Feel the mist splash upwards from the Pacific as your exclusive schooner sails past secluded Fijian Islands. Listen to the traditional drum echo through the sky at dusk. Emerald mountains tower over powdery beaches. Your custom tailored cruise and vacation to the amazing islands of Fiji has you cruising along often-overlooked islands, where tradition and unspoiled marvels thrive. Dive deep down into the water to witness brimming coral reefs. Hike up to a volcanic crater for an unparalleled view....
Fiji is a country of translucent turquoise waters and landscape draped in emerald rainforest. Mountains and hills rise out of the center of ethereal islands, with around 322 creating the archipelagic nation. You arrive at the airport in Nadi, and continue on a short flight to Savusavu, a small, picturesque town on the island of Vanua Levu. Your private transfer awaits you at the airport. The image of island life comes into view, filled with temperate waters clear as the sky. Boats wade in the small marina, their masts swaying from side to side. Tropical foothills rise into mountains and edge against the beatific bay. Savusavu Town boasts a fun, eclectic display of authentic handmade goods, rich with cultural value and artisanal crafting, from dolls to paintings, jewelry to sculptures. The relaxed pace filters through you and you settle into the calm and welcoming spirit of the islands.
In the morning, you wake up to the subtle sounds of the water brushing against the shore. The soothing wake is better than any alarm you have ever heard. Tropical fruits fill breakfast, brimming with color and juicy sweetness. You peel open the bright red outer layer of a rambutan and find the flavor similar to a lychee. You have a private transfer take you to the marina where you find your boat waiting. The schooner is 140 feet long, pristine and proud as it waits for arrivals. The ocean’s aroma is inviting, filled with a touch of salt, surrounded by plush greenery.
The boat weighs anchor and the greenery lines the island. You arrive on the outer rim of the Natewa Coastal Trail situated around Natewa Bay. The bay reaches a depth of 3,300 feet and is the largest deep-water bay in Fiji. You have the option of hopping into a kayak or climbing atop a paddleboard to explore the refreshing waters. The sun drifts overhead and you push your paddle alongside the kayak. The water spritzes into the air with every stroke. The schooner wades nearby. The beauty of the unspoiled bay is clear.
The Splendor of the Water
You wake up in the quiet magnificence of your stateroom, with a view directly of the water. The calm rocking of the sea feels is soothing, like lying in a hammock. The aroma of breakfast drifts through the ship accompanied with the delectable scent of freshly brewed coffee. After your meal, you jump into the sea with a guide to explore the fabulous subaquatic world. Giant manta rays swarm through the current, gliding around the water in search of breakfast. They can grow to over 18 feet eating hefty quantities of plankton.
Watching the fly near you in the water is like standing in a flock of birds soaring through the air with grace and focus. The water is warm around your body, the sun filters through the water’s surface and can cast light up to 660 feet deep. In the late afternoon, you can experience a breath of heritage during a Micronesian cultural performance. The sound of the water adds to the beating drums. Warriors hold long staffs, clacking the sticks on the floor to keep time and rhythm. They twirl in woven grass skirts, emblematic of the islands and their past.
Morning comes, and you have the chance to dive deep into the waters to visit the Great White Wall at the Somosomo Strait. The wall is often noted as one of the top 10 diving locations in the world. The strait runs between the Garden Island of Taveuni and Vanua Levu. Soft coral enraptures a tubular cave almost 50 feet deep. The Lionfish encircle the subaquatic cave mouth. The wall appears like a snow covered drop, blanketed in white coral. Splashes of orange burst through like sunlight, mixing with bits of green and red, emphasizing the bleached blanket of the wall.
The drop continues into darkness, but you return to the surface and venture to the land to visit the natural rockslide at Waitavala. The water has carved, guided, and smoothed the rock to create a rush of mini falls. Locals and visitors come to slide and surf the current. You can hear people laughing and excitedly crying out before splashing down into the pools below. The wonders of both the Great White Wall and Waitavala Rockslides offer a fraction of Fiji’s inspiring beauty.
Away from the Main Lands
The main islands have faded into the distance and you anchor on the fringing islands around the Ringgold Atolls. A barrier reef creates a vibrant lagoon erupting in color and vivaciousness. After breakfast, you make your way to Cobia, the northernmost island around the reef. The entire island has a landmass of over 170 acres rising from a submerged volcano. Whether kayaking or snorkeling, you can see to an ocean depth of 120 feet. The beach is powdery and golden.
Palm trees swivel out of the forest and cast shade over the shoreline. You follow the paths upwards to the island’s highest point. The crater rim is reached easily from the island’s south offering a tremendous view of the interior. The cliff is rugged and stunning. Water crashes against the rocks below. A small arched rock opens up to the cobalt water bordered with white mist. The scent of the sea mixes with the soft soil. The view of the Pacific is vast.
Today you return to the grandeur of the garden island of Taveuni to visit the Bouma National Heritage Park. The lush rainforest embodies the traditions and culture embraced by the islanders that runs deeper than bloodline, celebrating the island itself. The national park was established in 1990 and encompasses four separate villages with an eco-attraction. The village of Vidawa has a rainforest hike winding through the towering trees, filled with the aroma of freshwater and rich soil. The trail leads to a set of ancient ruins.
