members”.
Terri Huber, Senior Sales Representative with Deep Blue Adventures explains.
Terri & friends during her trip to Fiji“One night, during my recent trip to Fiji, I was chatting after dinner with another guest and Matava resort owner, Richard Akhtar. During our conversation, the subject of the needs of the Fijian Villagers came up and Richard immediately responded without hesitation, eye glasses. Having traveled to many remote diving destinations around the world and being welcomed and treated graciously by the locals we have thought of a small gesture to say "thank you". We as divers visit and enjoy these far off countries and return home with long lasting memories, photos, and souvenirs. So, why not give back a little to help out the remote villages of Fiji?”
While the glasses will be distributed to various villages in need across the country, Matava Resort on Kadavu who operates the Matava Foundation has agreed to assist Deep Blue Adventures in their first Good Will Diving venture by providing a contact point in Fiji and facilitating in getting the glasses to those that need it most. Organizations such as clubs or schools that participate in the Eyes For Fiji Program and elect to take a group to the resort will receive a Meke from the village, with an official handing over ceremony to the elders of the village as part of their week at Matava, a truly memorable experience.
If you are interested in contributing to this effort, you can do so simply by mailing in reading glasses, but Deep Blue Adventures is willing to absorb the postage costs involved on your behalf if you email GoodWillDiving@deepblueadventures.comThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 888-266-2209 and request a self-addressed, postage paid envelope.
We are also encouraging dive stores, clubs, schools, scouts, business and other organizations to consider becoming a collection point for Eyes for Fiji and engaging their local community in an effort on a larger scale. Once the glasses are received any interested donors may request a $50 travel voucher as a thank you for their donation. Glasses collected will be sent on a regular and ongoing basis to the islands through the company’s various contacts. All vouchers will be distributed electronically due to conservation efforts also being made by the company.
On behalf of the people of Fiji, and all of our team members here at Deep Blue Adventures, we thank you in advance for your interest and support.
Deep Blue Adventures the best dive travel vacations worldwide - Eyes for Fiji - A Good Will Diving Featured Cause

Oct 25, 2010

Fabulous & Friendly Service & Awesome Diving! - Review of Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, Kadavu Island, Fiji - TripAdvisor

Stayed only 9 days at Matava Resort and loved every minute. Wonderful staff, VERY friendly and always around if you need anything at all.

Beautiful food (& heaps of it!) gorgeous views from our tropical bungalow & awesome diving.

Dive staff really look after you & take you to all the best spots. Great knowledge of the area and surrounding reefs. Highlights of diving were turtles, manta rays (up close) and lots of sharks! Not to mention colorful corals.

Will definitely go back there.

Anj & Rob (Victoria)

Fabulous & Friendly Service & Awesome Diving! - Review of Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, Kadavu Island, Fiji - TripAdvisor

Sep 16, 2010

Super Resort - das richtige - TripAdvisor

Wir waren für - leider - nur drei Nächte in Matava und sehr begeistert! Das Resort ist sehr abgelegen, Anreise per Boot vom kleinen Inselflughafen. Wir hatten eine Oceanview Bure, die sehr nett war. Beim nächsten Mal würden wir aber des größeren Betts wegen wohl in die Honeymoon Bure gehen.

In Matava haben wir mit das beste Essen unserer 5-wöchigen Reise gehabt! Z.B. super frischen Fisch, den zwei australische Fischer jeden Abend an Land brachten, sehr phantasiereich gekocht. Mit den anderen Besuchern und Eigentümer Richard hatten wir sehr nette Abende. Wir haben auch viel über Fiji gelernt.

Die gute Seele Matavas ist, wie schon von anderen erwähnt, Maggie, die alles im Griff hat und immer nett und freundlich ist.

Wir haben eine sehr interessante Birdwatchingtour gemacht, mit Besuch im "Dorf." Ausserdem waren wir schnorcheln. Auch die Tauchausrüstung ist auf neuestem Stand.

Wir würden jederzeit wieder nach Matava gehen!

Super Resort - das richtige Fiji - Review of Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, Kadavu Island, Fiji - TripAdvisor

Sep 13, 2010

Party at Matava for Thanksgiving with ScubaRadio Crew! - Matava - Fijis Premier Eco Adventure Resort

cuba Radio Mermaid Special 2010

Come and join us and the Scuba Radio presenters and Mermaids at Thanksgiving for a week of fun and diving and Turkey Gobbling in November 2010.

