Located over 1,290,000 sq. km across the South Pacific Ocean, this chain of 320 islands in the middle of the South Pacific is home to the friendliest people on earth. Bask in the warmth of the tropical sun and the hospitality of the Fijian people. Dive into blue lagoons, wander pink sand beaches and learn about Fijian culture by participating in meke and yaqona ceremonies.
The sound of Bula, a greeting meaning hello, is almost always accompanied by a relaxed smile and a casual wave whether the greeter is to a young child or a village elder. The memory that remains in most travellers minds long after their tan has faded, are genuinely friendly locals and smiling faces throughout the Fijian islands.
The largest island, Viti Levu is home to 70% of the population (about 600,000) and is the hub of the entire Fijian archipelago. Fiji’s second largest island Vanua Levu has been attracting divers ever since Jacques Cousteau shared the underwater world. Across the Somosomo Strait the island of Taveuni offers natural beauty of a lushly forested island with waterfalls and national park forests. Further afield is the Kadavu which is south of Viti Levu offering birdlife an unforgetable blue lagoon and lengthy hiking trails.
Nadi International Airport.
Star Alliance partners such as American Airlines, Air New Zealand and Fiji Airways fly via LA from many cities within the United States and Vancouver, Canada. Jetstar, Air New Zealand, Korean Air, Pacific Blue, V Australia, Air Niugini, Air Vanuatu, and Air Caledonie also fly regularly to Fiji.
If you are flying from the UK or other destinations in Europe then Air New Zealand fly via Auckland to Nadi International airport.
Once in Fiji, the fastest way to travel between the islands is to catch a plane. Domestic Fiji flights are operated by Fiji Airways. Ferries and other boats also offer many services between the islands. To travel within an island, buses are available and will stop if you hail from the road side, buses will stop at many stops so prepared for a lengthy journey!
The level of serious crime is generally low, but petty theft is fairly common. Be particularly careful with personal possessions and travel documents in cities and other popular tourist destinations. Use a hotel safe where possible and avoid carrying everything in one bag. Don’t leave your belongings unattended, particularly in Fiji’s main International Airports of Nadi and Nausori where tourists have been targeted. Be alert when you are withdrawing cash from cash machines.
There are no travel visas or vaccinations required by North American or European visitors to Fiji. Guests traveling from outside North America or Europe or not holding valid US, Canadian or European passports, must check with their nearest Fiji High Commission. You require a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond your stay. It is advisable to check that your tetanus shot is up to date. All islands have medical clinics, it is advisable to purchase medical and cancellation/interruption insurance when traveling abroad on adventurous holidays. Fiji is free from malaria, yellow fever and major tropical diseases. Inoculations are only required if travelling from an infected area. There is an effective medical system in place with government and privately run hospitals, clinics, surgical centres, dental service and pharmacies.
GMT +12. From November to February Fiji moves one hour ahead with its own daylight savings.
The Fijian dollar is the basic unit of currency. There is a 24 hour currency exchange service at the arrivals concourse at Nadi Airport. ATMs are located around the country and at larger resorts and hotels.
The electric current is 240 volts AC 50Hz. Fiji has three-pin power outlets, which are identical to Australia and New Zealand. Leading hotels and resorts offer universal outlets for 240v or 11v shavers, hair dryers and other electrical appliances.
Fijian food can be broadly divided into two catagories. Local and imported. As you would expect, imported goods are far more pricey than locally produced. A general rule of thumb is that imported produce is triple what you would pay back at home, maybe more. No matter where you go in Fiji, you will see locals with their roadside stalls selling produce. Prices are extremely cheap, and much of the produce is sold in bunches. Every town of any size also has the markets, which is a hub for the local community to come and sell their produce. While these markets are not often frequented by tourists, the locals will make you feel very welcome, and are usually more than happy to tell you about some of the unfamiliar fruits and veges.
Fiji’s country code is +679. Many hotels and resorts have direct dialling facilities (IDD), and card phones are available in many shops and stores. Look for the Telecom call card signage on display. Fiji is well serviced by local mobile networks including Vodafone Fiji Limited, Digicel and Inkk Mobile. You can also arrange roaming status before travelling here as well as on arrival. Access to the internet and email is available in most parts of Fiji. In addition to sites at all major hotels, internet cafes are abundant in major cities and towns.
Tipping is not expected, but you may, if you wish, offer extra payment for an outstanding service.