November 4-18, 2018
What a two weeks trip we just had! This time on board MV Bilikiki we had a group of friends from Sun Valley and Seattle in the USA and we had tons of fun! The trip was a bit different compared with our normal diving trips since it was a little longer, there was lots of snorkelers and we only did three dives/snorkels a day. We got to visit some new areas and enjoyed doing a lot of different activities on the land too.
We started out in the Russell Islands and Marovo Lagoon, everyone loved the diving, snorkelling and veggie markets! The coral was amazing for snorkelling and we also saw rays, sharks, pygmy sea horses and ghost pipefish while diving. The uniquely sheer and beautiful Rapichana Cut was a big hit with everyone.
We then went onto the beautiful Tetepare, a protected area west of Marovo Lagoon. There was some great snorkelling and diving and we all enjoyed learning about the island on a couple of hikes into the untouched rain forest. We also visited the Arnavon Islands, another protected area and amazing place to spend a couple of days. The marine life was great and we saw manta and mobula rays, marbled stingrays, grey reef sharks, barracudas, bumphead parrotfish and even a leopard shark! During our surface time we went onto the white sand beaches and were lucky enough to see baby hawksbill turtles hatching, an unbelievable experience for all of us!
Back in Marovo we went to some villages and everyone was very happy to discover the beautiful carved art. During our trip to Peava we were treated to a private tour, where one of our guests even became a volleyball referee for the afternoon! Back to the diving (and snorkelling and kayaking) and Kicha and Mbulo were two of our favourites.
On our way back we had a very special event at Mary Island: Terri and Frank's wedding! What an amazing afternoon and night we had, and what an incredible job our crew did decorating the Bilikiki for that special occasion. Thank you guys for choosing the Bilikiki for such an important moment in your lives!
On our return to the Russells, we went on an expedition to see salt water crocodiles and we luckily spotted one! We also dove at Karumolun's spectacular point and coral gardens. We then visited the village and saw some traditional dancing and singing while enjoying fresh coconuts. Our guests enjoyed it very much and were very happy to see how kind and amazing Solomon Islanders are! And for the last days of the trip we enjoyed the Florida Islands and the Boneghi wrecks off the coast of Guadalcanal where we took in some WW2 history and more great marine life.
The macro life we saw on the trip was, as usual, spectacular and included convict blennies, orang-utan crabs, disco clams, ribbon eels, signal gobies, amazing nudibranches, sea moths, sea horses, ornate ghost pipes fish, peacock and spearing mantis shrimps, cuttlefish, demon stingers, scorpion leaf fish and crocodile fish!!!
And to finish a wonderful trip we had a very funny costume party where all our guests showed how fun it can be to just dress up with improvised outfits! It was a great trip indeed and thank you very much to everyone for being such a lovely, fun loving crowd! We hope to see you back soon!
And finally, thanks to our amazing crew for all their hard work and their effort to make this trip an unforgettable one!
Pato and Fernando