Pacific Island getaway recommendations

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jdogscoop
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Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

I'm looking to get away to the Pacific Islands in late May for a five night stay with mrs jdogscoop.

A review of Tripadvisor reveals the 4 star and above resorts all seem to be uniformly good, without being spectacular.

Has anyone spent a memorable vacay at a resort in the Cook Islands, Samoa or Fiji that they would care to recommend?

Please form an orderly queue.

jdog out.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by comets »

#FARKOFFWEAREFULL
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Kiwias
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Kiwias »

Kaimbu Island Resort -- privately run with only four villas on the entire island. Assured total privacy.
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Ali's Choice
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Ali's Choice »

Kiwias wrote:Kaimbu Island Resort -- privately run with only four villas on the entire island. Assured total privacy.
How private does someone need to get? Jdog isn't a newly wed, and he isn't a Kardashian. I reckon he wants somewhere where he can enjoy an authentic Pacific experience whilst also enjoying a meal out, meeting locals, a few sundowners at local bars every night and perhaps watching some local Rugby (or at the very least being able to watch Super Rugby on TV.

I would go to Rarotonga or Fiji.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Jay Cee Gee »

Went to Samoa a few years back. Stayed near Apia in a fairly ordinary hotel but there were much nicer places within a short drive. Stayed on Upolu as my wife gets seasick but have heard very nice things about Savaii. There's loads of amazing beaches and it's big enough that you can hire a car and explore. Some beaches you might have to pay 5$ or so to the locals to access or you can just ask resorts if you can swim at their beaches.

Did the Cooks on my honeymoon. Managed to avoid any Zac Guilford antics and mostly stayed at the Pacific Resort in Raro which was cool. Did a ride around Raro on a hired scooter, it only takes 45 minutes to go round the whole island. Also went to Aitutaki which was great for a day or so till a Category 3 Tropical Storm f*cked it up big time.

Went to Fiji and did a week at Treasure Island last year. F'ing great but would have been shit if it rained. Check out international DJ Max Key's latest video for a tour of the facilities and a perv at some poor girl's arse.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Jay Cee Gee »

Ali's Choice wrote:
Kiwias wrote:Kaimbu Island Resort -- privately run with only four villas on the entire island. Assured total privacy.
How private does someone need to get? Jdog isn't a newly wed, and he isn't a Kardashian. I reckon he wants somewhere where he can enjoy an authentic Pacific experience whilst also enjoying a meal out, meeting locals, a few sundowners at local bars every night and perhaps watching some local Rugby (or at the very least being able to watch Super Rugby on TV.

I would go to Rarotonga or Fiji.
We had a great time at Samoa which has enough beaches that you can go for a drive and find one all to yourself half the time.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

Jay Cee Gee wrote:Went to Samoa a few years back. Stayed near Apia in a fairly ordinary hotel but there were much nicer places within a short drive. Stayed on Upolu as my wife gets seasick but have heard very nice things about Savaii. There's loads of amazing beaches and it's big enough that you can hire a car and explore. Some beaches you might have to pay 5$ or so to the locals to access or you can just ask resorts if you can swim at their beaches.

Did the Cooks on my honeymoon. Managed to avoid any Zac Guilford antics and mostly stayed at the Pacific Resort in Raro which was cool. Did a ride around Raro on a hired scooter, it only takes 45 minutes to go round the whole island. Also went to Aitutaki which was great for a day or so till a Category 3 Tropical Storm f*cked it up big time.

Went to Fiji and did a week at Treasure Island last year. F'ing great but would have been shit if it rained. Check out international DJ Max Key's latest video for a tour of the facilities and a perv at some poor girl's arse.
I hadn't picked you as a multi-millionaire. I checked out the Little Polynesian at Pacific Resort and rooms appear to start from $1100 a night.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Jay Cee Gee »

jdogscoop wrote:
Jay Cee Gee wrote:Went to Samoa a few years back. Stayed near Apia in a fairly ordinary hotel but there were much nicer places within a short drive. Stayed on Upolu as my wife gets seasick but have heard very nice things about Savaii. There's loads of amazing beaches and it's big enough that you can hire a car and explore. Some beaches you might have to pay 5$ or so to the locals to access or you can just ask resorts if you can swim at their beaches.

Did the Cooks on my honeymoon. Managed to avoid any Zac Guilford antics and mostly stayed at the Pacific Resort in Raro which was cool. Did a ride around Raro on a hired scooter, it only takes 45 minutes to go round the whole island. Also went to Aitutaki which was great for a day or so till a Category 3 Tropical Storm f*cked it up big time.

