Wednesday, 13 August 2014


A couple of cute young backpacker girls had just come from a different part of the mainland and recommended that I visit, as I had no other plans and since they were going back also, figured why not!  So I teamed up with another young Aussie guy named Ben and we made our way back to Viti Levu via fast boat and hopped a local bus along the south coast to Beachhouse Resort, a boutique backpacker place with upmarket rooms also.
Now I have never really stayed in backpacker dorms before Fiji, except 1 night on Koh Ta Kiev at Ten103 Treehouse, but I would assume and it seemed to be the general consensus, that Beach House was one of the nicest backpacker places you are likely to find, especially at the price.  From memory we paid around $25 au per night for a dorm bed but that included a free light breakfast and afternoon tea daily, plus they have a kitchen if you want to do your own cooking.  
It was a beautiful, sprawling, absolute beachfront 'resort', tucked away in a bay with no neighbours to be seen, you felt as though you were on your own island it was so peaceful.  The people here were amazing, staff and travellers, and everybody that turned up just simply never left!  People were changing flights and plans everyday here, just to continue living in such a cool environment.  The food was also amazing, they had possibly the best fresh baked bread I have ever eaten, and I was a baker for 8 years! 
 I was amazed at how many vegans I met in Fiji, I’m not normally spending so much time with other western backpackers but it seemed to be a common trend, with a lot of girls and guys also being right into yoga.  There was a definite new age vibe with a lot of these younger ones and although I may not agree with all their philosophies, the themes of living simpler, reducing waste and looking after the environment was great to see.
In a really bizarre twist of fate, I bumped into Pete’s (who I met and went riding with in Vietnam) housemate that lives in Phong Nha who I had hung out with a few times while there in February this year.  If I had of ran into him in Thailand or Cambodia etc it still would have been a little weird, but in some random backpacker joint in Fiji??!!  What are the odds….
There were a ton of activities to do every day,  kayaking, surfing, fishing, jungle walks to a waterfall, weaving, diving, snorkelling, SUP boarding, nightly pool comps, swimming in the resort pool, watching amazing sunsets….  The list seemed endless, check out their website for all the details, for anybody stopping in Fiji, you would be crazy to miss out on this place.  Ben and I stopped in for a couple of days and stayed for 2 weeks, with him changing his flights to extend, he actually stayed over 3 weeks, but I chose to move on for a while as it was just too easy to spend your whole time there and not see anything else.
 I knew I had to move on or get stuck there, so again hopped a local bus and made my way to Suva solo.  I booked into the cheapest place I could find, City Private Hotel, still pricey at $35 au a night, but not bad for Fiji, plus it was in a good location.  I had to change rooms for my last night  in town though and it turned out to be a much nicer place and  better value.  I'm pretty certain the place was Sunset Motel, if I ever find my way back to Suva I will certainly stay there again.
 I explored to the town thoroughly (had a beer in nearly every watering hole) and absolutely love the Fijian spirit, they sure know how to have a good time.  Through some social networking media I made contact with some locals and we went out a couple of nights, otherwise I rolled solo and made friends along the way!
When I told the local contacts where I had been going on my own the previous nights they were shocked!  They have never been to some of them and couldn’t believe I had no trouble, especially in one place in particular, Golden Dragon.  I just laughed ‘no worries, I got a few funny looks for the first half hour, then they accepted me after we got chatting’ especially having been to the Solomon Islands, as there are many SI living and going to school here. 
It is still recommended to take a taxi everywhere late at night though as it can be a dangerous place.  I had an absolute ball in Suva and met some great people, but I wouldn’t recommend for everyone to just head out alone like that.  Bad Dog CafĂ©, O'Reilly's and Traps are the main foreigner bars but don't be shy about mingling with the locals in other places, you would be hard pressed to find a friendlier bunch of people.  But enter Golden Dragon at your own risk!  haha
Beach House Resort