ScubaRadio

November 20th to November 27th 2010

A week of diving, chaos and fun for only - USD 1199.00

Click here to read more...

ScubaRadio recording in FijiThe Scuba Radio crew with Greg the Divemaster and the Mermaids are coming back to Fiji, and this time it's going to be mostly for fun!

The week will begin on Saturday 20th, however DO feel free to drop in for half the week, or even just the last few days! Drop us an email or call us on Skype and we'll work it out! Heck, it's going to be chaos anyway!

Greg et al will arrive at Matava in Fiji on Monday 22nd November, fresh from a week in Las Vegas at the DEMA Show. If you are planning on going to this Dive Show, cahnces are that you'll bump into the crew there, and you can fly with them all the way to Fiji.

Greg and the crew were here in May (listen to that show here!), and they loved it SO much that they're coming back. This time they're coming to Matava in Kadavu to dive the Great Astrolabe Reef with the mantas, and they are inviting us all along for the week!


Listen to Scuba Radio now!

ScubaRadio is radio talk show with a diving theme. Pictures are painted of the underwater world as listeners and guests share their diving adventures. Every diver has a story about the perfect dive, destination, or encounter with some amazing sea creature. ScubaRadio provides the forum. It’s like hanging out at a Tiki hut and sharing fish tales with friends.

Never heard of Scuba Radio (where HAVE you been?), find the podcasts/archives of ScubaRadio here, available worldwide online! Just click here or paste the following link into your podcasting software: http://www.scubaradio.com/srpodcast.xml. You’ll find at least a couple years of past shows!

ItunesIf you’re using Itunes, just click here and subscribe!
The latest edition of ScubaRadio will now automatically download to your computer/MP3 listening device!


Scuba Radio Mermaid Special 2010

So here's the deal:

  • • 7 nights at Matava in an Oceanview Bure

  • • All meals and airport transfers included

  • • 5 days of 2 tank diving - 10 dives

  • • Free unlimited shore diving

  • • Free 3rd tank on 1 afternoon

  • • Free use of kayaks, snorkelling around the resort

  • • Traditional Lovo Feast and Kava Ceremony

  • Scuba Radio T-shirt and baseball cap

  • • Free fun times with the Matava / Scuba Radio team and of course the ScubaRadio Mermaids

Chance to star on the Scuba Radio broadcasts recorded throughout the week!

Diver - USD 1199.00
Non Diver - USD 899.00

(only valid for double / twin share, Group 5 pay - 1 FOC)

ScubaRadio

Additions

  • • Upgrade to 5 days of 3 tank dives (15 dives) – USD 199.00
  • • Extra night – USD 125.00(based on 2 sharing)
  • • Extra days diving (2 tanks) – USD 100.00
  • • Single supplement – USD 500.00

Dates:- November 20th to November 27th 2010


Book your ScubaRadio MERMAID Package Now!

Click here to book your ScubaRadio MERMAID to the Fiji Islands today and see all the mantas and pristine tropical reefs on Mad Fish Dive Centre's dive boats on the Great Astrolabe Reef on Kadavu!

Book Now!


Party at Matava for Thanksgiving with ScubaRadio Crew! - Matava - Fijis Premier Eco Adventure Resort

Aug 26, 2010

New telephone numbers for Matava!

Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort has installed a new Satellite Communications System with new telephone numbers. We have new methods of contacting Matava in the Fiji Islands including new telephone and fax numbers and a new Skype name! All running off the in-house solar power!

Our new permanent contact numbers are:

TELEPHONE:    +679 603 0685

FAX:    +679 603 0684

SKYPE:    MatavaFiji

My status



"And so what does this mean to you?" I hear you ask? Well one of the big step forwards is that we now have a 24 hour contact via Skype technology and voice-mail there-in on site at the resort. This will revolutionise our online reservations and booking system.

Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco-Adventure Resort Matava Resort is proud to install this communications solution purely using the alternative power already available at the resort.

We will maintain our current CDMA/Easytel phone (+679 368 0080) until the end of August 2010, at which point they it be disconnected.

The new system runs on the Gilat SkyEdge System which supports telephony, broadband data and video communications via satellite. It is optimized for transaction-oriented applications, business continuity needs, legacy protocols, rural telephony deployments and multi-topology networks with mesh, star and multi-star topologies.

