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Vuda, Fiji to Minerva Reef to Kermadec Islands to Opua, New Zealand 18 Sep 2024 Expedition Cruising

Vuda Marina, Fiji
  • Event date: 18/09/2024
  • Event end: 02/10/2024
  • When: JUL-SEP
  • Duration: 2 weeks

VUDA, FIJI TO MINERVA REEF, THE KERMADEC’S & OPUA, NEW ZEALAND / 1,110NM

15 DAYS / CAT 1 EXPEDITION  / TE KAIHŌPARA: CREW POSITIONS AVAILABLE


OVERVIEW:

A 15-day Expedition from Vuda, Fiji to Minerva Reef, the Kermadec’s and Opua, New Zealand.

Embark on a 1,100NM journey of a lifetime, setting sail from the enchanting Vuda Marina, Fiji, and embarking on an expedition that spans the remote North Minerva Reef, the breathtaking Kermadec Islands, and the welcoming shores of Opua, New Zealand. This isn’t merely a sailing adventure; it’s a voyage through history, culture, and the natural wonders of the South Pacific. Join us as we navigate this extraordinary odyssey, where each destination is a chapter in a story waiting to be discovered.

Opua+to+Fiji
Difficulty Level:
Medium
Price:

 Private cabin: 3 berth  $23,665 AUD

  Shared cabin: 1 berth $8750 AUD

Vuda Marina, Fiji: Setting Sail from Paradise

 Vuda Marina in Fiji is where our journey begins, surrounded by lush hills and clear waters. Fiji’s history is a rich tapestry of ancient migrations and vibrant Polynesian heritage. The Fijian culture is steeped in tradition, exemplified by the warm Fijian hospitality and unique customs like the Kava ceremony. Departing from Fiji, we carry the legacy of these customs and a deep appreciation for the Fijian way of life.

 Fiji’s history is a rich tapestry woven with ancient migrations, tribal traditions, and a vibrant Polynesian heritage. Inhabited for over 3,000 years, these islands resonate with echoes of their ancient past, with evidence of Lapita pottery dating back to antiquity. Fijian culture is steeped in tradition, exemplified by the warm Fijian hospitality and unique customs, such as the Kava ceremony, a sacred ritual symbolizing unity and friendship. As we sail away from Fiji’s shores, we carry with us the legacy of these timeless customs and a profound appreciation for the Fijian way of life.

North Minerva Reef: A Pristine Oasis in the Blue

 Our first major destination is the remote North Minerva Reef, a true oasis amidst the vast South Pacific. This submerged atoll, often described as a sailor’s paradise, stands in stark contrast to the lush landscapes of Fiji.

 North Minerva Reef is a sailor’s dream, where history is written in coral formations and culture is the rhythm of the tides. Snorkelling and diving in its crystalline waters reveal a vibrant underwater world, while the solitude of this remote reef connects you with nature’s purest essence. Witness the untouched beauty of the underwater kingdom, where corals form intricate labyrinths, and colourful marine life dances to the rhythm of the tides. As you explore the reef, you become part of an ancient narrative, a testament to the unyielding force of nature and the enduring allure of the sea.

Raoul Island, Kermadecs: A Volcanic Eden

 Our journey continues to the Kermadec Islands, with our first port of call being Raoul Island, a remote volcanic paradise. The Kermadec’s history is one of fiery geological processes and isolation, making it a place of remarkable natural beauty. Raoul Island, the largest in the Kermadec group, has been shaped by millions of years of volcanic activity. It’s a place where rugged cliffs give way to lush forests, and hot springs emerge from the earth. Raoul Island is part of New Zealand’s territory, and its history is one of conservation and ecological restoration.

 Here, we explore the island’s unique flora and fauna, much of which is found nowhere else on Earth. It offers nature enthusiasts an intimate connection with an unspoiled landscape. Wander through lush forests, where endemic plant species paint the terrain with vibrant hues. Gaze upon volcanic craters, silent witnesses to the island’s fiery past. Raoul Island is an open book of geological wonders and a sanctuary for nature enthusiasts, beckoning you to explore its diverse ecosystems and discover the secrets of this pristine Eden. The rugged landscape also offers opportunities for hiking and birdwatching, providing an intimate connection with nature in a remote, pristine setting.

Opua, New Zealand: A Warm Welcome to Aotearoa

 Our voyage concludes in Opua, New Zealand, a picturesque port nestled in the Bay of Islands, Northland. As we sail into Opua’s welcoming harbour, we’re greeted by the rich maritime history of this region, intertwined with the broader story of Aotearoa (New Zealand). Opua is also known as a haven for marine life and a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Cruising through this region provides pristine waters and the opportunity to spot dolphins and whales for nature enthusiasts.

