Welcome to Dravuni Island, a hidden gem in the Kadavu Group of islands in the Fiji archipelago. Dravuni offers a glimpse of the “real” Fiji because you will see local village life without a resort, hotel, restaurant, or pool in sight. It may be small, with just 125 local residents, but there’s a lot to do in Dravuni!
With its pristine beaches, vibrant coral reefs, and friendly locals, Dravuni offers an unforgettable tropical escape. Here’s your guide to making the most of your time in this South Pacific paradise.
Dravuni Island is accessible by boat or cruise ships. If you’re on a cruise ship, you’ll take a tender boat to get to the island. Prepare for a scenic journey surrounded by turquoise waters. You’ll land on the beach, and one of the first things you’ll see is a “Welcome to Dravuni Island” map which provides a helpful outline of what you can do and where you can go on the island.
Exploring the Island
1. Hike to the Summit
The island is criss-crossed with walking trails, so you can embark on a trek to the island’s summit for breathtaking panoramic views. The lush greenery and cool breezes make it a rewarding experience.
There is an unmissable path which climbs the 148 metres to the top of the hill. The actual climb is not too steep if you’re used to the Blue Mountains near Sydney, and the look-out up top rewards you with incredible vistas of the island and the ocean.
2. Beach Bliss
Relax on the powdery white sands of the beach. Swim in crystal-clear waters and soak up the tropical sun. If you want to escape the sun, there is well-tended lawn under the trees further up, with colourful sulus and shawls billowing from the market stalls in the sea breeze.
3. Snorkeling Adventure
Straight from the beach, you’ll be able to dive into the vibrant coral reefs surrounding the island. Encounter a kaleidoscope of marine life, from colourful fish to majestic sea turtles.
There are occasional stinging jellyfish in the water near the beaches, so keep an eye out! If you see one, there’s likely to be several more nearby so it’s best to move away from the area.
4. Cultural Exchange
Engage with the friendly locals and learn about Fijian traditions. You’ll probably see the Dravuni Primary School and if you’re lucky the local kids will put on a singing and dance show if there’s a tour group around. There’ll also be cassava groves, the odd pig-pen and wondering chickens, so you’ll get a good sense of village life in Fiji.
If you get the chance, try to participate in a kava ceremony to experience the island’s warm hospitality. If there isn’t one the day you visit, you’ll at least see some locals (usually children) sitting under the palm trees singing songs for passers-by.
5. Traditional Craft Shopping
Not far from the beach, you can explore local markets for handmade crafts and souvenirs. The stalls are an ideal place to pick up traditional Fijian items like woven baskets and tapa cloth.
6. Seafood Feast
As you walk along the beach, you’ll find that the locals have set up food stalls, with the smell of freshly-cooked meals in the air. You can pick up local specialities like lamb flap and egg salad so you can enjoy the flavours of the Pacific with a beachfront meal.
For a more exotic food experience, why not indulge in a flame-grilled seafood feast featuring fresh catches from the surrounding waters! There’s also a variety of local fruits like coconuts and bananas on sale.
7. Bird Watching
Dravuni is a haven for birdwatchers. Keep an eye out for native species as you stroll through the lush landscapes. The island is home to the Pink Billed Parrotfinch, Barking Imperial Pigeon, and even the Fiji Goshawk.
8. Photography Paradise
You can hire a local boat with an experienced fisherman who will take you around the shore to all the best photograph-worthy spots. If you get the light right, you will be thrilled with magazine-quality photos which will be the envy of the back-homers. Capture the island’s natural beauty and vibrant culture. Every corner of Dravuni provides a picturesque backdrop for your travel album.
9. Sunset Serenity
End your day with a sunset stroll along the beach. Witness the sky ablaze with hues of orange and pink as the sun sets over the South Pacific.
- Respect Local Customs: When you enter the village, remember that Fijians are a conservative people. Familiarize yourself with Fijian customs and traditions. A respectful approach to the local culture enhances your experience. If you’re traveling with a tour group, your group leader will probably deliver a customary gift to the village representatives.
- Pack Essentials: Bring sunscreen, a hat, and comfortable footwear for island exploration. Snorkeling gear is a must if you want to see the vibrant underwater corals and fish.
Dravuni Island promises an enchanting escape into nature and culture. Whether you seek relaxation on the beach or thrilling underwater encounters, this hidden paradise has something for every traveler. Enjoy your time in the heart of the South Pacific!