• Solomon Islands!

    Solomon Islands: Looking up at palm trees. Go Now!

    Solomon Islands
    This Melanesian country is best known for its many islands and beaches... and this natural landscape (pictured) is why most people go. Don't miss out on the unique Melanesian culture and foods though! Begin Your Journey!

  • Tonga!

    Tonga: Coastline. Go Now!

    The heart of Polynesian culture is rooted in Tonga, but most visitors just come for the natural beauty. Explore Tonga!

  • Vanuatu!

    Vanuatu: Jetty into the ocean. Go Now!

    Picturesque serenity is a good way to describe Vanuatu, but the culture offers much more, including the inspiration for bungee jumping, which remains a rite of passage for young men. Explore Vanuatu!

  • Palau!

    Palau: "70 Islands!" Go Now!

    Few people have even heard of this small Micronesian country, but those who have often return with stories of beauty unmatched elsewhere, such as view of the "70 Islands" (pictured). Go Now!

  • Explore the: Federated States of Micronesia!

    Federated States of Micronesia: Overlooking some islands. Go Now!

    Federated States of Micronesia
    This diverse country stretches for thousands of miles and has the diversity to prove it, including the people from Chuuk, Pohnpei, and Yap among others. Begin Your Journey!

  • Samoa!

    Samoa: A traditional home. Go Now!

    Among the most famous of the South Pacific's many countries, Samoa sits in the heart of Polynesia and has a culture to match. Begin Your Journey!

FijiThe name Fiji is derived from the name of the largest island, Viti Levu. The word "Viti" in Tonga is pronounced "Fisi" and it was this name that Captain James Cook brought home with him, giving the nation the Anglicized name of Fiji (or Feejee) ever since.



Of all the countries of the South Pacific, Fiji is among the most unique and is primarily due to the cultural influences the islands have received in recent history. Although many Fijians still call the country home, later immigrants from various countries, particularly India have changed the cultural dynamic in this small island paradise.

The earliest people who called Fiji home lived off the lands and surrounded seas for survival and even today the lifestyle in the country remains tied to the lands. While this lifestyle has changed little over time, the culture has been altered numerous times. Numerous waves of immigrants changed the ethnicity, language, food, and more. Most of these early settlers arrived via the Solomon Islands and they have distinct ethnic similarities to these people, who are considered Melanesian. However, the people are also closely related to the Polynesians.

Like the ethnic mix on the islands, the Fijian language also contains aspects of both Melanesian and Polynesian. However, most other cultural aspects in Fiji came from Tonga and are heavily Polynesian influenced, including many of the foods.

Although many foods, the language, and the ethnicity are primarily based on regional influences, much of the country's modern day culture is based on European influences. The greatest of these influences came from the United Kingdom, which introduced Christianity, the English language as a second language, ended cannibalism, added new technology, and introduced Indian laborers in the late 1800s.

While many aspects of English culture survived, however perhaps the greatest change came with the immigrating Indian population, who brought with them their own culture and traditions, including languages, religions, foods, and dress. Today the ethnic Indians make up nearly half of the island's total population and the divide between the ethnic Indians and Fijians is obvious as both have solidified their cultures on the island. However, the people also share many commonalities, such as English, which is the language of communication, a lifestyle based off the land, some foods, and other cultural aspects.

Information for Fiji was last updated: March, 2014 ● View our: Sources & Special Thanks