After loosing a day to the time difference and watching numerous films on a 12 hour flight, we have finally arrived in Fiji!
We decided to squeeze Fiji in for a couple of days before heading off to the next place since after all we are on the other side of the world.
We are currently staying in one of the Bamboo Hostels in Nadi. Mainly because they are so cheap.
As we arrived quite early in the day we wandered around the area to get our bearings. Now everywhere you go you will hear people greeting you with “Bula” which basically means hello, welcome and everything in between. Luckily an easy word to remember and the only word you will need to remember.
We came across a small stall with two local guys claiming to be selling local merchandise made from their village. They also asked if we wanted to go clubbing with them and if we wanted to buy weed off of them. We thought better and made our excuses and moved on.
We then headed back to the hostel for some food and to relax for the rest of the day.
As a tip, do not have high expectations of the food. We were hoping for some local cuisine or at least a kitchen we could use to make our own food in, but one there is no kitchen for guest use and two the food you can buy is always cold and bland. And overpriced, Fiji wasn’t as cheap as we had expected it to be, their prices almost matched that of prices back at home.
Now, when we arrived in America we never really had to deal with jetlag. Fiji on the other hand… safe to say we were in bed pretty early the first night. But not until we watched the sunset.
On our first full day we headed into Nandi town to look around the shops and see if we could get any gifts.
We ended up getting pulled into the local tourist shop which I had read online was legitimate in the money made went to the surrounding villages. We were given the local welcome ceremony with kava to drink. The guys working at the shop really push their sales and you would feel guilty leaving without buying anything. Especially after being officially welcomed into Fiji with kava.
Now the only reason we ended up in the shop was because we were looking for somewhere good to eat. A guy we assumed to be a local said he would show us a good place to eat. But via his shop… that is how we got there. He then, to his word, took us to a place for food.
We finally ate a local dish which consisted of the fish of the day in a cold coconut broth. It was pleasant enough. We noticed how the guy from earlier kept bringing more and more tourists to the same place to eat… something clearly going on there. We were happy to call it a day by that point but he was insistent on taking us to the local travel agents to get a good deal on a tour to one of the islands.
As we have a bit more sense and the place didn’t look right, we politely spoke to the lady working there and said that we didn’t have any money on us and would be back once we made a decision. Of course, we didn’t go back.
At our hostel there was a notice informing guests that there are fake travel agents out to rip you off by selling invalid tickets so they could take your money. Best to stick to the travel agents at the hostel or hotels and just negotiate the price.
After our interesting day we ended it by watching the sunset over the ocean.
We had however learnt that Fijians used to be cannibals. We found this out as any local you get chatting to makes a comment about how thankful they are that Britain had colonised Fiji so that they are no longer cannibals. Well mostly. There are still cases of cannibalism on the island… so don’t stray from the path…
They also enjoy telling you that Fiji stands for “Fun In Jungle Island”.
Our next day was a little less eventful as Sunday in Fiji means almost everything is closed. So we took advantage of a lazy day and spent it on the beach. But we have booked a tour for our last full day in Fiji tomorrow.
Top tip to anyone thinking of travelling to Fiji, spend as little time on the mainland and island hop as much as you can. But book it all beforehand so you wont get ripped off or potentially scammed. Also, Fiji isn’t as cheap as it appears, be prepared to part with quite a bit of your money, not the best Island for a budget holiday which is why 2/3 of our full days consisted of doing not very much.