The Bay of Islands or Qilaqila is a very special place that is sacred to the Fijians.  It is made up of limestone islands and caves.  There are arches and fallen arches.  Kayaks can go through narrow gaps.  The snorkeling is excellent and there are sandy (not coral) bays from which one can swim.  We had our best snorkeling here on Vanua Balavu and it is one of the best yacht harbors in the South Pacific.  Several yachts were anchored here.  The islands are similar to those in Palau.  We thought it was one of the best places in the world to visit and were very honored to have Ratu Joe as our tour guide.  We went with David and Di Jesinger from Amoenitas.

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Our first stop was a limestone cave.  Dave is in the cave - the water was a turquoise blue outside and excellent for snorkeling.
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Di, Ratu Joe and Dave on Qilaqila, Ratu Joe's boat.  We saw many fruit bats in the trees.  This is the part of the Bay of Islands were yachties anchor.  The limestone islands look like mushrooms.  There are fine corals full of reef fish.
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We then went off to a wonderful beach to eat the lunch that Helene had prepared - the kokoda was terrific.  Dave cut open a fresh coconut and we enjoyed both the milk and the flesh in it.  We snorkeled in the bay and as we came out a small reef shark came close to the beach to investigate.
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We sailed around more visiting a sacred cave that was like a cathedral.  It was wet and we were up to our arm pits in water inside - so no photos.  It was magical as it had two entrances and windows in it - the limestone must have been very thin.
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Coming back to Daliconi Bay - you can see in the rightmost picture how a cyclone removed all the trees from one side of a hill.
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Back to Amoenitas for drinks and appetizers - thanks David and Di.  There wasn't a red sunset - but it was very pleasant to relax at the end of our terrific day.  It made the whole trip to Vanua Balavu worth it to go to the Bay of Islands - I could have stayed there for weeks.  One day was not enough - a sea kayak or camping trip would have been great in this area.
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