A Travellerspoint blog

December 2011

Fiji

The happiest place in the world...

semi-overcast 31 °C

No matter how long and turbulence-filled your flight may be, once you step off the plane and onto Fijian soil, all bad feelings get left on board. After stepping off the plane three enthusiastic Fijians greet each person with a song, a shimmy, and a smile that becomes instantly contagious to all.

The islands offer everything one expects from Fiji - white, sandy beaches, clear blue waters and swaying palm trees. One thing that is not expected to such a level is the welcoming, generous and relaxed people of Fiji. Every person you encounter, even simply in passing, pleasantly welcomes you with a grin and the Fijian favourite "bula", meaning 'welcome' or 'hello', making the people there the most precious asset in all of Fiji.

I stayed in a hostel called Horizon Beach that was pleasant but did put me a little on edge, mainly due to the fact that I was sharing a dormitory with eight strangers and the door had no lock on it, meaning every Tom, Dick and Harry could easily walk off the street and straight into my room. Regardless of this fact, the staff were very welcoming and my stay was more than bearable. Every night the sister hostel, Smugglers Cove, provides entertainment for guests that consisted of typically Fijian things, allowing visitors to experience the Fijian way of life. One event consists of drinking the Fijian classic 'kava', a drink made by pounding sun-dried kava root into a fine powder, straining and mixing it with cold water.

Fiji was amazing for feeling like you were on holiday whilst constantly learning knowledge about the Island. For example, one day I took a stroll across a quarter of the islands beach front. On this journey I came across hundreds of school children on their lunch breaks, playing on the beach and paddling in the water (all with a MacDonalds happy meal I may add). Each child would stop and stare, wave or try to talk to me. After a conversation with one teacher I learnt that these children very rarely see white people and, to them, we are the superior race. Each child was in awe and wanted me to see they had acknowledged me - something I found both amazing and devastating. I learnt all of this in a ten minute walk across a beach - imagine what you could learn if you spent simply a few days there.

I went to Fiji feeling a litle lonely and lost but felt relaxed and welcomed in less than a day (unfortunately I had already booked my flight home - I will be returning!) and would recommend it to everyone who wants to experience different culture, see some beautiful sights and generally relax.

Posted by LaurenF3 13:36 Archived in Fiji Comments (0)

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