Fiji, an island country in Melanesia, is a part of Oceania in the south Pacific Ocean. The place lies about 1,100 nautical miles northeast of New Zealand. It has abundant flora and fauna which includes tropical fruits and vegetables along with coconut palms. Having a scenic beauty like this attracts a lot of tourists which makes tourism a major industry for the people to earn their livelihood. Apart from this, there are more such stunning facts about Fiji you will be amazed to know about.
So let’s dive into the fun facts about Fiji!
1. Traditional drink kava
Kava is a drink made from a root that grows all throughout the Pacific islands. The process is as follows – drying the root, powdering it, mixing water, and later consuming it. The root is also popularly known for its medicinal values.
2. Extremely venomous sea snakes
On the coastline of Fiji, the black and white banded sea snakes are quite in number. This snake type is 20 times more venomous than any land snake. Fortunately, the size of its mouth is so small that it can’t bite us humans. The species only attack when disturbed or provoked.
3. Traditional dance ‘Meke’
Like any region, Fiji has its traditional dance form too. Meke is storytelling through the form of songs and dance. In this, both the male and female take part. The dance expresses elegant and graceful moves by the women and strong and fierce moves by the men. Meke is performed on the beats of a traditional drum called Lali.
4. Gifting a tooth is a symbol of love
A surprising traditional practice is proposing your lover and their family with a tooth of the sperm whale. We generally propose with diamonds and the more the merrier. Here in Fiji, they practice the same with teeth. The more you present to the family the happier you make them.
5. Firewalking started in Fiji
The people believe that 500 years ago, in the village of Nakarovu, there was a man called Tunaiviqalita who was asked to search for an eel for his elder. While searching he came across a spirit god in the form of a small man, who asked for help. The man promised him the ability to control fire in return for the help he provided. And hence he could walk on fire. This makes the Fijians believe that the same has been passed into their blood too.
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6. Tourism as a major industry
Most of the money for the country comes from tourism, that’s why it is the backbone of Fiji’s economy. Tourists are primarily from Australia followed by New Zealand and the United States.
7. Highly volcanic in nature
Fiji is made up of a huge network of volcanoes, out of which some are still having thermal activity. Nabukelevu is a network of lava domes that is formed due to the eruptions. The last eruption on this site was in 1660.
8. Home for monkey faced bats
These bats are the native species in Fiji. Their weight is around 222-362 grams, they even have distinct orange eyes. There are only 6 recorded sightings in Fiji. They are only found in the cloud forests high in the mountains as it’s a safe area and extremely difficult for people to reach.
9. Raw fish in regular diets
Kokoda, a popular cuisine of Fiji, consists of raw fish. The fish is marinated in coconut milk along with chili, onions and lime juice. The acidic element of the lime makes it good enough to be eaten raw and hence no fire is needed to cook the fish. It is presented in a coconut shell.
10. Rugby is a national sport
Rugby is the national sport of Fiji; it was introduced to them by the Britishers. The national team of Fijians is extremely renowned for its skills in the game. The team won gold at the 2016 Summer Olympics.
11. Three official languages
This country is known for having three languages namely Hindi, English, and iTaukei as its national languages. 54% of its population speaks iTaukei as its first or second language. 37% of Indians in this country speak Hindi. English was brought over by the British colonial rule and it remained the official language until 1997.
A country that has tradition and development going hand-in-hand has the capacity to reach great horizons. Fiji is one such country which has deep traditional roots and high development branches.
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