A Guide to Fiji
Know Before You Go
- Save money by eating food from the snack stands. You can buy curry or fish and chips for as little as FJD 2.
- Buy what you need from the main islands. If you're planning a trip to one of the more remote destinations, things are 50% more expensive. Before leaving, stock up on water, food, alcohol and any other necessities.
- Travel to Fiji in offseason. You'll still have perfect weather, but you'll find better deals and fewer people at the top attractions and beaches.
- You can drink the tap water on the mainland, but most travellers don't like the taste. Instead, buy bottled Fiji water. It's cheap and easy to find on the islands.
- It's not customary to tip in Fiji. If you feel the service you received was exceptional, you can contribute to the staff fund box.
- You don't need to apply for a visa to visit Fiji. Kiwis only need a passport that's valid for at least six months to obtain a visitors permit on arrival.
Getting Around Fiji
- If you're travelling to Fiji on a budget, the best way to get around is with the local bus. With most of the locals using this mode of transportation, it's an authentic way to experience day-to-day Fijian life. Ticket prices depend on the company, and you can also book more touristy options that loop around the top attractions.
- No visit to Fiji would be complete without some island-hopping. There are a number of companies that offer transfers to and from the main islands of Ovalau, Viti Levu and Taveuni. But it's important to keep in mind that the ferries rarely run according to schedule.
- If you're short on time, taking a plane is the fastest but most expensive way to explore the islands. You can fly from the major airports to the smaller airstrips located on Mana Island, Lakeba, Labasa and many more.
- Renting a car is a good way to explore the islands at your own pace. You'll find the best rates from the kiosks at the airport, and you need a valid driver's license from an English-speaking country, or an international driver's permit.
- If you don't want to hire a car, you can use the islands taxi service to get around. Flag down a driver at major intersections or bus stations, and negotiate a price before getting into the car.
Suva is Fiji's capital city and the island nation's largest city. Situated on the main island of Viti Levu, it's one of the most cosmopolitan cities in Oceania and has a lot to offer the curious traveller.
From its rows of colonial architecture to its vibrant nightlife and curry houses, Suva's mix of cultures means there is an endless array of things to do. Take a walking tour to learn more about the city's role in Fiji's history, or escape the bustle and explore the beautiful treks just outside the city.
Suva is also the best place in Fiji to pick up supplies. With food being much cheaper than the more remote islands, use your stop here to save money by stocking up on a few essentials.
Nadi is the third biggest city and is the gateway to exploring Fiji's 332 islands. With accommodation options to suit any traveller, it's one of the best places to set up a home base.
Day trips to nearby islands are only 8km away, or you can explore famous attractions like the Garden of the Sleeping Giant and the Mud Pools.
City slickers won't be disappointed by Nadi either. This bustling multi-cultural town is filled with excellent restaurants, bars and enough retail therapy options to help you find the perfect souvenirs.
Lautoka is Fiji's second largest city and is known as the "Sugar City". It boasts the biggest sugar mill in the southern hemisphere and it's a must-visit for travellers who want to get off the beaten path and relax.
Nature lovers will love exploring the many hiking trails of Koroyanitu National Heritage Park as well as the city's Botanical Garden. While culture vultures can wander around the wide streets steeped in foliage, visit the city's mosques and enjoy a cup of coffee against the backdrop of Mt Koroyanitu.
Top Attractions in Fiji
Located an hour away from the coast of Nadi lies one of Fiji's top destinations. Home to 20 different islands, the Mamanucas rose to fame in the film Cast Away and has attracted visitors ever since.
This small chain of islands boasts world class surf spots like Cloud Break, beautiful coral reefs and incredible wildlife. Beachcomber is also known as Fiji's premier party resort island and is the ideal place for the young at heart.
While many travellers choose to visit as part of a day trip from Nadi, you won't regret spending a night or two at this pristine island getaway. Choose from budget-friendly resorts or splurge and stay at the luxury five-star hotels on Tokarski or Vomo Island.
Bouma National Heritage Park
If you've had your fill of sandy white beaches, head to Bouma National Heritage Park to experience another side of Fiji's natural beauty.
Established in 1990, the park covers 150 square kilometres of rainforest and is home to rare tropical plants, rich biodiversity and four villages. Entrance is only FJD 12, and if you time your visit right, you'll be able to see the rare Tagimaucia flower bloom at Lake Tagimaucia.
Spend a day exploring the ancient ruins near Vitawa, swimming beneath Tavoro Waterfalls, strolling along the Lavena Coastal Walk or summit De Voeux Peak for panoramic views of Taveuni Island below.
Great Astrolabe Reef
The Great Astrolabe Reef is the fourth largest barrier reef in the world and a diverse paradise. Located near the Kadavu island, the 100-kilometre reef boasts visibility ranging from 10 to 40 metres.
There's also no shortage of things to explore in this underwater wonderland. Put on your flippers and glide past underwater caverns, drop-offs, tropical fish, colourful corals and so much more.
But if you aren't a diver, you can still enjoy this side of Fiji's natural heritage. The reef has an abundance of snorkelling spots teeming with marine life. If you're lucky, you might even have the chance to swim alongside manta rays, mahi-mahi, and giant trevally.
Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple
The Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple is one of the top attractions in Nadi. It's the largest Hindu temple in the Southern Hemisphere and attracts devotees and tourists from all over the world.
It's renowned for its intricate carvings, Dravidian architecture and colourful exterior.
If you can, plan your visit to Fiji around one of the Hindu festivals. Go in January for Thaipusam or in April for Panguni Uthram Thirunal. But if those months don't work for your travel plans, try to be in Nadi for the monthly Karthigai Puja festival to witness the locals offering fruits and flowers to the gods.
Make sure you follow the dress code when visiting this important religious site. You'll need to cover your shoulders and knees and take your shoes off before entering the temple.
Beqa Island may be small, but it boasts more than 100 dive sites. Located off the southern coast of Viti Levu, this island and its surrounding Beqa Lagoon is the soft coral capital of the world.
You'll be able to spot seahorses, ribbon eels, ghost pipefish and more at depths above 50 feet. Plus dive sites are only a 5 or 20-minute boat ride from shore.
The island isn't just for diving enthusiasts. It's also home to the Sawau tribe and the traditional art of fire-walking. The practice started more than 500 years ago and watching a ceremony is one of the most fascinating cultural experiences Fiji has to offer.
Airports in Fiji
Nadi International Airport
Nadi International Airport is the gateway to the Fijian islands. It's the main hub for regional carrier Fiji Airways and is located 10 km from Nadi.
Getting to and from Nadi International Airport
If you want to rent a car while in Fiji, you'll find more favourable rates at the airport. The rental desks are inside the arrivals terminal, opposite the baggage claim area.
The cheapest way to get to your hotel from the airport is with the bus. You'll need to buy disposable cards to be able to use the service.
The taxi stands are located outside of the arrivals terminal. Make sure the driver turns the meter on to avoid being ripped off.
Nausori International Airport
Nausori is the second international airport in Fiji. It's located on Viti Levu and is 23 km from the capital city of Suva.
Getting to and from Nausori International Airport
The cheapest way to get from the airport is with the bus. It's the most popular option for budget travellers, and you'll need to purchase a disposable card to pay for your trip.
Metered taxis are available from the airport. You'll find the driver's waiting outside of the arrivals terminal.
If you want to rent a car from the airport, you'll need a valid drivers license or an international driver's permit. You can also hire a car from select hotels, but the daily rates will be higher.