Fiji for First-timers

Cruise the stunning Yasawas on Captain Cook Cruise, and discover a new atoll and coral reef every morning and afternoon.

Spurred on by popular blockbusters like Cast Away and The Blue Lagoon, these images are most commonly associated with Fiji. Located in the picturesque South Pacific, Fiji was formed hundreds of millions of years ago by volcanic activity, and inhabited in the second millennium BC. Today, the beautifully remote island nation is rich with culture and tradition, and is a popular holiday destination for families and honeymooners, and solace seekers and adventurers alike.

Where to Stay

The island of Viti Levu is a great base from which to experience and explore Fiji. Located on the island’s west coast, Fiji’s major tourism hub, Nadi is a centre for Hinduism, Islam and commerce, and boasts a great mix of ethnicities and culture. Experience the country’s unique traditions and charm with a visit to a local village, and indulge in the South Pacific's tranquility and beauty at resorts like Sonaisali Island Resort and Club Fiji Resort.

Just west of Nadi, Denarau Island acts as a gateway to the Yasawa and Mamanuca island groups. The island is home to Viti Levu’s most plush resorts, including popular international chains like Sheraton, Sofitel and Radisson.

Located just off the west coast of Viti Levu, the Mamanuca Islands are the perfect playground for a tropical getaway. Surrounded by breathtaking scenery, the islands encourage water sports such as boating, yachting, snorkeling and scuba diving, and boast world-class resorts like family-friendly sanctuary Plantation Island Resort, backpacker paradise Beachcomber Island Resort, and child-free retreat Matamanoa Island Resort.

What to Eat and Drink

Fiji has two main cuisines, indigenous Fijian and Indo-Fijian. Indo-Fijian cuisine largely consists of rice, spices and chili; while indigenous Fijian cuisine focuses on fresh seafood like fish, crab, prawn and lobster, and local fruits like sweet pineapple, mango and ripe papaya.

Kava (also known as yaquona or grog) occupies a central place in everyday life in Fiji. Kava ceremonies are crucial elements of diplomacy, and can be experienced in most villages and resorts, where guests are asked to participate with reverence and respect.

Most resorts cater for guests with several dining options – the most traditional of which is a lovo night, where food is cooked in an underground oven. Restaurants and eateries can be found all throughout Nadi and Suva, however Viti Levu’s most celebrated dining options are located on the marina at Port Denarau – where western-style and Fijian eateries have been establish to specifically satiate guests in transit to the Mamanuca and Yasawa island groups.

What to See and Do

The Fijian archipelago boasts some of the world’s most striking scenery. Made up of over 300 islands and 500 islets, the country’s natural beauty is best experienced by island hopping. The Yasawa and Mamanuca island groups are Fiji’s most idyllic settings for island hopping adventures.

Cruise the stunning Yasawas on Capitan Cook Cruise, and discover a new atoll and coral reef every morning and afternoon. Take in the world-famous Mamanucas from aboard a South Sea Cruise or water taxi service. Charter a private yacht and enjoy the South Pacific sea breeze while lazing on the deck.

Or take it all in with a bird's eye view, from high above with a helicopter charter. Island hopping offers perfect opportunities to dive, snorkel and surf Fiji’s beautiful waters. Most Yasawas and Mamanucas trips leave from Port Denarau.

How to Get There

  • Flights to Fiji: Virgin Australia operates to flights Nadi from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
  • Fiji Holiday Packages: Our holiday partner, Virgin Australia Holidays has exceptional Fiji holiday packages.
  • Fiji Hotels: Our partner Agoda offers great deals on hotels and resorts in Fiji.  
Words by Alice Nash - Published 7 September 12
Quick Facts 
Population Approx 920,000
Area 18,274 km2; (all Fiji islands)
Time Zone GMT +12
Languages English (official)
Currency Fijian dollar (F$)
Electricity 220 – 240v 50Hz
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