Each year, countless honeymooners descend upon Fiji and with good reason. If you aren’t honeymooning in Fiji, chances are, you’ll want to after flipping through photographs of its clear blue waters and white sandy beaches. And while Tom Hanks’ character in the Fiji filmed movie Castaway, might have yearned to leave his lonely island paradise, couples will have trouble getting on that plane back home.
You won’t need a volleyball named Wilson to keep your company. Instead, Fiji provides some of the warmest locals around and some of the best scenery to boot. You can island hop, chase waterfalls, explore extensive reefs and sink your toes into powdery sands. Pack your snorkel, swimsuit, and sense of adventure and plan the ultimate honeymoon in Fiji. We’re here to help you get started, providing all the answers to your most pressing questions about honeymooning in this South Pacific dream.
Where Exactly is Fiji?
We all have preconceived notions of Fiji appearing to fall straight out of Robinson Crusoe. However, the archipelago nation is much more than just the work of fiction. Fiji rests in the South Pacific Ocean, some 2,000 kilometers east of Australia. It is made up of 333 islands, with more than 100 of those islands inhabited.
When Should We Go?
If you are plotting your honeymoon to Fiji, you need to figure out what time of year will work for your visit. The busy season falls in July and August. Many Australians and New Zealanders descend upon the archipelago during this time. Rates, as a result, can escalate during the high season. The dry season, from June to September, usually brings fine tropical conditions, even if it is technically the winter season for Fiji. Average highs reach to around 83°F. The wet season falls from November through April. Called the summer season, conditions during this period are warm and extremely humid. Average highs top out around 88°F. If you can, try to plan your visit around the solstice in late September and March when you can experience a full moon over Fiji.
How Long Should We Stay?
Some types of travelers budget and plan out just a week for beach type destinations like Fiji. However, you might be a bit disappointed if you only spend a week in the archipelago. As Fiji is often a long way to travel for a week, you eat up a fair amount of time just getting there. While it can be done in a week, you might feel rushed and jet lagged the whole time. Couples should factor in travel days not just on the arriving and departing end but also between islands. As Fiji is composed of loads of islands, more travel time can eat up your days getting from one to the other.
How Do We Get There?
Getting to Fiji is half the battle. You can really only arrive by plane. A flight from Los Angeles to Fiji can take 11 hours or more depending on connections and routes. In addition to lengthy plane rides, flights can also be sporadic and infrequent. Most international flights land at Nadi International Airport (NAN), perched on the western side of the island of Viti Levu. In addition to NAN, you can also reach Fiji from Samoa and Tonga at Nausori Airport (SUV), 19 kilometers from Suva. The main airlines to service Fiji include Air New Zealand, Air Pacific, Korean Air, Pacific Blue and Qantas Airways.
What Should We Pack?
Your swimsuit shouldn’t be the only thing on your packing list for your honeymoon on the islands. Fiji calls for a number of specialty items that you might not bring to other parts of the world. First, select breathable fabrics for all of your outfits. As Fiji resides in a tropical climate, it is best to have fabrics that will stand up to the humidity. Also, the mosquitoes in Fiji can be quite mean. Pack bug repellent if you don’t want to go home looking like you are permanently sporting polka dots. If you plan on exploring Fiji’s reefs and swimming, reef shoes can come in handy. Most of the islands that make up Fiji are surrounded by coral reefs. Lastly, nothing can rain on a honeymoon parade more than seasickness. With all of those boat rides in between island stops, you want to be sure you can stand up to rough seas.
How Should We Get Around?
As Fiji is made up of islands, most likely you will travel by boat once you touch down. While there are buses on the major islands, you can easily head to more remote islands by boat. In fact, many resorts even have their own boat services. Regular ferries service Viti Levu with Vanua Levu, Ovalau, and Tavenui.
And if you have always wanted to live out some fantasy of traveling from island to island by plane, you can. Fiji offers relatively affordable and fast air service to different islands. While the planes are small, the flights are often the best way to get around. Couples should know that their luggage might not always travel with them on board due to weight limits. However, your bags will either be there waiting for you or arriving shortly after you touch down on another plane.
Where Should We Go?
As Fiji is made up of hundreds of islands, deciding where to go can be a bit challenging. For starters, you can explore Viti Levu, the country’s largest island. The capital of Suva is home to a number of attractions including the Fiji Museum. The museum provides a fine introduction to the culture and history of Fiji. On the west coast, you will find Nadi and its Sri Siva Subrahmaniya Swami Temple. The Hindu temple is the largest in the Southern Hemisphere.
Island Groups --
Once you have explored Viti Levu, you can move on to some of Fiji’s groups of islands. Mamanuca Islands are one of the country’s most popular destinations. The chain of 20 islands near Nadi and Denarau boasts an established resort area. Activities in the island group include parasailing, windsurfing, dolphin watching, surfing and scuba diving. You also might recognize the Mamanuca Islands from the film Castaway.
