Fabulous Fiji has much to offer travelers for a peaceful or active tropical vacation. We caught up with our on-site On Location partner, Lynette Wilson of Destination World, for the latest on visiting this enticing island chain.
Q: What do you consider to be the highlights of Fiji for travelers?
There is something for everyone in the South Pacific and it’s not all sea and sand. The adrenalin junkies can get their fix in Fiji too.
We can arrange a tropical vacation pretty much anywhere in the Fiji Islands that can be accessed by plane, boat or automobile or a good canoe.
Q: What type of services and packages do you offer?
Our office in Fiji can tailor-make any package in Fiji, Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Australia or New Zealand.
We can provide transfers, accommodation, guides, off the beaten path touring and amazing experiences. We let the clients’ imagination come alive.
Q: Which islands do you think are the most romantic?
For beach lovers, the Yasawa Islands reflect the picture perfect images of long white sandy beaches and turquoise waters, with no high-rise resorts to disturb the natural flow of the romantic dream discovered.
For adventure seekers, the reef and rainforest of the far northern islands of Taveuni and Vanua Levu will allow romantic couples to hike to waterfalls, dance with dolphins and embrace the underwater magic of color and marine life with snorkel and scuba diving adventures.
Q: What day trips are available for experiencing the local culture?
Q: Tell us about the different types of accommodation in the islands?
There is a wide range of accommodation from backpackers to beyond 5 Star. In many cases, there is one resort on one island. The majority of the resorts are boutique and not higher than the palm trees.
Q: What do you recommend for families?
It depends on the child’s age and if the clients want to stay at a resort with a kids club, like Castaway Island Resort in the Mamanuca Islands, or take a Captain Cook small ship cruise around the Yasawa Islands. They can rent a villa with a private chef and all the facilities of a large resort, but be on a much smaller scale, or create a mix of both.
Q: Which culinary experience/cooking class is top of your list?
"The Flavours of Fiji" cooking school, located in Denarau, offers a fantastic opportunity to experience true local Fijian and Indian cuisine. Learn to cook Fiji’s unique dishes in small, island cooking classes with experienced local cooks as they take you on a mouth-watering journey of traditional Fijian & Indian flavors. Venturing on a journey of discovery through authentic Fijian home-style cooking, guests will enjoy the finest dishes our islands have to offer.
Q: Is there an activity in the South Pacific that should not be missed?
Go to a village to experience the ’real’ Fiji and see how people still live in ’yesterday’. Despite limited income, they are always smiling and enjoy life.
Everywhere you go people will call out ’Bula’. Its literal meaning is ’life,’ and when used as a greeting it implies wishes for continued good health.
Q: What sites do you recommend in this region renowned for diving?
The Rainbow Reef can be found in the Somosomo Strait located between the Fijian islands of Taveuni and Vanua Levu. It is considered one of the most famous dive sites in the South Pacific and includes The Great White Wall, a popular scuba diving site. It is named because of the white coral inhabiting the area between 49 and 213 feet.
The Great Astrolabe Reef surrounds the fourth largest island, Kadavu Island, which is approximately 40 miles in length. Kadavu Island is approximately 62 miles south of Viti Levu, the main island of Fiji. This is one of the largest barrier reefs in the world and encompasses Kadavu Island, Ono Island and other small islands within a natural protective lagoon.
The reef is a breeding ground for many large billfish (marlin) species, sharks, tuna, giant trevally, mahi-mahi (dolphinfish) and snapper, due to it having many channels leading from extremely deep water into shallow lagoons. Parts of the reef, such as Naiqoro Passage, one of the main passages, are protected from fishing and require entry fees. This is because Naiqoro Passage is one of the main thoroughfares for large fish.
In 1789 the English Royal Navy Cutter HMS Bounty commanded by Lieutenant William Bligh was overtaken by 18 crew led by Master’s Mate Fletcher Christian in what has been named the ’Mutiny on the Bounty.’ The area known as the Bligh Water is the body of water (approximately 3,668 sq.miles in extent) in the western Fiji islands through which Bligh sailed his 23 ft launch during his 3,618 mile journey from Tofua to the Dutch port of Timor. At the time some of the local Fijian tribes were considered hostile and many were cannibalistic so Bligh did not wish to jeopardize his safety or the safety of his crew elected not to stop his journey in the area.
Today many people refer to the area of the Vatu-I-Ra Passage, around the island of Vatu, as the ’Bligh Water’. While this is technically true, and the Vatu-I-Ra passage is located in the Bligh Water, the real Bligh Water is much larger. The Vatu-I-Ra Passage, now a marine protected area is famous for its abundance and diversity of marine life. One of the main attractions is the plentiful populations of beautiful hard and soft corals which thousands of SCUBA divers each year visit to enjoy and photograph.
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