Going the Fiji way

Fiji Beach Resort and Spa (HIlton)
Fiji Beach Resort and Spa (HIlton)

Fiji, Nadi

Bula! This is what you hear everywhere you go in Fiji. Bula is the friendly Fijian hello greeting to you. One of the most friendly place, locals are always smiling and greeting you where ever you go.

Nadi is the third largest town in Fiji, and is one of the main gateway for tourist in Fiji to the many smaller islands in Fiji. Air Pacific fly daily to Fiji from Sydney.


Whales tales off Schooner Island
Whales tales off Schooner Island

Cruises

You must try going out to sea while in Nadi. There are plenty of ferries and cruises available that take you out to smaller island - some are uninhabited.

I did the 'Whales Tales' cruise and they are great. The crew members are fun and food and drinks are also provided. Whales Tales sail pass by some of islands (such as Malamala, Bounty and Treasure island) and stop at their own Schooner Island. At Schooner Island, a traditional Kava ceremony will be performed, whereby you are invited to drink the kava juice. The kava juice tasted like crushed tree roots with (bitter-nish) herbs and leave a numb feeling on the tongue - a must try! There are snorkeling and fishing available to do around the island. I didn't find the coral as great around the Schooner island, however, it was a good swim around the island.

Ferries also run between Nadi and the Mamanuca Island (the crew from Whales Tales told me that Mamanuca snorkeling are even better) from 9am to 4pm each day and depart from Port Denarau.

West Bus
West Bus
Nadi Market
Nadi Market

Going to the market

If you are staying in the hotels around Port Denarau, you can take the Bula bus to the Port Denarau Retail and Commecial centre. Bula bus runs around every 10-20mins and fare are FJD7/person one way or take the taxi for FJD5. In Port Denarau, you must try what the local offer in Nadina restaurant - the crabs are one of the highlights. There are also a number of pubs and restaurant around the port.

For day trip, try catching a West Bus down to the city. The trip cost only FJD1 and takes roughly more than 1/2hr - depending which West Bus you take. There are two West Bus, a yellow one and a white one that stops outside the Hilton hotel (near the round-about). Both also cost only FJD1, but the route are different. The white West Bus wiggle through the village area and took slightly longer time to arrive in the city. But I do recommend it as it is interesting to see the kids and village life. The Yellow Bus on the other hand goes through the major road and arrive quicker at your destination. There is a big wet market (Nadi Market) selling fruits and vegetables close to the bus port and there is also a Handicraft market nearby.

Sabeto mud bath
Sabeto mud bath
the mud bath pool + our mud bath guide
the mud bath pool + our mud bath guide
Massage ladies in the distance
Massage ladies in the distance

Mud bath anyone?

There hot springs, and then there are the mud baths. The mud bath are located way out of the city in the hill area, and you need to get a cab (who is willing) to get there - its gravel road. Remember to check the price of the taxi to and fro before you board the taxi. You need to get them to wait for you there, as there are no other taxi available to get you back. Mine cost FJD100 from the town center and back to our hotel.

Once you get there, you will be taken on a short tour around the area and there is also a small hut for you to change. How do you do it with the mud bath? First, you dip yourself in the mud pool and then get out to get mud rubbed onto you, back into the mud pool then walk over to the warm hot spring bath to get rid of the mud. The hot mud is believe to give you therapeutic benefits, and I suggest to get to the end of the pool where it is heated where possible - the cooler area feels like there are little critters crawling around you (twigs? who knows!).

Where do you find this mud bath/hot spring? It is near to the Garden of Sleeping Giant (orchid farm) pass the Nadi airport. The Sabeto mud bath belongs to the local village clan and its one of the only two mud baths in all of Fiji. The Sabeto hot spring/mud bath entry cost FJD12 per person and include both mud bath and hot spring. You can also get the ladies there to gives you a long good massage, this will cost you around FJD20-25 for a 20min open air massage. Opening hours are from 8am - 4pm Monday to Sunday.

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