  New Zealand’s history is one of remarkable discovery and Maori heritage. The indigenous Maori people have inhabited these islands for over a thousand years, leaving an indelible mark on the culture and traditions of Aotearoa. European explorers arrived in the late 18th century, leading to British colonization. Opua itself has a history as a vital port for early European settlers. Today, it stands as a gateway to New Zealand’s lush landscapes and Maori culture. It provided the opportunity to immerse yourself in the living culture of the Maori people, learning about their traditions, art, and spiritual connection to the land. Exploring Opua and the Bay of Islands allows us to appreciate the Maori heritage, colonial legacy, and the stunning coastal beauty of Aotearoa.

Sights Along the Passage: Nature’s Masterpieces

 As we sail through the South Pacific, we’ll encounter breathtaking natural wonders along the way:

 Coral Reefs and Marine Marvels:

 The South Pacific is renowned for its vibrant coral reefs and teeming marine life. Snorkelling and diving opportunities abound, allowing you to swim among technicolour coral formations and encounter tropical fish, rays, and even the occasional turtle. These living ecosystems are a testament to nature’s intricate design, where each species plays a vital role in the delicate balance of underwater life.

 Remote Islands and Pristine Beaches:

 Our route takes us to remote islands and pristine beaches that invite you to unwind in paradisiacal settings. White sands and crystal-clear waters provide a perfect backdrop for relaxation and exploration. Stroll along untouched shores, collect seashells, or simply bask in the serenity of these unspoiled landscapes. The islands offer a glimpse into the past, where time seems to stand still, and the only soundtrack is the gentle lapping of the waves.

Cultural Immersion:

  Meeting locals and immersing yourself in the cultures of Fiji, New Zealand, and the Kermadecs will be an integral part of this journey. From traditional ceremonies to vibrant markets and indigenous art, each destination offers a unique cultural experience. Engage with the warm-hearted Fijians, share stories with the New Zealanders, and discover the fascinating Kanak culture of the Kermadec Islands. These encounters will enrich your voyage, creating lasting memories and deepening your appreciation for the diverse cultures that call the South Pacific home.

 Volcanic Wonders:

 Raoul Island in the Kermadecs offers a unique opportunity to witness the power of volcanic forces. Hot springs and rugged volcanic landscapes create an otherworldly backdrop for exploration. Walk along ancient lava flows, marvel at steaming vents, and feel the earth’s raw energy beneath your feet. These geological wonders are living proof of the ever-changing nature of our planet and a reminder of the forces that have shaped the landscapes we traverse.

 This 1,100NM voyage is a symphony of adventure, culture, and natural splendor. Each destination along our passage has its own story to tell, from the timeless traditions of Fiji to the raw beauty of North Minerva Reef, the volcanic wonders of Raoul Island, and the warm welcome of Opua, New Zealand. Join us on this extraordinary expedition, where the wind and waves will carry you through history, culture, and the breathtaking landscapes of the South Pacific, weaving a tapestry of experiences you’ll cherish forever.

Here is what you will experience onboard

  • Hoisting, trimming and reefing both upwind (main, genoas, and jibs) and downwind sails (poled out headsails, spinnakers, gennakers and code 0’s (subject to weather)
  • Acting as watch captain (day and night), helming, navigating, checking the weather and monitoring AIS and radar and for both traffic and rain squalls
  • Downloading and analysing the latest weather forecasts and calculating the best route to the destination
  • Navigating, hazard identification, entering waypoints and calculating updated ETA’s
  • Routine checks of bilges, engine, electrical systems, sails and hardware for preventative maintenance
  • Watch roster planning, matching responsibility to experience, crew management and communication
  • Familiarisation of all safety procedures, sail planning, storm preparation planning and abandon ship procedures
  • Training in the use of PDF’s (Personal Flotation Devices), PLB’s (Personal Locator Beacons), safety tethers, dan buoy’s, storm drogue, liferaft and any other equipment required to ensure you remain safe in all conditions
  • Advice on how to take responsibility for managing clothing, hydration, sleep and nutrition to maintain your health and well being aboard
  • Planning our arrival and route to safe harbour including timing with daylight (if required), weather factors, navigational hazards, communications/customs and sail/motor arrival plan
  • Multi-day, offshore passage making 24/7 on a significant Category 1 offshore passage.

Your crew package includes the following:

  • All meals onboard

  • Crew meals in Tonga and Vanuatu and various stopover ports

  • Accommodation onboard, your Ocean Sailing Expeditions crew shirt

  • Marina fees

  • The use of a PFD (personal flotation device)

  • PLB (personal locator beacon), and a safety tether

  • Your bedding, a pillow and towel are also included along with sunscreen.

