New 89 day booking in Fiji with photos! Who knew it was do-able? More bookings and itinerary updates coming...


View overlooking the resort to the sea.  Due to the necessity of resizing the photos on the resort's site, these photos are a bit blurry. To see details, please click here for the Homeaway listing.
With strict 90 day visa requirements in Australia, we had to make a plan to spend more time outside of Australia.  Rather than fly in and out of the continent to have a chance to start another 90 day period, we decided that living in another country in South Pacific for yet another 89 days makes the most sense. This way we can return to Australia to begin another 90 day visa. 
The veranda at our private villa, an actual separate house.
We'll be able to purchase a one year visa online, still requiring us to stay only 90 days at a time, that will allow us to go in and out of Australia with greater ease over a period of one year. 
Another veranda view.
Long ago, we both expressed an interest in Fiji as we considered living in Australia for varying periods of time.  We love island living which in most cases, provides us with close proximity to the sea and of course, the kind of views we can't seem to resist.

When we originally looked for vacation rentals in Fiji awhile back, we were quickly frustrated by the rates and gave up.  With the new booking in Australia, we had a new determination to find something wonderful at an affordable price.  Once again "safari luck" kicked in and just like that...we found a fabulous resort that worked out an excellent price for us for half as much as we'd expected to pay.

The beach at the resort.
The information we're sharing today isn't sequential for our booking dates.  Prior to living in Fiji, we'll be living in Australia for 89 days which information we've yet to share here. This weekend, the owners of the Australian rental will send us their photos of their lovely property in Trinity Beach, Australia, which we'll post the next day.
 
While in Belize, our first vacation rental outside of the US, we lived at the gorgeous Laru Beya resort in Placencia, loving every moment with our condo unit directly on the ocean on ground level.  From the attentive staff, included cleaning and laundry twice weekly, to the infinity pool, restaurant and bar, it was ideal.  Most of all, we made wonderful friends with whom we've stayed in touch.

We'll be living on the island of Vanua Levu in the village of Savusavu which is situated above the main island of Fiji, away from the bulk of the tourist hubbub on the main island of Fiji.
Beginning on September 8, 2015 (day of daughter Tammy's birthday, day after son Greg's) until December 6, 2015 we'll live on an island paradise for a full 89 days, another resort on the remote island of Vanau Levu in the town of Savusavu as shown in this above map. 

Prior to booking this property, we researched transportation to the somewhat remote island.  We'll fly from Cairns, Australia, (the closest airport to the rental in Trinity Beach, Australia) for a total of 10 hours to arrive in Vanau Levu.  Its a long flight with multiple layovers but considerably less time than many of our previous flights.

A portion of the living area.
We won't need a car while on the island with a reliable driver (raved about in the reviews) that can easily take us anywhere we'd like to go at a reasonable rate.  With the high cost for a rental cars on the remote island for such an extended period, we'll be content to request the driver for dining out, shopping and exploring the island. 

This is an excellent scenario for us, a quiet location directly on the ocean away from the tourist hubbub and yet relatively accessible to fulfil our needs for shopping, dining out and entertainment.  This island appears to be comparable to one's vision of "hiding away on a deserted island."  

View from the living room.
We anticipate that staying at this resort will be comparable to those vacations in our old lives, those that we never wanted to end.  With 89 days on this island, we'll satisfy that longing, ready to head back to Australia for a short stint and then on to New Zealand.  Although, we haven't pinned down the locations yet, we're working on New Zealand now, hoping to wrap it up in the next several days.
 
As with any new booking, there's a bit of trepidation as to whether the property will prove to be as it's described on the website. Our first booking outside of the US in Belize resulted in our staying only a week when there was seldom running water and there were holes in the window screens. 

Master bedroom.
Within days of arrival, I had no less than 100 inflamed bites from the no-see-ums (sand flies), getting more and more bites each day. The lack of running water, more than the bites, motivated us to get out of there as quickly as possible.  We anticipated that I'd be bitten wherever we went. 

Although, we lost the money we'd paid when the owner refused to give us a refund, once we moved to Laru Beya Resort we were in heaven. The sand flies were easily manageable by using repellent when outside at night.

Luckily, we've been pleased with the diligent and thoughtful representation by all of the subsequent managers/landlords for the properties we rented from that point on.  We didn't necessarily love every country in which we lived but the properties were as stated in each location.

Another bedroom.
Without the necessity of making budgetary adjustments for this reasonably priced property, we're both pleased and relieved to have this portion of our travels settled and awaiting our arrival in only one year, two months and twelve days.  When we think of it this way, its really not that far away.  (We use an online app to calculate "dates between dates" which we need to calculate.  Click here to see the free app.

Undoubtedly, there's a risk in renting properties we've never seen in person.  But, we've found that if the property is clean with a great view, with working WiFi and utilities, a comfortable bed, sofa and dining space and has a reasonably functional kitchen, we can get through it, bugs and all.

Steps from the lobby of the resort down to the pool.
Goodness, in South Africa, we had insects the size of one's hand, a spitting cobra on the veranda and scary looking creatures flying and crawling into the house. Somehow, we managed rather well.
 
In many ways, adapting to a new environment every few months has made us more tolerant than either of us had ever expected.  We've adopted an attitude that if we can't readily change a difficult situation, that no whining is allowed.  Taking whining and complaining out of the equation greatly adds to one's ability to adapt and to ultimately have a good experience.
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Photo from one year ago, June 28, 2013:

 Many homes in the small villages in Tuscany are share a common wall (s) as was the case
in the 300 year old vacation home we rented in Boveglio, Italy for 75 days.  It was part of the grouping as shown above in this photo. For details from that day, please click here.

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