I am becoming obsessed about Fiji lately, especially after I entered a competition on Facebook recently and tried to read more about this tropical corner (I avoided to write ‘paradise’ as I have not been yet in person to bring a clear testimony for or against this description). The idea of a gorgeous weather all round the year (the lowest temperature during the winter is around 19 Celsius) is very tempting for me, especially after the long winter that ended up less than one month ago.
Fiji has around 300 volcanic islands – maybe the earthquakes are not the natural activity that I am in love with – a rich traditional culture and food specialities that mixes the local dishes with Indian, Korean, European to the Australian and New Zealand influences.
I will not write right now about the wonders of nature or the wide range of possibilities for accommodation, from luxury five-star hotels to budget hotels (most likely my option, as from my home country the costs of transportation are over 2,000 euro). I will talk about golf now, a sport that I was encouraged to practice but as in the case of almost all the sports I wanted to discover I concluded that I am too clumsy to waste my time trying to understand it. In Japan, almost every small village has in the immediate vicinity a nice golf area, besides the usual sauna.
The good news for people like me is that I’ve heard that in the golf resorts of Fiji there are enough experienced coordinators that are ready to teach even the clumsiest persons in the world.
Where to golf
One of the most highlighted golf course is Natadola Bay Championship, situated alongside Fiji’s six-star resort, the Intercontinental Fiji Golf and Spa Report. Denarau Golf and Racquet Club is considered unique in elegance among the South Pacific golf resorts: it has two practice putting greens, with special lessons offered for adults and juniors. Only 10 minutes away from the airport is the Nadi Airport Golf Club, with 18 holes and a view to both the ocean and the mountains. Another challenging playground for the professional and experienced players is the Pearl Championship Fiji Golf Course, that has 66 bunkers and multiple water hazards on 12 of the 18 holes.
Some of the most recommended nine-hole golf clubs are: Ba Golf Course (North East of Viti Levu), Novotel Hotel Nadi Executive Golf Course, Shangi-La The Fijian Resort Executive Golf Course or Vatukoula Golf Course.
If you visit Fiji, there are a couple of local customs that the tourist should be aware of. For instance, dressing modestly when visiting villages is a sign of respect. However, when you visit a village, be sure that you do not wear a hat, as it is considered an insult to the village chef. Be also careful to do not touch someone’s head as it is considered an insult.
In case that you are invited in someone’s house, to dot wear shoes.
When you visit a village, don’t forget to bring with you a special gift for the head of the village. People are welcoming and curious and can’t wait to shake hands with you and ask you a couple of very important questions, including where you are from, whether marries and how many children do you have.
It looks as a challenging adventure for me. Let’s hope will win at travel competition soon!