advertisement

There are no Disney Worlds or other such attractions in Fiji. That's not to say that children won't have a fine time here, for Fiji draws many Australians and New Zealanders on family holidays. It has one of the South Pacific's finest family resorts, and others make provisions for families as well as honeymooners. Kids who like being around and in the water will enjoy themselves most.

With their innate love of children, Fijians are very good at babysitting and staffing the kids' programs at the major resorts.

On the other hand, many of Fiji's small resorts do not accept young children. I point these out in my hotel reviews.

Obvious family choices are the large hotels on Denarau Island. The Fiji Beach Resort & Spa Managed by Hilton, the Sheraton Fiji Resort, the Sheraton Denarau Villas, the Sofitel Fiji Resort & Spa, the Radisson Resort Fiji Denarau Island, and the Westin Denarau Island Resort & Spa are all equipped for families with children. Of them, the Radisson, has Fiji's best swimming-pool complex.

Likewise, the Outrigger on the Lagoon Fiji, the Warwick Fiji Resort & Spa, and the Naviti Resort on the Coral Coast all have plenty to keep the kids occupied.

Here are my recommendations among the smaller resorts.

  • Treasure Island Resort (Luvuka Island, the Mamanucas; tel. 666 6999; www.fiji-treasure.com): Modest but comfortable Treasure Island occupies a tiny, beach-fringed islet, the middle of which has a children's program, a miniature golf course, and baby sea turtles swimming in a breeding pool.

  • Castaway Island Resort (Qalito Island, the Mamanucas; tel. 800/888-0120 or 666 1233; www.castawayfiji.com): One of Fiji's oldest resorts but thoroughly refurbished, Castaway has plenty to keep both adults and children occupied, from a wide array of watersports to a kids' playroom and a nursery.

  • Malolo Island Fiji (Malolo Island, the Mamanucas; tel. 666 9192; www.maloloisland.com): This sister of the adults-only Likuliku Lagoon Resort has a fine beach, as well as a shaded swimming pool designed with children in mind.

  • Mana Island Resort (Mana Island, the Mamanucas; tel. 665 0423; www.manafiji.com): Relatively large Mana Island Resort caters to everyone and gets many day-trippers from Nadi; but the beach is safe, and it has one of the better children's programs in the Mamanuca Islands.

  • Plantation Island Resort (Malololailai Island, the Mamanucas; tel. 666 9333; www.plantationisland.com): The largest resort in the Mamanucas has long appealed to Australian families, offering a wide range of accommodations and activities, including a children's program with a full-time babysitter.

  • Outrigger on the Lagoon Fiji (Coral Coast; tel. 800/688-7444 or 650 0044; www.outrigger.com): The beach and shallow lagoon at the Outrigger leave much to be desired, but it has an exceptional swimming pool.

  • Shangri-La's Fijian Resort & Spa (Yanuca Island, the Coral Coast; tel. 866/565-5050 or 652 0155; www.shangri-la.com): The country's largest resort with 442 units, "The Fijian" has a better beach and lagoon than its big rivals on Denarau Island and the Coral Coast. You may exhaust yourself chasing the youngsters around its sprawling grounds, but the hotel has plenty of activities for all ages.

  • Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort (Savusavu; tel. 800/246-3454 or 885 0188; www.fijiresort.com): Although it appeals equally to couples, Fiji's finest family resort encourages parents to enroll their kids in its exceptional Bula Club, thus keeping the youngsters educated, entertained, and out of sight from breakfast to bedtime.

  • Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.