Fijian Culture

Village Etiquette
The Fijian people have their own customs and culture that are an integral part of their every day life. To enter a Fijian village, one should seek permission from a Village Elder or be invited by one of the villagers. When entering a village there are some do's and don'ts that are more in keeping with good taste with culture.
  • Do dress modestly and comfortably.Wearing bikinis and brief swimming costumes is fine at the resorts but not when visiting villages. Remember to remove all hats and headgear. 
  • You may bring some Yaqona/Kava (it symbolizes the giving of life) to present to the village - and this is always appreciated.
  • When entering a bure (house) you may take your shoes off at the door to help keep the bure clean.
  • Fijians are very giving people, and this sometimes can work to their disadvantage - use common sense in taking food or objects. A good rule of thumb - it is better to give than to receive.
  • Good manners and courtesy are a worldwide customs; act as you would at home and you should have no trouble.
The Fijian meke features men and women in a programme of traditonal song and dance. The various provinces in Fiji have different dance routines. The meke usually depicts a story. The performances are colourful and participants wear traditional island costumes of printed bark cloth (tapa) and accessories woven from flowers and leaves. Musical accompaniment is provided Lali (drum carved from the bark of a tree) and a hollow bamboo pole beaten rhythmically on the ground.

One of the more spectacular sights in Fiji is the Fijian and Indian firewalking. The Fijians perform this at hotels on Viti Levu, or on the Island of Beqa where they were first given this gift according to legend. The Indians perform the firewalking as a Hindu religious observance.

The lovo is a traditional Fijian feast in which food is wrapped in banana leaves and cooked slowly in an earth oven over smouldering stones, providing a distinctive faintly smokey flavour. Vegetables, fish and meats are placed in the oven and many of the dishes are prepared in coconut milk. The centrepiece of the lovo is often a whole pig.