THE villagers of Navolau 2 in Rakiraki marked the 50th anniversary of its relocation on Friday.
The village shifted from Navolau Village 1 in 1962 to its current location near the Kings highway.
And to remember the decision of village elders to move Navolau Village from its former seaside location 50 years ago, the villagers unveiled a special plaque yesterday.
The day was filled with song and laughter and a sweet sadness for the elders who had passed on.
70-year-old Ilaitia Wacegucegu, one of the last remaining elders who witnessed the move, said the day was special to all of the Navolau villagers because it marked a new beginning for them.
As one of those that witnessed the changes the village went through, Mr Wacegucegu said the changes had been positive despite its difficult origins.
"The government suggested we move because our village would get flooded every time there was heavy rain," he said.
"Life at Navolau Village 1 was very difficult at the time and so our elders made the decision to move us here." Mr Wacegucegu, who was 20 at the time of shift, said life at Navolau Village 2 also posed challenges.
"All of our plantation and fishing area was back at Navolau Village 1 and a lot of us had to travel back to the village to get food for their families.
"We did this for the first couple of months during our stay and that was very hard for us."
Mr Wacegucegu also remembered how the new village was struck with typhoid during its first few years.
"The river that ran beside the new village was contaminated and most of the villagers fell sick," he said.
"Fortunately, none of them died but it gave us a reason to find ways to improve our water system," said Mr Wacegucegu.