The ARC World Rally have arrived in Fiji and authorized to clear in Vanua Balavu, in Lau Group, a group of officers from Custom and Immigration, Quarantine and Biosecurity flew to this remote island specifically for World ARC; World Cruising Club obtained special permission for the fleet as normally visiting yachts to Fiji are required to clear into the ports Suva or Savusavu from which the Lau Group are a difficult sail back to windward.
By clearing directly into the Lau Group this beautiful and remote archipelago have been available for the fleet to visit and explore.
After clearances the fleet moved on the other side of the island to visit the village of Daliconi; on the way of the village part of the fleet decided to stop for few hours in the beautiful bay of islands.
In the village of Daliconi the crews went ashore for a welcome ceremony and a dinner; the chiefs of the village welcomed the crews with a Sevusevu, a traditional ceremony which formally authorize the visitors to anchor in front of the village and stay ashore.
After the ceremony few skippers have been invited to drink a Kava with the chiefs of the village; Kava is a traditional drink obtained from a root and is quite popular in this part of Polynesia.
The dinner has been greatly appreciated with participants, dances and traditional music made the evening unforgettable for many of them; everybody enjoyed this opportunity to get in contact with such an interesting culture.
After the dinner the world ARC participants offered the gifts for the local school committee; the local community need support and help to rebuild the school and the rest of the buildings destroyed by the hurricane in 2016.
The fleet started now the cruising period in Fiji; few decided to stay few more days in Vanua Balavu, others already left the island.
Next meeting in Musket Cove the 5th of July for the Rendez vous and the start of Leg 6 to Vanuatu.