Why the Yasawa Islands in Fiji are Perfect for All Types of Travelers
For a tropical island, Fiji actually surprisingly receives quite a diverse range of travelers. Many people associate tropical islands, either in the Caribbean or the South Pacific, with luxury travelers used to long haul destinations and pricey hotels. However, due to its relative proximity to Australia (about 4 hours flight) it is an island group that is well on the backpacker trail. Australia itself lures travelers from Europe, the UK and even the US through its historical connections, and with Fiji a viable addition to an Australian holiday, this is yet another reason for many people coming here.
The Yasawa Islands
Despite its popularity, there’s not really anywhere in Fiji that can be considered a tourist trap. Fiji is an archipelago of over 300 islands which does a pretty good job of dispersing everyone. However, if you are traveling with a group of varied personalities all looking for a different experience, or you simply want a holiday full of mixed experiences for yourself, then the Yasawa Island group off the Western Shore of the main Fijian island Viti Levu is perfect. This collection of about 20 volcanic islands are an eclectic array of different sizes and shapes, with varying levels of development and activities on offer. For a good reference point, if you have seen the film Castaway with Tom Hanks then you will have a good idea of what these islands look like, as some of the scenes from the Castaway were filmed here!
The resorts are run by an arrangement of organizations, from the island’s villagers to an Australian company providing scuba diving and manta ray viewing facilities. What doesn’t change is the tropical island bliss, neither a road nor vehicle exists anywhere, just endless beaches and stunning volcanic summits.
Planned travel versus careless wandering
Accessing the Yasawa islands is done on the bright yellow Yasawa flyer, a fast ferry offering open topped views of the island chains as you whip past. Purchasing a 1 week or 2 week pass, you can use this service whenever you want, so if you are organized you can plan everything to a T, if you are not then let yourself go with the flow and island hop as you please.
Luxury versus simplicity
Travelers on a budget are easily catered for by the many resorts along the island chain that have communal dorms. The level of accommodation grades up to private bures on the beach front and luxury villas, giving those prima donnas something up market to choose from.
Lively, tranquil, familiar, authentic
Islands range from the party centric Beachcomber, a tiny island with a large bar and lively party scene at night, to islands that balance night entertainment with tranquility, such as the Manta Ray resort, to serene peaceful resorts with minimalistic, traditional facilities. This makes the island chain perfect for every type of traveler, or someone looking for places to party and then to nurse the hangover.
Author Bio: Having hopped from one island to the next on a daily basis, Matt explored and experienced much of what the Yasawa islands offer. He now writes for Citalia, specializing in Italian travel.