Last week I went on a crazy adventure to the Ovalau Island where we stayed in Levuka, Fiji’s old capital. I was SUPER EXCITED to come here because I’d read that Levuka is home to the only UNESCO site in the pacific islands.
I hadn’t Googled it first and Trip Advisor does not offer much help.
As an old British capital I definitely expected old churches and brick buildings. I didn’t expect a city that looks like it belongs in a Western movie, or next to an old abandoned Australian goldmine. Here are some weird pictures so you understand what I’m saying:
And now for my favourite part. Oh, the little quirks of Levuka.
- The smell of gutted fish is so intoxicating it’s almost difficult to breathe. There’s a factory in Levuka that processes 16,000 tons of Tuna a year. This smell occurs daily between 3-7pm. I don’t even know how people manage to walk outdoors when it happens, it’s a bizarre experience.
- This is a hall sign stating “Eli Peceli Hall”. Eli Peceli is just presumably the donor or some other important person to the Church. Unfortunately, in Fijian this roughly translates to something along the lines of “Hell is here”.
- The building that was set alight by locals in 2000. According to my favourite and most reliable source – the Internet – the people who attacked it believe there was devil worship occurring in tunnels below the building (tunnels that went all the way to Scotland) and as such it must be destroyed.
4. And this schools motto of lest we forget below a crucifix sitting in a Kava bowl. Lest we forget here does not refer to war and instead refers to “not forgetting some things”.
5. The Internet was raving about this ‘199’ steps. 199 Steps is really not a lot, but I guess when there’s not that much to do here, at least it’s something. And the view from the top is worth it.
Anyway – this is just the funny stuff. When most people dream of Fiji they see sandy beaches and resorts. Levuka, while nothing like this has a fascinating insight into Fiji’s colonialist history. It’s a very unique part of the world. All in all, the people in the community are incredibly kind and friendly and to visit is a fun and unforgettable experience.