Your crew package excludes the following:

  • accommodation ashore
  • flights and transport to and from departure and arrival ports and visas
  • alcohol
  • toiletries
  • clothing and wet weather gear
  • You will need to complete a 2-day Sea Safety and Survival Training Course or equivalent Category 1 Course at least one month prior.

It’s always recommended that you book flights with date flexibility in case of unforeseen changes due to weather or schedules. Accommodation options if you want to stay ashore on either side of the trip: AirBNBBooking.comWotif & HomeAway.

Boats
Program 8 Sep 2024

Vuda Marina, Fiji: Setting Sail from Paradise

 Vuda Marina in Fiji is where our journey begins, surrounded by lush hills and clear waters. Fiji’s history is a rich tapestry of ancient migrations and vibrant Polynesian heritage. The Fijian culture is steeped in tradition, exemplified by the warm Fijian hospitality and unique customs like the Kava ceremony. Departing from Fiji, we carry the legacy of these customs and a deep appreciation for the Fijian way of life.

 Fiji’s history is a rich tapestry woven with ancient migrations, tribal traditions, and a vibrant Polynesian heritage. Inhabited for over 3,000 years, these islands resonate with echoes of their ancient past, with evidence of Lapita pottery dating back to antiquity. Fijian culture is steeped in tradition, exemplified by the warm Fijian hospitality and unique customs, such as the Kava ceremony, a sacred ritual symbolizing unity and friendship. As we sail away from Fiji’s shores, we carry with us the legacy of these timeless customs and a profound appreciation for the Fijian way of life.

North Minerva Reef: A Pristine Oasis in the Blue

 Our first major destination is the remote North Minerva Reef, a true oasis amidst the vast South Pacific. This submerged atoll, often described as a sailor’s paradise, stands in stark contrast to the lush landscapes of Fiji.

 North Minerva Reef is a sailor’s dream, where history is written in coral formations and culture is the rhythm of the tides. Snorkelling and diving in its crystalline waters reveal a vibrant underwater world, while the solitude of this remote reef connects you with nature’s purest essence. Witness the untouched beauty of the underwater kingdom, where corals form intricate labyrinths, and colourful marine life dances to the rhythm of the tides. As you explore the reef, you become part of an ancient narrative, a testament to the unyielding force of nature and the enduring allure of the sea.

Raoul Island, Kermadecs: A Volcanic Eden

 Our journey continues to the Kermadec Islands, with our first port of call being Raoul Island, a remote volcanic paradise. The Kermadec’s history is one of fiery geological processes and isolation, making it a place of remarkable natural beauty. Raoul Island, the largest in the Kermadec group, has been shaped by millions of years of volcanic activity. It’s a place where rugged cliffs give way to lush forests, and hot springs emerge from the earth. Raoul Island is part of New Zealand’s territory, and its history is one of conservation and ecological restoration.

 Here, we explore the island’s unique flora and fauna, much of which is found nowhere else on Earth. It offers nature enthusiasts an intimate connection with an unspoiled landscape. Wander through lush forests, where endemic plant species paint the terrain with vibrant hues. Gaze upon volcanic craters, silent witnesses to the island’s fiery past. Raoul Island is an open book of geological wonders and a sanctuary for nature enthusiasts, beckoning you to explore its diverse ecosystems and discover the secrets of this pristine Eden. The rugged landscape also offers opportunities for hiking and birdwatching, providing an intimate connection with nature in a remote, pristine setting.

Opua, New Zealand: A Warm Welcome to Aotearoa

 Our voyage concludes in Opua, New Zealand, a picturesque port nestled in the Bay of Islands, Northland. As we sail into Opua’s welcoming harbour, we’re greeted by the rich maritime history of this region, intertwined with the broader story of Aotearoa (New Zealand). Opua is also known as a haven for marine life and a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Cruising through this region provides pristine waters and the opportunity to spot dolphins and whales for nature enthusiasts.

  New Zealand’s history is one of remarkable discovery and Maori heritage. The indigenous Maori people have inhabited these islands for over a thousand years, leaving an indelible mark on the culture and traditions of Aotearoa. European explorers arrived in the late 18th century, leading to British colonization. Opua itself has a history as a vital port for early European settlers. Today, it stands as a gateway to New Zealand’s lush landscapes and Maori culture. It provided the opportunity to immerse yourself in the living culture of the Maori people, learning about their traditions, art, and spiritual connection to the land. Exploring Opua and the Bay of Islands allows us to appreciate the Maori heritage, colonial legacy, and the stunning coastal beauty of Aotearoa.

