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Getting around Fiji

Getting around Fiji is simple by air with most places served by Airport or Airstrip. The domestic airlines Pacific Sun, Turtle Airways and Air Wakaya are available to fly around the islands. By using local buses, carriers (small trucks) and ferries you can get around Fiji's main islands comparatively low-pricely and easily. If you'd like additional comfort or are short on time you can use air-conditioned express buses, rental vehicles and charter boats.

For those with abundance of time on their hands getting around Fiji by boat is incredible, with ferry services linking Viti Levu to all the other island groups. These ferries not only take passengers, but cargo and vehicles as well and sell food, snacks and drinks aboard. The only disadvantage to traveling by ferry is that a proper time schedule is not followed and most boats do not leave or arrive at the appointed hour. This can be difficult if you are short of for time. 

Boat
The only means of transport to and between the Mamanuca and Yasawa groups and upmarket resort islands is by small local boats, especially for the backpacker resorts but there a catamaran that goes up to this Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands. Life jackets are rarely provided on the small boats and usually they have no radio-phones as well but for the catamaran there are sufficient life jackets and radio phones provided. If the weather looks ominous or the boat is overcrowded, consider postponing the trip or opting for a flight.

In other areas, it is hard to discover and hop from island to island unless you have a charter boat or yacht. On Kadavu, for example, transport is mostly by small village or resort-owned boats. Apart from the Suva-Kadavu ferry, there is no organized transport here and most resorts have their own boats.

Bus
Fiji's larger islands have a wide range and inexpensive bus networks. Local buses are cheap and regular and a great way to mix with the locals. While they can be fairly noisy and smoky they are perfect for the tropics, with unglazed windows and pull-down tarpaulins for when it rains. There are bus stops but you can often just hail buses, especially in rural areas.
Air-conditioned express buses scuttle on some major routes such as Nadi to Suva.
Sunbeam Transport and Pacific Transport are the main carriers on Viti Levu. Pacific Transport also operates services on Taveuni. Local companies operate buses on Vanua Levu.
Reservations are not obligatory for local buses. If you are on a tight schedule or have an appointment, though, it's a good idea to buy your ticket in advance, especially for bus trips and tours over longer distances (eg Suva to Nadi).

Car & motorcycle
About 90% of Fiji's 5100km of roads are on Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, of which about 1/5 are sealed. Both of these islands are fun to travel around by car, 4WD or on motorcycles. Driving is on the left side of the road and international permits are valid for six months. Maximum speed in the built up areas is 50 km/hr and in the highways it is 80 km/hr.

Hire
Rental cars are fairly expensive in Fiji. Despite this, it is a good way to discover the larger islands, especially if you can split the cost with others.
Some rental agencies will not allow their cars to be driven on unpaved roads, which greatly limit exploration of the highlands. It is possible to take vehicles on roll-on, roll-off ferries to Vanua Levu or Taveuni, but again, some companies do not allow this. The ferry costs are pretty expensive and vehicles are available to rent on both these islands anyway. If you do take a car on a ferry to Vanua Levu, it's best if it's a 4WD.

Limousine and Chauffeur Services
Limousine services are obtainable with your own personal chauffeur. The tour operators providing such services are Adventure & Endless Holidays, Rosie Travel Service – Inbound, Significant Original Holidays, Coral Sun Fiji, Khans Rental Cars, Thomas Cook Fiji, Tapa International Ltd and United Touring Fiji Ltd.

Bicycles
Bicycles are becoming more popular in Fiji in recent years for locals and tourists alike and in many ways; Fiji is a perfect place for a rugged bike tour. However, the motor vehicle traffic can be nerve-racking on well-travelled roads, and there is a lack of accommodation along secondary roads. Cycling is a great way to see Fiji but make sure you carry all your own spares and supplies as bike shops are scarce. It is an excellent idea to carry abundance of water, a camelbak is great, as it is very hot and humid almost year round.

The main Road around the largest island, Viti Levu, is sealed except for a 40 km section on the eastern side. A sturdy road, touring or hybrid bike is suitable.

Taxis
Taxis are also a good way to tour around Viti Levu, Taveuni, Vanua Levu and Ovalau and see the sights. However, before you get in, make sure you agree on a fare. Sharing taxis and cabs with other people is an efficient way of keeping the price cheap. Taxis can be found at the taxi depot in the main towns, or just have your hotel ring one up for you.