Fiji knows how to do traditional romance. From private dinners on the sand with the sea lapping by your feet, to candlelit spa treatments for two, honeymooners and lovebirds are in for some serious island-style pampering. But a romantic adventure doesn’t have to stick to convention – when you reach your limit of gazing at each other in paradise, venture beyond the resorts to strengthen your love even further.
Hike mountains and slide down a natural waterslide
There really is something special about the rhythm of walking together in nature, looking out for birds and wildlife or foraging for unique plants. On Taveuni (the Garden Island), the three-mile Lavena Coastal Walk skirts the forest edge, linking beaches and villages before arriving at incredible twin waterfalls. Take a sarong and swimsuit and break up the walk back with an impossibly romantic waterfall bath for two. Also on Taveuni, you can hike up to Waitavala, a natural rock waterslide – ideally with a guide who can show you the best way to tackle the wild cascades. For forests and mountains with breathtaking views, head to Koroyanitu National Heritage Park near Lautoka on Viti Levu. Expect some sometimes slippery uphill walking to climb Mt Batilamu, as well as the chance to cool off in a clear water stream, or even organise an overnight stay in a village inside the park.
Dare to dive, snorkel or explore limestone caves
With warm, clear waters and an abundance of reef life, Fiji is a magnet for divers and snorkelers. Underwater visibility regularly exceeds 100ft, and when the current flows, the corals bloom with flower-like beauty. If you haven’t already, you can get your PADI open-water diving certification together while in Fiji. In the Yasawa Islands chain, you can snorkel with manta rays in the channel between Nanuya Balavu and Drawaqa Islands. Or you and your partner might be tempted to explore the romantic Sawa-i-Lau caves. This limestone island is known as ‘the heart of the Yasawas’ with unforgettable 50-ft-high caves bathed in shafts of daylight.
Base yourself at Taveuni to dive the Great White Wall, or at Savusavu to dive the famous Namena Marine Reserve. Just two hours away by boat, this protected 43 square-mile park is home to vibrant corals and abundant marine life. For soft coral formations, Great Astrolabe Reef, a 62-mile barrier reef at Kadavu presents a maze of faults, canyons and tunnels.
Sail together, stay together
Challenging yes, but with the right skipper at the helm vacationers in Fiji have the time of their lives learning how to sail the South Pacific. Yachting is all about communication and teamwork – and there’s nothing more exhilarating than getting all the ingredients right so you feel like you’re at one with the ocean, the sky, the elements and of course your other half. There are a number of yacht charter companies to head out with, and several marinas have private sailing schools. Check out the options at Port Denarau and Savusavu’s marinas to find the boat and team that is right for you. Then sail away together to a deserted island – you’re sure to find the perfect one for you among Fiji’s 300-plus.
For something a little bit different, consider a half-day sailing tour on a traditional Fijian drua, where you’ll get the chance to steer the ship, as well as swimming and snorkeling in the ocean. Rosie Living offers trips that depart from The Boatshed at Vudu Marina, and include transfers for the Nadi and Denaru areas.
Cover each other in volcanic mud
All the relationship advice suggests one shouldn’t sling mud at one’s partner, but that’s exactly what you will do at Sabeto Hot Springs. These natural, outdoor thermal pools near Nadi Airport are a hugely popular spot to unwind. Visitors spend the afternoon bathing in volcanic mud pools of varying temperatures before showering clean. The softening effect on your skin is immediate. Lathering your partner in mud and then drying off, like a couple of Roman statues in the sun, can be hugely therapeutic and a lot of fun.
Go rafting, tubing, and waterfall bathing on the Navua River
Couples after a completely different adventure have two options on the pristine Navua River. Head for the Upper River rapids to go rafting through deep gorges and past dramatic waterfalls; or choose a more sedate river tubing adventure, with occasional rapids to keep the heart rate pumping. The Navua River slices through lush rainforest on Viti Levu from its source on the south east slope of Mount Gordon, and flows for 40 miles to the Pacific. Along the length of the river are dozens of waterfalls to stop off at and get pummeled by. Tours to Navua River typically depart from Pacific Harbour, 30 miles west of Suva.
A day out on the river, sailing to deserted islands, or slipping down a natural waterslide definitely calls for cocktails, or a massage for two, back at your hotel in the evening.