Fiji Islands is an island nation in Melanesia in the South Pacific Ocean about 2000 km northeast of New Zealand's North Island. Its more immediate neighbours are Vanuatu to the west, France's New Caledonia to the southwest, New Zealand's Kermadec to the southeast, Tonga to the east, the Samoas and France's Wallis and Futuna to the northeast and Tuvalu to the north.Fiji has had inhabitants since the second millennium BC. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the Dutch and the British explored Fiji. Fiji was a British colony up until 1970; British occupation lasted almost a century. Because of the abundance of forest, mineral, and fish resources, Fiji is one of the most developed economies in the Pacific island realm.
Fiji has a significant amount of tourism and many people go to the Nadi and Denarau islands. The biggest sources of international visitors by country are Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Fiji has a significant amount of soft coral reefs, and scuba diving is a common tourist activity. Fiji enjoys a typical tropical climate, with a trade wind blowing across the islands to cool things down during most of the year. Maximum summer temperatures average 88°F (31°C), with the winter average not far different at 84°F (29°C). Rain can be expected at any time of year. The driest months are April, May, June and October.
More budget resorts are being opened in remote areas, which provides more tourism opportunities One of the world's more exotic destinations, Fiji is a tropical paradise in the South Pacific, made up of 322 islands nearly two thousand miles (3,219km) east of Australia. More information on http://www.fijiguide.com
Visitors to Fiji should be careful not to offend local sensitivities. Wearing bikinis and swimming costumes is fine at the resorts but not when visiting villages or shopping in town. A sulu (a sarong that can be worn by men and women) is useful as a wrap-around so no offence is caused when wearing shorts or sleeveless tops away from hotels or resorts. Topless bathing and nudity in public is forbidden. A popular excursion for visitors to Fiji is a visit to one of the traditional villages. Guests in villages should show respect and avoid wearing hats, as they are a sign of disrespect, and remove shoes before enterin.
Diving has become a major activity in the Fiji archipelago, which is encircled by a huge reef. Divers are drawn to its shallow, translucent lagoons, steep drop-offs and world famous soft corals. Combined with warm waters and 130-foot (40m) visibility, this makes Fiji an underwater paradise.
Some of the best dive sites are in Yasawas, Mamanucas, Nadi and the Coral Coast. Kadavu, Vanua Levu, Tavanui and the Lau group of islands also offer some interesting options. This vast number of sites ensures divers will see a great selection of marine life, caves, corals and reefs. The directory at www.fiji.islands-diving.com provides good dive resort information, while information for everything from PADI courses and dive operators to good snorkeling spots is also available. Fiji is definitely a destination to put on any diver's list of places to visit.