Went to Fiji and did a week at Treasure Island last year. F'ing great but would have been shit if it rained. Check out international DJ Max Key's latest video for a tour of the facilities and a perv at some poor girl's arse.
I hadn't picked you as a multi-millionaire. I checked out the Little Polynesian at Pacific Resort and rooms appear to start from $1100 a night.

This is over the course of 8 years, tbf. The Samoa trip was on the cheap, the Cooks was our honeymoon (we asked for contributions to a travel fund rather than wedding gifts) so it's only the Fiji one that we splashed out on. The Pacific Resort Raro was nowhere near that per night when we stayed - more like $3-400 per night. 3 nights in Aitutaki was expensive but that was a wedding present from my Dad.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by RuggaBugga »

Whatever you do, don't go to Denarau if you do Fiji. It's utter shit.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

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RuggaBugga wrote:Whatever you do, don't go to Denarau if you do Fiji. It's utter shit.
Is this a wind up? Denarau is one of the places I was looking at closely. The Hilton and Radisson Blu there seem to be very highly rated.
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Kiwias
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Kiwias »

Ali's Choice wrote:
Kiwias wrote:Kaimbu Island Resort -- privately run with only four villas on the entire island. Assured total privacy.
How private does someone need to get? Jdog isn't a newly wed, and he isn't a Kardashian. I reckon he wants somewhere where he can enjoy an authentic Pacific experience whilst also enjoying a meal out, meeting locals, a few sundowners at local bars every night and perhaps watching some local Rugby (or at the very least being able to watch Super Rugby on TV.

I would go to Rarotonga or Fiji.
Thanks for clarifying Jdog's intentions.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by RuggaBugga »

jdogscoop wrote:
RuggaBugga wrote:Whatever you do, don't go to Denarau if you do Fiji. It's utter shit.
Is this a wind up? Denarau is one of the places I was looking at closely. The Hilton and Radisson Blu there seem to be very highly rated.
No it's crap, nothing there but a line of 5 Hotels and a poxy little Marina. The Hotels themselves are OK but the food and drink are expensive and the beach is really crap. You can't snorkel off it or anything.

The outer Islands are a lot better.

I just booked New Caledonia for June, looks ace.
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jdogscoop
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

RuggaBugga wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:
RuggaBugga wrote:Whatever you do, don't go to Denarau if you do Fiji. It's utter shit.
Is this a wind up? Denarau is one of the places I was looking at closely. The Hilton and Radisson Blu there seem to be very highly rated.
No it's crap, nothing there but a line of 5 Hotels and a poxy little Marina. The Hotels themselves are OK but the food and drink are expensive and the beach is really crap. You can't snorkel off it or anything.

The outer Islands are a lot better.

I just booked New Caledonia for June, looks ace.
Good to know, cheers. :thumbup:
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Fat Old Git »

I was going to straight out pick Samoa, but I'm biased as we have family connections there and it's the last place we went on Holiday. And we spent an afternoon swimming here.

Image

But I've also been to Fiji, The Cook Island's (including Aitutaki) and New Caledonia and loved them all.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by RuggaBugga »

Here's the New Caledonia thread I started if you're interested.

http://forum.planetrugby.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=78544
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

Fat Old Git wrote:I was going to straight out pick Samoa, but I'm biased as we have family connections there and it's the last place we went on Holiday. And we spent an afternoon swimming here.

Image

But I've also been to Fiji, The Cook Island's (including Aitutaki) and New Caledonia and loved them all.
Holy shit it's beautiful.

Is there a bar there?
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Fat Old Git »

I remember getting on the plane to Noumea (an Air NZ flight out of Auckland), hearing the captain do the welcome in both english and french, and listening to multiple conversations going on around us in french, and thinking, I usually have to go half way around the planet to get this type of experience. We tend to forget that we kind of have a little bit of France on our back doorstep.

It was an early morning flight and they served bubbles with the breakfast. Not a bad way to start your holiday.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Fat Old Git »

jdogscoop wrote:
Spoiler: show
[quote="Fat Old Git"]I was going to straight out pick Samoa, but I'm biased as we have family connections there and it's the last place we went on Holiday. And we spent an afternoon swimming here.

Image

But I've also been to Fiji, The Cook Island's (including Aitutaki) and New Caledonia and loved them all.


Holy shit it's beautiful.

Is there a bar there?[/quote]

Unfortunately not, but the Seebreeze ocean resort is about a km or 2 down the road. We had a late lunch there after we had finished our swim. Sat at this very table.

