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Teiki Mathieu Baillan surfing a self-made Alaia surfboard in Lances Left, Mentawaï, Indonesia. Photo by C. Naslain, 2009.

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 Fiji

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By Straight Shooter , 18-09-2003

Local Knowledge - I am a residential lot owner at Waidroka Bay. Much has been said regarding this resort in recent months. Their negative press is well deserved. In a very small nutshell, the scene has potential but it's locked in the grip of unenlightened people with no vision, and no concern for the environment they preside over. Originally hoping to succeed as a dive resort, they have since opted to focus on the surfing resources they were once oblivious to. Sadly, they do not cater well to any sport, as their inherent nature is decidely "American." They cater to their bottom line. Fair enough, but be forewarned. The surf can certainly get good, however it's fickle, as the swell window for local reefs is fairly small. When it breaks, it breaks hard, and is far from indo-perfect. Their boats probably are the best in Fiji, but sadly they are overcrowded. That's forced those of us invested there to be more aggressive. Don't take it personally. There's just no other option when we find 15 or more guys on a boat arrive when 6 of us are already there. Hopefully the resort will be bought in the future, and the new owner will take these issues into consideration. Until then, you might spend your money and your hard-earned holiday time elsewhere. Fiji's surfing industry in a state of flux right now. It may work itself out eventually. For now, it's suffering from a fair amount of greed on all fronts.

By skid , 05-09-2003

BOARD HIRE - Im am getting married at Plantation Island and staying for 7 nights and want to surf wilkies or namotu reefs on at least one of those days, but dont have room for a board to take with me. Is there any where u can hire boards for the day to surf these places. Any advise would be of great help.

By anonymous , 23-08-2003

Waidroka - I stayed at Waidroka a few days a while ago. Everything negative I've read on this site about Waidroka I found to be true. However, they do have the nicest boat I saw, and by nice, I don't mean a little bit nicer. Waidroka's boat is a lot nicer. I wouldn't feel safe in the other boats I saw at Frigates. I actually saw a guy bailing water in a wooden boat there.
However, that's about all I can say that's good about Waidroka. Ray junior said he wouldn't save the people from the other boat if they sunk. I believed him. Unless he didn't have something to gain, I believe he wouldn't of saved them.
The AZ boys really weren't interested in there guests or there employees well being. They only seemed to be interested in making money. They paid there Fijian workers something like a dollar a day and generally treated them poorly. The Ray junior also informed us that he really didn't need our money "He had more money than god" Generally, The AZ boys didn't seem to like surfers. The food wasn't that good, but it was expensive. Even though the boat was safe the surfing was expensive. Also, I think the resort is on the wetside of the island too because everything was moldy . Violent movies played night and day were we ate. Everything we wanted to get away from was there. I generally wasn't impressed with surfing Fiji, there aren't many spots and they are incosistent. But I really was impressed by Waidroka. I wish we would of saved money and stayed home

By LAU LOVER , 05-08-2003

ITS SOOO TRUE GUYS DO YRSELVES A FAVOUR - After reading all the comments on Waidroka madness and the redknecks that run it i can only say good on you guys as for Brandon Sanders the small minded and probably like minded yank who made his comments the redkneck twins are neither honest or stout and have benn quoted manny times as Hating Surfers the only reason they deal with you at all is because they have to to survive in the jungle there fast destroying i have been dealing with these goons for 8 years and there bad news indeed,they have raped the rain forest ,raped the locals (litterally)Hate fijians , Hate other land owners in the area and to top it all of have know idea about surfing or Hospitality or Food and Beverage they are only after your dollars and if you support them they can laugh at you bastards do surfing a favour and boycot these bogus bastards go to a surf camp thats for surfers and run by sombody who gives a rats about you.As we speak there is a big dollar Kiwi taking over Yanutha Island after paying of the Locals there and intends to make Frigates Pass another Taverua...Why does this keep happening guys????? Get Smart and search for something alot better.