Sights Along the Passage: Nature’s Masterpieces

 As we sail through the South Pacific, we’ll encounter breathtaking natural wonders along the way:

 Coral Reefs and Marine Marvels:

 The South Pacific is renowned for its vibrant coral reefs and teeming marine life. Snorkelling and diving opportunities abound, allowing you to swim among technicolour coral formations and encounter tropical fish, rays, and even the occasional turtle. These living ecosystems are a testament to nature’s intricate design, where each species plays a vital role in the delicate balance of underwater life.

 Remote Islands and Pristine Beaches:

 Our route takes us to remote islands and pristine beaches that invite you to unwind in paradisiacal settings. White sands and crystal-clear waters provide a perfect backdrop for relaxation and exploration. Stroll along untouched shores, collect seashells, or simply bask in the serenity of these unspoiled landscapes. The islands offer a glimpse into the past, where time seems to stand still, and the only soundtrack is the gentle lapping of the waves.

Cultural Immersion:

  Meeting locals and immersing yourself in the cultures of Fiji, New Zealand, and the Kermadecs will be an integral part of this journey. From traditional ceremonies to vibrant markets and indigenous art, each destination offers a unique cultural experience. Engage with the warm-hearted Fijians, share stories with the New Zealanders, and discover the fascinating Kanak culture of the Kermadec Islands. These encounters will enrich your voyage, creating lasting memories and deepening your appreciation for the diverse cultures that call the South Pacific home.

 Volcanic Wonders:

 Raoul Island in the Kermadecs offers a unique opportunity to witness the power of volcanic forces. Hot springs and rugged volcanic landscapes create an otherworldly backdrop for exploration. Walk along ancient lava flows, marvel at steaming vents, and feel the earth’s raw energy beneath your feet. These geological wonders are living proof of the ever-changing nature of our planet and a reminder of the forces that have shaped the landscapes we traverse.

 This 1,100NM voyage is a symphony of adventure, culture, and natural splendor. Each destination along our passage has its own story to tell, from the timeless traditions of Fiji to the raw beauty of North Minerva Reef, the volcanic wonders of Raoul Island, and the warm welcome of Opua, New Zealand. Join us on this extraordinary expedition, where the wind and waves will carry you through history, culture, and the breathtaking landscapes of the South Pacific, weaving a tapestry of experiences you’ll cherish forever.

Tips

Here is what you will experience onboard

  • Hoisting, trimming and reefing both upwind (main, genoas, and jibs) and downwind sails (poled out headsails, spinnakers, gennakers and code 0’s (subject to weather)
  • Acting as watch captain (day and night), helming, navigating, checking the weather and monitoring AIS and radar and for both traffic and rain squalls
  • Downloading and analysing the latest weather forecasts and calculating the best route to the destination
  • Navigating, hazard identification, entering waypoints and calculating updated ETA’s
  • Routine checks of bilges, engine, electrical systems, sails and hardware for preventative maintenance
  • Watch roster planning, matching responsibility to experience, crew management and communication
  • Familiarisation of all safety procedures, sail planning, storm preparation planning and abandon ship procedures
  • Training in the use of PDF’s (Personal Flotation Devices), PLB’s (Personal Locator Beacons), safety tethers, dan buoy’s, storm drogue, liferaft and any other equipment required to ensure you remain safe in all conditions
  • Advice on how to take responsibility for managing clothing, hydration, sleep and nutrition to maintain your health and well being aboard
  • Planning our arrival and route to safe harbour including timing with daylight (if required), weather factors, navigational hazards, communications/customs and sail/motor arrival plan
  • Multi-day, offshore passage making 24/7 on a significant Category 1 offshore passage.
Inclusions

Your crew package includes the following:

  • All meals onboard

  • Crew meals in Tonga and Vanuatu and various stopover ports

  • Accommodation onboard, your Ocean Sailing Expeditions crew shirt

  • Marina fees

  • The use of a PFD (personal flotation device)

  • PLB (personal locator beacon), and a safety tether

  • Your bedding, a pillow and towel are also included along with sunscreen.

Exclusions

Your crew package excludes the following:

  • accommodation ashore
  • flights and transport to and from departure and arrival ports and visas
  • alcohol
  • toiletries
  • clothing and wet weather gear
  • You will need to complete a 2-day Sea Safety and Survival Training Course or equivalent Category 1 Course at least one month prior.

It’s always recommended that you book flights with date flexibility in case of unforeseen changes due to weather or schedules. Accommodation options if you want to stay ashore on either side of the trip: AirBNBBooking.comWotif & HomeAway.

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