Fiji's Garden Island

 

Welcome to the Garden Island and the jewel of the pacific. As the third largest island in Fiji, Taveuni is an untouched magical paradise that’s waiting to be explored. 

Located off the south-east coast of Vanua Levu and made up of a mountainous terrain, thick vegetation, magnificent reefs and abundant wildlife, the rugged beauty and natural wonders of Taveuni are guaranteed to delight and inspire. Home to the renowned Bouma National Heritage Park, this is a dream destination for eco-warriors, nature lovers and adventure travellers. Enjoy scenic hiking ventures or take in peaceful sessions of birdwatching, to witness over 100 species of birdlife soar high and low.

One Foot in the Past and One Foot in the Future

The old International Date Line crosses land in very few places and Taveuni was one of those places. You can still visit the spot and take the obligatory tourist photo where yesterday and today used to meet. Look out for the big map sign and have fun with this significant photo op.

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Highlights of Taveuni

With very little commercial development, apart from the odd five-star resort, needless to say Taveuni is a nature lover’s idea of pure paradise. Whether you want to hit the unspoilt beach and reefs or want to discover a hidden path through the tropical jungle, you’ll find it all – and more - on Taveuni.
 

A Natural Slip ‘n’ Slide

If you’ve ever wanted to experience sliding down a natural waterslide, Taveuni is where you can tick this off your adventure bucket list. The Waitavala Waterslide, at 50 meters high, is made up of a long, sloping rock bed covered in rushing water. Sliding down this remarkable waterslide will feel like a zipline experience, before you make the big splash into a pool. Most resorts in the area (like Garden Island Resort) will easily be able to direct you to this iconic local landmark. The safe option is to slide on your bottom but, if you dare, you can try standing up. If you’re a bit apprehensive, be sure to watch how the local kids tackle it for some pointers.

 

Rainbow Reef Dive

The waters surrounding Taveuni Island are home to the idyllic Rainbow Reef. With an abundance of nutrients, soft coral flourishes easily in the region and plays host to a wide array of colourful marine life. To fully experience this underwater oasis and to witness the legendary Great White Wall, book in to a Taveuni Dive. This magnificent naturally-occurring monument is a humongous wall covered top to bottom in ice coloured soft coral. Fiji boasts some of the best dive sites in the world, however it’s safe to say, Rainbow Reef is truly one-of-a-kind.

 

Wold-Class Birdwatching

Eco-tourists who have Taveuni on their itinerary won’t want to miss out on the world-class birdwatching available on the island. Nabogiono Farm is a family-run property for the purpose of wildlife conservation. The family is only too happy to share their knowledge of biodiversity and how they maintain a comfortable habitat for their winged friends. Over 20 species of birds and fruit bats are reliant on the rainforest component of the property for survival. Pop by for a visit and if you’re really lucky, you might just spot the rare Orange Dove.


More Things to Do in Taveuni

 

Waitabu Village Visit

What better way to get a taste of Fijian life than to visit a local village? Waitabu Marine Park in Taveuni is home to The Waitabu Villages, where the friendly locals love to show off their marine life on board a handmade bamboo raft known as a ‘Bilibili’. Opt for a Cultural Experience tour to enjoy snorkelling on the pristine reefs of Waitabu or the Backpackers tour for a budget-friendly way to take in Taveuni’s scenic sights.

 

Lavena Coastal Walk

You might think the coast is the coast but the Lavena Coastal Walk in Taveuni has a few aces up its sleeve that’ll surprise you. Black volcanic rock sits side by side white coral sand to create tide pools that are a haven for tropical fish and snails. At the end of the trail, the spectacular Wainabau Waterfalls carves out a circular pool just waiting for you to take a swim. Most resorts in Taveuni including Coconut Grove Fiji, offer guided excursions for this 5km scenic hike, where you can also experience some divine snorkelling and kayaking. Often considered one of the most remote wonders of the world, prepare to marvel at the raw beauty of this area.

