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Sovi Basin

Date of Submission: 26/10/1999
Criteria: (iii)(iv)(v)
Category: Cultural
Submitted by:
Department of Environment
Coordinates: Naitasiri Province - South Central Sector of Fiji's main island of Viti Levu
Ref.: 1374

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The Sovi Basin, Waimaro, is Fiji's most important land ecosystem in terms of its biological and landscape heritage. The 19600 hectare Basin is sited in the Naitasiri Province. Sovi Basin has a number of special natural features. The distinctive bowl shape of the Basin with its encircling volcanic peaks create a landform unique in both Fiji and in the island Pacific. Its floor is composed of hard granite rock which has slowly eroded over time to form low rolling hills, drained by crystal clear rivers and streams. The entire landform is covered with undisturbed tropical lowland forest. The Sovi Basin is the largest, most diverse and most scenically outstanding of Fiji's natural forest. If it were to be protected it would be the "jewel in the crown" of Fiji's protected areas system, functioning as the main storehouse of Fiji's land-based biodiversity. The spectacular natural and cultural features of the Sovi Basin together build a strong imperative for ecoturism development. International promotion of the wilderness and cultural features of the Sovi Basin would form the lynch pin of a new heritage focus to Fiji's tourism industry.