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“Exactly what we hoped for...”

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Navini Island Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Navini Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 11, 2010

First trip to Fiji and we wanted the 'Tropical Island' experience. Navini seemed to fit the bill -small, private, simple. The owners have done a fantastic job in creating an informal, welcoming retreat that caters well to honeymooners and families alike.
We arrived in the dark so couldn't really judge how it was. We were welcomed by name, shown our bure and then escorted to a late snack.
Next day and Navini showed itself - tiny, warm and private. Small places are 'won and lost' based on the attitude of the staff - Navini's staff appear to be more of a family. We were greeted warmly and confidently (staff walk up to you, stick out their hand and say "Hi, I'm xxx, , what's your name....?").
The island is stunning - a perfect paradise. Snorkelling is excellent and the island boasts a large number of kayaks etc to satisfy the small number of guests.
After reading the meal reviews of others I was prepared for basic fare but we were very happy with our meals. Breakfast was plentiful and eggs perfectly cooked, most lunches we ate salads (bu there were various other choices we could have had) and dinner was a 3-course spread with choices of 2-3 dishes. There wasn't one meal where I either didn't like the options or the delivered meal. Drinks are very reasonably priced, especially given the secluded location. Communal dining is probably not for everyone but our fellow visitors were a lovely bunch and we didn't feel pressured to socialise beyond our comfort level.
Sleeping without aircon (given we come from a cool climate) was slightly challenging but we slept well in the end and enjoyed the breeze coming into the Bure. The Bures are simply, but well-furnished, the water from the tap delicious, and the shower more than adequate. The ability to walk from your Bure for 10 metres to the water was a fantastic treat.
Navini is genuinely special (so much so that part of me thinks I shouldn't have reviewed it and instead kept the secret to the lucky few).

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled with family
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4  Thank richmet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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298 - 304 of 357 reviews

Reviewed April 6, 2010

We took part of our honeymoon here: it was ridiculously relaxing. We walked around the island in 20 minutes on our first day: it took almost 2 hours on day 6; we were literally waddling from relaxation. I really appreciate what the owners have done with this place: they could probably have double the accommodation; or quadruple if they went the bunk-bed route. Instead, they have maintained a lovely, intimate, calm environment, where you have as much privacy as you wish. No day-trippers allowed. The staff are chill - not obsequious, and not uninterested; just friendly, professional and happy. The accommodation is not deluxe, but it is totally fine. Who cares when you can flop into pristine sea, and snorkel an amazing reef? Visits to nearby resorts left us with the feeling "get us back to Navini!". I hear the remarks from some other guests about the food, and I get it - it was a little monotonous, but it was all fresh and fine. I would love to return one day - I achieved the highest sense of relaxation here compared with anywhere else in the world

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Pincut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 20, 2010

Navini island is a fantastic place! It is very small, and during our stay there were only 4-6 other guests, which was great. The staff do a great job maintaining the island, including clearing the beach of seaweed and some dead coral every day to keep it looking nice. The island has a water filtration system making the water safe to drink (the island is quite eco friendly). Our premier bure was nice and it couldn’t really be any closer to the ocean, however some of the bures share a wall, which detracts from the privacy a little (see photo).

The snorkelling is first rate (you don’t have to go further than your doorstep to get a good spot), especially when you snorkel out from the island to the coral edge/drop off: there is a fantastic variety of fish and good coral.

The meal package is flexible: you can decide whether you want 2 meals or 3 meals a day, and you can change your mind every day, however the meal times are set. The menu changes every day for lunch and dinner. The food was fresh and much of it homemade (we went on a fishing trip one day and ate the catch for dinner!). My partner was not a big fan of the communal dining arrangements (she does not like to do ‘small talk’ with strangers), although I was not bothered. We really enjoyed our candlelight dinner on the beach.

There is an organised trip everyday (which can include a village trip, snorkelling trip, fishing trip or a visit to another island). We received excellent and friendly service from the staff, who were very attentive to our needs. They did not operate on ‘Fiji time’, which was great. Transfers from the airport were hassle free: we even arranged to get dropped off at our next accommodation on the coral coast by one of the staff (thanks Henry!).

Overall, this was a fantastic trip: expensive, but a great experience if you can afford it.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MandSCanberra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2010

An absolute beautiful experience, their attention and friendliness brought tears to my eyes. They made our special day superb, not a thing went wrong and they were organised, focused and really made our wedding delightful because they genuinely were having a great time. Nothing was a problem for them! We definately have plans to go back. We want them to make us a chocolate wedding cake again, it was the best cake ever, apparently the chef is a chocolateir, bonus,...food is simple, fresh as expected from Fiji. Dinner on the beach by candlelight. They even looked after our kids and made sure they were quiet during the ceremony, gave them fresh coconuts and kept them entertained. Owners are Aussie, spectacular service, rooms clean, staff are Fijian, so friendly, keep their distance but are prompt when needed. When leaving only after a day it was like saying goodbye to family. You need to stay longer than a night, we stayed 2 days 1 night and were kicking ourselves. At least a week, it's so worth it. They can even take you on their boat to the island where CastAway was shot with Tom Hanks...will be back to do that. Enjoy you stay...you'll want to come back to the crystal clear water...amazing.

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank SinD Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 14, 2010

We had a great stay at Navini. The island is really tiny and unusual, and its great that you have free use of their equipment (catamaran, paddleboat, etc) and we tried out most of these, in addition to checking out their amazing snorkeling. Saw some amazing fish- from the tiny to the huge, as well as sharks (one about my size at the drop off!!) and a ray of some kind.
The downside to this place is that a) it is pricey, and b) the food is extremely bland. I'm not sure if its geared towards Australians with a blander palate, but I found it to be utterly tasteless and pretty disappointing. Tough, as its the only option! I also thought it was expensive, but had the food been better and the acommodation a bit more luxe I would have felt it justified... Despite the not-so good food, the moonlight dinner was one of the highlights of our trip to fiji- so romantic!

