CORAL Dive Trip to Fiji
CORAL's 15th Anniversary Dive Trip to Fiji
November 21–28, 2009
WHAT: We will dive aboard the Nai'a, a 120-foot luxury motor sailing vessel custom-built for live-aboard scuba diving.
WHERE: We set sail from the city of Lautoka, just north of Nadi on the island of Viti Levu, and dive spectacular sites near Lomaiviti, Bligh Water, and the Namena Marine Reserve—CORAL's oldest project site.
WHY: As we sail through the Fiji Islands, we'll be diving some of the finest coral reefs and fish-filled channels in the world. From manta rays to mantis shrimp, dolphins to dartfish, sharks to vibrant soft corals, you'll experience Fiji's ultimate dive sites.
WHO: One of CORAL's senior program staff members will be on board to interpret what you're seeing underwater; lead discussions about coral reef ecology, conservation, and Fijian culture; and showcase the many ways CORAL is uniting people to protect our planet's coral reefs.
DETAILS: When we aren't diving, we'll be visiting villages in the Kubulau District, where CORAL is working with local communities to set up sustainable financing projects through tourist-based microenterprises. Not only will you experience some of the best diving the world has to offer, but you'll also have the opportunity to meet and support the people who depend on Fiji's coral reefs for survival every day.
Fiji's coral reef system is an ecologically connected network of barrier and fringing reefs, deep channels, and sea mounts surrounding large lagoons and islands. Some of the best dive sites and most spectacular fish populations are only accessible by live-aboard. And the Nai'a crew knows how to provide full-service diving: when you jump aboard the skiff at the back dive deck, your equipment is ready and waiting for you. After your dive, you simply board the boat and the crew takes care of the rest.
Our CORAL dive trip aboard the Nai'a will accommodate a maximum of sixteen guests in nine spacious, air-conditioned en suite staterooms. Select Fijian timbers make the ship elegant, functional, and quiet, and delicious and beautifully prepared local meals will be created by two onboard chefs. A huge salon houses a dining area and lounge where you can review the day's photography on your laptop, watch videos, or listen to music.
For underwater photographers, the Nai'a features elaborate provisions for professional and amateur photographers, including camera and video rentals, a multisystem VCR and television able to play miniDV in NTSC format and VHS in both NTSC and PAL formats, and a slide projector and light box. A digital projector will be available to make slide shows a snap. And the dedicated camera room has work space for more than a dozen photographers, their gear, and storage of cases.
COST: The seven-day trip costs $3,890 per person based on double occupancy, and includes tax, round-trip transfers on the day of charter, accommodation, all meals, tanks, weights, air, and a fully tax-deductible donation to CORAL of $750. The price does not include round-trip air travel to Fiji (round-trip from Los Angeles to Nadi, Fiji, on Air Pacific in economy class is $1,294.30 including tax, subject to change until paid in full), fuel surcharges, gratuities, alcoholic beverages (other than the house wine served at dinner), NITROX, gear or camera rentals, and personal purchases from the ship's store.
Because we are chartering the entire boat for our celebratory trip around the beautiful Fiji Islands, we must collect an initial deposit of 50 percent ($1,945).
TO MAKE A RESERVATION: Call or email Diana Williams, Development Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (415) 834-0900 x305.
We only turn fifteen once and we're ready to celebrate! I hope you'll join us for this incredible opportunity to visit the precious reefs that we're trying to protect and the kind and hospitable people who inspire our work. See you in Fiji!
BLOG: Scientists from the New England and Monterey Bay Aquariums were recently aboard the Nai'a on a joint expedition to Fiji. Read the blog and see the photos here »
Photo Credits (from top): Taveuni, Fiji, by Julie Bennett; Fiji soft corals by Jeff Yonover; Nai'a interior shots courtesy of the Nai'a; Fiji sharks by Jeff Yonover; Nai'a exterior courtesy of the Nai'a; Villagers in Namalata, Kubulau, Fiji, by Julie Bennett.