 

Fishing Charters

With such an abundance of wildlife and prime fishing habitats, Game/Sports Fishing is in vogue all year around in Taveuni. Experience Fiji’s pristine waters and take in the gentle lapping of waves with a chartered fishing boat trip via Makaira Resort. You’ll be surprised at how quick a trip it is before you start trying to catch your evening meal. Skipjack, Yellow Fin Tuna, Mahi-mahi, Flying Fish, Mackerel and Ballyhoo (just to name a few) call the Somosomo Straits of Taveuni home, so get out there and catch a fish! Witnessing the kaleidoscope of colours the vibrant marine life offers alone is sure to entice.


Where to Stay in Taveuni

Taveuni has accommodation options at both ends of the spectrum. All-inclusive, high-end resorts and cottage-style lodgings are dotted around Taveuni along with the neighbouring islets of Qamea, catering strongly towards families, honeymooners and diving enthusiasts.

Food & Drink in Taveuni

Most resorts in the Taveuni provide Meal Plans for guests, covering breakfast, lunch and dinner. However, there’s also a small selection of eateries scattered around the island that caters to visitors. Blending Fijian and international flavours, Taveuni is famed for its local produce, seafood and fusion-inspired cuisine
Restaurant Tramonto, Taveuni

Want a pizza the size of your head and then some? Topped with a perfect sunset view, this eatery is so popular on the island; you have to arrive early to get a table. Not a pizza fan? Try their Sunday roasts or Wednesday buffets – neither will disappoint.

Coconut Grove Restaurant, Beachfront Cottages

While it’s true that Fijians eat a lot of meat and fish, Coconut Grove Restaurant is a perennial favourite that specialises in vegetarian dishes made from scratch using the island’s fresh produce. Boasting oceanfront views and an intimate vibe, enjoy meals on the private verandah or down on the beach by candlelight.

Vunibokoi Restaurant, Tovu Tovu Resort

Need a taste of the real Fiji? You’ll get that and more at Vunibokoi. Adjacent to the Tovu Tovu Resort, crabs, coconut cream and chillies are the order of the day. The Friday buffet is a particular delight accompanied by live music.

The Salty Fox Bar and Grill, Taveuni Dive Resort

Adjacent to the Taveuni Dive Resort is where you’ll find The Salty Fox Bar and Grill, a relaxed and buzzing eatery that overlooks the stunning Somosomo Strait. Order pizza, burgers, exotic cocktails and enjoy a leisurely meal on the patio next to the resort’s infinity pool.


How to Get to & Around Taveuni

From Nadi - The easiest way to get to Taveuni is via a direct flight from Nadi to Matei Airstrip on the island. 
Domestic Flights 
Fiji Link is the official domestic carrier of Fiji, offering cheap domestic flights to 12 exciting destinations including Taveuni.
Plane Transfers 
Daily charter flights from Nadi to Taveuni are also available via Island Hoppers, ideal for travellers who want to minimise transfer time. These flights have large cargo pods for surfboards, fishing rods and dive gear.

Once you reach Matei Airstrip, most resorts offer transfers to their particular location so check with your accommodation for details and to arrange pickup. Getting around Taveuni by yourself is relatively easy and often, your day trip providers will include transport transfers to sightseeing areas and attractions.
 
Taxi
Taxis are another affordable transport option in Taveuni – you can even hire one for a whole day at a flat rate.
Buses
Getting around Taveuni by public bus is the cheapest and easiest way to see the island. Be warned – it only runs 3 times a day Monday to Saturday and once on Sundays. Check the timetable ahead of time or ask locals in the area for guidance on timings.

Practical Travel Tips for Taveuni

Check-In Curfews

Like most islands that aren't Viti Levu, Taveuni Island has few stores and the stores they do have are considerably more expensive. Before leaving Nadi, be sure to stock up on essentials such as snacks, sunscreen and insect repellent to ensure you are not left wanting. 

Village Etiquette 

When visiting a local village, ensure you remove your hat and sunglasses. Only the chief is allowed to wear such items and failure to remove these articles will be taken as a sign of disrespect



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