Blue. Green. Red.
Colours of New caledonia.
Blue, the pristine water of the lagoon. Home to myriad of fish, shark, turtle, ray and many other living species.
Green the lush vegetation. Sculptural banians, mangrove trees and tropical plants.
Red, the colour of the soil and specially omnipresent in the great South.
Invited by friends for a cruise in the great lagoon of New Caledonia, Paprika and I have the opportunity to discover this French territory.
All excited, we start our journey on the plane with a touch of Kiwi humour and a couple of hours flight later, a splendid aerial view of the barrier reef greets us.
As soon as we step on the ground, we get rid of our jackets, happy to win 10°C and be in tee-shirt.
The following days, a road trip from West to East going through North, with days stops in between allows us to appreciate the variety of landscapes and traditional villages from the mainland.
The second part and no doubt the best one of our journey is in company of our friends on board of a catamaran.
First the apprehension -being subject to seasickness, the perspective of spending four days on a boat is like a challenge for me- but I quickly get used to the vessel and enjoy every moment.
The relaxing feeling standing on the deck and being surrounded by all that blue with the light breeze. Catch sight of dugong and turtle. Paprika diving for the first time. Snorkeling amongst small, big, flat, dotted or stripped but always colourful coral fishes. Gaze at the milky way at night and being overwhelmed by all the countless stars. Be lulled by the rolling boat when lay down on the berth. Eat barbecue and good meals on the boat. And share all that good time with friends…
Back to the mainland.
For the remaining days, we tour the great South and visit the city of Nouméa. The winding road in the South leads us to the ex penal colony, now historic village of Prony and to the Yaté river and lake.
In the city, we conclude our stay with the main cultural attractions: the iconic J.M Tjibaou cultural centre and the museum of New Caledonia with its interesting collection of Kanak and Melanesian art.
And it’s already time to fly back and bring with us all the good souvenir of that short, but lovely holiday under the sun…