Is it safe to rent a car around Viti Levu, and camp out at spots along the way? Should we worry about muggings or theft?
My wife, originally from Fiji (17 years ago and from a small outer island) and I will be spending a couple weeks there, mostly on Viti Levu. We plan to rent a car, visit her family, and hopefully camp out at various spots around the Queen's and King's highways.
I understand that small gifts (sevusevu) should be offered and permission to camp outside of villages is the way to be polite. But, if there is no problem getting permission, should we still be worried about getting robbed? We will be obvious tourists with the rental car, tent, etc. Thanks in advance for your feedback!
Hi Shaun, Jesse from the Safety Hub here...
Viti Levu is the largest island on Fiji and the home of Suva, the nations capital. Despite what is said in the media, the larger areas of Fiji are fine in regard to safety (as long as common sense safety precautions are maintained). Keep an eye on your things and maintain a reasonable sense of vigilance and you should be fine. The tourist dollar is highly sought so your main concern will be people trying to sell you things - not nick off with your wallet.
The issue of offerings? There is no harm done in seeking the chief of the land in which you are staying and giving a small gift of gratitude - very polite of you. However, from what I understand, it is not obligatory.
The only issue you should worry about is if you go into more remote islands where the people who live there are more traditional - you will be in their territory and will be subject to their rules and ways of life.
But stick to the basics of safety and security and you shouldn't have any problems. over 8 years ago