By Angus Delaney
A lot of travel in Fiji is focused on relaxing by the beach in a hammock, but if you’re up for something a little more challenging, Mt Korobaba is perfect for you.
Located just on the outskirts of Lami, Mt Korobaba is a short but tough hike, which offers panoramic views of Suva, Lami and even Beqa Island. With a summit at 400m above sea level, it’s a steep climb – particularly towards the peak, which is the toughest part.
Starting behind near the cement factory, it generally takes 2.5 – 3 hours to make the trip up and down, but take breaks as required while ascending, as the descent is far easier. Definitely pack lots of water and some snacks, and it’s advisable to start early in the morning, as the sun is rising, to avoid the worst of the heat. Going the day after heavy rain also makes it harder, as the trail becomes muddy and slippery.
This being said, the hike is totally worth the challenges. Throughout the climb you’re surrounded by birdsong and rainforest, as the trail winds past small streams and fallen trees. Sunlight peers through the tree canopy and casts a warm glow on your surroundings.
Once you reach the summit, you’re rewarded one of the best views in this part of Viti Levu – a sweeping 360º that captures so much of the island’s beauty, the highlands to your north and west, ocean to the south and the city skyline of Suva to the east. Beqa and Yanuca islands are stand-out features and a cool breeze greets sweaty hikes at the top. Boulders make excellent seats to sit down and have some food while taking in the view.
The descent is much less tiring, but also takes time and care at the steeper parts. One unmissable part of the hike are the waterfalls and rockpools, which lay on a path just off the main track near the base of Korobaba. A stream runs across the path into two deep pools large enough for several people to sit in, and cascades into a small waterfall off the side of the mountain. It is a perfectly refreshing spot to rest after the hot and taxing hike, and you could plan to spend anywhere from 10 minutes to a couple hours hanging out by the water.
Mt Korobaba is the complete package, a half day activity that is challenging, relaxing and rewarding.