The fortress was erected by invading Tongans. The stone chair is draped in moss, camouflaged by the bright green. Parrots glide through the trees and call out in the canopy. Their iridescent plumage is unmistakable. The waterfall trail takes you around three sets of falls, including the plush Lower Bouma Waterfall, which stands just over 79 feet tall. Situated between the lower and middle falls is an opening where you can look out over the eastern coast for a magnificent panorama over the trees and out to the water.
A New Kind of Forest Adventure
Qamea is an islet connected to Taveuni Island. World-class waves break and surfers catch a ride on the barrels until they fade back into the water. The waves curl over people; surfers crouch to stay afloat, speeding beneath the crashing water. It is always a thrilling sight and even more exhilarating to experience. You step off the ship and board your paddleboard to follow the mangrove forest. The trees twist and wind out of the saltwater, their roots practically knotted together overtaking the sand.
The scent of lush greenery overtakes the saltwater air. The slow moving waters allow for the trees to take root beneath the sediment. It looks like the trees are standing on stilts as opposed to trunks. The trees help reduce erosion and offer shelter and food sources to local animal species. The tranquil exploration of the forest provides a view of the mountains rising as tall 660 feet over the mangrove trees. You continue to paddle, dripping cool water over your toes.
Around the northern edge of the archipelago is Rabi, a volcanic island close to Taveuni. The island reaches a maximum height of 1,528 feet near the tallest summit. The mountains roll upwards from the shore, pleated around the ridges. The emerald grasses and treetops glow in the sunlight. The day is yours to enjoy the sounds of lulling ways around Albert Cove. Visitors and locals play beach volleyball, kicking up sand and taking pleasure in the sunshine.
The cove is small and delightful, enchanting in the hard coral sprouting from the ocean floor. Snorkeling around the water is easy, providing images of marine life without effort. The coral rises like trees out of the forest floor. Clams disguise themselves in the hard calcite. Vibrant fish swim around anemones, with effervescent blue blues and yellows capturing your eye. The water moves you back and forth; zebra fish swim in pairs. When you surface the soft breeze cools the air.
Spend your last morning hours aboard the ship indulging in the wind and the scenery. When traveling westward you can look back towards the eastern horizon and watch the sunrise, the absorptive shine overtaking the night and spreading across the water. The ship docks and you disembark, meeting your private transfer at the marina. You continue onward to Nadi and board a ferry from Denarau Island venturing to the Mamanuca Islands. Settle into an overwater bungalow where you can relax with a view better than beachside. The serene turquoise shines beneath your room and looks out into pristine ocean. The Mamanuca Islands are a volcanic archipelago west of Viti Levu. Once you arrive at your resort, you can nestle a chair by the infinity pool, watching the water from the pool and the ocean shimmer in the sunlight, with the delicate aroma of coconut simmering around you.
Leisure Days Above the Water
Submarine Pacific currents bring nutrients to the island and soak the ocean floor and island edges with captivating scenery. From above the glassy surface everything looks magnified. Up close you can see the minute detail in each coral and fish. Your day is at your whim and pleasure, soaking in the sun on your balcony or reveling in a relaxing massage. Fishers set out each morning into the deep sea. You could spend all day lounging on a boat with the quiet sea breeze brushing your hair, watching the fishing rod in case something nibbles. With over 1,000 species of fish in the water you hope for a large, decadent mahi-mahi, or a yellow fin tuna that can weigh up to 100 pounds.
Sundowners With a View
The quiet sounds of the island life surround you. People are up early and enjoying the bay’s temperate waters. The sun climbs over the eastern horizon and brings back the colors of the island you have grown accustomed to seeing. Indulge in the flavors of breakfast, from juicy papaya to succulent coconut. The scenery enhances each bite, filled with the enticing scent of fresh pineapple. Your private transfer takes you to harbor where you meet the new cruise ship for an extended island adventure. When the boat weighs anchor, you arrive at Modriki Island.
Your skipper makes a joke about Tom Hanks and Wilson, the volleyball. The sand is powdery and cool. A rugged cliff rises over the beachside. Palms wave in the slow breeze. The island’s seclusion creates a magnetic attraction beyond the craggy hillsides and shady walkways. Step back aboard the ship and listen to the soothing sounds of a live band playing before dusk. You can stand on the upper deck watching the shores of Modriki Island, sipping a specialty drink with the captivating rhythms of the band accompanying you along the journey.
Welcoming the Reefs
In the late morning, the ship casts away from its anchored position and sets out along the archipelago. Mist sprays into the air. The wind is too soft to push the sails along. When you reach a particular reef, you can follow an experienced guide into the water to experience an unparalleled snorkel experience. Reef sharks swim near the calcite hills and encircle the alluring colorful reef. The sharks can grow to an average length over eight-feet. Their gray skin stands out against the bright colors of the reef but as they swim into the depths of the water they disappear into the dark blue hue. Back aboard the ship you continue onward to Soso Bay where you can partake in a kava ceremony.
