Colo-i-Suva Forest Park

FJ

If you are wondering where to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and find the opportunity to dip into naturally fresh and cool waters to beat the intense heat, think no more than the Colo-i-Suva Forest Park, just about 15-minute drive from Suva’s central business district.  The Park is in a Forest Reserve managed by the Ministry of Forestry.

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About Colo-i-Suva Forest Park

Established in 1952, the Forest Park is a 4.97 square kilometre sanctuary of lush rainforest filled with tropical plants and a songful bird life. The walking trails navigate clear natural pools and gorgeous views. Sitting at an elevation of 56 metres, it’s a cool and peaceful haven off Suva’s Princes Road.

The natural pools are filled when the Waisiliva Creek flows through the Park over water-worn rocks, as it makes its way down to the Waimanu River. There are numerous swimming holes and waterfalls along the Creeks, as it flows through the Colo-i-Suva Forest Park and Reserve.

Colo-I-Suva Forest Park Bird Sightings


Head and plumage of the Pacific Black Duck in Fiji

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Colo-i-Suva Forest Park and Reserve

The Colo-i-Suva Forest Park is home to a plethora of flora and fauna, sites of archaeological and historic interest, and ecological systems such as the existence of headwaters to important water bodies in Nausori and Nasinu areas. There are several walking tracks to encourage exploration of the Park and visitors are requested to keep to the tracks so as to minimise their impacts in the forest.

Mahogany trees were planted after a period of aggressive logging in the 1940s and ‘50s to stabilise the topsoil without impinging on the indigenous vegetation. The lush prolific trees within the Forest Park are vital for purifying and filtering air and water, preventing soil erosion, which also helps in ameliorating the impacts of Climate Change.

Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy


Prince Harry a Christmas card of the Dakua tree in 2019.
Prince Harry a Christmas card of the Dakua tree in 2019

The Park gained international recognition when it was registered under the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy (QCC) by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II during the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting held in Malta in 2015.

The initiative was accomplished as a symbol of Fiji’s united stance with 53 other Commonwealth countries who have a unique opportunity to save one of the world’s most important habitats – our forests. Her Majesty the Queen stated that she was moved by the collective initiative of Commonwealth countries wanting to harness their collective expertise and resources to protect the world’s forests.

Her Majesty added that this and other initiatives are practical demonstration of the power of the Commonwealth working as a group to effect real change for generations to come.

The President His Excellency Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konrote received Fiji’s QCC certificate of membership when he paid a courtesy call on Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace in October 2016. Her Majesty personally thanked Fiji for joining the QCC and helping conserve forests and trees to minimise the impacts of climate change.

In October 2018 during the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s visit to Fiji, Prince Harry visited Colo-i-Suva and planted a Fijian Kauri tree known locally as Dakua Makadre, which the Ministry maintains to this day. The Ministry sent Prince Harry a Christmas card of the Dakua tree in 2019 and aims to make this a tradition to maintain the link between the Prince, the QCC and Colo-iSuva.

YouTube: Colo-i-Suva Forest Park


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