Bury your toes in Sigatoka Sand Dunes
One of Fiji's natural highlights, the spectacular sand dunes lining the Sigatoka River have been in the making for millions of years. Windblown and rugged, these dunes are a far cry from those of the Sahara – the sand is grey-brown in colour and covered with vines and shrubs. They are also one of the largest burial sites in the Pacific.
Cruise through mangrove forests
Mangrove forests can be found along Viti Levu’s gorgeous coastline and are extremely rich in wildlife. Take a boat trip along the meandering corridors of the mangrove forests, up the Rewa River Delta, for a chance to see myriad bird species and remote fishing villages.
Discover the Fiji Museum
Located in Thurston Gardens in Suvu, the Fiji Museum houses an extensive archaeological collection, which dates back 3,700 years and includes cultural objects representing both Fiji's indigenous inhabitants and other communities that have settled in the islands. Of particular note is the rudder of the HMS Bounty, which was destroyed by mutineers.
Enter the Garden of the Sleeping Giant
For peace and tranquillity, the Garden of the Sleeping Giant on the road between Nadi and Lautoka, at the foot of the Sabeto Mountains is the place to go. Formally a private orchid garden now open to the public, beautiful orchids and flowering plants abound here.
Explore Fiji’s magnificent underwater world
Fiji has been called “the soft coral capital of the world” and few seasoned divers will deny that Fiji has some of the finest scuba diving in the South Pacific. Diving is possible all year, with the best sites including Beqa Lagoon, Rainbow Reef or the Somosomo Straits with the famous Great White Wall.
Find inner peace at Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple
A must-see for culture vultures, Nadi’s Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple is the largest Hindu temple in the Southern Hemisphere. Illustrating the architectural diversity for which Fiji is well known, the temple is dedicated to the deity Murugan whose statue, specially carved in India, is housed in the main temple.
Go windsurfing in the Mamanuca Islands
Ideal water conditions, big waves and a year round breeze conspire to make Fiji an amazing windsurfing destination. Most resorts offer the sport – with instruction too – but if you’re a pro and are looking for something special, the best windsurfing can be found in the Mamanuca Islands.
Hike across Taveuni
Taveuni has hiking trails all over the island, but the Lavena Coastal Walk and Tavoro Falls route offer some of the best trekking opportunities. Serious hikers can test their mettle on the Vidawa Forest Walk. The trek up to Lake Tagimaucia and the Des Voeux ascent are also challenging climbs.
Hit the waves in Viti Levu
A number of surfing camps are springing up off southern and western Viti Levu. There's surf throughout the year with the best swells out of the south from March to October. Fiji's waves typically break on coral reefs. Most of the well-known spots are off Viti Levu and can often only be reached by boat.
Imbibe local culture at the Arts Village
A fusion of historical fantasy and contemporary arts, Pacific Harbour’s quaint Arts Village is well worth a visit. Take a boat tour around the lagoon, wander around the temple and explore the market, where you will be treated to various cultural performances including traditional displays of Fijian fire walking.
Keep an eye on the wildlife
Fruit bats, parrots and marine turtles are just some of the star attractions. You should also check out the acres of orchids and flowering plants in the Garden of the Sleeping Giant at the foot of the Sabeto Mountains, and the Sigatoka Sand Dunes off the main Queens Highway on Viti Levu.
Scale the heights of Mount Batilamu
Fiji isn’t short of spectacular vistas, but for unparalleled panoramas take a day trip from Nadi or Lautoka to scale the “sleeping giant”, also known as Mount Batilamu. The ascent wends through the Koroyanitu National Heritage Park through small villages, past watering holes and up vertiginous summits.
Take to the water
The warm, crystalline waters surrounding Fiji are a playground for watersports enthusiasts. It’s possible to try your hand at diving, swimming, snorkelling, surfing, sailing, fishing, wakeboarding, kayaking and much more on most of the islands. You can also swim in numerous waterfalls found in the forest, coastal parks and reserves.
Trek to the Church of Saint Francis Xavier
Perched atop a hill on Fiji’s main island, Viti Levu, The Church of Saint Francis Xavier is a must-visit for its unique marrying of European and Fijian culture. Straw mats instead of pews lie beneath beautiful frescos, originally commissioned by the former chaplain to the famous Von Trapp family (of The Sound of Music fame).
Unwind with a relaxing mud baths
The hot springs of Nadi are believed by locals to have healing properties. We can’t qualify that, but we do know the three pools, warm mud baths and lush backdrop make for a seriously relaxing experience. Located in Sabeto Valley, the springs are run by friendly locals who will help you get muddy.
Visit the sacred Naihehe Caves
Situated deep in the Sigatoka Valley, the caves are popular with tourists and locals alike. Once a fortress of Fiji's last pagan tribes, the caves contain a priest chamber, sacred pond and great Cathedral Chamber. The caves are still considered sacrosanct today and locals frequent go there to pay tribute to their ancestors.
Witness the Fijian dancing
Experiencing a meke, the traditional dance of indigenous Fijian people, is almost unavoidable, particularly if you’re staying at an island resort. Mekes are performed by women, who cover themselves with fans, and men, who dance with spears or clubs. Typically, the performers dress in the national costume of flower leis, grass skirts and tapa cloth.