Fiji is home to over 850,000 people, making it one of the most populated South Pacific Islands. Sand beaches, precious coral reefs, lush forests and plenty of sunshine are some of the features that make this island one of the most popular tourist destinations.
During the early nineties, the government made a decision to boost ecotourism in Fiji to enable travelers discovering the area’s natural beauty. It recognized that by making Fiji an ecotourism location, particular opportunities would open up for indigenous Fijians to participate in the tourism sector.
According to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, the Fiji government recognizes the fact that ecotourism has the potential to provide jobs, income, business opportunities for the locals and also act as a catalyst for ensuring preservation of the indigenous Fijian culture and the natural environment.
However, the UN organization also warned of the potential negative effects tourism can bring to the islands, because building more structures and inviting visitors can damage the natural beauty of the area as well as the local traditions.
Ecotourism Attractions in Fiji
The Fiji Islands are an archipelago of more than 330 islands filled with unique attractions that offer special experiential opportunities for travelers. The variety of memorable experiences in this area is very diverse that it’s not impossible to find virgin grasslands and lush tropical rainforests that remain untouched.
There are plenty of ecotourism attractions in Fiji, which represent the government’s desire to show outsiders the unique nature and culture that Fiji possesses while at the same time making sure that these features are conserved and preserved for future generations. Since many of these attractions are run by local Fijians themselves, visitors have the chance for a memorable and educational cultural interaction.
Ecotourism goes hand in hand with the Yasawa Island Chain in Fiji. No land based tourism was allowed on the Yasawa Island Chain until the 1950s. This allowed the Yasawas to remain fairly free from the negative influence of the tourist based sector that plaques many popular vacation hotspots.
Yasawa Island resorts are normally made by the local people, or with the help and blessing of local Fijian villages. Moreover, they are staffed by locals and benefit from the local community, allowing them to enjoy a unique relationship that supports the local Fijian people and helps to preserve their indigenous culture.
Creating sustainable guest resorts in the Yasawas has allowed the area to stay fairly free from the influence of modern society. Here there are no fast food joints, factories or paved roads. These islands look much like they did in the 1700’s when westerners first landed.
Obviously, keeping the Yasawa Island Chain beautiful, natural and a paradise in the South Pacific makes them a bit hard to get to. Actually, there aren’t any international airports in these islands. The best way to get there is via a seaplane trip.
Other ecotourism attractions are:
- Mamanuca Islands
- Abaca Village and Recreation
- Momi Bay Battery Historical Park
- Adventure and Endless Holidays
- Nukubolu- A step back in time
- Bouma National Heritage Park
- Orchid Island
- Colo-i-Suva Forest Park
- Raintree Lodge
- Fiji Kayak Kadavu
- Rivers Fiji
- Fiji Museum
- Sigatoka Snad Dunes
- Koroyanitu National Heritag Park
- Tavuni Hill Fort
- Kula Eco Park Fiji
- Tavueni Island
- The Laverna Coastal Walk.