Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.


Fiji Islands
Paradise in the South Pacific
by Sophie Gayot

For those of us who don’t live in Australia or New Zealand, Fiji seems far away. But isn’t that what we want: go far away from out daily routine, phone, cell phone, e-mail…? The Fiji islands are one of the perfect destinations to resource one’s self among nature and extremely friendly people. Anywhere you go you will be greeted with the famous “Bula!” meaning hello or welcome but also cheers and good health. Of course, you are to reply “Bula!”

Out of the 300 islands that constitute this republic, of which 130 are inhabited, you will find one that suits your needs and budget. We often think of going to Fiji for a romantic trip, but is also a great escape with your children, whatever age they have. Fijians love children and obviously take care of them with great pleasure.

You will be landing at Nadi International airport, located on main island (Viti Levu). From there, it is easy to travel to the other islands, which all have different atmosphere. We recommend that you try more than one during your stay. Hop on a charter boat from South Sea Cruises, on plane from Sun Air if you are going north, or on a private helicopter or sea plane. The two means of transportation both have their charm; the boat will let you have a close look of the islands along the way; from the air you will admire the coral reefs that are spread out all over in the ocean. Seeing them, you will wonder how the explorers, in their time, made it through with no map.

The focal point of your vacation will be the sea and all its recreational components. Choose between, the beach, swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, sailing, jet ski, wind surfing, water skiing, para sailing…The experts scuba divers will tell that Fiji is one of the best spot in the world for this exercise, and they are right. If you have never done it, you should get a resort course (a small course with basic training, usually in the pool), and then immerse yourself into a world that you’ve had no idea it even could be so beautiful, and peaceful. There are chances that when you will come out of the water, you’ll have a different perspective of life, hoping to see more graciousness around us.

The geography of the lieu. also brings peacefulness. Most of the time, on any island you will be, you will see others islands in the surroundings, some can be larger, some can be just a rock or a sand strand.

Very often, you will be asked "First time in Fiji?". We hope that one day can return, and reply "No".


Where to stay


Castaway Island, Castaway
Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort, Vanua Levu
Sofitel Fiji Resort & Spa, Denarau
Vomo Island Resort. Vomo
The Westin Denarau Island Resort & Spa, Fiji, Denarau

Fiji in colors


To see some of Fiji's beauty in color, click here.

Some things to do we recommend

* Visit the only pearl farm in Fiji, in Savusavu, (on the island of Vanua Lenu).
* A day cruise on an island so small..., (on South Sea Island).
* Rise up your adrenaline sky diving, (on the island of Viti Levu)
* A tour in Nadi town, (on the island of Viti Levu).

Facts to Know


Currency: Fiji Dollar

Exchange money at the main airport once you arrive. For the best rate, use an ATM or get cash back on purchases. Some places at the airport may take U.S. dollars, however the vast majority of businesses on the islands take only Fijian ones, which trade at a rate of about 1.7 Fijian dollars to each U.S. dollar.

Transportation:

How to get there?
The best way to get to Fiji is to fly Air Pacific airlines, the Fijian national carrier, which flies into Nadi International Airport or Suva Airport. The island chain is also served by Air New Zealand and Qantas Airlines.
Your passport must be valid at least three moth beyond the intended period of stay. Depending on your ticket a $30.00 departure tax is to be paid at the airport at the time of departure.


Inbound Tours
Rosie Holidays Fiji
Established since 1974, Rosie is the largest operator in Fiji for all your travel needs during your stay in Fiji. They will organise any sightseeing tour you desire. They have many different locations, with in the hotels, including one in Nadi airport.
PoBox 9268, Nadi Airport, Fiji Islands
Phone: 679 672 2755, Fax: 679 672 2607
www.rosiefiji.com, reservations@rosie.com.fj


Rental cars
Various locations. Driving is on the left side.


A few basics facts:

The Fijian Islands are located west of Hawaii, south of the Equator. Fiji is an independent country, formerly of Bristish Colony rule until 1970. The capital is Suva located on the largest island, Viti Levu.

Language

English, Fijian and Hindi. They are all fluent in English.

Local time
GMT +12

Climate
Remember that the seasons are opposite of the Northern hemisphere. Summer is from November to March. It is warm and it is the wetter season. Winter starts in April and ends in October. The temperature is mild, and it is dryer.

Electricity
240v 50c AC. Three pin power outlets identical to Australia and New Zealand.(Adapters are usually not provided by the hotels.

No immunizations are necessary. Fiji is free from Malaria, but mosquitoes are here, so bring some repellent),
Tipping is not customary
.
For more information visit www,bulafiji.com

 
(Updated: 07/03/08 HC)

Plan a voyage to a tropical paradise aboard one of GAYOT's Best Caribbean Cruises.
Get the 411 on the City of Angels. Find the city's top hotels, restaurants, attractions and more with GAYOT's guide.