The country of Fiji in the Pacific is popular among western tourists for its hundreds of pristine beaches and intriguing landscapes. It has everything that you can think of such as mountains, volcanoes, caves, rainforests, coastal forests, coral reefs, beaches, and amazing dive sites. If you want your Fiji vacation educational as well as enjoyable, visit Tavuni Hill Fort to get a dose of the archipelago’s interesting history.
Located among the tiny island-nations of Tonga, Vanuatu and Samoa in southwestern Pacific, Fiji is made up of 322 islands, only 110 of which are inhabited. The islands are divided into 9 regions or groups, the most popular of which are Viti Levu (the main island), Mamanuca Group, and Yasawa Group. People have settled in these beautiful islands about 3,000 years ago. According to folk beliefs, ancient seafarers from Vanuatu stumbled upon Fiji as they searched for more lands to cultivate kava, a popular herb in the Pacific. Kava was considered sacred and was even used as currency. It still factors highly in the lives of local Fijians today.
Tavuni Hill Fort is located in Sigatoka on the island of Viti Levu. Hiking up the hill is never fun without a native guide who is only too willing to tell folk stories and the history of the islands. The Tavuni tour is very affordable at only F$ 12 (about US$7) per person, plus donation or tip to the friendly guide. It is not difficult to find the hill on board a regular taxi from Sigatoka, which makes it unnecessary to pay for a complete tour from the hotel and back.
Here are exciting things that await a tourist on top of the hill.
As expected, one gets a breath-taking view of the island below. One may linger on top of the hills just looking over the Naroro Village, nearby Sigatoka sand dunes, and the distant mountain range and farm lands. Climb Tavuni Hill Fort if only for this spectacular and soothing hilltop view.
On top of the hill, stroll among the ruins of an ancient Tongan fort that was built in the 18th Century. The Tongans invaded the islands and strategically built a fortress on top of this steep hill overlooking Sigatoka. They held the fort for some time until they were finally vanquished by Fijian troops under British control. Today, hikers are treated to an amazing site that includes rock barricades, stone foundations, ceremonial grounds and the “vatu-ni-bokola” or killing stone. Knowing about this stone typically sends chills to the spines of tourists. It was used to bash the heads of enemies using a war club.
Finally, the climb down includes a refreshing drink of freshly squeezed fruit juice. Hikers are also encouraged to spend more time with the locals at the Naroro Village. There is also a tour that involves a homestay in the village for a truly cultural and educational experience.
Tavuni Hill Fort is open to visitors Mondays through Fridays from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and on Saturdays from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM.