Fiji Islands

Exploring Bouma National Heritage Park on Beautiful Taveuni Island

admin March 20, 2019

Taveuni is Fiji’s third largest island. Known as the “Garden Island” or “Mystery Island”, it receives frequent rainfall resulting in lush, exotic scenery. The Bouma National Park, located on the Eastern side of the island, was established in 1990 and is designed to protect the rainforest region of this magnificent island paradise.

Making up a third of Taveuni island, the Bouma National Park is a serene setting and a wonderful escape from the tropical heat. Home to three spectacular falls, each unique and worth the walk, it makes for a fantastic family day out, a romantic hike, a bird watching hub or a place to kayak. It also helps generate an income for the four surrounding villages, with the traditional park owners being three local tribes.

There are four main features to the park, offering something special for every kind of traveler.

TAVORO WATERFALLS

By far the most popular attraction of the National Park is the Tavoro Waterfalls, a three-hour return hike that passes not one, but three waterfalls. Each of the waterfalls features a natural volcanic pool, perfect for swimming and cooling off after your long (but not strenuous) hike.

The first is located just a 10-minute walk from the beginning of the trail and is the most popular of the three falls. The fall itself is about 24 metres high, and the location offers a changing area, picnic tables and barbecue plates.

The second and third falls are generally quieter and tougher to get to, but along the way, you’ll discover the sights and sounds of the Taveuni Forest. The third fall is the smallest of the three at just 10m high and offers a picturesque pool and rocks for jumping off. If you bring your snorkeling gear, you could also see the hundreds of prawns in the water, a sight not to be missed.

LAKE TAGIMAUCIA

Native plant enthusiasts could take a guided tour past the falls and up to the top of the mountain at Lake Tagimaucia. This is the home of the legendary Tagimaucia flower, the national flower of Fiji.

It is not recommended that you try to tackle this walk on your own. The terrain is rough and very quiet, and if you want any hope of finding the beautiful red and white flower, it’s best to take someone who knows where they are going and what they are looking for.

To reach the lake, you will need to allow for an entire day of trekking.

VIDAWA RAINFOREST WALK

The Vidawa Rainforest Walk is the opportunity to learn from knowledgeable local guides who, in turn, learned about the island’s rainforest from their forefathers. Listen carefully as they explain how they have lived off the land and shaped it to meet their needs, and how they plan to protect it for future generations.

Starting at the quaint Vidawa Village, the medium-challenge hike will take you into the heart of the forest, past ancient fortified villages and ending at the Tavoro Waterfalls. Learn traditional hunting practices, spot the endemic Orange Dove, listen for the Barking Pigeon and hear stories hundreds of years old.

LAVENA COASTAL WALK

Situated on the coastal boundary of the Bouma National Heritage Park, the Lavena Coastal Walk offers the opportunity to explore a mixture of remote beaches, rainforests, and traditional gardens. A three-hour round trip, you can stop for a swim, enjoy a picnic at Unaca point (pronounced “Oothuna”) and learn about the Naba settlement, a small community descended from the Solomon Islands. Just before the village, you can also see a collection of reef pedestals, evidence of the island’s volcanic history.

GETTING TO THE BOUMA NATIONAL HERITAGE PARK

A Northern Colonial Discovery Cruise offers a truly unique experience in the Northern Fiji islands. You’ll be able to explore Taveuni Island, swim in the Tavoro Waterfalls, visit the local handicraft markets, and stand on the 180th Meridian – the line between the past and the future. Or, if you’d like to try the Lavena Coastal Walk, take a look at our Lau and Kadavu Discovery Cruise, which stops there first. Find out more or book today.

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