by Naomi Neoh | June 20, 2019
Get uncaged and closer to nature on a shark dive.

With less than one million international arrivals annually, Fiji's pristine island destinations make for an exclusive enclave for incentive groups. Its strong conservation and sustainability focus has helped the tropical paradise remain an inspiring destination not just with its unspoiled scenic wonders. The archipelago sees a multicultural spread of ethnicities, from Indo-Fijians of Indian heritage to Chinese, Southeast Asians, Europeans and other Melanesians, with English as the most widely spoken language.

The archipelago of more than 300 islands is where ancient traditions continue to be practised today. Here, groups can take part in a host of inspiring nature activities and unique cultural experiences.

Fantastical dives
A trip to Fiji will not be complete without diving into the crystal clear waters. A signature activity, shark diving, will allow groups to swim alongside experts and get unnervingly close to sharks in the wild.

Off the main island of Viti Levu, Beqa Lagoon is where groups can go 'uncaged'  to feed sharks. There, even beginners can get the ultimate shark diving experience.

Surrounded by over 300km of coral reefs, the waters are home to about eight species of sharks, including the famed bull sharks, silvertips and the legendary tiger sharks, as well as more than 400 species of tropical reef fish.

At Beqa Lagoon Resort, groups can take a 15-minute boat ride to Cathedral, a tiger shark dive site, where they can watch the agile predators at work from a safe distance of five- to six-metres.

To attract the sharks, the resort's dive crew will put fish loins and bones in the water. But the main attraction is watching sharks make their meal of a locked box of small fishes, equipped with bars that allow the fishes to pass through.

Kava Ceremony 190619
Fiji's beloved kava ceremony allows groups to experience what it's like to be part of a larger village family.

Culture trip

Then there is the Kava ceremony, one of Fiji's most beloved customs that continues to be practiced in villages.  

Fijian destination management company Rosie Holidays offers groups the rare chance to visit Fiji's remaining village, where traditional ways of life are preserved. Located in the Ba Highlands of northern-central Viti Levu, Navala is home to villagers who still live in more than 200 thatched buildings - one of the few settlements where its traditional architecture remains intact.

Groups can also experience the traditional ritual of offering kava roots as 'sevusevu', or a gesture of respect, while inside a Fijian a wood-and-straw hut, or 'bure', before proceeding on a guided tour around the village by a local guide.

Kava Ceremony 1906192
Kava offerings on display.

For a more interactive and hands-on experience, groups can head to the Fiji Culture Village in Nacaqara, Navo, Nadi, where they will get to meet local villagers and learn about their crafts and customs.

Groups will get the chance to try various arts and cultural activities, such as carving, fishing, canoe making, pottery making, tapa making and coconut bure. Afterwards, there are galleries where visitors can learn more about Fiji's history and culture.

Traditional customs, such as the kava ceremony and meke performance, will come alive, promising groups a spectacular show filled with singing and dancing, as well as a wild display of local costumes and legends. They can also witness a traditional form of cooking, or 'lovo', in which food is cooked by being placed in an underground pit filled with heated rocks.

Au naturel in the mud
After the day's excitement, a relaxing and nourishing experience for groups is a trip to the Sabeto Hot Springs and Mud Pool, located in the western end of Nadi on
Viti Levu.

Tour operator Westerzaif Tours can organise a trip to the popular spot, frequented by both locals and tourists alike. Groups will be able to indulge in a therapeutic nature-themed mud spa, which is touted to have age-defying benefits and amazing healing properties.

Cap off the day with a trip to the Vuda Lookout, which affords a 360-degree bird's eye view of the West's mountain ranges, Nadi Bay, Nadi International Airport and the beautiful Yasawa group of Islands.