If you want to plan a tropical vacation off the beaten path, consider Fiji. There are over 300 separate islands in this chain in the Southwest Pacific, though only about 100 are inhabited, leaving plenty of room for exploration during your stay. Most of Fijis population lives on the islands of Vanau Levu and Viti Levu. Fiji is located approximately midway between the Kingdom of Tonga and Vanuatu.
Stay on one island of Fiji for the duration of your stay, or travel to various locations to explore the dramatic changes in scenery. Fiji offers something for everyone, from a romantic getaway to a family-friendly adventure. Like any tropical island vacation, Fiji offers white sandy beaches, palm trees, and of course beautiful blue skies. The islands rise into peaks up to 4,250 feet tall covered with tropical forests.
Fiji was first settled about three thousand years ago by immigrants from Tonga and other Pacific islands; it was not settled by Europeans until the nineteenth century, when it became a British colony.
Fiji gained its independence in 1970. Today, most residents are of mixed Polynesian and Melanesian ancestry, although a significant minority is Indo-Fijians, or descendants of Indian laborers brought by the British colonizers in the nineteenth century.
Unlike Hawaii and other popular destinations, Fiji offers a completely unspoiled island paradise, just like what you see in vacation brochures. On the isolated islands of Fiji, you wont run into crowded beaches or large supermarkets. This unique destination is known for recreation activities including hiking in the tropical forests and scuba diving or snorkeling in the blue waters. Croquet and golf are available if you prefer a more organized sport.
The islands of Fiji are known for their hospitality, with service on hand to ensure that you experience a luxurious stay. There is no such thing as a room without a view in Fiji; you can be sure that every room will overlook an island paradise.
No matter which island of Fiji you choose to visit, be sure to soak in plenty of the local island culture. Over the centuries, a unique Fijian culture developed from Samoan, Tongan, Melanesian, Indian, Chinese, and European traditions. Today, the indigenous Fijian culture is still very alive, and overall the culture of the Fijian islands is still very traditional. In fact, many lodgings where you may be staying still have a thatched roof, like a tiki hut. The heavy Polynesian influence includes the worship of tikis and related traditions. As a result, youll see many tiki masks, statues, and other carvings during your stay in Fiji.
Partake in the local culture by visiting the Fiji Museum, which features the political, archaeological, and cultural history of the islands. Learn to dance the meke from native inhabitants, whose native dance is done while dressed in leis and grass skirts. Opportunities are also available to float down one of the many rivers on a traditional bamboo raft. For the best evening experience of modern Fiji culture, visit Suva, the capital, where local bars, restaurants, and other nightlife are available.