Perennially a top tropical destination, Fiji is the centre jewel in the crown of the South Pacific. Australians make up roughly 45% of visitation to this slice of paradise, indicating just how strong the relationship is between the two countries. Visitors go for relaxation and come away wholly rejuvenated; they go for underwater adventure and come away with experiences of the land; they go for island isolation and come away with the feeling of community.
But until you visit for yourself, these are nothing more than concepts. You have to see Fiji to believe it.
Once you’ve decided that you’re heading to Fiji, the next step of planning begins. With great insights from Skyscanner, here are all the basics you’d want to know before booking your first - of many, undoubtedly - trip to Fiji.
Fiji is great to visit all year round. There is a dry season from April to November with tourist season peaking in June and July. During the wet season, which usually lasts December to March, visitors should beware of possible cyclones.
Flights from the east coast of Australia last 4 hours typically - less than it takes to get to the west coast!
English is the official language, along with native Fijian, and Hindustani is also commonly spoken.
The standard currency is the Fijian Dollar. Whilst tipping is not expected or encouraged, it is appreciated for extraordinary service.
There are over 300 islands in Fiji, some inhabited and others untouched wilderness. But for your first trip, consider visiting these most popular Fijian islands:
Viti Levu - your Fiji holiday will most likely start here. Most international flights land at Nadi International Airport. Fiji’s capital city, Suva, is located on the south east coast of this island and can serve visitors an unparalleled dose of Melanesian culture.
Denarau Island - a 20 minute drive from Nadi takes visitors to Denarau, an island that’s connected to the mainland by a small bridge. Resorts and hotels here usually feature access to white sand beaches, sprawling gardens, seemingly endless pools, and unblocked views of technicolour sunsets.
Mamanuca Islands - some of Fiji’s swankiest accommodation is found in this island group, but there’s nothing pretentious about it. Turquoise waters with breaks that would make a surfer’s wildest dreams come true surround these pristine islands. They feel so remote that they have been the location for Hollywood movies such as Cast Away, but they are accessible to visitors by boat.
Yasawa Islands - this island group is the manifestation of an idyllic fantasy. Colourful coral reef gardens and protected lagoons below, glistening white sand beaches and coconut palm trees above: these islands have only been open to the public since the 1950s, keeping them absolutely pristine.
For those who want to go off the beaten track, many lesser known islands will make the Fijian holiday a true standout.
Who makes a suitable visitor?
In short, everybody!
Families make Fiji their favourite holiday destination - often year after year - because of the exceedingly friendly nature of Fijians and the cultural importance of taking care of one another. Local communities welcome respectful visitors with open arms. At many resorts and hotels, warm nanny staff are available to provide childcare as parents are relaxing in spa treatments or enjoying a day of peace to themselves.
Of course, Fiji’s sparkling, majestic land and seascapes make the perfect background for a couples’ holiday. Famous as an ideal destination wedding locale, Fiji’s islands have become synonymous with romance.
Adventure-seeking solo travellers are encouraged to find their own paradise in Fiji. Pacific Harbour, 3 hours from Nadi, is the adventure capital where visitors can raft, kayak, off-road, and zipline. Those who seek thrills on or under water must make a trip to world-famous Cloudbreak, one of the most challenging waves to surf in the world, for a surf or mesmerising reef dive.