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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:38 PM
DP and i are planning our first 'family holiday' to Fiji.
Would love some feedback from anyone who has been there recently with children.
We are planning on going before DD turns 2 (24th april) so not a great deal of time to plan!
Would love to know your experiences and which resorts are 'child friendly'?
I have been doing some research and most resorts have facilities for children starting at 4 yrs.
DD will only be 2!
We have not had a holiday in such a long time, and really want to make this memorable! (as it won't happen again for a long time either!)
Thankyou in advance,
Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:43 PM
We went to Mana Island when DD was 2 and DS was 4. DD was allowed to go to the kids' club and we could also hire a babysitter for her.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 12:14 PM
We are about to go to Fiji as well and as the above poster said, although the kids club won't allow your DD into the kids club by herself, babysitters can be hired and they are CRAZY cheap in Fiji. They can either stay in your room with her or take her to the kids club, and most places will allow parents to take their kids to the kids club as well if you want to do activities with her.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 01:07 PM
agree with PP, even if not old enough, fiji nannies/babysitters are very cheap and very lovely.
Bear in mind that flights/accomm to family friendly fiji places are booked out well in advance, and also that the recent cyclone destroyed a lot of the properties in the mamanuca islands - so there will be a lot of people trying to rebook. Mana and Plantation are still open (mana has lost its restaurant so only buffet available) but lots of others are closed or offering reduced services.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 01:14 PM
we are currently looking into a fjij holiday and have done a lot of research.. we have looked at plantation island, sonasalis resort, coral cove - fijian resort and spa, and of course hotels in denarua.
we are tossing up with plantation island and denarua purely for the nice beachs and pools... dd will be almost 3 and i will be pg with #2. i am a little deterred from plantation island purely for the fact that i have heard bad reports on their food.. but you dont have to eat buffet as they have 3 restaurants. its a little bit more expensive tho
sorry i am probably telling you stuff that you have already found through your research. but i am swaying towards denarua cause of nicer facilities and you can walk to each hotel and use their pools and eat there plus you also can walk to the marina and apparently there are heaps of restaurants there as well..
i am not fazed by kids clubs cause dd will only be 2.5 and i wouldnt leave her by herself - possibly cause she wouldnt stay anyways.. but she loves the beach and loves the water so she doesnt need entertaining as i can still relax while she has fun.
enjoy your holiday - i am looking forward to going too..
Posted 22 February 2013 - 01:28 PM
We went to Fiji in Jan this year for 10 days. We stayed at the Sofitel which is on the mainland but it is called Denaru Island. Our son is 2.5yrs old and he went to their kids club I believe they take them from 2 yrs old. We all had the best time. I don't know about other resotrs but the Sofitel was amazing their pool was set up so one end there was plenty of shallow water for the little ones to splash about and Mum/Dad didn't have to hold them all the time.
We had babysitters employed by the kids club come and babysit a couple of nights for us while we had dinner at the resort. They are all certified in Early Childhood education and I know our son had an absolute ball whenever we left him there.
I have to say I was sceptical at first about leaving him with strangers, we don't even get babysitters at home so it was a little strange for me at first. But the Fijian people were so lovely and warm, and a complete so very tolerant of kids !!!
Whenever we would go out for dinner, once he was finsihed eating the people that worked in the restaurant would take him off to feed fish, check out the kitchen etc or they would sing songs to him. Anything that kept him amused while we ate. It was like having extended family with you and our son lapped up the attention.
My husband and I joked that he would find it strange when we got home and he no longer had shop keepers coming up and kissing him.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 01:58 PM
I have been to Musket Cove (Dec 2009 & Dec 2010) and Mana Is (Aug 2012). Each time I've spent a night on Denauru (The Westin & Raddison, I think).
Fiji is fantastic for a family holiday. Fijians are so lovely and they adore children. The resorts have great facilities and all of them seem to cater for children.
Mana Island (like many others) has a kids club, plus babysitting for children who are too young for the kids club. My ds was 2 when we were there and we got 5 hrs free babysitting each day. The babysitters were fantastic- they took him to the kids buffet at meal times (kids eat free), they took him on the Bula bus (an open bus that goes to one of the beaches) and he got to spend time at the beach. He loved it and I felt secure leaving him.
My ds was only 5.5 months when we were last at Musket Cove so I didn't use the babysitting. But the babysitting service was about 2-3 Fijian dollars per hour. The babysitters are off duty staff from around the resort (whereas on Mana Island they had dedicated babysitting staff).
Denauru resorts have great facilities, but IMO the surrounds aren't anywhere near as nice as the islands. The islands have the beautiful beaches, crystal clear water- magical tropical island environment. Denauru on the other hand has tiny strips of sand and dirty coloured water (I think the sand is volcanic or something, which impacts the colour of the water- I might be wrong though, but the water is definitely not crystal clear like the islands).
I recommend going to one of the island resorts and doing some research on which suits you. Fiji is great and we will be back some time soon, I'm sure.
Good luck with planning your holiday!
ETA: for one of the pp, the food at Plantation Island wasn't that great but you can walk to Musket Cove and they have great food. One time, they'd run out of bananas so they said 'Hold on, we'll just go and pick some more from the garden'.
Edited by Mamabear2010, 22 February 2013 - 02:02 PM.
Posted 24 February 2013 - 08:53 AM
I've just booked my fiji holiday with DS 10mo and although we haven't gone yet, here's what i found:
* Denarau Island not as flashy/pretty as some islands but much easier to get to with kids due to short travel time (and you likely won't land until evening so may have to stay first night anyway).
* Sheraton Villas have rooms available for end of March...as do some others..we chose the villas as they're good value to get a kids bedroom/kitchen.
* if you stay at either sheraton/westin then buy a StarPrivilege Card (just launched) which gives you 50% off food. visit http://www.starprivilege-pacific.com and if you're only going on one holiday, rather than frequent travelling insist they sell you the $99/3 month card (they don't promote it or like selling it ...say you heard about it on tripadvisor).
but buy the card BEFORE you book the hotel as it's cheaper with the card. You can book through that website...the 'member offers' tab has details.
good luck and enjoy!
Posted 02 March 2013 - 09:47 PM
Thankyou everyone for your replies,
they have all been very helpful.
After much research we have finally booked 8 nights at the Radisson!
We are all looking forward to it (except for the flights!!)
We would love to take some sort of 'gifts' over for if/when we use the nanny service.
Any suggestions as to what to take?
Posted 04 March 2013 - 06:27 AM
We've stayed at the Radisson before, only for two nights though, and loved it. There's a good kids pool with a little water slide and we had great food there.
We always give our magazines that we bought to read on the plane to the baby sitters or housekeepers as they are at least two weeks behind with theirs over there, plus we've given Aussie souvenirs and chocolate
Have a wonderful time, I can't wait to go back to Fiji!
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