Skip to Content

12 Things to Know BEFORE Visiting Tivua Island, Fiji

12 Things to Know BEFORE Visiting Tivua Island, Fiji

This blog may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy for more info.

Tivua Island is the kind of place that comes to mind when you dream of Fiji. It’s a tiny tropical island with scenic beaches and beautiful marine life, and since it’s privately owned, you can also enjoy cocktails, massages, and watersports here. So really, it should come as no surprise that Tivua Island is a popular place to spend a day relaxing in the sun and visiting is one of the best things to do in Fiji

We’ve been to Fiji many times and have been on all of the best Fiji island tours, so if you’re wondering how Tivua Island measures up to other day trips like Malamala Beach Club, South Sea Island, and Seventh Heaven, you’ve come to the right place. Stay tuned for our full review below because this blog contains everything you need to know before visiting Tivua Island, Fiji!

Don’t have time to read the full article? Tivua Island is a private island paradise located 90 minutes from Port Denarau. To get here you will need to book this full-day tour that includes your hotel transfers, boat ride, beer/wine/soft drinks on the island, non-motorized water sports, snorkeling, and even a traditional kava ceremony!

1. About Tivua Island, Fiji

The shallow crystal clear waters of Tivua Island in Fiji
The shallow crystal clear waters of Tivua Island in Fiji

Tivua Island is a private island owned by Captain Cook Cruises. It’s a little gem in the middle of the South Pacific Ocean, with white sand, crystal clear water, and tropical gardens to explore. The island is also surrounded by coral, so it’s a great place to snorkel in Fiji. 

This little island is bursting with natural beauty and biodiversity making it a true slice of paradise. In fact, it’s even a turtle sanctuary during the turtle nesting season from October to April!

There’s a very laid-back, rustic feel to Tivua Island, in contrast to some of the more built-up island beach clubs around. The restaurant is housed inside a wooden hut, and you can seek shade under thatched roof parasols. It’s a bit of a Robinson Crusoe-style experience! 

Tivua is also great for enjoying non-motorized water sports like paddleboarding, kayaking, and of course, snorkeling. There’s equipment on the island for guests to use, or you can head out on a glass-bottomed boat tour with the resident marine biologist – how cool is that?

Visiting Tivua Island is perfect for anyone wanting to experience authentic Fijian beauty. There is something for everyone here and it’s one of the great day trips in Fiji for families, couples, and friends!

2. Where is Tivua Island in Fiji? 

People sit on the outdoor deck of the boat to Tivua Island in Fiji
The ferry to Tivua Island!

Tivua Island is located in the Mamanuca island group and takes a 90-minute boat ride from Port Denarau Marina on the west coast of mainland Fiji to get there. But of course, you’ll need to actually get to the port before you can sail away! 

When you book a tour to Tivua Island, you also get coach transfers to the port from many areas around the island, including Nadi and the Coral Coast. 

We were staying in Denarau so we only spent a few minutes on the bus before catching the boat. However, Nadi is about 15 minutes away, and if you’re staying along the Coral Coast, you’re looking at up to 2 hours on the bus. 

3. How much does it cost to visit Tivua Island in Fiji? 

Arriving at Tivua Island in Fiji (2)
Arriving at Tivua Island in Fiji

Since Tivua Island is its own private island, you must book a tour to visit. The price for a full-day tour to Tivua varies depending on where you are getting picked up from.

If you are getting picked up from Denarau or Nadi, it costs $115 USD. For pick-up from the Coral Coast, Lautoka, Vuda area, or Marriott Momi Bay and Double Tree Hilton the price is slightly higher at $131 USD to accommodate for the longer transfer time.

We think these prices are very reasonable when you consider that everything is included (more on this below!). This tour tends to book up quickly so we recommend securing your spot online in advance here. With Viator, you can reserve now and don’t have to pay until just before you go. Plus with a 24-hour cancellation policy, it means you can always cancel or reschedule if your plans change.

4. What’s included in the Tivua Island tour?

The Kava Ceremony on the boat to Tivua Island in Fiji
The Kava Ceremony on the boat to Tivua Island in Fiji
A Fiji Gold beer on the boat to Tivua Island in Fiji
Drinks on the boat are not included!

Your island pass is all-inclusive, which means you get as many beers, glasses of wine, and cold drinks as you like! It also includes a buffet lunch and access to all of the activities on Tivua Island. You can go stand-up paddleboarding, play beach volleyball, go snorkeling, view turtles (if the timing is right), go canoeing, and enjoy a glass-bottomed boat tour. It’s a pretty generous deal, all in all. 

