Bula! Welcome to the Fiji Islands
The wonderful, tropical islands of Fiji have many white beaches, turquoise water, and a culture of their own. In the old days called the “Cannibal Islands” is Fiji today one of the more modern Melanesian countries. The people of Fiji are some of the friendliest people on the planet, with a legendary hospitality which is for most visitors to the Islands the most memorable.
The Fiji Islands are a holiday destination, full of activities, adventures, scuba diving, snorkeling and natural beauty with a warm climate throughout the year, clear and warm oceans teeming with fish and coral, mountains, jungle, islands, beaches…
Fiji caters for the backpacking individual traveler with lots of budget accommodations to the rich and famous with luxury resorts that, in combination with the natural beauty of Fiji, are literally are out of this world.
There are over 322 islands and about 500 islets in Fiji, so it can be difficult do decide where to go and what you should do first. Here are some of the best places to visit on the Fiji islands.
The largest of the Fiji Islands, it’s the hub of the entire archipelago. Visitors to Fiji will arrive at Nadi International Airport. Nearby towns Nadi and Lautoka are the departing points to the Mamanuca or the Yasawa Islands.
Along the south coast of the main island is the famous Coral Coast with plenty resorts located directly on the beach easily accessible from Nadi via the Queen’s highway. The beauty of the Coral Coast is captivating with its sugar cane plantations, pineapple plantations, lush gardens and fantastic views of the ocean.
Further along the south coast of Viti Levu is Pacific Harbour the “Adventure Capital of Fiji”. It’s the gateway to Beqa Lagoon, known for world class dive sites with coral and wreck dives, as well as one of the world’s best shark feeding dives. There are adventure tours into the jungle, river rafting, zip lining, game fishing, shops and restaurants… The resorts here are the perfect base for an active or a relaxing holiday.
On the southeast of Viti Levu is Fiji’s Capital Suva. It’s a modern, bustling and multicultural city with shopping malls and markets, restaurants, entertainment, cultural activities surrounded by parks, gardens, museums, and a vibrant nightlife.
Just of the coast of Nadi is a group of 20 small beautiful islands surrounded by white sandy beaches, turquoise sea’s and reefs, that make your stay an unforgettable experience. These isles were used to film the movie Castaway with Tom Hanks. They are very popular with tourists, as they can easily and quickly be reached from Nadi. Perfect for beachcombing, diving, snorkeling kayaking, paragliding, windsurfing… Whether you’re looking for adventure, party or just relaxing, you have the freedom to choose. The most famous are the Beachcomber, Mana, Tokoriki and Malolo.
The Yasawa Islands are located off the northwest coast of Viti Levu. It’s a group of about 20 islands that fulfill the picturesque postcard south seas cliche. Gentle hilly landscapes, secluded palm tree fringed bays with white sandy beaches to relax and dream. The turquoise crystal clear water of the lagoon’s invites to swim and snorkel.
The budget resorts on most of the Yasawas Islands attract a lot of backpackers and travelers seeking beaches and stunning nature without spending big dollars. There is a well-organized infrastructure of passenger ferries and island supply boats that allow swift daily transport in and out of the islands.
There are also some very up-market resorts here, the most famous one beeing Turtle Islands Resort where the movie “The Blue Lagoon” was filmed.
Ovalau Island is a lush tropical volcanic island of about 100 square kilometers surrounded by large coral reefs. It is the main island of the Lomaiviti Group which is made up of the islands of Namena, Makogai, Koro, Wakaya, Batiki, Nairai, Gau and Ovalau. The islands are the peaks of deep-sea volcanoes that became extinct millions of years ago.
Levuka town on Ovalau was the first capital of Fiji and is the countries only UNESCO World Heritage Site for its value as a Historical Port Town. Still, Levuka and Ovalau are off the main tourist track, but it’s a destination to experience the real Fiji.
Vanua Levu is Fiji’s second largest island. In the past known as the Sandalwood island and Fiji’s center for copra production. It has still a lot of untouched lush tropical forests covering the hilly mountains. The coast along the north shore is one of the most unexplored and undiscovered areas of Fiji with only the occasional Fijian village set on its beaches. Most infrastructure is concentrated around Vanua Levu’s two towns.
Labasa in the north is mainly an Indian community with thriving business centered around the sugar industry. Not really a very picturesque place to visit.
The Opposite is Savusavu town, known as the “Hidden Paradise of Fiji”. It is located on the south coast of Vanua Levu in one of the South Pacifics most beautiful bays. There are hot springs scattered around the city limits that are used by locals for cooking and hot water.
The town has a range of accommodation, activities, and adventures. Around Savusavu is a number of resorts the most famous one the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort just at the southeast of Savusavu peninsula.
The fourth largest island Taveuni, of Fiji is known as the Garden Island. Covered by lush mountains and tropical nature with a wealth of endemic plants and animals. Nature lovers will find lots to do: hiking, birdwatching, visit Bouma National Heritage Park, find the Tagimaucia flower one of the rarest and largest flowering plants in the world. The chiefly village of Somosomo is known for the international Dateline cutting through. There are several dive resorts on Taveuni which offer world class diving on colorful soft coral reefs. The most famous ones are the Great White Wall and the Rainbow Reef.
Kadavu is a remote island south of Viti Levu, regular ferries, and air transport link it to the main island. The island is popular among watersports and eco-adventurers. Some of the resorts grow and use organic produce and try to be as environmentally friendly as possible by using solar and wind for power generation. Most of the island is still undeveloped with roads only found around Vunisea, the main village on Kadavu. Kadavu is a rugged hilly island with secluded bays and long beaches. Epic coral reefs surround Kadavu, the most famous beeing the Great Astrolabe Reef, one of the world’s largest barrier reefs. Kadavu dive sites are known for big fish diving and famous “Manta Magic”, a site with regular Manta ray sightings. Several dive resorts are located all around the island.
If you really want to get away from all the tourism in Fiji, the Lau Group is the place. This is one of the last areas that is free from tourism. There are boat services and flights to the islands, but they are few in number. The islands traditional villages can only be visited by following Fijian protocol, and there is a lot of virgin jungle on the island. These islands are great for those looking to explore and enjoy south pacific nature.
The wonderful, tropical islands of Fiji is a popular vacation spot. Fiji’s islands are great for backpacking, a getaway, or just a relaxing time at a resort. Fiji is very welcoming to all travelers.