Island resorts by their very nature are exclusive hideaways – places where lapping waves are your soundtrack, seafood is plucked fresh from the sea, and sand on your skin is just part of the standard apparel.
In Fiji, where happiness comes naturally, some resorts take barefoot bliss to the next level. Think free-flowing Champagne at every meal, beaches reserved solely for romantic picnics, and even a dedicated luxury lounge at Nadi Airport.
Of course, it’s not just dazzling resorts and incredible scenery that makes Fiji’s 333 islands worth visiting. It’s the locals too. They’re warm and inviting, always wearing a smile, and guaranteed to leave just as big an impression as wherever you stay.
Ready to slip into island time, where minutes feel like hours and hours feel like days? These are the Fiji private islands worth checking into.
COMO Laucala Island
Even if you don’t know COMO Laucala Island by name, there’s a chance you’ve seen its lap pool – glass-fronted, fringed by palms and enveloped by an even larger lagoon. It’s striking… yet it isn’t even the best part of this 25 residence resort.
Set amid 3,500 acres, Laucala embraces the luxury of space, with locally-inspired design and a particular emphasis on wellness. The latter is most evident in treatments at its Shambhala Spa, though it’s infused in the cuisine at its varied restaurants too.
Plantation House’s menu changes daily, depending on available produce and the day’s catch, while Seagrass Restaurant up in the treetops is all about abundant seafood and pan-Asian flavours.
Rock Lounge and the Beach Bar are essential ports of call.
And as for the residences? They certainly command attention, whether perched beside the rolling waves, on a hilltop or surrounded by the sounds of the tropical forest.
In keeping with COMO’s global ethos, there’s a strong focus on sustainability and farm-to-table produce. Farm tours take you behind the scenes to see the island-wide efforts, including stops at the piggery, beehives and wagyu cattle paddocks.
Vatuvara Private Islands
The word ‘paradise’ sums up Vatuvara Private Islands to a tee. But perhaps the biggest reason to visit the luxury resort – nestled within 800-acres on Kaibu island, northeast of Suva – isn’t simply for what it has, but rather what it doesn’t.
Instead of dozens of villas, Vatuvara has only three: Delana, Saku and Vatu. This results in an incredible level of personalisation and privacy.
Add in views for days and timber-clad interiors where no detail is overlooked and you have something truly special.
Organic fruits and vege from the resort’s kitchen garden play a big role in its culinary offering, both at casual Jim’s Bar & Grill, and at Valhalla Restaurant, where artfully-designed multi-course dinners are matched by a formidable wine cellar.
Guests can fill their days playing golf, diving and snorkelling, hiking or immersing themselves in local culture. Vatuvara island, the resort’s uninhabited volcanic namesake, is also only a short boat ride away for destination picnics.
Similarly exclusive is Dolphin Island, welcoming just eight guests. Though 20 minutes by boat from Rakiraki, it feels wholly off-grid, like you’ve washed up on an deserted island, but there’s running water, fragrant cuisine and bures you won’t want to be rescued from.
Each suite is vastly different, united by a shared lodge and pool, yet the open-air hilltop sleepout is arguably its most enchanting. A real one-of-a-kind. Rustic, refined, and brimming with Fijian elements, such as woven ‘kivu’ mats and ‘magimagi’ coconut husk ropes.
The experience is absolutely worth writing home about too. Whether it’s fishing in the morning, diving in the afternoon, or getting to know the locals at nearby villages, every moment is worth savouring.
Speaking of savouring, every mouthful of the Indo-Fijian cuisine – Indian spices blending with fresh seafood, tropical fruits and indigenous vegetables – is guaranteed to make you swoon.
Royal Davui Island
Just off the coast of dive mecca Beqa Island, adults-only Royal Davui Island is home to 16 thatched-roof villas and bungalows, all-inclusive dining and an exceptional array of activities designed to help you slip into a state of bliss.
Accessible via a short flight from Nadi, followed by a zippy speedboat from Pacific Harbour, the resort’s villas and main buildings have all been designed to blend into the island’s natural setting, adding to the ‘castaway’ island feel.
Each villa boasts a private plunge pool and sensational views. However, the Davui Plunge Pool Villa East is a cut above the rest, with 180-degree views of Beqa island and lagoon greeting you each time you step outside.
When hunger calls, guests can make their way to Banyan Tree Restaurant and Bar, or dial up the romance with a private dinner on the lookout deck or down alongside the lapping waves.
For something truly unforgettable, private picnics at a sand cay – just you, your significant other and an umbrella and deck chairs to enjoy the serenity – can also be arranged.
The Kokomo experience begins long before you even set foot on its pristine shore. At Nadi, guests are whisked to a private airport hangar and lounge. Here, they can enjoy a shower or light refreshments before making the flight to the island.
On touchdown, indulgence only takes off from there. Every one of its 21 villas has a private pool and beach access, while its five hilltop residences – ideal for extended families – come with dedicated butlers and a nanny for the duration of the stay.
Beach Shack is your go-to for a tantalising mix of Mediterranean and Fijian cuisines, while Walker d’Plank plates up Asian-style street food classic, chargrilled seafood and cocktails so good you won’t be able to stop at one.
Sound like paradise? It certainly is. Yet it’s just one of countless swoon-worthy escapes ready to be discovered throughout Fiji – and repeat visits are an ideal way to experience them all.
It’s a good thing then that Fiji is so easily accessible from Australia, with direct flights now jetting off from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide on Fiji Airways, as well as Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane on Qantas and Virgin Australia.
For more info or to start planning your perfect Fiji escape, visit fiji.travel
This article was produced in collaboration with Tourism Fiji.