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Kula Eco Park
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Kula Eco Park
  Viti Levu Travel Tip

Text and photos used with permission from Kula Eco Park

logoecopark.jpg Imagine, if you will, a cool green forest nestled in a small valley. A stream wanders between the trees, making its way through the valley to the Pacific Ocean. Trees bearing strange fruits, nuts and blossoms have names like Dawa, Ivi, Vutu and Vesi and tower above the valley floor filtering the sun. The banks of the stream are dotted with brightly colored flowers and shrubs. As you wander over the many bridges spanning the sparkling ribbon of water, you're greeted by the call of a barking pigeon, the shrill of honey eaters and the constant, pulsing concert of unseen forest dwellers. This is the South Pacific. This is the wild side of Fiji and you've arrived at Kula Eco Park.

fijimap.jpg Literally hundreds of islands make up the Fiji Group although fewer than 325 are considered large enough for habitation and only 106 actually have people living on them. The largest of these is Viti Levu.

Kula Eco Park is set in the southern Coral Coast area of Viti Levu. The park nestles in a valley of coastal forest less than 1,000 meters from the ocean. Nearby is the river town of Sigatoka (pronounced Sing-a-toe-ka). Queen's Highway runs past the park's entrance on its way between the international airport of Nadi (pronounced Nan-dee) and the capital city of Suva,

redbirdecopark.jpg A "bird park" had been established on the site in the late '80's and displayed typical aviculture species. It soon failed and the owner abandoned Fiji. By 1996 the park was in shocking condition with most of the birds either dead or dying from poor nutrition and care. The property was taken over by Kula Eco Park Management in January of 1997 and immediate action was taken to save the remaining inhabitants.

Today the park is the environmental showplace of the South Pacific. Kula Eco Park works in cooperation with The National Trust for Fiji, The Endangered Species Recovery Council of San Diego, The Parks Board of New South Wales, Australia, is an Honorary Member of The Australasian Regional Association of Zoological Parks & Aquaria and was recently presented the "Excellence in Tourism" award for attractions in Fiji.

Kula Eco Park is dedicated to the conservation of Fiji's indigenous flora and fauna and the environmental education of Fiji's children. The park is open to the public everyday and is operationally funded through gate receipts (35%) and private contributions (65%).

There is nothing more satisfying at the end of the day than watching the faces of the children light-up as they are handed their personalized Certificate of Achievement.

Our classes are free to any child in Fiji. Schools book groups of 20 or so students to spend a day with us exploring the environment and learning how everything fits together. The day begins with an introduction to the ecosystem and goes on to role-playing sessions exploring how water, trees, animals, etc. are interconnected into one giant environmental engine. Pollution, habitat damage and urbanization are all discussed through hands-on sessions that have the children totally enthralled. Hands fly in the air during the question & answer segments as these newly appointed Environmental Ambassadors eagerly compete with each other.

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