This seductive chain of South Pacific islands offers a world of mystery, surprise, and spectacular scenery.
From any seaplane window or over-water bungalow, the waters surrounding Fiji look like an artificial blend Mother Nature spilled by mistake. Jaw-dropping shades of neon blue, mint green, vibrant emerald, and deep turquoise span as far as the eye can see.
It’s clear that the 333 islands that make up Fiji hold a truly magical quality: A scuba-diving adventure may find you surrounded by bio-fluorescent squid, and only a full moon brings bright purple crabs out to the beach.
Fiji's ancient villages, still bustling today, provide a real glimpse into the islands’ friendly, welcoming culture. Days are spent "on Fiji time," or at your leisure. "Everyone wants to know why Fijians are so happy--it's all about simplicity," says Fiji Eco Tour Director Michael Crocker. "And we're eager to share our culture with you."
Meals typically begin with a traditional kava (the ground root of a pepper tree) ceremony, the centerpiece of which is a mouth-numbing beverage said to induce relaxation. Just-pulled-from-the-water whitefish, spinach pie, tapioca, and fruit juice are also common staples. Fresh fruit produce is abundant throughout Fiji.
A 10-hour flight via Air Pacific from LAX takes you to the city of Nadi on the main island of Viti Levu. Temperatures in Fiji average in the low 80s year-round.
Laucaula Island Resort: Choose from 25 luxury options. Rates start at $3,800 for double occupancy and include breakfast, lunch, dinner, beverages,
and most activities; laucala.com.
Likuliku Lagoon Resort (pictured): This village-style resort offers deluxe beach-front bures with private plunge pools, garden bures with private courtyards, and unique over-water bures. Rates start at $892 and include breakfast, lunch, and dinner; likulikulagoon.com.
Outrigger on the Lagoon: At Fiji's first official five-star resort, accommodations include resort and ocean views from the hotel, ocean-view suites with private balconies, and spacious family and beachfront bures. Rates start at $320; outrigger.com.