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The dunes are clearly visible from the main highway just outside Sigatoka.

Near where the Sigatoka River meets the sea on South-Eastern Viti Levu stretches an expanse of barren wind-blown sand that has been the subject of myth and superstition for centuries.

The dunes are clearly visible from the main highway just outside Sigatoka.

All you need to do is park the car at the foot of the dunes and a short, steep ascent up the sands is rewarded with a panoramic view of rolling surf, the mouth of Sigatoka River and a desert-like vista of breathtaking beauty.

The Sigatoka sand dunes are constantly being reformed by wind and tide on the side nearest the sea and have revealed archaeological treasures that have done so much to establish Fiji's earliest human history.

The dunes are the product of fluvial erosion in the coastal hinterland and coastal beach forming process. Eroded rock material from the Sigatoka River's catchment is transported downstream to the river's mouth where a sand bar has developed.
Wave action (long-shore drift) then transports the sand ashore. Strong on-shore winds then further transport the sand in-land, piling it up in the form of dunes. Dunal vegetation reduces Western wind velocity and acts as a sand trap, thereby effectively stabilising and building up the dunes at the same time.

The sand dunes extend from the mouth of the Sigatoka River for a distance of close to five kilometres. The width of this complex system of dunes and inter-dunal hollows (swales) varies from around 200m in the east to 0.8 km in the west

Their average height is 20m but at their high point in the Western Section, they reach in excess of 50 meters. Dunes composed largely of alluvial sands, overlay details and beach deposits.

Their average height is 20m but at their high point in the Western Section, they reach in excess of 50 meters. Dunes composed largely of alluvial sands, overlay details and beach deposits.

For almost half of their total area of approximately 240 hectares dunes are unstable.

Occasionally, as the huge sand dunes shifted with the wind, shards of pottery and human bones were uncovered.

Even today, as the dunes continue their endless movement, new discoveries are being made.

For almost half of their total area of approximately 240 hectares dunes are unstable. Occasionally, as the huge sand dunes shifted with the wind, shards of pottery and human bones were uncovered. Even today, as the dunes continue their endless movement, new discoveries are being made. The mystery of this dune-forming process has been occurring for the last 3500 years.

In those times, the coastal strip was tropical forest with...

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