Judy White, of Cruise, Disney and All Inclusive Travel Specialist, Direct Accommodation, South Carolina, USA was the 2019 prize winner of the SPTO’s South Pacific Specialist competition. Her prize was a Famil holiday to Fiji which she visited recently with her daughter Victoria Rose.
This was how my daughter, Victoria, and I were greeted once we arrived in the Nadi International Airport after our flights from halfway across the world. This was the first of many friendly greetings we received during our 8 night stay.
While in Fiji we were fortunate enough to stay in four resorts in different areas. We first stayed at Radisson Blu Denarau Island Resort. This resort was close to the airport and to the Port of Denarau which made transfers quite easy. The resort had a fire dancing exhibit the night we stayed there and many family friendly activities throughout the day and night. Our adventure continued aboard the South Sea Cruises catamaran. This company has different vessels that take you to the islands off the mainland.
We were headed to Tropica Island Resort on Malolo Island for 3 nights. This resort is definitely unique and truly a great place to unplug from reality. Victoria and I felt like family to the staff as soon as we arrive on the pier. There are 24 rooms in this boutique resort so you get to meet many of the guests throughout the property. I would have to say the most memorable event for both of us happened while we stayed here. We took a snorkel and sandbank excursion on our last full day at the resort.
We went to 2 different snorkel spots and then to a sandbar that appears out of the Pacific Ocean at low tide for lunch. We saw some amazing creatures while snorkeling, one of which was a turtle!
The sandbar experience is something that we will never be able to replicate. The sure beauty of it took our breaths away.
The next day we were off again on the South Sea Cruises vessel to return to the mainland and venture off to the Coral Coast. During both of our catamaran transfers we could see other island resorts and islands that were uninhabited. After arriving back at the Port of Denarau, we were taken to Shangri-La Fijian Resort on Yanuca Island for 3 nights. This resort is on the Coral Coast and had a reef right off its beaches so that we could watch and listen to the waves break.
The 442 room resort was a large contrast to our previous resort, but there were activities available for all ages-adults and kids alike. During our stay here we visited a local village and school. This is something that we will always remember as we donated some school supplies to a Year 6 and a Kindergarten class. The teachers and students were so appreciative of us bringing them basic supplies.
On our way back to Nadi for our last night stay at Tanoa International and before our departure from Fiji, our transfer driver took us through Nadi. We were able to visit Jack’s of Fiji and Tapoo for some shopping. Victoria was excited about this so that we could take home some souvenirs.
Our visit to Fiji was amazing and we are forever grateful to have had this opportunity. We have left a little piece of our hearts there and hope to go back again.
I recommend the South Pacific Specialist Program to any travel professional who would like to sell destinations in the South Pacific. The resources in the training, the SPTO website, and the weekly e-newsletter, Pacific Pulse, provide valuable information.