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Nadi/Fiji or Rarotonga/Cook Islands?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Nadi/Fiji or Rarotonga/Cook Islands?

1. Posted by blytonrtw (Respected Member, 20 posts) 6 May '07 10:50

Hi folks,

If given the choice of Nadi/Fiji or Rarotonga/Cook Islands, what would you recommend. We are planning to arrive around mid october 2007.

Cheers:)

2. Posted by SamSalmon (Respected Member, 622 posts) 9 May '07 19:51

Definitely Fiji.

Many more places to visit/things to do/friendlier people and much much better food.

3. Posted by magdabis (Full Member, 26 posts) 9 May '07 20:55

I have not been to Cook Islands but I've been to Fiji and Nadi is definitely not the best place to see in Fiji. it is pretty messy town, noething special there really. But Fiji itself is gorgeous. You should do island hoping in Yasawa group of islands. They are amazing, real paradise. I recommend http://www.awesomefiji.com they have great deals and their packages are great for backpackers - transport and accomodation are organised and booked for you but you still have all the freedom. I've been with them on 5-day package on 5 islands and it was the most relaxing time ever. I also did Feejee Experience on Viti Levu, main island where Nadi is, but this is more cultural experience kind of thing, since you visit school or village, but it is still great way to see beauty of fiji
Magda

4. Posted by hellopanda (Budding Member, 26 posts) 9 May '07 22:38

I completely agree with magdabis - nadi probably isn't what you have in mind when you think of fiji, it's where the airport is and there is one main street of shops, and that's about it, it's not a 'beachy' place.

Definitely head to the Yasawa islands if you can. We also went to another group of islands called the Mananucas which are also amazing, like magdabis said 'paradise'!

5. Posted by hey_monkee (Respected Member, 430 posts) 11 May '07 20:48

Rarotonga is more expensive, if your decision is gonna be budget based...but its really nice and not quite so over-run with tourists.

6. Posted by Degolasse (Travel Guru, 806 posts) 17 May '07 07:06

I went to both a few years ago - 10 days in Fiji, and a week in Cooks.
I loved Fiji. It was friendly, cheap, backpacker oriented, lots to see and do, and it was a really good time.
On the Cook Islands I was quite bored. I found the Cooks far more beautiful - it was pretty much the brochure image of a perfect tropical beach - and I entertained myself for a couple days by renting a bicycle and going around Raratonga, and by doing the fantastic cross-island hike. But after that and a couple days sitting on the beach opening coconuts, I was a little stir crazy. The Cooks are also a little more expensive, though if you stay in hostels and cook your own food, you dont notice too much of a difference.

The big thing for me though was that I was a solo traveller. As I said, Fiji was backpacker oriented, and so days were spend on the beach or playing volleyball at the resort with a groups of fellow travellers and evenings with a guitar, some beer, and good conversation. In the Cooks however, I found it a little more couple oriented and I found myself a little bored by myself with fewer ways to meet fellow travellers. Of course there were many evenings of playing cards with a few folks from the hostel, but it didn't have the same communal atmosphere that Fiji had. However, I will happily go back to the Cooks someday...with my girlfriend.

So, if you want a nice relaxing, maybe romantic getaway with whomever is included in "we", then head to the Cook Islands. If you want a more backpacker type, slightly more adventurous and fun trip, head to Fiji.

7. Posted by hopper (Budding Member, 4 posts) 21 May '07 17:35

i would have to say that, returning from fiji about a month ago, it is now quite an expensive place for backpackers (more so than oz) it's moderately dangerous, always people trying to rip you off. it's good if you're looking for the tourist holiday of sitting in the resort or going to yasawas/mamanucas, otherwise i wouldnt bother going there.

8. Posted by ladybug66 (Budding Member, 42 posts) 23 May '07 05:38

I would have to agree - never been to the Cook Islands but i would highly recommend Fiji. We spent a week on Mana Island and did loads of island hopping. Incredibly cheap, the people were really friendly and the food was great. Beaches were amazing too!

9. Posted by Aukena (Budding Member, 5 posts) 13 Jun '07 16:56

I'm in love with the Cooks. I wish I could move there!!!I've been to Samoa and French Poly and I would head back to the Cooks before the other 2. I've never been to Fiji though. Thats the next island group on my list after Oz this Nov. Anyways, I don't think you would go wrong either way:) Aloha

10. Posted by S_Paradise (Full Member, 65 posts) 13 Jun '07 20:29

Fiji. But only use Nadi (on Viti Levu) as a jumping off point for the Yasawas and Mamanuthas. For really wild Fiji head to the island of Vanua Levu.