Saturday, September 17, 2016

Homegrown bananas

No much time to blog these days, too busy with this event, so here is just a pic of the bananas from my plant, finally ripen. Making lots of banana cakes!

Photos by Alessandra Zecchini ©

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Denarau, Fiji and flowers

The best of Fiji can be found in the islands, like here, and Denarau is usually just a 'stopover' (unless you play golf…). But it is convenient for day trips (sea and land), and scuba diving courses (they take you out to the islands from Denarau). For me, what I have enjoyed most are... the flowers!

Sunrise 1
Sunrise 2
Twilight at the port

Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa

Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa

Hilton Fiji Beach Resort and Spa
 And all those flowers and tropical plants!

Bye bye Fiji!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Fiji, from the Mamamuka to the Yasawa islands

An ode to blue...

When you enter the Yasawa Islands Group a worrier welcomes you, can you see him on the rock?

Photos by Alessandra Zecchini ©

Friday, August 5, 2016

The best Italian Vegan fritters are...

… chestnut fritters! And you only need three ingredients: Italian chestnut flour (which is naturally sweet so you don't need to add sugar), sultana (optional, but traditional!) and oil for frying! These are full of protein, gluten free, and perfect for breakfast, or snack, hot or cold. I love them after a gym workout and the kids like to put them in their lunch boxes. They are very filling, plus they last a few days, if you don't eat them all at once!

Mix the chestnut flour with enough water to make a batter (same consistency as hot cakes), add the sultana.

 Drop full spoons of batter in the hot oil and fry on both sides until nice and brown.

Drain excess oil with kitchen paper


Photos and Recipes by Alessandra Zecchini ©

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Viwa Island Resort, Yasawa Islands, Fiji

We had a great holiday in Fiji and the highlight was staying in Viwa Island, in the Yasawa Group. There is only one small boutique resort, Viwa Island Resort, while the island itself has about 500 people distributed in three small villages. You won't see the island in many tourist brochures, as it is usually 'off the map' to the west of the Yasawas, and can be reached by seaplane, or by ferry until Waya Island, and the with a smaller boat until Viwa. A great trip either way, and the feel that you are really somewhere exclusive and far away, but will all the comforts.

View from the bure
Coral island

Happy feet
Viwa was badly hit but the Cyclone but it has been restored beautifully with charming elevated bure (the term bure traditionally refers to the villages' meeting houses, but now it is also used to describe a type of holiday hut based on the traditional island architecture), hosting a max of 22 guests. The bure are lovely and comfortable with amazing sea views. I also liked the semi-open and yet private garden en-suite present in each bure, and the lovely little touches like Pure Fiji toiletry and fresh flower everywhere. I loved  little foot pool to rinse your feet from the sand before going up the steps into your private deck. 

Our deck

Hibiscus flowers and butterflies everywhere

The kids in front of their own bure (our was exactly the same, but with a double bed instead of twin beds). 
Mostly I just relaxed, swam and sunbathed, but there are plenty of activities to do to, if you are so inclined, like scuba diving and snorkeling (beautiful fish and corals!), village and island tours, paddle boards and canoes, beach ball games and social activities in the evening. The staff is great, sings a lot and makes you feel special and welcomed. The restaurant is good and has an extensive vegetarian menu, a real bonus for our family (with two hungry teen-agers!).
From top right, clockwise: blue skies, Arantxa in crystal clear water, On Fiji Island by Ronald Right was published in 1987 but it is great reading, my legs getting tanned!

Naibalebale village, from top right, clockwise: traditional village house rebuilt after the cyclone, school children, the village Bure (meeting house, very beautiful inside).
Trying the local beer
What shall we do today?
Sunset with full moon

Peaceful resort at night, also with full moon

Bye bye Viwa, we had a great holiday!

Our spot on the beach!

Photos by Alessandra Zecchini ©



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