Tales of Kokomo | January 2021



2021 is off to a good start, with Scream the manta putting on a show for marine biologists, Cliona O’Flaherty and Vee Taubera, just a few days into the year. We are looking forward to another incredible manta season this year, following 1,024 manta sightings in 2020. Plan your visit between May and October for the best chance to snorkel with these friendly giants.


While Fiji’s borders remain closed to international travel, we were thrilled that Santa was able to join us in Fiji over the festive season. With our guests celebrating at home with their families, our staff spent Christmas Day on the neighboring island of Dravuni. We celebrated with local children, ensuring everyone had something special to open from Santa.

On Saturday, 10th October, Fiji celebrated its 50th year as an independent nation. To celebrate the occasion, our team came together for an afternoon of festivities, including a traditional salusalu ceremony, a flag raising and some friendly competition (tug of war).

We echo the comments of Fiji’s Prime Minister, the Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama who said,

“Nothing can take away our undying optimism as we look ahead, knowing that we are strong, that we are resilient, and that the best is yet to come.”

Continuing our commitment to our local community, Kokomo recently donated a range of computer equipment to Naqara District School. The school’s 38 students and 4 teachers will benefit from access to these computers throughout the coming school year.


What is your fondest Kokomo memory?

My fondest memories are those I have created for others! I have had the pleasure to meet many great people on Kokomo. I have photographed families, couples and so many children. Sometimes when guests approach me, they are concerned about being too shy or never being in front of a camera. I make them feel comfortable, so they can enjoy the experience, have some fun and laugh through our sessions. The best moments for me, are when the guests receive their images and message me to thank me for creating those beautiful memories for them. It makes my heart happy.


Meet Maria Louw, the woman behind the lens, Kokomo’s resident photographer.

What is the best thing about living on Kokomo?

I have been living on remote islands for more than 15 years and on Kokomo for two and a half years. When our family (myself, my husband Jacques and my two boys Ethan and Noah) arrived in Fiji, 7 years ago, we were amazed by the warm and genuine hospitality of the Fijians. Their love for children goes beyond words and we knew instantly that we were in the right place. Everyone on Kokomo is part of one big happy family.

What do you love about working on the island?

As a passionate photographer I love to create and am always trying to create something knew. Becoming a mother made me even more aware of precious little details and the importance of capturing special moments and expressions that will be remembered forever. Kokomo fills me with inspiration. Every sunrise, every sunset, the palm trees, the turquoise water…. I am so fortunate to be able to work in this very special place.

Most used word/phrase on island?

Bula Vinaka without a doubt.


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