Honeymoon on the beaches of Fiji

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
Week of June 12-18, 1997
Honeymoon on the beaches of Fiji
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Honeymoon on the beaches of Fiji
Question: I'm getting married in late July (in Sweden) and we're planning a honeymoon to a faraway destination that we're not likely to hit easily or soon. Fiji strikes us as a good option. We want to combine reasonably comfortable and relaxing with interesting sights and activities. It's easy to find good dive spots in Fiji but we're not sure which ones are best.

More importantly (considering the number of good dive spots), we're looking for advice about what other activities we should plan to hit. For example, are there any good companies that offer chances to sail around some of the islands? We would need to have a boat with a captain, and we're guessing there must be some good options.

I've also read about quite a few decent hikes to the many villages, but I don't know which ones offer the most interesting scenery and can be combined with a beach stay. We have about three weeks for the whole trip beginning around July 27. Any recommendations you could offer would be much appreciated.

Harlan Flint
London, England
[email protected]

Adventure Adviser: No matter what size the party, post-wedding exhaustion is a very true phenomenon, so the first thing to do is find a secluded stretch of beach where you can catch some Zs for about 20 hours. After that, prepare to be pampered, but Fijian paradise doesn't come cheap — a couple hundred bucks a night is the average.

For diving, try Jean-Michel Cousteau's Fiji Islands Resort on Vanua Levu. Set on 17 beachfront acres, the resort prides itself on ecologic harmony. It features 20 "rustic" bures (thatch-roof huts) — rustic meaning hardwood floors, wicker furniture, a king bed, private bath, private bar, fresh flowers, and a plethora of elegant touches. The resort's theme is "environmental sensitivity," so there are naturalist-led hiking tours, stargazing lectures, and underwater photography classes under the tutelage of Jean-Michel when he's around. Other activities include a full-service PADI dive center, swimming, sailing, kayaking, snorkeling, and tennis.

I believe the Fiji Aggressor, a live-aboard dive boat, also offers trips out of the resort. Call 800-246-3454 for prices and more details. If you'd rather spend all of your time aboard a dive boat, try the Matagi Princess II, a 12-passenger, 85-foot live-aboard that cruises from Matagi to sites in the Somosomo Strait and the Ringgolds. Plush staterooms include hot showers and air conditioning. Call 800-362-8244.

If you are REALLY serious about the "only live once" philosophy, consider staying at the Kaimbu Island Resort. One night may break the bank, but if you can afford Fiji, you may be able to afford a $1,000-per-night bure with 25-foot ceilings and 220-degree views. (Or go all out and rent the entire island for upwards of $2,500 per night.) Call 800-473-0332 for details.

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