Places to Visit
Fiji’s major islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, contain most of the population. The main island of Viti Levu is Fiji’s largest island, and home to the national capital city of Suva. The island is known for its beautiful coastline, rainforests, swaying cane fields and beachfront resorts.
The main places to visit in Fiji Islands are as below:
Nadi is where international visitors first enter into Fiji. The international airport is based in Nadi and that’s why Nadi is popularly known as the “stopover city”. This multi-cultural town offers great places to eat, drink and shop. The main street buzzes with action where you can hear the latest Bollywood or Fijian music playing from every storefront. Being in close proximity to Denarau Island, Momi bay, Yasawas and the Mamanucas, Nadi is the ideal place to stay over for a night to get over your exhaustion from flying before heading to these idyllic islands.
Denarau Island near Nadi hosts some of the nation’s best hotel chains, is the home to the Marina where inter island ferries and cruises depart from. One can access the Mamanucas and Yasawas from the Marina. You can even experience some excellent golf and tennis facilities at Denarau.
Mamanuca islands are a chain of 20 islands near Nadi and Denarau. One of the most established resort areas in Fiji, the Mamanucas provide a stunning array of activities for all types of travelers. It’s beautiful surroundings are where famous Hollywood movie “Castaway” and “Survivor series” were shot. ‘Tropical paradise’ might be the most hackneyed cliché , but there’s no getting away from it here: the Mamanuca islands tick every box, with brochure-blue seas and beaches so brilliant. These islands offer parasailing, windsurfing, dolphin-watching, famous dives such as the Big W and Gotham City, some of the best surf breaks in the world, and just about any other activity you can do on or under water. Whether you are young or old, whether you are looking for a family holiday or want to party hard; there’s an island for everyone.
Yasawa islands are some of the most picturesque and scenic grass-covered islands with brilliant porcelain beaches and water in shades of blue! North of the more famous Mamanuca chain, the Yasawas are quite a different experience. Rugged, remote and more dramatic than the sugardrop islands of the Mamanucas, the mighty Yasawas were once off-limits to all but those determined to play out their Robinson Crusoe fantasies. Today, ferries, cruise ships and seaplanes make daily deposits of sun-and-fun-seekers keen to explore both its looming landscapes and eminently diveable depths. While there are luxury resorts the Yasawas is better known for its backpacking and flashbacking visitors.You won’t find any shops or banks here, but with so much natural beauty you’ll enjoy the break from civilization.
The Yasawas are popular for snorkeling, kayaking and sailing. Experience the stunning islands from on board a floating hotel/cruise ship or a chartered sailing boat. Swimming, fishing, village visits and campfire barbeques are common activities. The limestone caves of Sawa-i-lau in the northern part of the group, is a very popular day trip as are diving with Manta Rays on Drawaqa Island and Snorkelling with Sharks’ on Kuata Island.You can sample traditional Fijian fare during village tours, hikes or Meke nights.
Coral Coast is, as the name implies, an 80km long stretch of coastline along the Queen’s road between Nadi and Suva on Viti Levu encircled by a fringing reef that drops off dramatically into the deep blue of the South Pacific ocean, making it extremely scenic. Diving is exceptional as well as golf and the beaches. As a well-established tourist destination, the Coast offers both the full resort experience and a chance to visit the real Fiji in the many villages along the way who operate home stays. From a fisherman selling his day’s catch on the roadside, to bargaining with a local at the Sigatoka Market, true island life is here.
Head inland along the west bank of the Sigatoka river. Either side of the road are the patchwork of flat green fields growing the crops that give the Valley its nickname: “Fiji’s Salad Bowl.” One can get a panoramic view across the winding Sigatoka Valley and the Sigatoka agricultural research station, a popular spot for picnics. The Sigatoka Sand Dunes National Park is located at the mouth of the Sigatoka River. Fiji’s first National Park is worth visiting for its wild beauty, excellent walks and archeological significance. The Kula Eco Park is Fiji’s only wildlife park. Located in a small forested valley, one can enjoy walks through the cool forest. Visitors will hear the call of barking pigeons, the shrill of honey eaters and the constant, pulsing concert of unseen canopy dwellers. This is as wild as Fiji gets
Vanua Levu is Fiji’s second largest island and is one of the tropics’ best kept secrets. Less tourist-oriented than Viti Levu, there’s still lots to see and do for the more adventurous traveller.
Labasa and Savusavu are preposterously picturesque and affable beyond all expectations. Savusavu is a swashbuckling throwback to the days of high seas adventures and tall tales told in rollicking rickety taverns. It has a protected bay that is a popular mooring for yachts. Wasali Nature Reserve is an untouched rainforest with hiking trails leading to spectacular views. Whether touring the Snake Temple near Labasa, diving to see the soft corals or just exploring along the Hibiscus highway, Vanua Levu has lots to offer. Dolphin watching is the highlight of Vanua Levu where a trip to Natewa bay will bring you up close with spinner and bottle nose dophins. The bay offers great diving and snorkeling spots too.
Taveuni which is Fiji’s third largest island is known as the Garden Island as its covered in tropical rainforests and is an eco-tourist’s dream with nature reserves harboring an abundance of native plants and wildlife. The island is surrounded by tropical reefs with some of the world’s best dive sites. A Marine Park at Waitabu teems with fish and coral. Hikers and nature fans are equally well served with the Bouma National Heritage Park offering hiking trails and world-class birdwatching.
