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Tokoriki Island, Fiji Travel Guide
 
Last Updated: Apr-03-2012, Hits: 3,965, Rating: 0, Reviews: 0, Votes: 0 Bookmark and Share
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Location: Australia & Pacific
Geography: Island, Beach
Vacation Type: Romantic, Relaxation
Popularity: Off-the-Beaten Path
Costs: Moderate, Expensive
Attractions: Scenery, Fishing, Hiking, Scuba & Snorkeling, Spa & Wellness

Facts and Stats:
Population: 0
Land Area: 0.3 square miles
Elevation: Sea level
Country Dialing Code: 679
Languages: English, Bau Fijian, and Fiji Hindi
Electricity: 220V
Currency: Fijian dollar (FJD)
Time Zone: UTC +12 (+13 Summer)
Current Time:

Introduction:
Tokoriki is a small island off the west coast of Viti Levu. The island is only occupied by 2 resorts which provide a good place for relaxation and romance. The resorts also offer snorkeling, diving, fishing tours and other recreational activities.

Geography:
Tokoriki is the northernmost island in the Mamanuca Island group, and located approximately 22 miles northwest of Nadi International Airport on the main island of Viti Levu. The island only has about 190 acres of land with the resorts located on the western side. The island is surround by coral reef making it a good destination for snorkeling and scuba diving.

Brief History:
It is believed that Fiji was originally settled by the Lapita people in about 1220 BC. They likely came to the area from Vanuatu or the Solomon Islands by way of Indonesia and the Malay Peninsula. Aroung 500 BC, a shift towards agriculture combined with an increase in population resulted in intertribal fighting. As a result, cannibalism became common in times of war and this practice would continue until the 19th century.

Abel Tasman was the first European to sail past Fiji in 1643, but his descriptions of the dangerous reefs kept explorers away for nearly 130 years. James Cook was in the area in 1774, but Captain Bligh is often credited for sailing through the islands after the "Mutiny on the Bounty" in 1789.

The first outsiders to live among the native Fijians were escaped Australian convicts and shipwrecked sailors, many of whom became dinner. Missionaries arrived during the 19th century, and as Christianity spread, cannabilism waned.

Fiji was pronounced a British crown colony in 1874. Enslaving local Fijians wasn't legal, so the British turned to indentured servants from India to help them run the sugar cane fields and sugar mills. Indentured servitude was abolished in 1919, however, over 40% of Fiji's population is made up of descendants of this Indian labor force.

Tourism came to the Mamanuca Islands in the 1960's.

Fiji gained its independence from the British in 1970.

People & Culture:
The people of Fiji are very friendly. In fact, Conde Nast once voted the people of Fiji as the "Friendliest People in the World". Although the locals' native languages are Fijian and Hindi, pretty much everybody speaks English.

There are no permanant residents on Tokoriki Island and most of the workers live in a village on nearby Yanuya Island.

The island doesn't offer any cultural attractions such as museums, galleries, or theatres, however, the the resorts do offer a handful of cultural activities, demonstrations, and tours.

There are some local customs to keep in mind if you visit one of the villages (there are tours to villages on other islands available). When visiting a village it is customary to present a gift of kava (more about that in the food section). If you are visiting via a tour from the resort, they will take care of this for you. If asked to participate in kava drinking, it is a good idea to partake. It is considered rude to touch someone on the head - even children. If entering someone's home, take your shoes off before entering. Do not wear skimpy clothing or a hat to the villages.

Food & Nightlife:
There are no independent restaurants or bars on the island, just the options offered at the resorts. Both resorts offer meal plans that provide access to their buffet style meals that feature local and international cuisine.

Money & Costs:
The resorts on Tokoriki Island are on the higher end of the budget. After purchasing a meal plan, additional costs will include transfer service, tours, and alcoholic beverages. There are no banks or ATMs on the island, however, the resorts do accept credit cards. Fiji's currency is the Fijian dollar (FJD).

Tipping is not customary in Fiji and even somewhat discouraged unless you have received extraordinary service.

Entry Requirements:
Entry Requirements: Holders of Passports from visa exempt countries are granted visitors visas valid for 4 months on arrival. Extensions can be made up to 6 months on condition that they hold a valid passport (valid for 3 months) beyond the intended period of stay in Fiji, outward ticket and sufficient funds to facilitate duration of stay.

For a list of visa exempt countries, visit the Fiji Department of Immigration.

Getting There & Around:
To get to Tokoriki Island you will first need to fly into Nadi International Airport on the main island of Viti Levu. The fastest (and most expensive) way to get to the island from Viti Levu is via a 15 minute helicopter flight. These flights run about $250 per person for the flight there and about $500 for the flight back. Keep in mind that there are no flights at night. You can also take a 15 minute seaplane flight which is slightly less expensive.

You can take a catamaran from South Sea Cruises that departs twice a day from Port Denarau. This appears to be the least expensive option and the trip takes between 1:15 and 1:30. Finally, you can take a 1 hour private water taxi ride from Viti Levu. These taxis run 24 hours. All of the options include taxi service from the airport to the departure point. Check with your resort's website for more information about transfer options and pricing.

Once on the island, the only transportation is your feet and the boats that will take you to dive spots and neighboring islands. If you want a break from the resort, you can hike up the hill to the top of the island for some excellent views.

Weather:
The best time to visit is between May and November when it is the driest. In addition to less rain, temperatures and humidity are lower as well.

The table below shows weather averages.

  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg High 88 88 88 88 86 82 82 84 84 86 86 86
Avg Low 73 73 73 72 70 66 64 66 68 70 72 72
Water Temp 84 86 84 84 82 81 79 79 81 81 81 82
Precipitation 16.5" 10.2" 13.5" 7.6" 5.5" 3.1" 2.0" 2.8" 3.5" 5.2" 2.5" 7.5"
Days of Rainfall 21 22 22 19 11 9 12 11 11 13 8 17
Humidity 83 82 83 82 78 77 77 77 75 76 77 80

Tips & Additional Information:
  • Fiji is free from malaria, yellow fever and other major tropical diseases.
  • Yellow Fever and Cholera vaccinations are only required if coming from an infected area.





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