Fiji has topped my bucket record for so long as I can keep in mind. White sand seashores. Swaying palms. Pumping surf. Reefs wealthy in biodiversity. It’s a watersports- and ocean-lover’s paradise.
I first visited Fiji in 2020, on the cusp of the COVID pandemic — my journey ended abruptly when the island nation had its first case of the virus. I’ve been itching to return ever since and when Fiji reopened its borders, I knew it was time to plan a visit.
In Could 2022, my boyfriend and I boarded a aircraft for a 2-week journey in paradise. We spent the primary few days browsing after which boarded a cruise ship the place we spent every week island-hopping.
Our closing days have been spent on Fiji’s mainland, immersing ourselves within the tradition and doing a few enjoyable day journeys. It was a visit I will likely be speaking about for years to come back.
An Adventurer’s Information to Fiji
Attending to Fiji is fairly simple. You fly into Fiji’s worldwide airport in Nadi and from there, there are a few totally different choices to get to your closing vacation spot.
For those who’re staying on the mainland, a cab or shuttle is your greatest wager. For those who’re heading to the Mamanuca or Yasawa Islands, essentially the most reasonably priced possibility is to hop on the ferry from Port Denarau. Some resorts provide their very own transportation, so get in contact forward of time to finalize your plan.
Another choice is to get to your resort through helicopter, which is an expertise in itself. For those who’re heading to Vanua Levu, you’ll must hop on a puddle hopper to Savusavu and take floor transportation from there.
The place to Go to
Viti Levu, Fiji’s Mainland
When visiting Fiji, most individuals spend an evening or two on the mainland earlier than heading to the outer islands. Motels on the mainland are a superb stopping level earlier than venturing to your subsequent vacation spot or a enjoyable spot to publish up for a number of days to get pleasure from some cultural experiences and excursions.
If you wish to keep someplace near the airport, Nadi has quite a lot of choices. Port Denarau gave the impression to be the most well-liked spot amongst vacationers: it’s residence to a lot of chain lodges, retailers, eating places, and a free shuttle.
We stayed on the Sheraton and whereas it was a pleasant place to remain for an evening, I used to be glad I wasn’t staying for the majority of my journey. One other widespread mainland vacation spot is the Coral Coast — I spent an evening there on a earlier journey to Fiji, and it was positively a enjoyable spot to spend a number of nights.
The Yasawa & Mamanuca Islands
Situated to the west of Nadi, the Mamanuca Islands include about 20 islands and are an amazing place to publish up should you’re trying to do some snorkeling, browsing, or diving.
Situated somewhat additional north are the Yasawa Islands, which include 20 volcanic islands and are a number of the most gorgeous islands and reefs I’ve ever laid eyes on. Among the many two island chains, there are numerous resorts and Airbnbs to select from, starting from finances to luxurious.
We spent our first 4 days on the Funky Fish Resort on Malolo Island, which was as funky because the identify suggests — it was an amazing spot for accessing the native surf breaks. Over the course of our journey, we had the possibility to go to a lot of different islands.
If in case you have the choice, I’d extremely advocate splitting your time between Mamanucas and Yasawas, and doing as a lot island hopping as potential so you may expertise somewhat little bit of all the pieces.
Vanua Levu is Fiji’s second-largest island and is far quieter than Viti Levu, making it an amazing place to go to should you’re trying to really calm down and unwind. Labasa and Savusavu are the most well-liked locations to remain, however you may at all times discover one thing within the extra distant corners of the island should you’re keen to do some digging.
Sadly, I didn’t make it to Vanua Levu on our journey, however I did quite a lot of analysis on it when planning our journey.
Mainland Excursions in Fiji
Captain Prepare dinner Cruises
We have been fortunate sufficient to do a weeklong island-hopping cruise with Captain Prepare dinner and it was an unbelievable week with a number of the greatest snorkeling of my life. For those who’re not in a position to do the weeklong cruise, in addition they provide day journeys to Tivua Island (extremely advocate) and sundown dinner cruises.
Be taught Extra at Captain Prepare dinner Cruises
Nothing will get the adrenaline pumping like racing via the forest surrounded by breathtaking views. Throughout our time in Port Denarau, we did the Zipline Nadi tour and had an amazing expertise.
The tour consists of 16 zips, complimentary transfers, and lunch and refreshments. The views have been unbelievable, and it was a enjoyable method to spend a day.
Be taught Extra at Zip Fiji
Rivers Fiji River Rafting
This tour was on the high of my record however sadly, we weren’t in a position to swing it on this journey. The journey navigates the Higher Navua River and consists of rapids, waterfalls, hidden grottoes, and a lush rainforest, making for a memorable day journey.
Be taught Extra at Rivers Fiji
Cloud 9 is epic — it’s a floating bar in the midst of the ocean. From the mainland or a lot of the Mamanuca Islands, you may simply do a day journey out to Cloud 9 the place you may sip on drinks, get pleasure from home made pizza, swim into the water, and snorkel.
We totally loved our afternoon at Cloud 9 and would positively return.
Be taught Extra at Cloud 9
Watersports in Fiji
I reside in Hawaii and have been to the Nice Barrier Reef and the Belize Barrier — and nonetheless, Fiji is likely one of the most spectacular locations I’ve ever been snorkeling or diving.
The reefs are colourful and wholesome, and there’s a big selection of marine life. We went to about 10 totally different snorkeling websites alongside the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands and did one dive within the Yasawas — and have been blown away.
Favourite sightings included clown fish, black tip reef sharks, noticed eagle rays, sea stars, jellies, and onerous and smooth corals.
Fiji is residence to a number of the greatest browsing on the earth. Heat water, vibrant reefs, and ideal barrels — odds are you’ll by no means need to go away.
Cloudbreak is essentially the most well-known surf spot within the nation, identified for large waves and clear barrels. Different noteworthy breaks within the area embrace Namotu Lefts, Wilkes Passage, Swimming Swimming pools, Tavarua Rights, and Desperations.
There was an enormous swell throughout our keep, so we have been solely in a position to surf Namotu Lefts and Swimming Swimming pools. The situations have been unreal, and I scored a number of the greatest waves of my life.
Standup Paddling and Kayaking
For those who’re searching for a special perspective, paddling is an effective way to seek out it. Standup paddling and kayaking have been enjoyable methods for us to discover stretches of the islands. The water is evident, so you may view the reefs from above.
If in case you have entry to a kayak or SUP, I extremely advocate heading out to discover. Even should you spend nearly all of your time falling in, it’s a enjoyable method to combine issues up and funky off.
The Fijians are happy with their tradition and are excited to share it with guests. Throughout our journey, we had the chance to go to an area faculty and some small villages, the place we discovered concerning the lifetime of the locals.
We additionally had the possibility to attend a kava ceremony, the place we loved conventional Fijian meals, music and, after all, kava. The Fijians are extremely heat and welcoming and are a number of the kindest folks I’ve ever come throughout.
For a vacation spot I spent a lifetime visiting, Fiji didn’t disappoint. Whereas we lined quite a lot of floor throughout our 2-week journey, there’s nonetheless a lot extra I need to see and do.
Though the tan traces are already starting to fade, I do know the reminiscences I made throughout my time in Fiji will final a lifetime. And I’ve little doubt that it’ll solely be a matter of time earlier than I return to the tropical waters as soon as extra.