Most islands of Fiji were formed due to volcanic activities that triggered around 150 million years ago in the South Pacific Ocean. With around 332 islands, Fiji is viewed as a far-off and exotic getaway, especially for couples looking for honeymoon packages. You will be spoilt for choice with an array of islands, resorts and activities to choose from.
The best time to visit Fiji is during the 'Fijian winter' or 'dry season' that starts from May and lasts till October. The climate is pleasant to enjoy outdoor activities like water sports, hiking, sightseeing and much more.
Must-see places in Fiji
1. Nadi - Nadi is best known for its welcoming nature and warm culture. Nadi’s open-air markets are the best to pick-up local souvenirs. The ‘cannibal fork’ displayed at the stalls are a reminder of their glorious past. Do try some Indo-Fijian cuisine at Curry House; it is the local favourite. Visit the Sri Siva Subramaniya temple which is the largest Hindu temple in the entire Southern hemisphere.
2. Taveuni - This cigar shaped island is the 3rd largest island in Fiji and has a massive volcanic crater at a height of 800 meters. It is also known as ‘Fiji’s Garden of Eden’ and almost 80% of it is protected by Bouma National Heritage Park. The Tavoro Waterfalls cascade into a beautiful swimming pool. You will have to hike a very easy trail to get here. Do visit the Waitabu Marine Park that has crystal clear waters, white sands and a wonderful sea-life.
3. Levuka - It is Fiji’s first and only UNESCO World Heritage Site. The historical port town of Levuka was the erstwhile capital of Fiji. The town is set apart by its unique 19th century Pacific port settlements, flanked by mango and coconut trees and low-line buildings along the beach front.
4. Mamanuca islands - Take a day’s trip to the Mamanuca islands that are an archipelago of volcanic islands lying northwest of Vitu Levu. Hitch a helicopter ride from Nadi International Airport and get a panoramic view of these pristine islands. Did you know that Tom Hanks’ film ‘Cast Away’ was shot on Monuriki, one of the islets here?
5. Yasawa Island - An archipelago of 20 scintillating volcanic islands in Fiji’s Western Division
6. Fiji Museum - A museum located in country’s capital (Suva), this museum houses an indigenous collection of relics dating back 3,700 years; including artifacts like cannibal utensils!
7. Sigatoka Sand Dunes National Park – Located just 4 kms from Sigatoka main town is Fiji’s first ever National Park. You can hike the unstable dunes, learn about dune formations and much more.
Shopping in Fiji
Fiji is famous for its art and craft items that are made by the locals. You can buy them at a shop, local markets and private craftsmen. Famous artifacts are fine ‘masi’ (tapa cloth), cannibal fork, woven baskets, mats, purses, clay pots and much more. The cheapest places to buy souvenirs are the local markets where you’d have to flaunt some bargaining skills. In Nadi and Sigatoka, Jack’s Handicrafts is very famous for selling these handcrafted items.
Food in Fiji
The best way to experience any place is by tasting its local cuisine. Fiji is most known for its elaborate seafood options. Treat yourself with some local Fijian Cuisine like Kokoda and Fijian Lovo. Kokoda is a preparation made from fresh fish that is cooked for several hours. Fijian Lovo is an extravagant feast where the food is traditionally cooked in an underground oven. Since a number of Indians inhabit the area, Indo-Fijian cuisine is also in fashion. Indian delicacies like punjabi tandoori chicken and many more are cooked using fresh local produce like taro and tavioka.
Do try the Fijian Kava drink. Kava is a muddy looking drink that is made from the pulverised roots of kava plant, a plant from pepper family.
What to wear in Fiji
As mentioned earlier, Fiji has an average temperature of 25°C. So carrying a sunscreen will be necessary. It is best to wear comfortable, light cotton clothes to enjoy this tropical climate. Do buy the ‘Fijian Sulu’ at a local market and enjoy the carefree lifestyle of tropical Fiji. Sulu is a rectangular cloth worn like a sarong to enjoy the beautiful beaches of Fiji.
Activities to do in Fiji
You can indulge in a lot of activities in Fiji - from water sports, exploring caves, eco-tours, spear fishing, game fishing, helicopter rides and birding to golfing - there’s something for every kind of traveller! Activities like trekking and hiking are famous here because of Fiji’s heterogeneous topography. Yoga classes and spa treatments are also a part of their lifestyle.
Getting Around in Fiji
Getting around Fiji is relatively convenient and easy. You can use local buses, ferries and small trucks to go around places. The best way to explore the smaller villages is on foot. If you want a relaxed holiday, you can always go for air-conditioned express buses, rental vehicles, charter boats and small planes. You can even take helicopters to certain islands to enjoy a scenic view.
Fiji is one of the most welcoming countries in the world to visit. Popular for its secluded beaches, serene sunsets, quiet streets, exotic spas and warm hospitality; Fiji is a top honeymoon destination as well. Check out our Fiji package that gives you and our better half a horde of honeymoon freebies.
Photo courtesy Fiji Tourism (India)