The perfect contrast

The contrasting colours of Fiji have it all for those wanting a relaxing, nature-filled vacation.

©Andrey Narchuk/500px

Author

Kate Veteri

Destination: Fiji

Are you craving a South Pacific getaway surrounded by beaches and palm trees? Look no further than the picturesque coastline of Fiji. This serene tropical paradise has a world of nature to help shift any visitor’s state of mind to relaxation.

Satisfy your sense of adventure with a range of nature-based adventures across the 332 islands. Strolling through lush botanical gardens will relax you, and increase your knowledge of the native flora and their various uses. Visitors can witness the brilliance of nature on a larger scale with the migration of humpback whales. Watch them splash in the clear-cut water, or see one of five species of playful sea turtles swimming alongside the pods of spinner dolphins that call Fijian waters home.

From the deep blue colours of the world-famous dive sites to the lush greenery of dense rainforests, Taveuni island is the dream destination for eco-enthused tourists. The contrasting colours of the reefs offer visitors the luxury of bathing in the sunshine on either white or black sand beaches. If you’re short of time, view all the island has to offer from 1241 metres-high with a hike up Taveuni’s dormant volcano. The breathtaking views of the island’s tropical rainforest – home to native Fijian wildlife and rare flora – are complemented by the rich volcanic soils that give this nature-filled haven the name ‘Garden Island’. To access the third largest Fijian island visitors can either travel via plane or take a ferry from Suva, the country’s capital.

Fiji
Explore Fiji's world-famous reefs
©Andrey Narchuk/500px
Fijian beach sunset
The sun setting on a Fijian beach
©Jacek Sniecikowski/500px

While Suva is everything you would expect from a capital city with shopping malls, restaurants and entertainment, the city is also home to historical colonial architecture. Dutch explorer Abel Tasman visited the Fiji in 1643 while looking for the Great Southern Continent, but the nation didn’t see the settlement of Europeans until the 19th century. Emerging from a culturally rich past the capital remains to this day a thriving scene of diversity for residents and visitors alike. Restaurants throughout the city offer traditional Fijian cuisine alongside tasty fare from people of Chinese, Indian and European ancestry. The cuisines found in the heart of the nation demonstrate East Asian and European backgrounds.

Fiji’s Coral Coast is located on the south of the Viti Levu island. Home to the country’s only wildlife park, Kula Wild Adventure Park, and the world’s only rail-mounted electric assisted pushbike carriages, Ecotrax, Coral Coast fits right in with the rest of Fiji and its magical scenery. Kula Wild Adventure Park was initially established as a bird park in the late 1980s but has grown to be an environmental showpiece of the South Pacific. Proudly identified as Fiji’s endangered species breeding facility, the park works in cooperation with a number of animal protection agencies across Fiji and Australia.

Fiji has nature-filled surroundings and adventure for everyone to enjoy

The eco-park has more than a focus on the protection of endangered species. It is a diverse fun-filled family experience. Go slow, walking amongst the trees on the elevated boardwalks that span across acres of natural forest, or experience the feeling of flight with the birds on Fiji’s only roller-coaster zip rail. After soaring through the air, land with your feet in the water on the biggest and best in waterslide adventures – the park’s jungle waterslide and the children’s splash pool. With animal displays and interactions with both land and sea creatures, there is something for every animal-loving member of the family.

Enjoy more of the available flora and fauna with Ecotrax, a three-hour adventure ride through beautiful bush, villages and fields. Pedal your way through peaceful tracks on the alluring coastline, or sit back and simply use the accelerator to cruise along. The ultimate family experience doesn’t stop there. Take a break and admire the remote beaches and clear water while sipping coconut drinks and snacking on tropical fruit.

If remote is what you are looking for, challenge yourself in both accessibility and liveability on the Yasawa Islands. With a history of untouched coastline, the islands – situated northwest of Viti Levu – are accessible yet remote. Up until the 1950s visiting the Yasawa Islands was limited to cruise ships stopping nearby, with passengers forbidden to step foot on the shore. The islands don’t have banks or shopping malls, only accommodation and a vast array of classic blue-water activities. From relaxing cruise ship tours to adrenaline-inducing shark dives, the archipelago of around 20 pristine volcanic islands offers the best in activity-based pastimes.

Fiji - Jungle Waterfall
Jungle waterfall, Taveuni island
©KieselUndStein/Getty Images
Fiji - Taveuni Island
Taveuni island is the dream destination for eco-enthused tourists
©Tien Le/Getty Images

Aligning closely with the heat of the many volcanoes on the islands, one of Fiji’s most intense traditional ceremonies is fire walking. While in modern Fijian culture this ceremony is mainly performed for tourists, traditionally tribesmen would refrain from eating coconuts before walking in single file, barefoot across a pit of red-hot stones because they believed it would stop them from getting badly burned. Following the immersion in traditional cultural activities get a sense of modern-day Fijian culture by watching a football game. Rugby Union is considered to be the national sport of the country, and games are regularly played against the fellow Pacific Island teams of Samoa and Tonga.

Whether it’s walking through plant-filled forests, swimming amongst the reefs and marine life, or immersing yourself in traditional and modern culture, Fiji has nature-filled surroundings and adventure for everyone to enjoy.

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