The system has an uplink speed of 64kbps where the service and support are provided by Connect Fiji

Not only does the new service out perform its predecessors, the satellite network is designed to perform even under the heavy tropical rain.

The equipment installed at Matava is called a VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal). It consists of a 1.8m dish (situated hidden away behind the resort office) and outdoor electronics for communicating with the satellite and an indoor unit to which our standard telephone /fax lines and laptops are connected. The intelligence within the indoor unit processes the calls and distributes them to assigned telephone lines.

Power for the terminal is purely 12V DC and is supplied by our own in-house solar panels and batteries in our Main Bure complex.

Watch this space for the next phase in the program which is to make WiFi available directly to guests laptops in the Main Bure (shhhhh... this is currently top secret info!)

Once again, here are our new permanent contact numbers:

TELEPHONE:    +679 603 0685

FAX:    +679 603 0684

SKYPE:    MatavaFiji

My status

Aug 12, 2010

Project AWARE Foundation: Event Details

Join the children from local Vacalea Primary School to collect all the rubbish between the school and the resort.

Students from Vacalea Primary School
Vacalea Primary School

Last year, over 10 sacks of marine debris were collected including shoes, fishing nets, plastic bags and even a plastic chair!


Afterwards everyone can enjoy a BBQ, lolling around in the sea and plenty of rugby with the kids, and of course staff, at Matava

2010 is the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day, an international campaign designed to raise environmental awareness on a global scale.

Underwater environments are under numerous threats including pollution, debirs, climate change, overfishing, and coral bleaching. Dive for Earth Day is an extraordinary opportunity to take action and help address the underwater issues that concern you most.

Over the last 10 years, the Project AWARE Foundation have joined this effort to focus attention on aquatic environments, and named this 'Dive for Earth Day'.

Why?

With the oceans covering more than 70% of the Earth's surface and providing habitat for 90% of all life on the planet, one aim is to highlight the issues facing this particular environment, including pollution, debris, climate change, overfishing and coral-bleaching. Human activity is costing the Earth. And despite the oceans' vast expanse, our marine debris is taking its toll on aquatic eco systems.


Project AWARE Foundation: Event Details

Aug 6, 2010

Dentists & Matava Foundation in Kadavu, 2010


Aug 5, 2010

Manta Ray, Kadavu, Fiji

Aug 4, 2010

Remote paradise - TripAdvisor

Matava is the perfect place to experience the beautiful part of Fiji that is Kadavu.

The location is great, overlooking the lagoon and then to the outer reefs in the distance.

The friendly atmosphere created by the owners and the incredible staff (led by the incomparable Maggie) feels just right and the communal dining tables allows a relaxed, informal interaction with the other guests over the fresh and varied food.

The Bures are reasonably simple but very nicely done with decent amenities (lights, running water, proper toilet, shower etc.) considering that it is an eco-resort and very remote.

There is plenty to keep you as active or inactive as desired. Snorkelling is great between the resort and nearby island and others guests said the diving nearby is 1st class. Other activities include boat trips, private beach picnics, surfing and a real highlight of visiting the nearby school, village and waterfall.

The island of Kadavu is a window into the Fiji of the past, untouched by many of the historical colonial influences or present political contrivances.

We really cannot recommend Matava enough if you are looking for something different and beautiful. Set your expectations accordingly (remembering it is an eco-resort and a long way from anywhere) and you will not be disappointed.
Remote paradise - Review of Matava - Fiji's Premier Eco Adventure Resort, Kadavu Island, Fiji - TripAdvisor:

Aug 2, 2010

National Geographic Interactive|

National Geographic Interactive — August Issue

In this dynamic issue: Dive into Beauty, Danger and Discovery with Bahamas Blue Holes.

Discover your world with award-winning photography, in-depth videos, animated slideshows and more exclusive content. Read it on your iPad, mac & pc!
get it now

National Geographic Interactive

The Responsible Tourism Awards organised by responsibletravel.com

Tourism Fiji
2010 sponsor of the Best in a marine environment category

Fiji, 'The Soft Coral Capital of the World', is made up of 333 islands surrounded by reefs and diverse underwater terrain. It is rated as one of the world's top ten dive destinations and is a South Pacific marine paradise famous for its white sand, palm fringed beaches, azure lagoons and exceptional reefs.

World famous marine biologist Jean-Michel Cousteau says of Fiji: "The unparalleled range of quality dive sites and sheer diversity of life of the reefs is overwhelming."

