Sunday, 27 October 2013

island life: the ben and lisa way

View east of Fetoko Island
There is a little island, not far from the Old Harbour. And when I say little, I mean little. It’s tucked away between Mafana and Ofu Islands, and it’s a little haven, where you can let your hair down, play with the dogs and maybe even sleep in a treehouse. The “resort” owners are Ben and Lisa, expats (who were once cruisers) and who have put roots down in Tonga for the past 10 years. A genial couple, they have enough people skills between them to fill the tiny island with 200 Palangis and Tongans if they so wish. (And they did!) It’s a mini resort, but it’s also their home, and when you go ashore to say hi, it feels like home. 

More than once I turned to Rick and said, “This is what Quadra Island would be like if it were in the tropics, (and if it were much smaller).” (Quadra Island to us has always felt like another home because of some very special people and a very special island…) Mandala Resort as they call it, however humble and lovely it is, knows how to throw a party, but they also know how to live the island life, which as I see it, is all about savouring the moment. And even for these lovers of the sea, this place makes land-life look pretty damn good. I wish I’d taken more photos, but I was too busy soaking in the vibe… Here is a small look at Fotoko Island on two very different days… Thanks Ben and Lisa, for sharing your slice of paradise with us!

The main building (in set up mode for the Vava'u Regatta)

Wandering around the 3 acres

The treehouse

We helped out for a day, as they were readying the island for
a fabulous beach party

The night the island became magic

Dressed like a girl and loving it
All kinds of excitement

Some pretty fab people (in case you're wondering: it was a dress in
white party) Left to Right: Ben (co-owner), Bri and Rob (volunteers and friends)

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