This past weekend, my parents planned a surprise vacation to Fiji, South Pacific’s tropical paradise, for my brother and I. From the moment I landed in Fiji, I was absolutely blown away by Fijian hospitality and culture. Visiting Fiji was like visiting a home away from home.
We stayed at the Fiji Beach Resort and Spa Managed by Hilton for 4 nights. The villa we stayed at had a beautiful sea facing view. All throughout the day we could see cruise ships and boats sailing past. It was an absolutely heavenly sight to see. The resort was filled with people of all nationalities and ethnicities. What made the stay at Fiji Hilton even better was hearing a loud and cheerful BULA (hello in Fijian) every time I walked passed the staff and visitors and to my surprise this kind of atmosphere was also in the cities. I was really lucky to have met some amazing people whilst in Fiji and till this date we have kept in touch with each other.
My family and I travelled all throughout Denarau, Nadi, Suva and Sigatoka. But the highlight of my trip was the Sigatoka Safari. I had the great privilege to meet with villagers that were based a few hours away from Sigatoka. Being a true city gal, hiking and doing any activity outdoors is completely outside my comfort zone; however, participating in the Sigatoka Safari really helped me challenge my fears in so many ways. While next to the Cannibal Caves, I got to meet with some of the other villagers and their children. They were very gracious to let me into their homes and allowed me to see their plantations and animals. I was really fascinated by the way the children kept themselves busy: riding their horses down to the lake, welcoming tourists, inventing new games and toys. It was absolutely wonderful for me to see people content and grateful for all that they have, even if they had very little.
Towards the end of the Sigatoka Safari the villagers prepared some lunch for us and even showed us some classic Fijian songs and performances. Watching them dance, I couldn’t help but join them.
I learnt so much about Fijian culture and their socio-economic conditions. It was an absolutely eye-opening and remarkable experience. This trip wouldn’t have been possible without my parents.
Here are a few photographs from my stay in Fiji.
These photographs were taken by Chikita Kodikal. If you would like to seek permission to use these photos you can send a message by clicking on the contact Messages to Mumbai tab. Messages to Mumbai logo designed by Vidyut and Chikita Kodikal.