One of the major draws of a vacation in Fiji is the stunning South Pacific itself. The islands’ unspoiled coral reefs offer some of the best scuba diving locations in the world. Must-see diving locales in Fiji include the Rainbow Reef off the coast Tavueni Island; the Great White Wall off of Fiji’s mainland, Viti Levu; and the Great Astrolabe Reef on the northeastern side of Kadavu. The Scuba Bula Diving Centre offers 22 different kinds of dives, giving vacationers an opportunity to explore the lush marine life and the crystal-clear waters of the South Pacific in a variety of different ways. Those looking for an even more unusual diving experience will find what they’re looking for at the Aqua-Trek Shark Encounter, a unique adrenaline-pumping diving opportunity that brings divers into close proximity with eight species of shark and nearly 300 species of fish (the death-defying nature of the dive is tempered by the comforting accompaniment of certified shark experts).
The islands also offer ample opportunities for snorkeling, sailing, boating, kayaking and surfing. Visitors can take one of the famous day-cruises off of Nadi (where Fiji’s international airport is located) such as the Beachcomber Day Cruise and the Castaway Island cruise and experience many of these aquatic activities in one fell swoop. The Lomgali Resort or the Takalana Resort even offer guests a chance to swim in the sea alongside dolphins! Whitewater rafting up the majestic 60-kilometer Navua River in East Viti Levu is another option for a water-soaked adventure; this excursion lasts a full day and takes rafters through stunning canyons and past majestic waterfalls.
Both the Mamuanca Islands and the Yasawas Islands, two sets of tightly grouped islands, are popular destinations for those who wish to go “island-hopping,” another popular activity amongst travelers in Fiji. Visitors can do this officially by signing up for a day-tour or can explore the islands themselves by looking into private boats that ferry passengers from island to island.
The Fiji Islands, like most of the islands in the South Pacific, are formed from volcanic activity, and though these volcanoes stopped erupting thousands of years ago, they have peppered the Fijian landscape with tall, rugged mountains that are perfect for mountain-biking and hiking. Visitors can rent mountain bikes and all necessary equipment from Stinger Bicycles in Nadi, Viti Levu. The Colo-I-Suva Forest Park in the capital city of Suva is a must for bird-watchers and those who wish to experience hiking trails in a sub-tropical rainforest.
For those less inclined towards outdoor adventure activities, Suva also offers endless landmarks and visit-worthy sites, as well as a throbbing night life. A walk through the Suva Municipal Market is crucial for flea-market fans and a tour of the government buildings fashioned after traditional Fijian huts a must-do for architecture buffs. And what Fijian vacation would be complete without a little binging on the delicious local food of the islands? Fiji’s multi-ethnic cuisine tickles and confounds the taste buds with its unique fusion of Polynesian, Chinese, Indian and European influences. In Suva, visitors might try Tiko’s Floating Restaurant for excellent seafood, or Old Mill Cottage (a lovely 19th century home converted into a restaurant) for hearty, homestyle cooking, or Maya Dhaba for delicious Indian food.