Fiji, the land of islands is the perfect romantic getaway destination to live your fantasy. A trip to the Volcanic Fiji Islands with its lovely tropical climate and blue waters can be an out-of-the-world experience. From relaxation to fun and adventure, this place offers everything a traveller dreams of. The rugged views of largely unexplored islands are calming and a visit to Fiji Islands will definitely rejuvenate you. This Fiji travel guide aims to provide as many details as required for a trip to Fiji Islands within budget. Check out this Fiji travel guide for all the information you need.
Geographical Details, Climate, Culture & Food Of The Pacific Island, Fiji
Geographical Details: Fiji is an archipelago of more than 333 volcanic islands spanning over 1,600 kilometres in the south pacific located on the edgeways of Australia and New Zealand. Most of the islands are uninhabited. You will be surprised to know that there are nearly 900 smaller islands and inlets. There are two major islands in Fiji, viz., Viti Levu and Vanua Levu. Suva, the capital of Fiji is in Viti Levu – almost 3/4th of Fiji’s population lives here. The two international airports in Fiji Islands are Nausori and Nadi International Airport which are in Viti Levu.
Climate: You can never go wrong with the year-round lovely and soothing tropical Fiji weather. With warm temperatures and less rainfall, the best time to visit Fiji Island is between the months of May and October. November, February, March and April are considered to be low seasons due to heavy rains, but if you love rains give it a try as the prices tend to be lower during this season. December and January are also good times to visit but be ready for the high prices and huge crowds.
Culture: The first thing which hits one about Fiji culture is the wonderful way Fijians greet you. Although Fiji’s Island has three official languages, English, Fijian, and Fiji Hindi, endear yourself to the friendly Fijians with English or a few words of the Fijian tongue. Fiji has a population of over 900,000 people. Out of this 38% are Indians, 56% Fijians, 0.9% Chinese, 2.4% Europeans, 1.4% Rotumans and 1% others. A smile appears to be a compulsory accompaniment of “Bula” (a hello), which gives you an idea of the friendly nature of Fijians. A beautiful example of Fiji culture is the wraparound sort of garb Fijians wear, called ‘Sulu’. Tipping is not allowed in Fijian culture as they consider it an insult for the efforts they put in.
Fijian Food and Drinks: The seafood varieties of fish, prawns, lobsters, and crabs are definitely drool-worthy and are a part of the best Fiji food served in restaurants. But wait, seafood is not ‘the all’ of Fiji’s food culture, Fiji also has international cuisine ranging from Japanese to Italian delicacies. Fijian cuisine also comprises sweet potatoes, taros, bananas, coconuts, leafy vegetables etc. which are laced with delicate spices and served, mostly, in banana leaves. Do taste all the native food and carry the after-taste as sweet memories. While at it, don’t miss to taste the National Fiji drink – kava. The dried and pounded roots of the kava plant are mixed with clean, fresh rain waters, and served in coconut shell cups (bilo) as a symbol of acceptance and friendship.
Fiji Islands Budgeting
Accommodation: You can choose to live in Fiji lavishly even on a tight budget trip. There are economy accommodations to five-star hotels to even stay at your own small islands! The choice is of course yours. A budget accommodation (hostel) may cost approx 20-50 Fijian Dollars (FJD) per night, a midrange may cost you around 200-450 Fijian Dollars per night and a high end may cost you around 500-2000 Fijian Dollars per night. So, a week’s luxurious vacation in Fiji Islands would be between FJD.10000 to 15000. There can be a 10-20% price increase on hotel accommodations during peak seasons, compare with other hotels to get maximum discounts.
Fiji Islands Food: Food expenses also will vary according to one’s taste. You will be able to get a big plate of Indian food for less than 10 FJD from the popular roadside food stands. Local Fijian food can be purchased for less than 5 FJD. Dining out at a restaurant may cost about 40-55 FJD. Try out the popular dinner buffets here which will cost you around 70-85 FJD. A four-course meal at a high-end dining place will cost you about 200 FJD or 300 FJD with wine. A week’s grocery will cost between 65-100 FJD if you plan to cook your meals.
