Bula!!! Planning on travelling somewhere far off? Someplace Serene? How does Fiji Island Hopping a 2 Week Itinerary sound to you? This South Pacific Island will be the best vacation that you will ever plan. If you are looking for something quite yet beautiful, rooted and untouched then there is no better suggestion than Fiji Islands.
FIJI ISLAND HOPPING or 2 WEEKS In FIJI, will be the perfect romantic honeymoon destination, backpacking destination, for the extravagant and the budget traveller, for marine lovers and the beach bums.
Where is Fiji?
Fiji is an Island country, part of Oceania in the South Pacific Ocean. It is about 2000 kilometres northeast of New Zealand’s North Island. More than 330 Island make up the Fiji Island Country. Of which 110 are inhabited and the over 500 are perfect for a holiday Destination.
The Fiji Islands are one of the most exotic Island destinations in the world. Since this Polynesian Island is located in the South Pacific Ocean it is very well connected with Brisbane and Sydney in Australia and Auckland, New Zealand by air.
Suva is the capital of Fiji and also a port. A major population of Fiji reside in Nadi and Suva. Both these cities are like any other cities, commercially developed. It is easy to find malls, supermarkets, cinemas etc. These cities are in the largest island called the Viti Levu.
On the other hand, the Yasawa Islands is quite a contrast.
Where is the Yasawa Island?
On the North-West corridor of the mainland Viti Levu lies the Yasawa stretch of islands. The Yasawa Stretch is away from all the civilization and technology that one can possibly think off. It is not easy to find ATM’s, or any type of convenience store in these islands. The Yasawa Stretch is Fiji’s Tourist Attraction.
Why We Chose Yasawa Island?
Yasawa Island seemed like the place that we were looking for. Away from mobile reception, away from civilization and commercialization. This Island’s charm is its untouched beauty. It is away from everything man-made. The accommodation options range from internationally owned luxury resorts to locally owned budget backpackers with a traditional touch.
Any time you arrive at any one of these islands you would be welcomed with a traditional song, flower garlands and a loud BULA!!!. Bula in the local language means Hello. Undoubtedly, these islands are the most picturesque offerings from Fiji.
Visa requirements for Indians entering Fiji:
As Indian nationals, it will be easier to transit through Hong Kong and fly straight to Nadi, avoid hassles of transit visas and avail of the generous 4 months valid visa on arrival into Fiji. So, yes! Visa on arrival for Indian nationals but do ensure if you are transiting from Australia or New Zealand, you do require a transit visa.
Fiji Island Hopping 2 week Itinerary
Let’s summon this Fiji Island Hopping 2 week Itinerary tour we will focus on one of the best places to visit in Fiji the Yasawa stretch of Islands.
How to reach Yasawa Island?
Fortunately, reaching these islands is quite simple. There are a couple of ways to access the Yasawa Islands:
- Yasawa Flyer Island ferry.
We chose to stick to the Yasawa Flyer firstly because they are obviously cheaper and secondly, we wanted to stay close to the wilderness. Having said that, the seaplanes do offer an aerial and panoramic view of the pristine islands. So, this would completely depend on one’s personal choice, Extra money and better view or staying rooted.
Our arrival in Nadi was late in the afternoon and hence we decided to book our stay in Nadi before we could start our Fiji Vacations.
Awesome Adventure Tours:
Arriving in Nadi was the beginning of our cultural experience. Right from the airport staffs to ground staffs to immigration an custom officers, they all were extremely friendly and welcoming. It was great to witness the traditional Fijian performance at the airport and be greeted by a loud BULA (“Hello” in Fijian.)
Just after the baggage area before exiting the airport, we found a kiosk operated by Awesome Adventures Fiji. Before coming to Fiji I had read and heard volumes about this company.
Awesome Adventures had various packages to offer for a week or 2 weeks in Fiji with a variety of stay and activity options.
As we had the liberty of time, we opted for their BULA COMBO PASS, which was valid for a fortnight. The Bula pass works as the hop on hop of bus. You can choose to hop to as many islands as you like using the Yasawa Island Ferry, bearing in mind the stay options. Those were limited to six resort vouchers depending on your choice. Book Tours in Fiji Here
Note: Indifferent to the rest of the world, Fijians have their own local resort grading systems. There is no star rating, instead, they categorize accommodations as 1 coconut and 2 coconuts.
Irrespective of what coconut your choose, all resorts offer a choice of backpackers, lodges and bures (pronounced ‘boo-rays’, means a small thatched hut offering more privacy).
Typically, 1 coconut properties are very basic, you will be expected to carry your own towels, soaps and other amenities. So if you are fussy with hot water, air-conditioned rooms and amenities, these are not for you. The water supply is tepid and the air is naturally conditioned. These properties are owned and run by local Fijian Islanders who love hosting and sharing their lives with the guests. The meals provided here are not gourmet, but made from local produce, fresh catch and are very filling.
