The last week in Ha’apai gave us the opportunity to visit some really beautiful islands. Since we’ve made a weather stop in a location where they have Internet, I’ve managed to upload a very select few photos of the sights we saw. A few of the islands we explored included Uoleva, Uanakuhahaki, Tofanga, Nomuku Iki, and Kelefesia. The photos have been geotagged, so you can see where they are in Google Maps/Earth.
It’s hard to express how beautiful these places are even with photos. Later I plan to upload a couple of 360 panoramas to give you a more immersive taste of some of the places. We walked around the beaches and through some of the tropical jungles on these islands. We saw ship wrecks, dove on coral reefs, and found a variety of land and sea life. One set of islands had a few cows and pigs wandering around.
In Kelefesia, we met some fisherman who were camping for several weeks away from their homes up at Nomuku island. They were catching fish, lobster, and octopus. The fish and octopus were hanging up to dry on sticks and poles to keep stored until they can return and sell at the fish market. They also traded with the boats coming to anchor for other foods. One night the fisherman gave a small pig to the boats at anchor and an evening BBQ was set up. I especially like the photo from the cliff-top showing Kelefesia and the fishing camp. I did a 360 from there as well.
Check out the photos below (view full-sized for the better view of the photos):
View full-sized slideshow
The photos include pictures of the dive I did with new friends on s/v Dignity. Steve and Helen we had met briefly in Vava’u. And their son Ben was with them. We dove on the recent wreck of La Tortue. La Tortue was sailed by a frenchman and his family from French Polynesia. He had lived on the boat off and on most of his life and spent 3 years getting it ready for blue-water travel. They had only been out a few months and when approaching Kelefesia had engine problems. Then, they put out an anchor and it didn’t hold. Surprisingly, they ended up on the reef. They spent some time trying to get off, but it was impossible. And ended up getting rescued and taken off their boat. Later, other sailors came and took off as many of their belongings as possible and removed the mast. They also removed all the environmentally hazardous materials as possible and then sank the boat in a safe location. We were one of the first to dive on the boat two weeks later.