A huge part of Fiji’s appeal lies below the surface of the waves. Don a mask and snorkel and you will find coral reefs shimmering with colourful fish, sea fans dancing in the current and manta rays and reef sharks cruising the lagoons. Throw in crystal-clear water and temperatures that rarely fall below 25°C and you have one of the world’s greatest snorkelling and diving destinations.
Fiji’s ten thousand square kilometres of coral reef twist and turn around every island, and include the world’s third longest barrier reef – the 200km-long Great Sea Reef found off the north coast of Vanua Levu. These amazing structures provide habitats for thousands of species of fish, plants and animals and boast an astonishing biodiversity that’s comparable to that found in rainforests.
The three most common types of reef found in Fiji are fringing reefs, which are attached to an island and offer snorkelling direct from the shore; patch reefs, individual coral reefs found within a lagoon and usually attracting great numbers of reef fish; and barrier reefs, which are separated from the shore by a deep channel and feature steep drop-offs and strong currents. There’s information on Fiji’s best reefs, plus snorkelling and diving advice.