The 2 coconut properties are more modern, offering higher standards of accommodation and amenities, but still with a strong Fijian flavour. Ownership and management of these properties is a mix of Fijian and European, with Fijian staff. There’s aircon or fans during generator operating hours. Meals are generally more varied with more courses and of a higher standard than one coconut properties.
So for the first night, we were put up in a hotel in Nadi and our Fiji Island Hopping for 2 weeks would begin the next morning. All of this was included in our Bula Combo Pass.
Things to carry before your Fiji Island Tour:
- We vehemently recommend that you stock up for water, and basic nibbles, especially, if you are travelling with kids. Remember, the island has no basic resources.
- Keep in mind, the resort meal timings are very specific, like breakfast is served from 9 am to 10 am ONLY and nothing to eat if you get hungry before, lunch is served at 1 pm. There are no banks and cash machines at the islands. A daily cash expenditure of $30-$40 can be expected depending on the activities you choose. Your last bet for ATM machines and supermarket is at Port Denarau, from where the island ferry departs. We got a bit overboard and also carried a couple of beer crates with us, which later turned out to be a blessing as alcohol is fairly expensive at the islands.
- Sunscreen and some Aleo Vera Gel, just in case you get sunburnt the Aleo Vera helps it cool down.
- If, you wish to carry your snorkelling gears. This, however, is not mandatory as it is been provided by the property that you choose your activities from.
- Water Cameras. If you have forgotten it, Yasawa flyers sell them on board.
- Obviously, more than a couple of swimwear.
- Sun Glasses.
Talking of Islands check out Puerto Rico Itinerary another beautiful Island Destination one could consider.
Yawasa Island Ferry:
Our Fiji Package included breakfast at the hotel in Nadi and the pick up from the hotel on a coach at around 07:00 am for our travel to Port Denarau where we checked in for our island ferry. Be mindful as there is a weight limit for each piece of luggage checked into the ferry.
The routing of the Yasawa flyers was such that it would travel northbound till the northernmost island of Nacula. Cruising through the stunningly beautiful islands of FIJI. This would be a great way if, you stay seated till the end of the island and have a look at all the islands that you would cross and make a mental note on where you would like to stop on the way back. The maximum time it takes to reach towards the end of the islands is 5 hours.
Best Islands to Visit In Fiji and Things to Do in Fiji:
Blue Lagoon Island: ( 2 days)
The ferry will cruise through some stunningly beautiful lagoons and islands where you will be up for a lot of visual treat of the coolest blue waters, colourful corals and marine life. The Northernmost islet of the Nacula group of Islands hosts the stunningly beautiful Blue Lagoon Island and resort. The crystal clear water and its perfect temperature would compel you to take a dip.
Blue Lagoon Island resort is a 2 coconut property, internationally operated with Fijian staff. Well maintained with all comfortable amenities, lots of water activities to offer. At the end of the buffet, the hotel staff would entertain guests with Fijian art forms.
Activities of this island: A perfect place to get scuba diving lessons as neighbouring island resorts offer scuba diving at blue lagoon island with additional transfer charges. Another must do here is their cave snorkelling and during the day, the whole island is at your disposal to snorkel and kayak.
Naviti Island White Sandy Beach: (2 Days)
After experiencing some luxury at the blue lagoon resort start your journey southbound to your next island stop the White Sandy Beach at Naviti Island. As the name suggests the island offers white sand and stunning view.
The White Sandy Beach Resort is a 1 coconut property, however, arrival into this island was very homely and warm as the locals welcomed us with a traditional island song followed by a loud BULA!!!!! The rooms were not as fancy however they were more rooted.
The food was quite traditional and always served hot. There is a provisional store where you can find a pack of noodles, biscuits and some snack to suffice your mid-meal hunger. The beach is open to snorkelling and kayaking. White Sandy beach resort is on the western perimeter of the Naviti island and has access to over a mile of WHITE SAND BEACH.
Activities from this island: Must do Manta Ray snorkelling.
If you are a mid-meal person then this resort will suit your needs. The friendly resort staff would climb up the coconut trees to bring down some fresh coconuts for the guest and also perform acrobatics skills while doing so.
Matacawa Levu Island Long Beach Resort: (3 nights)
This Island gets this name because it actually is a long beach. Long Beach is located at a channel between two islands and experiences dramatic high and low tides. During low tide, the whole channel would completely dry out giving you the opportunity to walk between the 2 islands. During the high tides, the water would be about 4-5 feet.
Activities of this island: Highly recommend walking to the village and school. Its called the village tour. It will be a great time to get acquainted with the locals, kids and their schooling system. The walk is through the beautiful green forest. Crossing small villages and then reaching the school.
