Mai Dive Resort Fiji

The Mai Dive and Astrolabe Reef Resort (tel. 679-603-0842) opened recently on Ono Island near Kadavu, Fiji. The resort is on a spacious 19-hectare property with green jungly slopes and a lovely one-kilometer beach. Mai Dive is fully owned and operated by local Fijians from Tiliva village on Kadavu and resort guests are introduced to the culture. Most of the resort's fruit and vegetables are grown on-site, the sea provides abundant fish, and the power is solar.

The resort's three beachfront bungalows begin at $180/270/360 Fijian single/double/triple with discounts after four or seven nights. Meals, non-alcoholic drinks, kayaks, snorkeling gear, and tax are included. The units have private bath, open air shower, window screens, mosquito nets, fans, bar fridge, deck and chairs, and hammock. Campers with their own tents are most welcome at $75 per person including meals. Roundtrip boat transfers from Vunisea Airport on Kadavu are $140 Fijian per person. Pacific Sun flies to Vunisea from Nadi and Suva.

Mai Dive's specialty is scuba diving, and their location near the fabulous Astrolabe Reef means easy access to some of Fiji's finest soft coral diving. Two-tank dive trips cost $150 with reductions on three- and five-day packages. Gear rental is $30 a day, if required. Mai Dive is a PADI five-star dive resort offering dive training programs at all levels, from beginner to advanced certification. The company also provides dive services for those staying at Kenia Resort and Tiliva Resort.

Aside from the diving, Mai Dive is a perfect base for sea kayaking, and experienced guides from Tamarillo Tropical Expeditions are available to lead kayak tours of one or more days. Fishing charters are $500/900 Fijian a half/full day, and you can even hire a sailing yacht at $900 Fijian a day. The snorkeling is great right off Mai Dive's beach and guided snorkeling tours by boat to see manta rays are possible. Mountain hikes can be arranged.

Be aware, Mai Dive is not a large international resort like those around Nadi or along the Coral Coast. It's perfect if you want to enjoy nature or relax in a friendly unspoiled environment. While the resort does have 24-hour electricity, wireless internet, and a bar, things like shopping, organized entertainment, bus trips, and air conditioning are best sought elsewhere.

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