Image

The swiming hole is the To Sua Ocean trench by the way, in case you want to google it.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by RuggaBugga »

Fat Old Git wrote:I remember getting on the plane to Noumea (an Air NZ flight out of Auckland), hearing the captain do the welcome in both english and french, and listening to multiple conversations going on around us in french, and thinking, I usually have to go half way around the planet to get this type of experience. We tend to forget that we kind of have a little bit of France on our back doorstep.

It was an early morning flight and they served bubbles with the breakfast. Not a bad way to start your holiday.
The main reason for going there for me. I love holidaying in France and having that food culture on a pacific Island is perfect.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Fat Old Git »

RuggaBugga wrote:
Fat Old Git wrote:I remember getting on the plane to Noumea (an Air NZ flight out of Auckland), hearing the captain do the welcome in both english and french, and listening to multiple conversations going on around us in french, and thinking, I usually have to go half way around the planet to get this type of experience. We tend to forget that we kind of have a little bit of France on our back doorstep.

It was an early morning flight and they served bubbles with the breakfast. Not a bad way to start your holiday.
The main reason for going there for me. I love holidaying in France and having that food culture on a pacific Island is perfect.
I hope you enjoy it as much as we did mate. The nice thing about these travel threads is they bring up lots of happy memories that spend most of their time hidden away.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by wamberal99 »

Don't go to Tonga, unless you have a very specific type of adventure holiday in mind, in or around the outer islands.


Nuku'alofa is a shithole. Or it used to be, I doubt anything much has changed.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

wamberal99 wrote:Don't go to Tonga, unless you have a very specific type of adventure holiday in mind, in or around the outer islands.


Nuku'alofa is a shithole. Or it used to be, I doubt anything much has changed.
I actually forgot about Tonga entirely.

I like the idea of package holidays, after two memorable trips to Cuba and the Dominican Republic when living in Canada. Air New Zealand seem to be a bit slow off the mark in this respect, although Qantas and Virgin Australia in particular seem to be all over it.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Ghost-Of-Nepia »

jdogscoop wrote:I'm looking to get away to the Pacific Islands in late May for a five night stay with mrs jdogscoop.

A review of Tripadvisor reveals the 4 star and above resorts all seem to be uniformly good, without being spectacular.

Has anyone spent a memorable vacay at a resort in the Cook Islands, Samoa or Fiji that they would care to recommend?

Please form an orderly queue.

jdog out.
Dunedin?
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AD345
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by AD345 »

Cook Islands

Te Manava Villas

Get the Ultimate Beachfront Villa

Hire a scooter to zip around

awesome
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

Ghost-Of-Nepia wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:I'm looking to get away to the Pacific Islands in late May for a five night stay with mrs jdogscoop.

A review of Tripadvisor reveals the 4 star and above resorts all seem to be uniformly good, without being spectacular.

Has anyone spent a memorable vacay at a resort in the Cook Islands, Samoa or Fiji that they would care to recommend?

Please form an orderly queue.

jdog out.
Dunedin?
I'm already there for a one night stay in late May, nkosi.

I was drawn to the Alcala Motor Lodge for it's mad 1970s stylinz.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Ghost-Of-Nepia »

jdogscoop wrote:
Ghost-Of-Nepia wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:I'm looking to get away to the Pacific Islands in late May for a five night stay with mrs jdogscoop.

A review of Tripadvisor reveals the 4 star and above resorts all seem to be uniformly good, without being spectacular.

Has anyone spent a memorable vacay at a resort in the Cook Islands, Samoa or Fiji that they would care to recommend?

Please form an orderly queue.

jdog out.
Dunedin?
I'm already there for a one night stay in late May, nkosi.

I was drawn to the Alcala Motor Lodge for it's mad 1970s stylinz.
Heading to a PI before or after Dunedin? I'd suggest after for full impact of chilly Dunners to tropical Samoa/Cook Islands.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Tehuringa »

I rented a house for a week on the Coral Coast in Fiji for a week a year or so back before heading out to the Yasawa Islands for another week. House was great, just to the east of Sigatoka and was owned by one of the pioneers of th Fiji surf industry who spends half the year there and half operating a tow-in operation at Jaw's in Hawaii. Not much in the way of restaurants around (though a great Japanese place literally at the bottom of the driveway run by the wife of the coach of the Fijian surf team) but the markets in Sigatoka were great for seafood and vege's and a 15 minute blat into the bush and we where buying raw milk off a farmer called Muna in the middle of nowhere .... he's an ace cat and invited us in for a lunch of curry and roti on two of our visits. Sigatoka is also the home of the mighty Nadroga Rugby Club and catching a few games at Lawaqa Park is great fun. To be honest... if you were just with your missus... I'd probably head to one of the flashier resorts :thumbup: ..... Vatulele is pretty speccy