Tourism Fiji is dedicated to promoting and protecting this special, and in parts very fragile, marine environment and has long supported and actively encouraged sustainable tourism. Fiji Tourism's UK and Ireland representative, Jane West emphasises the importance of this work: "As a tourist board it is vital to educate all visitors to be both socially and environmentally responsible for the benefit of, most importantly, the Fijian people and future tourists to their wonderful country."

To help project the eco-systems, Tourism Fiji works with partners to conserve Fiji's marine biodiversity by encouraging guests not to remove items, especially coral, from the reefs and requesting they do not purchase souvenir products made from coral or endangered plants or animals.

Many of the country's leading resorts offer diving adventures. One of them, Matava, has just a won the Project AWARE Marine Environmental category at the PADI Asia Pacific Member Awards. The award rewards vision, excellence and pursuit of conservation to ensure the enjoyment of underwater environments for future generations.

The Responsible Tourism Awards organised by responsibletravel.com

Jul 26, 2010

Divers and Dental Professionals Combine Work and Passion for Scuba Diving Through Fiji Project

Returning from that trip I decided to pioneer a Dental Mission. I partnered with Coach Ramey Stroud, a Mill City diver, and Stuart Gow, Director of the Matava Eco-Resort on the island of Kadavu. Together we identified dates for our trip, solicited the cooperation of Air Pacific, the national airline of Fiji, the Fiji Islands Hotel and Tourism Association and the Fiji Ministry of Health. Salem Hospital generously shared information about our trip with their staff.



I traveled with Dr. Mike and Mrs. Carrie Litchfield and Dr. Sean Hanson of Salem and Jim and Gina Jepsen from Ione, Oregon. Dave Beard from Tasmania met us at Matava and joined our team.

Air Pacific allowed us each to bring an extra 50 pounds of medical gear. Mike and Sean had received hundreds of toothbrushes, toothpaste samples and dental supplies from their suppliers. Mike brought a portable dental station as well.




Our arrival at Matava was met with excitement. Maggie, the Fijian concierge, let us know that he had shared the news of the American dentists arriving three weeks earlier with the village council. He had made arrangements for us to visit the village the next day to meet with the Chief, the Director of the School (whose classroom’s we planned to use for the clinic) and the village nurse (representative of the Ministry of Health). We took an open boat to the village, walked past sleeping dogs, feeding chickens, children playing, men unloading cinderblocks and women washing clothes.

Our plan was pretty simple; breakfast, a two tank dive then lunch. We opened the clinic at 1:30 and treated patients until dark. Power in the classroom was limited to a single neon lamp powered by a new generator. We had come equipped with flashlights for diving and lighting up teeth.



Each afternoon the number of patients grew as word of our clinic spread. The third day we planned to hold an instructional clinic for the village children to share toothbrushes and toothpaste. Carrie Litchfield, an elementary school librarian in Salem was our point person. Using humor, laughter and smiles, Carrie warmed up the kids, taught basic oral hygiene and brushing technique and passed out over 200 toothbrushes and tubes of toothpaste.

We knew that dental care in the village was extremely limited. We learned that a boat ride to Vunisea, location of the regional hospital an hour away, has a cost of nearly a week's wages each way.



During our stay we had the opportunity to serve nearly 200 villagers from Kadavu Koro. Carrie taught 75 children how to brush their teeth. Numerous rotted, damaged and decayed teeth were removed, mostly from adults, a few from children.


We met many wonderful people during our visit to Kadavu Koro and our stay at the Matava Eco-Resort. We dove the Great Astrolabe Reef most mornings and provided dental care in the afternoon. Our Mission provided an opportunity to provide care for those in need and an education about preserving one's teeth to the children of the village.

Divers and Dental Professionals Combine Work and Passion for Scuba Diving Through Fiji Project - Matava - Fijis Premier Eco Adventure Resort

Jul 20, 2010

NatureFiji-MareqetiViti: Peach Palm Seeds Arrive

Sago 'heart of palm' can now be phased out by the introdcution of Peach Palm

Over 200 sago palms are felled each week to supply the local heart of palm market. But the Fiji Sago Palm is now severly threatened by unrestricted harvesting and felling not just for palm heart, but for thatching by the tourist industry. The Fiji Sago Palm is essentially restricted to the province of Serua and there are no more than six viable stands surviving.