One hour’s drive from the Taveuni airport, Vatuwiri Plantation is also a farm, a wildlife preserve, and an ocean and eco activity wonderland. There are a huge array of activities to choose from, with horse treks through the spectacular landscape, hikes to the top of a dormant volcano, or a visit to a 200 year old fortified village, Baudua. Taveuni is accessible by boat or by plane.
Pacific Harbor or Beqa island is Fiji’s adventure capital. Here you’ll find a range of great adventure activities from surfing, jet-skiing and shark feeding to four-wheel drive tours and golfing right at your doorstep. Pacific Harbor also houses an interesting arts village featuring food and crafts, boutique shops, and a residential community mostly comprising of ex-pats living in gorgeous Mediterranean-style homes . Pacific Harbor has the distinction of having some of the nicest beaches on the main island. Pacific Harbor is an hour’s drive from Suva.
Suva is Fiji’s capital city and the most cosmopolitan city in Oceania. It’s a lush green city on a hilly peninsula, bustling and highly multicultural. Suva has everything you’d expect from a large city – trendy shopping malls and farmers markets, restaurants, entertainment, and a huge range of cultural activities. A modern city which still has many buildings dating back to the colonial era, Suva offers parks, gardens, museums, outdoor activities and a vibrant nightlife. A lively and dynamic city, you’ll be dazzled by Suva’s incredible mix of cultures and range of things to do. The government buildings are all here. Suva is the perfect place to experience a mix of culture, sports and outdoor recreation. Visit the museum, Fiji’s parliament or check out some of the city’s beautiful gardens.
Lomaiviti group of islands is the perfect place to experience laid-back island life. Ovalau is the largest island in the Lomaiviti Group. At the center of the island is an extinct volcano and several mountains which offer nice hiking. The islands are at the heart of Fiji’s colonial past and are home to the country’s first capital, Levuka. The port town of Levuka is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is worth visiting. Some of the inner islands are well-developed tourist destinations with plenty of facilities and attractions including diving, fishing, snorkeling, yatching and whale watching. Homestays and resorts are scattered throughout the Lomaiviti Group, although there are several concentrated in Ovalau.
Kadavu islands is one of the best places to experience true Fijian culture. Surrounded by luminescent sea, volcanic peaks and intense forest, you’ll feel like an adventurer With just one town and very few roads, you can escape modern life and experience Fiji’s incredible natural beauty. Completely unspoiled, the islands are renowned for diving and is home to the world-famous Great Astrolabe Reef. It is one of the largest barrier reefs in the world, and a world-famous dive spot that manages to be still largely unspoiled. Swim with manta rays, or dive wrecks and swim through coral gardens – the Great Astrolabe Reef offers a huge range of underwater experiences. All resorts at Kadavu will offer a chance to snorkel or scuba dive here. There’s plenty to see inside the islands too, including rainforests, birdwatching, glorious waterfalls and guided sea-kayaking tours. Accommodation is plentiful, and while getting around is an adventure, it’s worth it to experience such tranquil, untouched islands. The road system in Kadavu is very limited, with most transport by boat. There is a shuttle bus available to pick you up at Kadavu Airport to take you to wherever your boat is leaving from.
Sun Coast is in the driest side of the island. This area is comprised of traditional villages, mosques and temples, agricultural and cane fields with a few boutique resorts and private holiday homes that offer easy access for diving the Bligh Waters region. For much of Fiji’s economic history, sugar was the largest revenue churner. Lautoka – Fiji’s second city – was built on this industry and still boasts the country’s largest sugar mill. In fact the entire Suncoast is sugar country! The Suncoast is a strikingly beautiful stretch of countryside with abundant sunshine, azure skies and dramatic grass-covered peaks chequered with sugar-cane fields, rural villages and quaint market towns. Sprawling vistas, slow-paced rural life and an eternal summer make it easy to fall in love with this corner of Fiji. The largest cluster of resorts is on the islands of Nananu-i-Ra and Dolphin Island. This is one of the best places on the island to watch the sun rise and set. Mountainous Koroyanitu National Heritage Park dominates the Lautoka skyline and a great hike for some stunning views of forests and grasslands, birdwatching, archaeological sites and waterfalls. If the Sabeto Mountain range is cloud-free, look to its far southeast ridge and you’ll see the profile of Mt Batilamu or, in local legend, the Sleeping Giant. There’s even a summit overnight option for those who don’t mind a little rustic rooming. Picturesque Navala village – in the mountains behind Ba town – maintains its traditional Fijian style houses (bure) and the remote location is picture postcard worthy. Ba boasts Fiji’s best racecourse and the town’s horse-racing and bougainvillea festivals are in September. With its abundant sunshine, majestic mountain backdrop and deep water channel, the Ra Peninsula and offshore islands is a tourist haven. Explore the mangrove-fringed coastline by kayak and paddleboard or hike to a hidden waterfall. There are some great beaches but the area is best known for game fishing, wind-surfing, kite boarding and diving on world-class reefs.
Lau Group of islands
The Lau Group, made up of a few small islands in Fiji’s far east, offer a glimpse of Fiji often not seen by tourists. Life here is simple and somewhat wild. There are only three islands that have accommodation for outsiders. If you’re prepared to venture off the beaten track you’ll get to experience Lau’s unique culture. If you want to see a place that’s utterly unspoiled, while still offering traditional Fijian hospitality, then visiting the Lau Group is your chance. The Lau Group has some spectacular sites for swimming, snorkelling and diving such as the Bay of Islands in the northwest pocket. On land, hiking trips are a great way to experience the incredible natural landscape. Lau has two small airstrips, and boats connect people between islands. There is no public transport.