ARTIFICIAL ISLAND VILLAGE STAY - BERLIN AND LISMORE, LAU LAGOON

(Pictures of Lau Lagoon village stay)lau_-_thumb_2.jpg
( please note, this place is currently closed for rebuilding)
For a unique cultural experience, as well as supporting sustainable tourism, how about visiting the artificial islands of North Malaita? The people of the Lau Lagoon in Malaita have been building their own islands out of coral rock for hundreds of years.

One of these islands is Berlin, and it has a guest island, Lismore beside it. Berlin Island is the home of Safo (who is the mother of 11 adult children), her youngest son, Mark Allardice, her daughter-in-law Fafi, and three grandchildren. They have built a guest house on its own small island, Lismore, in traditional leaf, with a verandah right over the sea.

Mark, who lives on Lismore island, welcomes paying guests, who live with his family the way they have lived for centuries. He can also tell you about how the islands are built because he constructed this one!
Mark can also take you to the mainland, where the family have their garden and there are walking tracks, and numerous villages to visit, or out beyond the reef for surfing. He can also arrange demonstrations of traditional shell money manufacture and dance performances.

You can reach the Lau Lagoon by inter-island ferry ("ship") from Honiara to Sulufou. It is an overnight trip - don't miss your first sunrise over the lagoon. When you get there, ask for Mark Allardice. For more information, contact Helen Newton at hnewton@ozemail.com.au.

Note: the information on this village originally came from the following web pages: http://www.geocities.com/hellennewt/Lau and http://www.geocities.com/hellennewt/ The site designer, Helen Newton has confirmed that the information is still up-to-date (early 2007).
(Note from Helen: June 2010) The geocities sites no longer exist, unfortunately. However, transport to this part of Malaita is improving, and the north road, which leads to Fouia,oposite Sulufou, and very close to Lismore Island, is now better than it has ever been, with trucks practically every day from Auki.
There are also daily fast boats (especialy Discovery 360) between Honiara and Auki.
In 2012 the island was closed so the house could be rebuilt. I will be back in Solomon Islands in October 2013, and will post an update when I return.

See also information from Visit Solomons on the artificial island village stay at Busu Cultural Village. Busu appears to be in the Langa Langa Lagoon, not Lau Lagoon.