The tribal leader welcomes you to the area. You join them sitting in a circle around a grinding stone as someone grinds kava root. The root is mixed with water and the ceremony begins. Women wear sarongs and men dress respectively. The village head drinks first before sharing with everyone. You clap once with your hands cupped to make a hollow sound. You yell “Bula!” and drink one gulp. Clap three more times before saying, “Mathe.” The locals welcome you with open arms and laugh with you at your enthusiasm during the ceremony. The entire circle drinks and everyone smiles warmly.
Life in a different country can be wondrous, from the purity of the rainforest to the comfortable immersion into the temperate coastal waters. Every day, no matter how familiar a task may seem to a local, brings unadulterated joy and charm to you. Today you can take part in the cultural traditions of the islands, learning to basket weave or partaking in a Fijian cooking course. You stand at your individual station with a friendly and knowledgeable local as your culinary guide. Before you start cooking your guide takes a machete and carves into a coconut for everyone to share. The luscious and sweet flavor fills your taste buds. All your ingredients are local and flavorful. Your guide shows you the proper preparation as you follow along, imitating each stop. In the end you have a cooked a full Kokoda, a raw fish salad filled coconut cream, onion, chili pepper, lime juice, and fresh mahi-mahi.
More than Shore Returns
The familiar aromas of fresh tropical fruits drift from the breakfast spread. The colors are as vibrant as the reefs you have seen around Fiji. The morning is yours to enjoy the beauty around the Narara Island. Let the water once again envelop you, feeling the temperate, peaceful current wade in and out. The ocean air surrounds you as the sea salt adds an extra layer to your skin. As the board weighs anchor from the island you pass the Sacred Islands and return to Viti Levu. Your private transfer meets you at the harbor. Your flight leaves later in the day, which allows you time to relax at a nearby hotel, sitting poolside under the shaded cabanas. Soon you will leave the magnificent islands behind but you take the outstanding memories with you.
Visit the Fiji travel companies page to read reviews of Zicasso's travel partners to Fiji.
- Swim with amazing aquatic life such as barracuda, reef sharks, manta rays, and turtles
- Indulge in a Fijian cooking course to learn how to prepare traditional dishes
- Revel in an over-water bungalow to view the natural aquatic life in luxurious comforts
- Explore the famous island from the movie Castaway
- Kayak and paddleboard along the white-sand beaches and crystal waters of captivating Natewa Bay
- Experience authentic villages and cultural performances across the Fijian Islands
- Witness renowned diving sites including The Great White Walla and Rainbow Reef
- Hike to the top of Cobia’s volcanic crater for a stunning vista of the rocky coastline
- Visit local fishers and craftspeople to see local trades and masterwork
The sounds of the ocean are never far away in Fiji. This 14-day cruise and vacation through the Fiji islands is meant for those that want to indulge on a luxury cruise or adventurers seeking out isolated island magnificence. Whether in need of an adventurous fishing trip or scouring the bays for a calm wake on your kayak, you will find the boundless beauty of the amazing Fiji islands, its culture, immaculate scenery, and friendly people. Arrive on Viti Levu and continue onwards to Savusavu, located on the island of Vanua Levu.
The picturesque scenery is a perfect welcome to the nation, with a collection of over 300 islands. The following day your private transfer escorts you to the harbor where you step aboard a 140-foot luxury schooner ready to take you around islands too often passed over by visitors. Your week on board takes you around the celebrated scuba spots and enticing snorkeling destinations. Sail to Natewa Bay and explore the coastal scenery alongside the Natewa Coastal Trail. Swim with Manta Rays and dive down tot eh Rainbow Reef.
Visit a Secondary School on Rabi Island before witnessing a Micronesian cultural performance. The boat takes you around the Great White Wall and Rainbow’s Edge SCUBA areas, and you take part in a Polynesian cultural performance, noting the differences and similarities in dances and songs of the Micronesians. Once at Cobia you hike to top of the crater and can even kayak or paddleboard in the caldera. Once near Taveuni you will discover the sensational Bouma National Heritage Park, filled with ruins and waterfalls to explore.
The day continues at a local village where they perform a meke, a traditional Fijian song and dance ceremony. Explore the waters around the Naivivi mangrove forest and return to Rabi for some exceptional leisure time before the cruise is done. You arrive at Savusavu and transfer to the Mamanuca Islands where you can relax overlooking the stellar waters in an overwater bungalow. When fully rejuvenated, your private transfer takes you to the harbor where you board your small cruiser for a three-night exploration of the Yasawa Islands.
Pass the island where Tom Hanks was stranded in Castaway and spend time discovering the tremendous colors of the reefs. Picnic on the beach and swim with reef sharks. Take part in a traditional kava ceremony and listen to the oral history of island legends. Learn to prepare traditional Fijian dishes with a local and weave baskets like a master craftsperson. When you return to the Nadi, your private transfer will escort you to the airport for your flight home.
Visit the Fiji island vacations page for more travel ideas.
$4,195 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
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- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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