Do Not Miss: Manat Ray Snorkelling if you haven’t done it yet and the Village tour is the must too.
The evenings at White sandy are quite entertaining. As these multitalented young boys dress up in their traditional tribal outfits and perform dance shows, fire acrobatics and juggling. The staff also had a very unique way of summoning the guest for meals. They would beat up a hollow wood bark to indicate that the food was ready to be served. The chef here was so kind, that when he learnt I preferred vegetarian food, he cooked up a variety of vegan meals and dessert. The homely feeling made our stay at the long beach for 3 days.
Waya Lai Lai: Waya Lai Lai Island Resort. (3 Nights)
Waya Lai Lai Island situated on the cliff offering a stunning view of the Sea. This Island resort did not have a very significant beach. But we did notice rough seas and rigorous high tides. Waya Lai Lai resort is run by locals and out of all the other islands they had a fairly higher occupancy and also their food buffet spread was the best. The buffet and the entertainment arrangement was on a huge patio overlooking the sea, where they would also organize engaging games and activities for the guest before dinner.
Activities from this island: Reef shark snorkelling and harpoon fishing. Reef Shark snorkelling was very entertaining as the guides would go underwater and form rings, play with baby sharks. They would bring the sharks close to you giving you the opportunity to swim and play with them.
South Sea Island: (1 night)
South Sea Island, amongst the tiniest island that you may have visited in the last few days in Fiji. You can walk around the circumference of this Island in 15 minutes. South Sea Island resorts host a very typical hostel style accommodation with multiple bunks and common toilets. This will be a great way to meet your fellow backpacker enthusiasts. You could choose to start here if you are looking for some travel companions.
This resort does not have any bures. This is very typical for the backpacking crowd. This Island resort did not have much to offer with regards to activities, however, it is used as a transit for people who have booked for the Castaway Island days trips. The resort offered a free 10-minute glass bottom boat tour that took us around the island to experience the marine life.
Depending on the number of days you can plan your visit to the above islands and customize it for a week in Fiji.
Castaway Island, Fiji’s Luxury Resort:
Castaway Island Resort is located in the Hearts of Mamanuca Islands Group. This pristine, super luxury 4-star private island resort offers day trips to traveller’s allowing them to access castaway’s well-equipped facilities. Day trip to Castaway Island is a fantastic and a reasonable way to explore a tiny portion of Mamanuca Islands. If you are looking for private Islands in Fiji or want to stay in Fiji’s Luxury Resort look for Mamanuca Island. An otherwise a full day trip that we did, will give you enough time to explore and indulge in the popular water activities in and around Castaway Island.
The day trip tour includes gears for all water activities like snorkelling goggles, kayaks, wind surfboards life jackets etc. Even buffet Lunch was included as a part of the tour. The tour will end at Port Denarau. If you still have a couple of days left, we recommend paying a visit to the capital city of Suva. Since you have explored the Islands and water it will be great to take a view of the land and the roads.
We personally took a 3 days road trip from Port Denarau in Nadi to Suva. On the boat, we got to talking with a Fijian, who knew a local car rental. The car was ready when we arrived at the port.
Distance between Nadi To Suva: 193km/ 120miles. 3hours 18 mins.
The Drive to Suva will take you through the scenic windy coastal roads of Fiji. It is recommended to do this journey during the daytime as it is difficult to handle windy roads in the dark. Having said that drive through the night was however safe.
Suva is the capital and the largest city of this South Pacific Island Fiji. Suva hosts all the fancy mall’s restaurants, parks, ATM’s that you probably missed in the Islands. There are beautiful markets, gardens, museums and plenty of sports and cultural activities around. Accommodation from budget to fancy or luxury is also easy to find. Suva hosts a vibrant nightlife too.
Staring the trip from Nadi, getting mesmerized by the serenity and beauty of Yasawa’s and getting back to reality in Suva will be your complete 2 Week Itinerary to Fiji. Exploring the best Islands of Fiji and getting connected with the locals will lead to a complete desired and much awaited Fiji Holidays that one can think off.
Looking for something similar but in Europe an Island with lots of history and beauty? There is no better place than Sicily.
Let me end by giving you a little insight into the Cost involved in executing Fiji Island Hopping a 2-week Itinerary.
How Much will it cost for 2 people for 15 days in Fiji?
Bear in mind this is just a personal experience, prices may vary as per your stay package, activities you choose etc. The total we spent for 15 days for 2 people, which included all of the above activities, stay and car rental, was USD 3500.
This marked the end of our unwinding 2 Weeks trip to Fiji. Fiji Island Hopping taught us to be content with the bare minimums and be resourceful. We would choose Fiji over any other commercialized, over expensive island destination, as it is still untouched, rooted, has colourful marine life and beautiful people.
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Enjoy and Safe Travels.
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