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Tribewanted

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Over 300 islands form the South Pacific's most popular adventure escape, Fiji. There are coral reefs, lush jungles and jagged mountains blending to make it the perfect destination for holiday-makers.

Vorovoro is a tiny, palm-fringed island off the north coast of Vanua Levu. The spectacular eruption of 80 hectares surges out of the crystal South Pacific Ocean. It's the perfect place for a holiday, but one that is completely different from any other.

In April, 2006, two British entrepreneurs began Tribewanted, a global search to create the world's first online and offline tribal community. The aim of Tribewanted is to build a simple and sustainable village on Vorovoro Island and a buzzing online community. It has been described as a "voluntourism project". It took just five months to achieve 1000 members for the three-year venture, and thirteen "first-footers" landed on Vorovoro to take part in a historic ceremony as two tribes were united in paradise.

Chief Tui Mali and his family welcomed the new tribe to their home with a traditional ceremony and those there said it was amazing to see over 100 people link arms to celebrate the new partnership.

When you join the tribe, you choose when you visit and you can take part in the project online before and after your stay.

There are different levels of tribal membership:

  • Nomad — seven nights on the island and one year of tribal membership
  • Hunter — 14 nights stay on the island and two years membership
  • Warrior — 21 nights and membership until the end of the project in September 2009.

In February, 2007, the tribe voted for longer stays and you can now book up to 12 weeks stay. This can be arranged through the island booking system once you become a member.

You choose to do as much or as little as you please on the island and there is plenty to choose from. Build, sleep, swim, trek, dance, fish, snorkel, read, play, teach, sing, farm, blog, cook. The only thing you are asked is that you wash up your own plate! Not too difficult at all.

Off the island, members meet, blog, chat, debate and vote. So far, gatherings have happened on four continents.

Each month a new tribal chief is elected from the online community. Any tribe member can put themselves forward for the role and once voted in, the chief spends a free month on Vorovoro. He or she has to manage a development budget in partnership with the island team.

Location

Vorovoro Island in Fiji.

Cost

STA Travel has packages starting at $1414 per person. They include Pacific Blue flights to Nadi, transfers, seven nights on Vorovoro, all meals and tribe membership for one year.

Nomad membership is $386, Hunter is $807 and Warrior costs $1229.

Pacific Blue has daily flights to Nadi. Fares from;

  • Brisbane, $517
  • Sydney, $562
  • Melbourne, $677
  • Darwin, $743
  • Perth, $754

There are daily flights from Nadi to Labasa via Suva. The fare is $297 return.

Prices correct at August 16, 2007

For more information

STA Travel
Ph: 134 STA (or 134 782)
Website: www.statravel.com.au

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