Fiji: The Ultimate Trip to Paradise?
By Blanche Delany
Last updated: 19th July 2012
So here’s a fun fact; Fiji is situated on the 180 degree meridian (commonly known as the International Date Line), which means that it is one of the first places in the world to greet each new day. In fact, there’s a location on the island of Taveuni where you can stand with one foot in the current day and one foot in the day before- that’s pretty remarkable, I’m sure you agree.
This is not, however, the only notable aspect of Fiji that makes it well worth a visit, so read on to find out more…
The islands of Fiji are found in the South Pacific Ocean, approximately 2000km northeast of New Zealand’s North Island. Made up of 333 volcanic islands, much of the land mass is mountainous and covered in dense rainforest, making it the ideal destination to explore.
Well known for their picture perfect coastlines of white sand and clear blue waters, a trip to the Fijian islands is probably as close to paradise as you can get. In 2010 there were over 630,000 visitors to the country, and it seems that the number of tourists travelling to the islands is on the increase. Island hopping across the country is by far the best way to see everything on offer, taking advantage of the range of activities and cultural diversions of the country.
The underwater scenery of the island is equally as mesmerising as the surroundings above sea level, with some of the best and most accessible dives of the Pacific available. With over 4000 square miles of coral reef to explore (including the Great Astrolabe Reef), Fiji’s waters are home to over 1500 species of sea life and will not disappoint.
Gap 360 runs two programmes to Fiji, both hop-on hop-off bus tours around Vita Levu and its satellite islands. Vita Levu is the main island of Fiji, followed by Vanua Levu. The first of the Gap 360 programmes is the ‘Lei Low’ trip, which takes place over 6 days, based around Vita Levu and Beachcomber Island, while the ‘Triple Treat’ programme is an extended 10-day trip and includes an additional trip to Manatary Island.
However, if you want to see more than just the exotic shores of Fiji then why not consider the Global 360 programme, which includes the 10 day ‘Triple Treat’ island tour alongside a multitude of other destinations across the globe- perfect!
So why choose the Fijian adventure?
Travelling in a group of about 15 people you will experience a multitude of what Fiji has to offer while meeting some great likeminded people. The hop-on hop-off aspect of the trip means that you have ultimate flexibility when it comes to how long you want to stay at any stop of the tour, so if you fancy lying on a beach for a week then you’ve got the freedom to do it! Activities included in the trip are varied and exciting, including a sevusevu welcoming ceremony, sand boarding, rainforest treks through the Namosi Highlands, waterfall swimming, and a visit to the Sabeto valley natural hot pools.
The more cultural features of the trip include visits to local villages, schools and orphanages where you will witness authentic daily life in a Fijian community. Furthermore, the Fijian guides on the trip are fountains of knowledge when it comes to the islands, so be sure to take advantage of this and ask them anything you want to know!
A trip to Fiji will give you the perfect opportunity to relax and unwind on an idyllic beach, trek through some exotic rainforests, and take part in as much or as little of the optional activities that will be offered to you throughout the trip. Rest assured, Fiji shows you the best of both breathtaking scenery and a unique cultural experience; this is not a trip that you will soon forget. So make the most of this opportunity and book your trip to paradise today!