Yasawa's was great...stayed at Manta Ray resort.... just a beach bure but the food was great and all inclusive and you walk down the stairs of your beach hut and straight into the water. Within 50m was some of he best snorkelling I've ever seen and head out another 75-100m over an artificial reef and you are up to your nuts in hammerhead and white-tip reef sharks. Great manta ray dives as well... I really enjoyed it there but as I said, nothing flashy.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by jdogscoop »

Ghost-Of-Nepia wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:
Ghost-Of-Nepia wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:I'm looking to get away to the Pacific Islands in late May for a five night stay with mrs jdogscoop.

A review of Tripadvisor reveals the 4 star and above resorts all seem to be uniformly good, without being spectacular.

Has anyone spent a memorable vacay at a resort in the Cook Islands, Samoa or Fiji that they would care to recommend?

Please form an orderly queue.

jdog out.
Dunedin?
I'm already there for a one night stay in late May, nkosi.

I was drawn to the Alcala Motor Lodge for it's mad 1970s stylinz.
Heading to a PI before or after Dunedin? I'd suggest after for full impact of chilly Dunners to tropical Samoa/Cook Islands.
After, mart. We'll fly home from ChCh on the Mondee only to nonsensically fly the other way the very next day.

Planning like a fox ;)
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Sundy »

Nanuku Aubrge Resort in Pacific Harbour Fiji.

Expensive but awesome
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Bindi
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Bindi »

Excellent thread.

Looking for somewhere local to take the family to in a year or two. Samoa really looks the goods.

Vanuatu any good? Quite close to Brisbane.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by kovana »

Savai'i in Samoa is awesome.

It isnt the mythical homeland of the polynesians for nothing. ;)
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terangi48
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by terangi48 »

Rarotonga is great....sister and her family live there. Good beaches...snorkeling....diving with the sharks...fishing...chilling...great eating houses (Sails) friendly locals...medical services if needed...local markets in weekends...local rugby and league matches...relaxing life style. If that isn't relaxed enough...fly to Atuitaki with Air Rarotonga....stay in an even more relaxed place...lagoon trips....swim with the giant wrasse and g-trevally...even stay on a motu on the coral reef, which used to be part of the Coral Route of the 1940's and 50's served by the Sunderland Seaplanes....many famous people travelled this route....documented in the whares on the island. Top place all round........then, If you get itchy feet......move on for a few nights in Tahiti.....it's brilliant.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Ghost-Of-Nepia »

Also, jdogscoop, if you do go snorkelling, I demand a remake of your infamous ''special needs'' photo from your Cairns trip around the turn of the millenium, this time substituting Ivor for Mrs jdogscoop.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Mahoney »

There used to be a little place north of Port Vila on Efate which was little more than a few thatched huts from which you could do some diving - very basic, very relaxed, beautifully isolated and cheap. Mind you this was in 1999, so goodness knows if it's still there / still has the same vibe.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by The Optimist »

Samoa is a good call, you will have a new appreciation for hot and humid. :lol:
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Brumbie_Steve »

jdogscoop wrote:
RuggaBugga wrote:Whatever you do, don't go to Denarau if you do Fiji. It's utter shit.
Is this a wind up? Denarau is one of the places I was looking at closely. The Hilton and Radisson Blu there seem to be very highly rated.

They are ok but IMHO Sofitel is the best one on the island. Denarau is ok but it is not really Fiji per se. Depends on what you are looking for. I like the Intercontinental at Natadola. The Marriott in Momi Bay has just opened and it was pretty good.

What are you interested in doing while here?
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by badmannotinjapan »

Taveuni.
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mr bungle
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by mr bungle »

Bindi wrote:
Vanuatu any good? Quite close to Brisbane.
I've had lots of family and friends go to Fiji, Samoa, New Caledonia, Rarotonga and Vanuatu. Never had any good reports of Vanuatu, while the rest seem highly rated.

I concur with RB on Denarau. Nice hotels, but expensive booze and food and nowt to do there.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by Ali's Choice »

Jdog,

Have you thought of Hawaii? Sure, it's a very different Pacific experience to the aforementioned islands, but flights are very reasonable these days.
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Re: Pacific Island getaway recommendations

Post by UncleFB »

If you're heading from NZ first (and not from Oz direct) then the Cooks are a good shout as you wont need to change any money. ;)

Also, does it have to be a resort? You can get nice beach houses in the Cooks.
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