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank qpas3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2010

Overall-
This was a completely relaxing, amazing vacation... sun, beach, warm ocean, and awesome snorkeling. If you are looking to relax, read a book, snorkel, get some sun, and feel like you are on your own seculed island, this is the place to go. If you want to go shopping or have nightlife - pick a different location. This is a back to nature/basics type of vacation and we loved it.
Weather-
We hesitated about visiting Fiji in February because it is supposed to be the rainy season and weather.com was showing rain every day (for Nadi). Apparently, Navini island is on the drier side of Fiji. It never rained while we were there. It was hot and pretty much completely sunny the whole time. We could see storms/rain in the distance, on other islands, but we never got it. One or two days, it was pretty hot/humid, but the rest of the time, the heat was bearable by just going in the water and the fan did keep us cool enough at night, with the windows open.
View-Paradise-
The view from our bure (#8), and the others too, was unbelievable. You are a few steps from the ocean. We heard the waves 24/7.
Snorkeling-
The reef that surrounds the whole island had the best snorkeling I have ever seen (and I've been to Hawaii, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Puerto Rico, Aruba, the Great Barrier Reef-Australia.....). We saw sea turtles, blue spotted sting ray, royal blue starfish, a very large tropical lobster, all different color corals and tons of different fish...oh yeah, and reef sharks. I did not like the idea of swimming in water where there were sharks, but after the initial time that I saw one, it didn't bother me at all. They are either afraid of you (the little ones-about a foot long) or they could care less about you (4-5 feet long). On the North side of the island, there were a school of about 15 baby sharks. They hung out right near the shore and they were very cool to watch. I have to mention that I did get stung while snorkeling. We weren't sure if it is from something called sea lice or pieces of jellyfish in the water. It happened only here and there at the beginning of the week and was manageable. I got a rash on one elbow that was pretty itchy. Later in the week, we swam into a school of jellyfish and for the last few days, snorkeling was unbearable for me. I got attacked by whatever it was. I had bumps all over. Antihistamine cream (which I bought in the office) helped. My companion didn't have a reaction to the stings.He felt them, but didn't have the itchy bumps afterwards. Other guests were scuba divers and were pretty much covered. The other couple had "sting" suits that they brought and those seemed to work. I wish they sold these at the resort becasue I would have paid good money for one. One couple has been to this resort 5 times and never had this problem. Guess it was just the tide or the water temp. Not sure, but figured you should be warned. Better to be prepared. Also, bring water shoes. The beach is made up of crushed coral, not soft white sand. To walk around the island, water shoes would help. There are lots of shells and pieces of coral.
Food-
I'm not the most adventurous eater and I found the food pretty decent. There are 3 or 4 selections each lunch/dinner. The breakfast menu doesn't change...eggs, pancakes, and cereals. You can get fruit with any meal and the pineapple, papaya and even the bananas were the best I ever had. The meals were served at 8AM, 1PM, and 8PM. I suggest you bring some snacks if you need something to hold you over. I was glad I did. There is a minibar in the room with some snacks and drinks. Prices were reasonable considering it was in Fiji money...so $4 for a candy bar is about $2.15 US. You can drink the water out of the tap. They give you a jug in the fridge and glasses too. We didn't mind eating with the other guests. It was nice to find out what everyone had spotted in the ocean that day.
Bure (room)
We were in a premier bure.I didn't realize it was a duplex set up. There was a couple next door to us for most of the nights. We were only 2 of 6 guests on the island for most of the week. There are more expensive bures that are stand alone, but we didn't know this before we went. There are geckos everywhere, so don't be surprised if you see some in the bure. They don't bother you.
General-
We pretty much didn't wear shoes for the whole week (we were there 7 nights). You take them off to go into the dinning hall, so we didn't bother wearing them at all. It is very casual - pack light. The heels I brought were a waste of space. We would literally get out of the ocean, throw on a cover up and go to lunch with our hair wet. Dinner, we showered, but there is not a blow dryer...you can probably ask for one, but since it was so hot, I didn't bother.
We took out the hobbie cat (all free) and sailed around the island. We kayaked over to the baby sharks and floated while they swam around us. Very cool. We also did a few of the boat trips (which are free) to other snorkel sites. There are no tv's, telephones or radios and we didn't miss any of it. We didn't even use our ipods. We did have a cell phone that had service so we could keep in touch with home.
The office has books you can borrow to read.
Another note, if you fly from the US, going business class makes a HUGE difference. We were able to get a good sleep each way and not suffer any jet lag.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank BeachBumMA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2010

I've traveled to 24 different countries, many cities, and this is by far my favorite spot I've ever been to. More staff than visitors, semi-private beach access, interesting and varied daily activities, wonderful food, etc...I could go on and on. We can't wait to come back and we measure all other destinations based on Navini.

Stayed: August 2008, traveled as a couple
Thank CurlyK2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Navini Island Resort

Address: Navini Island | Western Division, Fiji
Phone Number:
Location: Fiji > Mamanuca Islands > Navini Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Navini Island
Price Range: $371 - $371 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Navini Island Resort is a small private island resort in Fiji, just one hour from Nadi Airport. Guests are met on arrival, transferred at any time, takes 1 hour. Navini is surrounded by white sand and a magnificent coral reef sanctuary. All 10 bures are beachfront, four types including Family Villa, Deluxe Premier with outside daybed, Two Room and Premier. Complimentary daily outings and use of water sports equipment. No day trippers. Fresh fish, fruits, local and traditional meals; fully licensed restaurant. Fijian entertainment. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Navini Island Hotel Navini Island

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