In addition to the Mamanuca Islands, honeymooners might also want to explore the Yasawa Islands. A bit more rugged and remote than the Mamanuca Islands, this island group features more traditional villages and some of the biggest volcanic peaks in Fiji. If hiking is your poison, head to Waya Island for some of Fiji’s best trails.
For culture seekers, we suggest heading to the Lomaiviti Island, specifically the country’s first capital of Levuka. With a more laid back spirit, the island chain can provide island life at its best. Levuka is worth exploring alone. Founded as a whaling settlement in 1830, it has received UNESCO’s approval for it stands as a rare example of a colonial port town.
Parks and Gardens --
While you are out exploring Fiji’s different island groups, you might happen upon its many parks and gardens. Beginning at Bouma National Heritage Park, honeymooners will uncover 57 square miles of rainforest and coastal forest. The park includes three waterfalls, each with their own natural swimming pools. Bouma National Heritage Park rests on Taveuni Island.
Even right after you touch down at Nadi Airport, you can find one of Fiji’s most celebrated gardens. The Garden of the Sleeping Giant once served as the private collection of late American actor Raymond Burr. Now open to the public, the gardens boast a vast collection of more than 2,000 varieties of Asian orchids.
What Should We Do?
Without question, many come to Fiji to snorkel and dive. Some of the best of Fiji lurks below the surface. Due to its warm and clear waters, diving and snorkeling conditions prove ideal. While you can dive and snorkel almost everywhere in Fiji, there are a few hot spots. The Bligh Passage just northwest of Viti Levu provides a wealth of marine life and an elaborate reef. If diving with sharks is more of your thing, you can at the Beqa Shark Diving. Located in the Shark Reef Marine Reserve, couples can truly test the waters of their new marriage by diving with reef sharks, lemon sharks, and bull sharks.
Known as the Soft Coral Capital of the World, Fiji provides thousands of species of fish and several hundred types of coral to see. Another dive site you won’t want to miss is the Great Astrolabe Reef. One of the world’s longest barrier reefs, divers can explore a wealth of tunnels and canyons. The Great Astrolabe Reef sits beyond Kadavu Island.
In addition to diving and snorkeling, you can put away your mask and goggles for a while and arrange for a visit to a traditional Fijian village. Many tour companies and resorts can arrange for you to experience life in a true Fijian village. These tours generally consist of welcoming ceremonies that are heavy on the kava, a numbing drink from the pepper plant. Afterward you are most likely given a tour of the village to see how locals conduct their day to day lives.
Where Should You Stay?
Fiji, despite its size, is quite abundant with accommodations. Individual villas and bungalows have become a favorite type of accommodations in Fiji, ones perched right over the water or within close range of soft sands. With nearly 100 resorts to choose from throughout the islands, honeymooners can face a difficult task when trying to figure out where to stay.
If you are looking for privacy and seclusion, we recommend staying on Laucala Private Island. Close to Taveuni Island, this luxury resort features twenty-five villas, all spread out on a tranquil private island. The 3,500-acre property provides couples with all of the privacy they need and luxury too.
What sets Laucala Private Island above some of the other options in Fiji are its villa amenities. We love the private swimming pool, outdoor showers, private gardens and full bar in each bungalow. Honeymooners can also appreciate staying in the ultimate vision of South Pacific paradise under thatched roofs. Some of the villas at Laucala Private Island even perch over the water while others sit on a lush plateau looking out on the coast.
Being that the resort occupies its own island, guests can utilize five different restaurants on site or have their meals served in their own private villa. Laucala Private Island can also arrange for a number of activities like sailing, canoeing, sunset cruises, scuba diving, horseback riding and world-class golf.
Where and What Should We Eat?
It is hard to go wrong dining in Fiji. Most of the dining options are casual and mix Fijian, Chinese and Indian flavors. One experience you won’t want to miss is the chance to pick up fresh fruits at a local market. Nearly every town has one where you can find fruits, vegetables, and snacks. The Suva Municipal Market is particularly notable for its exotic fruits and fresh pineapple juice stands.
Traditional dishes throughout the island boil down to a few staples. Couples will feast on loads of baked or boiled fish. Kokoda is one of those classics, consisting of raw fish marinated in coconut milk and lime juice. Lovos is also worth a taste, a chicken, pork, taro root and coconut milk dish that is wrapped in banana leaves and steamed.
If you are looking for upscale Fijian cuisine on your honeymoon, it never hurts to check out Surf ‘n’ Turf. As one of the most upscale restaurants in Savusavu, you can find a dinner menu filled with shellfish, meats, and pasta. Meals come with a view as the restaurant opens up its terrace overlooking the water.
And perhaps most notably, you can cheers to your marriage with the traditional drink of Fiji, kava. The somewhat sedative drink comes from the pepper plant. If you enter into really any social situation with locals, you will most likely be given a cup of kava. It acts as a welcome to visitors. Once you taste kava, you will find your lips and tongue become a bit numb and you might feel a bit sluggish. At the same time, feeling sluggish in a South Pacific paradise isn’t really a problem with plentiful beaches to lounge.
Have you been to Fiji? Share your favorite experience on the islands with us in the comments below.