By Will , 29-07-2003

Exploitation - HERE IS THE WHOLE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH ABOUT WAIDROKA BAY... IT IS AN UNBELIEVABLY BEAUTIFUL PLACE, THE RAINFOREST IS STRAIGHT OUT OF YOUR DREAMS, THE LOCAL FIJIANS HAVE HEARTS OF GOLD, AND THE WAVES, ALTHOUGH FICKLE, CAN GET REALLY GOOD ON THEIR DAY. HOWEVER, THE AREA, SAD AS IT MAY SOUND, IS BEING EXPLOITED AND THE SITUATION IS GETTING WORSE. THE AMERICAN OWNERS SERIOUSLY DO NOT CARE ABOUT ANYTHING OTHER THAN MAKING MONEY. THEY CLAIM TO BE EXCLUSIVE BUT ARE CONSTANTLY TRYING TO BRING CREW FROM OTHER PARTS TO THEIR BREAKS TO FURTHER CASH IN ON THE ALREADY EXPENSIVE BOAT TRIP PRICES. THEY HAVE NEVER SURFED AND HAVE NO IDEA ABOUT THE CONDITIONS. THEY HAVE CUT DOWN THE RAINFOREST TO GREATLY INCREASE THE NUMBER OF SURFERS WHO CAN STAY THERE AS WELL- THEY ARE BUILDING A HUGE NEW COMPLEX ON THE HILL OVERLOOKING THE RESORT. AS YOU CAN ONLY SURF ON HIGH TIDE AND THE SETUPS ARE SHORT AND INTENSE,THIS WILL GET UGLY- BE WARNED, TAKE THIS SERIOUSLY. NOBODY WOULD WANT TO PAY ALL THAT MONEY TO SURF PIPE WITH 30 GUYS FOR 3 HOURS. THE THING THAT REALLY MADE ME SICK THOUGH WAS THE WAY THEY TREAT THE LOCAL WORKERS. RAY SENIOR TREATS THE FEMALES LIKE FUCKING SEX SLAVES, GETTING THEM TO MASSAGE HIM ALL DAY AND OTHER DEGRADING TASKS, AND RAY JUNIOR, WHO IS BONING A LOCAL GIRL WHO WORKS AT THE RESORT, HIS BEHAVIOUR IS SHOCKING, HE TREATS THIS CHICK LIKE FUCKING SHITE. I HAVE HAD SOME GREAT TIMES AT WAIDROKA, BUT I WON'T BE BACK. IF BY SOME MIRACLE IT CHANGES OWNERSHIP, ESPECIALLY TO A FIJIAN- THAT IS THE ONLY WAY I COULD EVER GO BACK.

By Dirty Yank Ceptic Tank ...and Proud! , 16-07-2003

Cepos revenge! - Why don't all you Ausholes eat a dick. You guys destroyed Bali, Maldives and the south pacific with your crowds and piss.. I am sure 3/4 of you guys can't surf worth a damn anyway...cry cry cry...on your big candy ass pillows you dirty khunts......I am sure Frigates fires, you guys were probably too scared to go deep...Ya, I am a dirty yank...but I am stoked on Fiji and ready to drop some buckets on your sour faces when I see you on the shoulder...You guys are no better then a group of shoulder hopping Brazilians...so vite al inferno ...hijos de putas...

By so shut the fuck up and surf it!!! , 16-07-2003

Waidroka can get fun - For all of you who say mean things here about the Arizona resort owners at Waidroka and the surf they take you too, you folks sounds to me like spoiled little pussies. You have the opportunity to travle halfway around teh world to surf in Fiji, and these stout Arizona men take you out on their boat, cook food for you and everything, and you complain? Then why the fuck did you book yourself at the resort? If you can't handle honest and up-front Americans running a new enterprise, perhaps you should stay with people who are deceptively sweet and polite. Would you rather have honesty and killer surf, or 5-star service in at some westerner-patronizing Third World 'eco-lodge'???

By Enforcer , 16-07-2003

You surfers are assholes!!! - This place sounds like all hell..the waves suck, the rednecks suck and everyone in the water sucks....Surfing sucks...we need fewer kooks in the water..all you blue crush watching, fun board riding, back paddling, stink bug stance, pillow biting wanna be surfing,blumpkin sucking no barrel riding ass monkeys, should go to hell. Stay home and out of the water..try inline skating ..its more up your alley...or shall I say, ass!!!

By PATTO , 15-07-2003

Close Escape - Shit! This place sounds like Bali is now. Thank you for warning me of this tragic sequence of events. I had planned to spend my honeymoon in FIJI but fuck you Yankee! If you don't need my money, you certainly won't be getting any. I for one will heed the advice of the poor souls who have been totally ripped off by the bloodsuckers who have stolen these waves. Waves should be free! TOO LATE FOR FIJI. LET US SHED A TEAR FOR FIJI.

By Going Elsewhere , 14-07-2003

as bad as it gets - the situation at waidroka is bad and getting worse. all the shit you're reading about the resort is sadly very true. you've got a family of arizona americans ruining the magic of a rainforest retreat. the area is drop-dead gorgeous. the service an absolute crime.

if you can stand to see the trees hacked away, the mud slide, and violent movie after violent movie play night and day in the only common area, then this place might be for you.

to say the resort doesn't cater to guests very well is an understatement. to quote ray senior, "i make more goddamn money on my investments in the states than i do off this resort. if you don't like the way things are done around here you can go to hell. we don't need your money." i found this comment to be in stark contrast to the 'in-your-pocket' reality of the place. if they could charge you for the air you breathe you'd suffocate by the end of day one.

it's this mindset that has it all fucked up. indeed, they continue to build more accomodation (right next to the huge generator i must add. who gets lucky enough to listen to that all night?). they're also acquiring a new boat to carry more surfers. to them, it's all paying heads for rides to the reef. they don't care what you find when you get there either. the local lineups are small, compact and fickle. plug 15 guys at once into that equation and figure out how many waves you're likely to get. and don't forget to add guests from every other resort on the coral coast. it appears they actively court them as well, adding to that 'exclusivity' they tout as a selling point.

to top it off, waidroka bay resort is set amid hundreds of private residences with access to the same waves. homes of surfers the world over who have staked their claim to the area's handful of breaks. at any given time of the year, 20 or more guys that have the place well sorted out could potentially come along to sit deeper than you on waves you're trying desperately not to get hurt by.

so, like the other guys said. give this place a pass and spend your holiday and your dollars where your likely to find a pay off. waidroka is a total rip-off.

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