Local Transportation: The best way to move around Fiji is in a local bus that will cost you 2FJD. You can also try out the express bus which will cost around 8 FJD. Another best option is to take a taxi that will cost you around 5 FJD to move around the capital city of Suva. Hire a scooter for 35-40 FJD per day to move around freely at your own pace. If you are with your family, the best thing to do is rent a car for around 125 FJD per day. If you have a lot of time on hand, then try out the trains for touring the main island.
The Island may be small in size, but there are plenty of things to do in Fiji and places to visit in Fiji. Want to experience all of Fiji Islands within your budget? Here are a few tips in this Fiji travel guide on how you can see more by spending less.
- Travel offseason to save on airfares and accommodations.
- Avoid eating at resorts; try the snack stands on the road or local restaurants for good food just for 5FJD.
- Use Fijian dollars instead of credit or debit cards to avoid charges.
- Take a shared taxi as they charge the same as a bus fare.
- Avoid island-hopping and stick to one island.
- If you want to explore outer islands, carry your own water, food and drinks as things are much cheaper on the main island.
- Try to use more of the WiFi than your roaming data.
- Hire a driver to take you around instead of taking a taxi.
- Book all your activities after you get to the island as the charges are much higher when you book from outside.
- Travel rules and restrictions are constantly changing due to the pandemic. Check the Fiji tourism board’s website for the latest updates before booking your tickets.
Do’s and Don’ts While You Are on Fiji Island
Things You Can Do In Fiji
- Fijians generally give a very relaxed and laid back vibe, so accept the slow pace and relax.
- While Packing for Fiji do pack some conservative clothing that will come of use while visiting villages and small towns.
- Learn a few basic words like, “Bula” which is the “Fijian Greeting” and the most common word “Vinaka” which means “Thank You”.
- The locals of Fiji Island are very friendly and welcoming, so make an effort to be polite and respectful while interacting with them.
- While visiting the villages do carry some school supplies to support the development and education of the children.
- Respect Fiji Island people’s faiths and join in whenever there is a prayer before eating or when there is a group prayer.
- Fiji is generally a safe place, but be alert and aware at all times.
- Do something relaxing on Sundays as all business and other travel activities may not be fully available on holidays.
Things You Should Not Do In Fiji
- Don’t say no to the Kava drink. This is a mandatory welcome drink and as part of respecting their culture, accept it.
- Don’t shout, raise your voice or lose your temper in public, be calm and polite always.
- Don’t exceed the speed limit of 80 KMH. If you are caught speeding, then you may have to pay a hefty fine.
- Machetes are sword type tools that many of the natives of Fiji use. Don’t get scared as they will not do anything violent or wrong with it.
- Do not point out any social problems or criticize Fijians in any way.
- Don’t roam around alone in the rural areas of Fiji Island at night as this can prove to be very dangerous.
- Don’t allow your taxi driver to pick up any random person midway as this might lead to theft or any other unpleasant incidents.
- Don’t pressure any Fijian to drink alcohol if they have given an initial refusal.
- Don’t go on a fishing trip without asking the locals as most of the places are actually protected marine reserves.
- Don’t go topless on Fiji beaches as it’s illegal here.
The aim of this Fiji travel guide is an attempt to bring to you the Fiji Islands’ culture, cuisine, and more, all at the same time. Keeping the current Pandemic in mind, kindly check activities, attractions, etc before you go as situations can change quickly. Now that you are armed with enough information on Fiji, enjoy your vacation to the dreamy islands of Fiji without being hassled about the budget.
Wet seasons can bring heavy rains, strong winds; high waves and can also trigger landslides.
February is the hottest month with an average temperature of 81°F.
Fiji is generally safe but avoid walking alone at night in remote coasts of the Island.
Always visit the smaller islands to get that “island paradise” feel.
People found with weapons and illicit drugs will be fined severely and sentenced to jail.
April is the last month of Fiji’s summer; hence the temperature is hot and humid.