Yet another marvellous flight. We weren’t looking forward to the early takeoff (08:15) but the 3 hours to Fiji started off well!
Rum cocktails for breakfast are a great way to begin the day and that was before we even left the tarmac!
The Qantas/Fiji Airways flight continued in pretty much the same vein. Fortunately, besides the generous servings of alcohol we did get a great breakfast (with champagne of course) and landed in Nadi feeling very
In no time we arrived at our hotel and were shown to our bure right on the ocean.
We’d booked for six days, intending to use the time to plan the rest of our stay on Fiji. It soon became clear just how expensive this South Pacific paradise is. Prices on the islands we wanted to visit were comparable to holidaying in the Maldives and even on the main island (Viti Levu) our budget was maxed out daily.
Eventually we decided to change to an Accor hotel which we’d be able to pay with points that we’d accumulated for just such a situation. So, after negotiating a price we moved. The Sofitel is a nice enough hotel, but again, considering the price we would have had to pay without points, certainly not worth the money. The one upside – a childfree zone!
We started exploring on foot but it was so hot that we soon had to take advantage of the “Bula” bus which, for a small fee, will chauffeur you around the local sights allowing you to hop-off, hop-on at any of the many stops.
One of the favourite places is the marina where, not only do the rich dock their boats, but also where the many cruise ships depart from.
There are lots of restaurants around here and though we weren’t overwhelmed by the food in general, I did love the “kokoda” – raw fish marinated in lemon and lime with coconut milk – reminiscent of South American Ceviche.
Always one to enjoy a fresh coconut it was good to see that coconut collector was obeying the safety rules and wore a harness, though maybe the rules should also state that the harness works best if one end is actually attached to something.
One of the lasting memories of Fiji will be the Fijians themselves. They are the warmest and friendliest people we have ever come across and were definitely the highlight of this trip. The word “Bula”, the national greeting, will stay with us for a long time.
We had planned to stay on Fiji for a month, but after two weeks decided to cut the visit short and return to Australia and our camper.
Fiji is great if you want to spend a week or two on a resort, basking in the sun. We would have enjoyed it a lot more if we’d been travelling with small backpacks rather than wheely bags. However, as we carry our lives with us we’re unwilling to leave our stuff anywhere so though travelling lighter would have made island hopping much easier and cheaper, it wasn’t really a viable option for us.
Still, we’re glad we went as Fiji is likely to be the first and last South Pacific Island we will ever visit.