All You Need To Know About Backpacking Fiji

With 333 islands to explore, backpacking around Fiji is an absolute must. You’ll discover glorious white sandy beaches, an abundance of local and freshly caught food, green picturesque mountains, stunning sunsets and super friendly, relaxed Fijians. Everywhere you look, there’s an image that needs to be captured and shared. Find out all you need to know about backpacking Fiji right here.


When backpacking Fiji, it’s common to travel the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands due to its stunning beauty and relative closeness to Fiji’s capital. Here you’ll find plenty of accommodation and food options for all types of travellers.


Homestays are ideal for budget conscious travellers seeking an authentic experience. They also come with the added benefit of being able to put money directly into Fijian communities. Alternatively, if you’re looking for luxury, stick to the big resorts. I booked a mix of resorts and homestays on which incorporated the best of both worlds. When we stayed in homestays/cheaper accommodation, typically breakfast was included in the price and each additional meal was a mere $15-$20 FJD (£5-£6).

Resort Meal Plans

When booking a resort, compulsory meal plans are sometimes added to the price of the room. They’re compulsory due to the nature of having few alternative ways of getting food on each island. These food plans are an additional cost to the room so something to consider when looking at the price of accommodation. Due to the compulsory meal plans, Mantaray Island Resort and Octopus Resort were our 2 most expensive stays, despite staying in dorms.

Resort name:Octopus ResortMantaray Island Resort
Meal plan:FJD$136 per nightFJD$119 per night
Dorm:FJD$67 per nightFJD$62 per night
Typical resort & added meal plan price


For getting around the islands, the most popular choice is the Yasawa Flyer. There is also the option of the Sea Bus and private transfers. The Yasawa Flyer is a hop-on, hop-off catamaran which can be booked through Awesome Adventures. They promote the Bula Pass which you can get for different durations up to a 15-day pass. However, this is only cost effective when using the ferry often in a condensed time period. If you want to stay longer at each resort or you’re visiting fewer than approximately 5 islands, I’d recommend purchasing individual ferry tickets from island to island. It’s worth noting the Yasawa Flyer runs daily but transfers need to be pre-booked.

Before we began island hopping, many locals instructed us to stock up on bottled water. However, we were pleasantly surprised to find most of the accommodation provided free filtered water or rain water available 24/7. That being said, some islands – such as Beachcomber – are still limited on their capacity to provide this. We paid $6 FJD compared to around $1.20 FJD on mainland.

To fellow backpackers on a budget: I would definitely recommend taking mosquito repellant, a couple bottles of water, snacks and a bottle or two of wine!


All year-round you’ll find glorious weather in Fiji. I travelled in June, the start of their winter season, but enjoyed average temperatures of 30 degrees celsius thanks to the tropical climate. Upon our return to mainland (Viti Levu), the weather became a bit more temperamental and experienced a few overcast, rainy days. I’d recommend backpacking Fiji in off-peak season which is May-September as the islands weren’t jam packed with tourists yet the weather was still glorious.

Fiji sunset


You’ll always find something to keep you occupied when backpacking Fiji. If you don’t fancy basking in the sun and getting lost in a book all day, there are plenty of activities. Whether you’re staying at a homestay or resort, staff try hard to keep guests entertained with daily activities. Most places offer free activities such as kava ceremonies, snorkelling, paddle boarding, volley ball, jewellery making, coconut weaving and kayaking. Paid activities that were also readily available were spear fishing, boat tours, cave and village trips and scuba diving.

Fiji Kava Ceremony

When backpacking Fiji you must get involved in an authentic tradition: a Kava ceremony. Kava is the traditional drink of Fiji. Locals drink it most days either to socialise or as part of a ritual; it’s considered impolite to refuse it. You all gather round the kava bowl in a circle cross-legged, and drink from a half-coconut shell. Once presented with a bowl you clap once and yell BULA! (meaning hello). Drink the liquid – ideally in one gulp – then proceed to clap 3 more times. At many of the homestays and resorts they will have a daily kava session to welcome the new guests and chat with existing ones. It’s definitely a must-try activity while in Fiji!

Let me know if there’s anything else you think need to be added to this list of backpacking Fiji!

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