11/5/2010 Ile Lifou -Loyalty Islands
Well today was to be our last island stop and after Vanuatu I was looking for a more scenic non-commercialized stop… and Lifou was just what the doctor ordered. This was going to be the first ever stop for the Rhapsody of the Seas at Lifou and it was going to be the largest cruise ship to ever visit the island. Thus we had to tender once again so we were off the ship around 7:30 am and on to Lifou. This was going to be a shorter day today as the all aboard was for 3:30 pm before our last two days at sea.
Our plans here were to spend the day at Luecila Beach which was right near where we tendered to and was just beautiful. Not a thing commercial at all… just island people carrying out their island lives. We had heard about a good snorkeling spot just down the road from the beach so we walked about 15 minutes from the beach up the road to the place we heard that was good for snorkeling… man were they wrong… it wasn’t good snorkeling it was GREAT for snorkeling.
If you were to visit here you will need some reef shoes as the shoreline is mostly broken coral and rough on the feet. There was a small dock with a fairly poorly designed ladder going down to the waters edge. At the edge was a smooth bottom that was in shallow water which was great for putting on our fins. Then you could gradually swim out in the clear aquamarine waters…
The snorkeling here was the best we have ever experienced in our lives! The water was perfectly clear and it felt as if we were swimming in an aquarium. The diversity of corals and fishes was bountiful. The corals were gigantic and pristine. We saw many bizarre and unknown fishes here of all sizes and shapes. We also saw numerous different colored clown fish swimming amongst the anemones as well as the giant deep see clams (some as large as 2-3 feet across). There was even one species of fish that swam around in the taller corals and would defend them by swimming aggressively at you to scare you away… which was quite humorous. My favorite as a fish with green dots on his side and what appeared to be gold eyebrows and they would come right up to your mask and just look directly at you… really cool!
We snorkeled here for hours and to top it off there was a Lifou native lady selling cold drinks out of a cooler so we had a couple of “number ones” after snorkeling… The number ones were more than eight dollars at Isle of Pines but here we could get four for that same amount… what a life… life is good!