Best snorkeling in Fiji for underwater photography

Matamanoa Island Resort - Mamanuca Islands - West Fiji

I hadn't seen great coral until I came to Matamanoa - unmissable for snorkeling

One of the very best off-beach hard coral places we have snorkelled anywhere.

Even photographs do not do Matamanoa's underwater, panoramic views of thick, healthy, beautifully coloured, coral justice.   Blew us away.

Matamanoa is 30 mins taxi from Nadi then 45 mins on a fast, air-conditioned catamaran.
rolling hills of Staghorn corals

Matmanoa bird
A bird of only two Fijian islands.   A few are on the neighbouring, uninhabitated, Modriki island but the majority are on Matamanoa.

The Matamanoa bird, or Nocturnal storm petrel, breeds on these islands from December to mid-May.

At low tide they feed on seeweed and plankton.

They can set up an unholy racket at night, particularly on the North side of the island.
Apparently are more visible in the resort during bad weather.

This coincided with the night this picture was taken, when five individuals were clumsily bumbling around on the ground near the North side villas and could be very easily approached.

They would be easy prey for dogs or whatever.

Presumably, with their 5' wing span, they are more elegant in flight.

Despite the cost we chose one of the new villas above the north-facing beach.   (Click magnifying icon above right thumbnail for large map.)

This is by far the best part of the island for snorkeling.   It can be reached from the older villa areas (long swim, walk or a boat).
The villas are a 7 minute walk back to the main resort restaurant and bar area.   When this walkway is properly finished it will be no problem.

Plunge pool, beautiful villa, lawn, 24 steps from a fantastic, often deserted, beach and that coral, more than makes up for the walk.

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