NFMV has identified the Peach Palm as the most suitable substitute for "Heart of Palm" or "Millionaire's Salad",it is grown commercially for this purpose in Hawaii and Central America. With Biosecurity Clearance obtained, NFMV have imported 3,000 seeds and will grow out a seed orchard and a commercial stand on their land in the Sigatoka Valley. As soon as seeds are available they will be made available to other farmers and to existing suppliers of Sago Palm heart.

Commercial Peach Palm Orchard. Each palm has multiple stems and so harvesting does not result in death of the palm.
The introduction of the Peach Palm now enables NFMV to submit the Fiji Sago Palm Species Recovery Plan for endorsement by the Department of the Environment and other stakeholders, notably the Dept. of Forestry, the Serua Provincial Office and the National Trust for Fiji. In the coming months NFMV will be giving presentations to the tourism industry on the sutainable use of Sago Thatch and the potential of 'heart of palm' from Peach Palm as a new culinary item.

The Peach Palm is an ideal species for commercial 'heart of palm' cultivation because it is a clumping palm with several stems, so that as one stem is harvested, another is growing in its place for future harvest. Sago, apart from being a severely threatened species, has a single trunk and so harvesting is a permanent loss.



Heart of Sago Palms for sale on the Queen's Road. Yes this species is as endangered as Fiji's Turtles.

At Culanuku, NFMV have been working with the village community to restore a 30 ha stand of sago which was threatened with complete loss after over-harvesting enable weedy trees and vines to suppress regeneration. After two years and funding by the British High Commission, the stand has recovered well and in another two years, the first harvest of leaves for thatching could start and continue as a source of income. NFMV have drawn up sustainable thatch harvesting guidelines for Sago which are available to all who request them.


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Matava - Fijis Premier Eco Adventure Resort

Jul 18, 2010

Dentists & Matava Foundation in Kadavu, 2010

Divers and Medical Professionals Combine Work and Passion for Scuba Diving Through Fiji Project
www.hydrosports.com/MatavaMemories.html
www.Matava.com

Jul 17, 2010

It’s important to keep oneself protected against mosquitoes

feasting mosquito

Mosquito season is in full swing and, as a non-fan of bad smelling and potentially toxic commercial skeeter-repelling products, I’ve found myself, along with my family, hiding indoors at dusk. Peak feasting hours. We live in a heavily wooded neighborhood with streams and ponds. A mosquito’s dream world. When we first moved here, my husband and I swore aliens were in our midst—an eery, other-worldly baritone hum accompanied by a slow-flashing light around 1 or 2AM, disturbing our sleep just enough to make us think we were dreaming. “Did you hear that weird sound last night?” Craig asked one morning. “You heard it, too?” Eventually, we found out that it was a mosquito-control spraying truck.

While it’s important to keep oneself protected against mosquitoes, which can transmit serious disease such as West Nile virus, malaria, and eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), I can’t help but wonder… How safe are these products that we spray on our children from head-to-toe? Are there natural measures one can take to reduce mosquito population, deter them from gnawing on your arm, and possibly even keep their annoying buzz at a distance? And one question that has been nagging at my 8-year old: “Why does the world need mosquitoes?” These are just some of the questions I will address in this series about mosquitoes, which will also include my family’s first-hand experience with natural solutions. Hopefully the information will help you to navigate through the rest of your summer with fewer mosquito bites and less reliance on chemical-ridden repellents.

Full article here: Warning: Fending Off Mosquitoes May be Harmful to Your Health « I Count for myEARTH

Jul 5, 2010

HydroSports : Dental Mission Impressions Part 1

I was so looking forward to our trip to Fiji. I was as excited about being able to help people as I was to be diving. I couldn't hardly wait!

I was a little nervous as I looked at the Matava web-site...very remote. Wasn't quite sure about being so remote. I was wondering what I was getting into when we got to the "dock" and loaded up in the boat to get to the resort. Oh boy! But I found myself being truly amazed and awe struck. What a beautiful Resort, wonderful people, and the remoteness, being off the grid, was actually quite great. I couldn't have imagined the peace and wonder before going as being real. But it is real! I felt so welcome. I know I didn't want to leave!!

Still find myself thinking about being there. I want to do more for the people. Just knowing that our helping them saved them so much time and their hard earned money and long term pain warmed my heart. The people were so very appreciative of the help and anything we did. They did not expect it! Just appreciated. So different from what I see here in the US. I want to experience the freedom from possessions, freedom from technology, and the peace some more. I think everyone should be able to experience what I did at least once in their life. Just an amazing experience.

