Visiting Fiji without stopping by Suva would be a serious mistake. The capital of Fiji, Suva is unlike anywhere else in this island nation’s archipelago. Whether you’re in Suva as part of a cruise stop or simply looking to take a break from Fiji’s beaches, these are the best things to do in Suva.
The Best things to do in Suva
Wander through the Suva Municipal Market
Suva’s main market, found next to Suva’s main bus station is one of the best places to feel the spirit of the city. Every morning, fresh fruits and vegetables are shuttled in from Fiji’s fertile interior and sold at Suva Market. You’ll find piles of pineapples, mangoes, dalo, taro, carrots, passionfruit, eggplants… if it grows in Fiji, you’ll find it here. In Fiji, produce is sold by the pile rather than one-by-one at the market. If you see a pile of tomatoes on sale for $2, the whole heap is yours to keep!
Swim under waterfalls at Colo-I-Suva
Colo-I-Suva is a natural reserve about fifteen minutes outside of downtown Suva. Walk along the paths from waterfall to watering hole and swim in the one that seems most alluring. Some of the larger pools have rope swings and jump off points. Entrance to the park is $5, and you’ll want your own set or wheels or a guided tour.
Hike Mount Korobaba
For a panoramic view of Suva, trek to the top of Mount Korobaba, the city’s tallest peak. The trail begins behind a cement factory and weaves through dense forest where some sections are steep and woven with tree roots. Go early in the morning to listen to the chirp of Viti Levu’s birds. Expect to spend a little over three hours to complete this hike, with a stop at the top to admire the view.
Visit the Fiji Museum
The Fiji Museum is the largest museum in Fiji, an icon tucked in Thurston Gardens. The small museum has a cafe out front serving coffee and sandwiches. Inside, you can admire the museum’s main feature, a wooden sailing vessel called a drua and other maritime artifacts. Further inside, you can learn more about Fiji’s intriguing history, traditional rituals, and colonization. The most talked about exhibition in the museum is a half-eaten shoe, leftover from the time cannibals killed and ate Thomas Baker, a Christian missionary who came to Fiji and met Jesus shortly after in the mid 1860s.
Grab a drink at the Royal Suva Yacht Club
A rickety yacht club that’s recently undergone renovations, the Royal Suva Yacht Club is where sailors and surfers gather for a cold drink. Pitchers of Fiji Gold and Fiji Bitter are on offer for a fair price. Occasionally, the Royal Suva Yacht Club hosts markets, live music, events, and more. Check the community board if you’re looking to buy a boat or volunteer on a sailboat as crew.
Dine on Indian food
Spice up your Suva visit at one of the many Indian restaurants around Suva. Ashyana, Maya Dhaba, and Swagat are all worthy contenders. As Fiji’s population is around 40% ethnically Indian, sub-par Indian restaurants don’t tend to stick around for long.
Stroll along the sea wall and Around Albert Park
Come sunset, many locals stretch their legs at Suva’s sea wall. The sidewalk starts at Suva Port, just behind the market, and stretches all the way to the University of the South Pacific. Along the way, you can relax at a picnic bench, watch fishermen cast their nets, and watch as the sun sinks below Viti Levu’s impressive mountains across the harbor. Albert Park, Suva’s largest park, is also a great place to go for a walk.
Scuba dive in Suva Harbour
Suva Harbour is the final resting ground of over 20 shipwrecks — and what better way to explore them than from the water? This is one of the best things to do in Suva if you’re a diver who wants to take a peek at Fiji’s less-than-pristine reefs.
Enjoy Suva’s nightlife scene
In non-curfew times, Suva’s nightlight scene is one of the best in Fiji. Traps has a chill vibe with a pool table, O’Reilly’s is an Irish pub of debauchery, Temptations has karaoke, and there are a handful of other bars hidden on Suva’s main streets. Ask around and you’re bound to find wine tasting, live music, or barrel night taking place somewhere.
Watch a movie at Damodar Cinemas
Watching a movie at the theater is an experience in itself. In Fiji, laughing out loud is a given during a movie–even if the scene isn’t exactly funny. Listening to moviegoers yell and laugh during a movie’s somber scenes is often more entertaining than the movie itself. The best movie theater in Suva is at Damodar, where a movie will only set you back around $7.
Wander through Thurston Gardens
Walk among native plant life and enjoy listening to the birds at Thurston Gardens. Look up and you might see fruit bats hanging from palm trees. At sunset, they scream and squawk, competing with local bird life when it comes to garnering attention. On the ground, admire ferns, grassy areas, and ponds accented with water lilies.
Sail on the Drua
Sail around Suva harbor onboard a drua, a traditional canoe. Learn how Fijians crossed incredible distances on this interesting craft and discover just how much of a feat that would’ve been. The Drua Experience only runs on special occasions, so it’s best to book your trip well in advance. This is easily one of the most unique things to do in Suva.
Enjoy high tea at the Grand Pacific Hotel
The Grand Pacific Hotel, set between the sea and Albert Park, is one of the most striking buildings in Suva. Built in 1914, the hotel has hosted the likes of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 and 1973. More recently, Prince Harry and Princess Harry paid a visit. The hotel hosts high tea complete with sandwiches, pastries, tea, and other sweet treats.
Shop for souvenirs at the handicraft market
On the waterfront near Suva Port is a market selling wooden carvings, jewelry, painted cloth called tapa, and seashells. While these same goods can often be found inside Suva’s shopping centers, you’re better of buying a souvenir directly from the handicraft market. Here, you can haggle for a better price and choose from a wider variety of goods. Bargaining is expected, and you can usually score a deal by adding in an item rather than bringing the price of single item down.
Watch a dance and music performance
Feel the excitement of song and dance at a live performance in the city, one of the most exciting things to do in Suva. Dance troupes like Vou, Masti, Rako Pasefika host events every now and then. From classes to performances, there is almost always something going on.
See? There are plenty of interesting things to do in Suva, so it’s best not to skip it! Plan to spend at least a few days in the city to fully take in its excitement.