Ten Breathtaking Nature Spots to Cross Off Your Fiji Bucket List
February 07, 2024
This island nation boasts colourful reefs, breathtaking vistas and mesmerising waterfalls — all waiting to be discovered.
In the heart of the South Pacific, Fiji is a paradise brimming with stunning natural wonders beyond the picture-perfect beaches and crystal-clear waters. From cascading waterfalls to hidden caves, Fiji’s diverse landscapes offer a bucket list for nature enthusiasts seeking adventure and awe-inspiring beauty.
There is no end to the stunning natural locations that will take your breath away in this 333-island archipelago. So, grab your sunscreen and get ready to explore the top ten nature spots in Fiji that will leave you breathless.
Sea, Sand and Surf
Cloudbreak — The Surfer’s Haven
Found in the Mamanuca archipelago just off Nadi’s coastline, Cloudbreak is one of the top surfing locations in the world. It draws everyone from daring locals to big-wave pros. This reef break is not for beginners, with varying swells of up to ten feet and, thanks to prevailing wings, clean walls up to 15 knots. When it increases to over 20 knots, you’ll be joined by kitesurfers and windsurfers.
Getting to the spot can be tricky — you won’t be able to paddle out from just any lodging. However, most hotels can arrange a private transfer to the range — resorts on Namotu and Tavarua offer transport to the waves with experienced surf guides as part of their stay packages. Catching a Cloudbreak wave promises an unforgettable Fijian adventure, but respecting limits, patience and etiquette are crucial for a safe and stoke-filled experience.
Fiji is known as the soft coral capital of the world for good reason. As one of the most famous dive sites in the island nation, Rainbow Reef should definitely be on your nature bucket list. Located in the Somosomo Strait (literally translated as “good water”) between Taveuni and Vanua Levu islands, it’s home to the Great White Wall diving site — so named for the soft white corals that make it easy to spot the locals, which include manta rays, Spinner dolphins and reef fish. Dive into the kaleidoscopic world beneath the waves and explore the vibrant coral reef, seeking out its diverse marine life and breathtaking display of colours. Snorkel or scuba dive to witness the underwater spectacle. Interested in more diving locations on this epic 333-island archipelago? Check out our diving guide to Fiji here.
Beqa Lagoon Sand Cay
What’s a sand cay, I hear you ask? It’s a low sandy island found on the surface of coral reefs, created by ocean currents dropping sediment on the same reefs over and over, making for dreamy, ethereal islands with pristine white sand surrounded by azure waters. Whether you’re sunbathing, snorkelling, or simply enjoying the serenity, a sand cay is the perfect way to unwind. One such spot is the Beqa Lagoon sand cay. You can enjoy a romantic champagne breakfast on the deserted sand cay with Royal Davui Resort. Sip on bubbles while relaxing on the private beach, or explore the turquoise waters and surrounding reefs aboard a catamaran, paddleboard or sea kayak.
Waterfalls, Rivers and Caves — Oh My!
Yasawa Islands — Sawa-i-Lau Caves
Explore the mystical Sawa-i-Lau Caves hidden within the Yasawa Islands. These limestone saltwater caves are steeped in Fijian mythology and offer a captivating blend of local lore and natural wonder.
Beneath Sawa-i-Lau’s mountain are two caverns of turquoise seawater pools — the larger, bathed in daylight, invites a refreshing swim, while the smaller, accessed through an underwater entrance, is hailed as the true ‘heart of the Yasawas,’ requiring a guide and plenty of courage. It’s definitely a must-visit gem in the Yasawa Islands. Dive into the crystal-clear waters and immerse yourself in a surreal subterranean world that was immortalised in the classic film Blue Lagoon.
Found in the Bouma National Heritage Park, the Tavoro Waterfalls (also known as the Bouma Waterfalls) offer a refreshing oasis. Located on the eastern end of Taveuni Island — known as the Garden Island thanks to its lush rainforest — is a series of three waterfalls, one of which is 24 metres tall, with a natural pool for a stimulating dip after a hike through the scenic surroundings. There’s even a changing room nearby for privacy.
Continue the hike past these falls (after your swim), and you’ll ascend up the hills to two other falls, passing through stream crossings with ropes, with gorgeous views of dense flora and across the ocean. You can continue past the third double-barrelled falls to climb the mountain at Lake Tagimaucia and see if you can spot the emblematic flower of Fiji, the Tagimaucia flower — however, that particular trek will require a guide.
Nabalasere Waterfalls and Wailotua Caves
If chasing waterfalls is high on your Fiji bucket list, you should add these gems to your itinerary. Take a day trip to Nabalesere’s thunderous waterfall and escape the heat with a dip in the cool pool below. If you’re on a tour back to your accommodation, you can stop in at the local village to enjoy some traditional cuisine before venturing into the Wailotua Caves. Tucked away in the lush highlands, this site offers a double delight — a mesmerising waterfall and mysterious cave waiting to be explored.
Upper Navua River
If you want an adrenaline rush on your bucket-list trip, embark on a thrilling river-rafting adventure along the Upper Navua River canyon. Surrounded on both sides by towering gorge walls, tropical rainforest and countless waterfalls, this river journey is an adrenaline-pumping experience that takes you through Fiji’s pristine wilderness. Tucked away in the highlands of Viti Levu, you can head on a tour that will take you from hiking through the rainforest to epic whitewater rafting thrills, as well as exploring hidden grottos along this unique river canyon.
From the Mountaintops to the Seashore
Mt Tomanivi — Conquer the Highest Peak
Lace up your hiking boots for the ultimate trekking adventure on the archipelago: conquering its highest peak at 1324 metres, Mt Tomanivi. The challenging hike up the extinct volcano rewards you with panoramic vistas of the surrounding islands and the Pacific Ocean. It’s a physical feat that will be the literal high point of your Fiji bucket list.
Sigatoka Sand Dunes National Heritage Park
Shift gears from lush green landscapes, blue ocean waters and deep sea reefs to the dramatic Sigatoka Sand Dunes. Enter a world akin to Dune at this National Heritage Park, which boasts an otherworldly terrain with 650 acres of towering sand dunes and dry forests, pocketed with ancient archaeological sites of Fiji’s first inhabitants, the Lapita people. Take a guided tour through this desert-like landscape and uncover the secrets of Fiji’s past.
Lavena Coastal Walk
Get a taste of everything Fiji has to offer on this five-kilometre walking track on Taveuni Island. Begin at Lavena village and follow the winding coastal track as it leads into the island’s lush rainforests. This trek takes you from pristine beaches to quaint villages, through dense foliage and vibrant flora, eventually leading to the magnificent Wainibau Falls. The journey is just as breathtaking as the destination, with panoramic views that showcase Fiji’s untamed beauty.
Feeling inspired? Plan your trip now at the Tourism Fiji website.
Images: Tourism Fiji
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