I loved the diving. Oh my, how beautiful it was under the water. Warm, so full of life, clean and seeing the way our divemasters care. The sparkle in their eyes. It was a lot of work, no laying in the sun, no pina coladas on the beach, but in my book and heart it was the best!! Definitely a life changing experience, puts things into perspective and made me look deeper at myself and what is truly important to me . Yes, I would love to go again. I think it would be a good place for other diver's (and medical personnel) to consider.

No, it isn't for everyone, but they really would be missing out on "heaven on earth" in my opinion!!

HydroSports http://www.hydrosports.com/

Jun 14, 2010

Matava moments

Hello all at Matava,
 
Just wanted to say how much we enjoyed our week with you recently. The diving of course was spectacular and the atmosphere at the resort was wonderful. It is a credit to you all.

Thank you so much for your generosity in giving the week as a prize package, I can see why people would come half way round the world for such an experience. Now we are home and back into the routine of everyday life, but still find ourselves having "Matava moments" where our thoughts drift back to the manta rays, the food, the peace and remoteness, and the wonderful people we met. 
Hopefully will come back some day, but in the meantime are spreading the word about such a paradise. All the best...
 
Paul and Sophie (Australia)

Jun 13, 2010

Mt. Nabukelevu, also known as Mt. Washington, is Kadavu’s highest mountain and has the largest area of montane forest on the island

NatureFiji-MareqetiViti was invited by Birdlife International Fiji Programme to present at a two day workshop at Daviqele Village, Kadavu on the” Mount Nabukelevu Important Bird Area (IBA) Management Planning Workshop. The site was declared an IBA as it holds four bird species endemic to Kadavu Island, and may also hold nesting colonies of threatened sea birds. BL-I initially began conservation activities in Kadavu in 2005, leading to the establishment of a Site Support Group (SSG) with representatives from the four villagers around Mt. Nabukelevu which are, Lomati, Nabukelevuira, Daviqele and Kabariki.
Nabukelevu (Mt Washington) dominates west Kadavu and contains some of the last montane forest on the island
NFMV conservation officer Kelera Macedru attended the two day workshop (13th - 14th April 2010) presenting to the forty participants at the workshop, on endangered species that NFMV was and is currently working on. Other facilitators at the workshop were from the Dept. of Agriculture (Epeli Dugucagi and Seremaia Namanuloa ), Land Use section (Solomone Nagaunavou), Dept. of Forestry (Jone Rawasoi), Dept. of Fisheries ( Seru Batibasaga) led by Birdlife International (Tuvere Tuamoto and Mere Valu). Each topic presented at the meeting by the facilitators was designed to help the participants with the concept of ‘Connectivity’ of the natural ecosystem, of which the communities are now a part, stressing the responsibility of the people in caring for their environment. At the end of the two day workshop, leaders of land owning units, marked out boundaries of their land that are part of Mt. Nabukelevu, on a map, agreeing to protect the site for 20 years with a periodic review of every 5 years. The community-declared protected area on the top most part of Mt. Nabukelevu now includes 10 mataqali (clan) lands plus a native reserve.

Participants off the Daviqele Workshop in Kadavu

As the workshop was held during the one week celebration of “Plant a million trees campaign”, 20 young Vesi Intsia bijuga trees were planted on the last day of workshop, commemorating the signing of the MOU by landowning leaders for Mt. Nabukelevu IBA and in support of the campaign. The numbers of trees planted have been recorded by the Department of Forestry as part of the one million trees target. Tui Nabukelevu was the first to plant a tree near the shores of Daviqele village, followed by village elders, SSG representatives and workshop participants.

Work on drafting a Management plan for the community declared Protected Area will be an ongoing event, for SSG Members, relevant members of the community and Birdlife International.

Tui Nabukelevu planting a vesi tree to close the workshop

NatureFiji-MareqetiViti

Jun 12, 2010

Pacific Sun flights priorotised to Kadavu and Taveuni - Fiji Times Online

Even better news for Taveuni and Kadavu local domestic flights:

"With the Mamanuca Group serviced through ferry service as well as boat and air charter operations, Pacific Sun will be able to prioritise its flying on other key tourism destinations including Kadavu, Savusavu and Taveuni," Mr Samson said. "Pacific Sun will focus its operations on more distant points that link thousands of international tourists each year."

Charter flights replace routes - Fiji Times Online