There is no shop, no restaurant in the jungle :-) village is very poor so its better to take some food with you, also bottle water would help
Favorite Dish: There was lots of vegetables but no much meet in teh village. Even that food should be "provideed" we had no heart to take anything from our hosts. Make sure you have some dry food with you.
English Fijian Pronounciation
Hello/hi ni sa bula nee sar bula
Good morning ni sa yadra nee sar yarndra
Goodbye sa moce sa more
Please yalo vinaka yarlo veenarka
Excuse me tulou too low
Yes io ee or
Thank you/good vinaka veenarka
Thank you very much vinaka vaka levu veenarka varka levoo
Much/big levu l evoo
No sega senga
Eat kana karna
Village koro ko ro
A little/small vaka lailai va ka lie lie
Great/a lot vaka levu va ka levoo
Fast vaka totolo va ka tortorlo
Slowly vaka malua va ka mar lua
House vale va le
Toilet vale lailai va le lie lie
Come lako mai la ko my
Go lako tani la ko tan i
One of the great things about this Pacific paradise is that everyone speaks English as well as Fijian or Hindi - although there are a few idiosyncrasies.
Any word with a 'd' has an unwritten 'n' in front of it - Nadi is pronounced 'Nandi' and the delightful cold, marinated seafood dish kokoda, is 'kokonda'. You put an 'm' before the 'b' in words like Toberua (Tomberua). Sigatoka is 'Singatoka', Naigani is Ninegani'. And a 'c' is pronounced 'th', as in the Mamanuca Islands.
Yaqona, otherwise known as kava, is an infusion prepared from the root of Piper methysticum, a type of pepper plant. It is extremeny important in Fijian culture - in the time of the 'old religion' it was used ceremonially by chiefs and priests only. Today, yaqona is part of daily life, not only in villages but across the different races and in urban areas. 'Having a grog' is used for welcoming and bonding with visitors, for storytelling sessions or merely for passing time.
There are certain protocols to be followed at a kava ceremony and in some remote villages, it is still a semireligious experience. Sit cross-legged, facing the chief and the tanoa, or large wooden bowl. Women usually sit behind the men and won't get offered the first drink unless they are the guest of honour. Never walk across the circle of participants, turn your back to the tanoa or step over the cord that leads from the tanoa to a white cowry (it represents a link with the spirits).
The drink is prepared in the tanoa. The dried and powdered root, wrapped in a piece of cloth, is mixed with water and the resulting concoction looks (and tastes) like muddy water. You will then be offered a drink from a bilo (half a coconut shell). Clap once, accept the bilo and say 'bula' (meaning 'cheers', or literally, 'life'), before drinking it all in one go. Clap three times in gratification and try not to grimace. The drink will be shared until the tanoa is empty. You are not obligated to drink every bilo offered to you, but it is polite to drink at least the first.
Dont worry , it doesnt taste so badly like it looks like. There are no side effects like hangover or headache. You might feel very slow, sleepy and relax. Sometimes we all need it. After kava all world slows down
Luggage and bags:
backpack are the most comfortable. Its taking two hours by boat to get to village
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: long sulu, cover arms and legs, no swim suits, no hat , no sun glasses....take lots of t-shirts... what you dont use leave for your host
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: painkillers, and the basic medical help.
Photo Equipment: waterproof camera or camera case... diffrent lenses for portrets and landscape
Miscellaneous: few bottles of water, some dry food, biscuits etc please remember every village is diffrent.. some of them very poor some of them lots of sea food...some of them more traditional some of them less
Important Tips About Visiting Villages:
Dress modestly. Don't wear shorts, and women must not wear halter tops or bare shoulders. I always ask if I am ok to wear what I wear
Do not wear hats. They are interpreted as a sign of disrespect.
Always remove your shoes before entering any house or other building!!!!! Thats very important, In most villages there are no furnitures in the house. You sit and eat on the floor.
Stay with your assigned host. If other villagers ask you to eat or accompany them, politely note that you are with your host and would be honored to visit with them at some other time. Remember, Fijians will, out of custom, always ask you to eat with them or share whatever they have.
Speak softly. Raised voices are interpreted as expressing anger.
Show respect, but be cautious with praise. If you show too much liking for an object, then the Fijians will feel obliged to give it to you as a gift, whether they can afford to or not.ALso dont be afraid to say no if are asked for something. Try to explain that this thing is important to you. They will understand.
Try not to show up to much. Expensive eqquipment, cd players, games, clothes leave in your luggage.
If you spend a night in the village, reward your host with a useful gift of similar value for each member of your party. It is not recommended that you stay in a village which is in the habit of accommodating paying visitors. If you feel obliged to pay more, then ask your host what he or she might like and purchase it for them. A bundle of groceries is graciously appreciated by large Fijian families. Kids just love simple baloons. Toys are always welcome. Also books or newspapers