Last updated: 3 Sep 2018

Fiji

About

Comprised of over 300 volcanic and coral islands, the Fiji archipelago is at the crossroads of the South Pacific. In the days of sailing ships, it was known as The Cannibal Isles and carefully avoided by mariners because of its fierce warriors and treacherous waters. More recently, Fiji's tropical climate and location on Pacific air routes have made it a prime spot for tourists. Cruise by schooner or yacht to the different islands or glide along the mangrove-lined tidal corridors in a jet-boat. Alternatively, bamboo-raft along the streams and rivers - a uniquely Fijian experience.

Fiji has a number of soft coral reefs, such as the Beqa Lagoon, Rainbow Reef or the Somosomo Straits with the famous Great White Wall, which make for fantastic scuba-diving and snorkelling. Sailing, windsurfing, waterskiing, canoeing, kayaking and parasailing are all popular activities across the islands. You can also swim in numerous waterfalls found in the forest, coastal parks and reserves.

Take part in a meke, traditional Fijian dancing. The locals dress entirely in the national costume of flower leis, grass skirts and tapa cloth. The men perform warrior dances while the women sing.
Capital:  Suva (SUV)
Currency:  Fijian Dollar (FJD)
Language:  Fijian and Hindustani. English is widely spoken.
Dialling code from SA:  +679
Time Zones: UTC / GMT +12 (10 hours ahead of South Africa)
Daylight Savings Time: From last Sun in Oct to third Sunday in Jan: UTC / GMT +13  (11 hours ahead of South Africa)
Public Holidays 2018:

Jan 1; Mar 30, 31; Apr 2; Jun 26; Sep 7; Oct 10; Nov 21; Dec 25, 26

Side of the Road: Left
Best Time to go: May to October. (November to April is cyclone season)
Best For: Island relaxation, Cultural exploration
Plugs: 240 volts AC, 50Hz. Plugs used are Australian-style with two flat angled blades and one vertical grounding blade.
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink. Outside of the main towns, water may be contaminated. Bottled water is available. 
Health: Medical facilities are very limited. It is advisable to carry basic medical supplies.  Comprehensive health insurance is recommended and it should include emergency air evacuation coverage. If you require any medication on your travels it is best to bring it with you, in the original packaging, with a signed and dated letter from your doctor detailing exactly what it is and why you need it. Doctors will require cash payment regardless of whether you have health insurance.
Customs: Swimwear should be reserved for the beach / resorts. It is important to dress modestly when away from hotels and resorts and particularly when visiting a Fijian village (no bare shoulders or short shorts – a sulu sarong is useful for men and women as a wraparound). Avoid wearing a hat in a village; it is considered an insult to the village chief. It is also insulting to touch someone’s head. It's best to not wear shoes if visiting someone’s house. When visiting a village it is customary to present an inexpensive gift of 'yaqona' or kava to the “Turaga Ni Koro”, the traditional head of the village. Be prepared to shake hands and answer personal questions as to where you are from, whether married; and, if so, how many children.
Local Offences / Laws: Homosexuality is illegal. 
Local Offences / Laws: Avoid driving at night, especially outside of the urban areas, as cattle wander the unlit roads.  Check the local political situation before finalising travel plans.
Duty Free: The following items may be imported by travellers 17 years of age and over into Fiji without incurring customs duty:
• 250 cigarettes or 250g of cigars or 250g of tobacco goods
• 2.25L of spirits or 4.5L of wine or beer
• Other dutiable goods to the value of F$1,000
Prohibited Imports: Drugs, unlicensed firearms and ammunition, certain weapons (eg flick knives), pornography, gambling devices, any goods considered to disturb the peace in Fiji, tubers, bulbs, peanuts and oil seeds, and cereal grains, pulses and legumes.
Prohibited Exports: Drugs. Also prohibited unless certain conditions or restrictions are complied with are: unprocessed turtle shells, whale teeth (and products), ivory products, birds (alive or dead), reptiles, and wooden or stone carvings of human or animal figures (not including replicas).

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SA Representative

SA High Commission
Plot No. 1,
16 Kimberly Street,
Cnr. Gordon Street,
SUVA, Fiji
Tel: +679 331 1087/9620
Fax: +679 331 1086/0805

Travel Health

Compulsory:  Yellow Fever (Dependant on Country of Origin/Stopover)
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis A & B, Typhoid, Tetanus, Polio