The tour includes hotel pickup and drop-off, and the boat ride to Tivua Island. The staff actually perform shows on the boat there, which is cool because you get to experience some Fijian culture! Plus, it helps make the boat ride go by quicker.

We were also welcomed to the island with a complimentary traditional kava ceremony on the boat. Kava is a traditional Fijian drink made from a ground-up plant, which is said to induce feelings of relaxation and even euphoria. Technically, it’s a drug, but you’d have to consume a LOT of it to really feel anything. I don’t particularly like the taste, but participating in a kava ceremony is such a cool way to immerse yourself in Fijian culture, and it’s a great welcome to the island!

And speaking of all things plant-related, you can also take a complimentary guided herbal medicine walk on the island and find out how Fijians use plants to cure their aches and pains. 

We really enjoyed the glass bottom boat tour – it was a great option to see the coral and marine life without having to get wet and go swimming! Plus it was led by a marine biologist, so we learned a lot and got to ask questions.

If you are traveling with little ones there is even a complimentary Captain’s Kids Club on the island. They will get to do fun activities such as volleyball, sandcastle building, and even a treasure hunt!

Do note that the boat rides to and from the island are not all-inclusive, so if you want to have a drink on the boat, it will cost extra. You can pay with a card or Fijian dollars … or just wait until you get to the island for free drinks! With that being said, there is complimentary tea and water supplied on the boat ride to and from the island.

We think this island tour is a great value. You get everything included so it is a good option for people who want to see the beauty of the Fijian Islands and are traveling to Fiji on a budget.

5. Where can you visit Tivua Island on a day trip from? 

The welcome to Tivua Island sign on Tivua Island Fiji
Welcome, and Bula!

It’s easy to visit on a day trip from Denarau or Nadi, which are both pretty close to the port. You can also be picked up from hotels in Momi Bay and along the Coral Coast, although there is more travel time involved. You can also visit from some of the areas north of Denauru, like Lautoka and Vuda. 

If you’re staying outside of these pickup areas, you can still join the tour by taking a taxi or driving yourself to the Denarau Port for 10 am, which is when the boat departs. 

Related Read: If you want to learn more about Fijian culture and history, we highly recommend visiting the Fiji Culture Village!

6. Do you need to book the tour to Tivua Island in advance?

White sand beaches on Tivua Island
White sand beaches on Tivua Island

Yes, it’s a popular day tour! We also consider this one of the best day cruises in Fiji because the location is so stunning and remote. The tour company has two boats they use to transport guests to the island, but the boat they use depends on the number of visitors that day, so they need time to get organized.

I would definitely recommend booking your day trip to Tivua Island a few days in advance if not more to make sure you get a spot. Viator offers free cancellation until 24 hours before your departure date, so it’s pretty risk-free to book beforehand since you’re protected in case your plans change. 

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Lowest price guarantee – If you happen to find the same tour at a lower price elsewhere, Viator will refund you the price difference.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, for more info, read our detailed review about Viator here.

7. How long do you get to spend on the island?

Relaxing in the cabanas at Tivua Island in Fiji
It’s paradise!

The full-day tour leaves the Denarau Port at 10 am. It takes an hour and a half to get to the island, and then you get back to the port around 5 pm, so you get about 4 hours on Tivua Island in total. 

There is a half-day tour that you can book but to be honest, it’s not worth it. There’s too much travel time there and back, so you don’t get very long on the island with the half-day option. Trust me, do the full-day tour, you want as much time on this gorgeous island as you can get!

8. What extras can you book? 

Sitting in one of the shaded cabanas on Tivua Island in Fiji
The oceanfront cabanas!

If you really want to go all out, you can book a heli-sailing tour to Tivua! Instead of traveling to the island by boat, you’ll be flown out on a helicopter in true VIP style, then sail back to Denarau in the afternoon by boat. The views from the air are just beautiful, and you get more time on the island this way because the flight only takes 10-15 minutes. This option costs $340 USD per person and you need at least two people to book it with a maximum of 3 people.

The heli tour would be a great romantic Fijian honeymoon activity, or for something a little more budget-conscious, you can save money by booking this Tivua Island tour and sunset dinner cruise combo for $187 USD per person. You’ll enjoy the day on the island, and then once you get back to Denarau in the evening, you’ll set sail again to enjoy a romantic sunset dinner while you cruise along the coast. The dinner cruise includes a free welcome drink and on-board entertainment. 

You can do both cruises on the same day, or if you’re staying in Denarau or Nadi, you can arrange to do them on different days so that you can dress up for the evening boat tour, while still saving money with the combo deal. The dinner cruise isn’t available on Mondays, so bear that in mind.  

There are also some extras available on the island itself, like private cabanas, PADI scuba diving, spa treatments, and coral planting with a marine biologist. And if you’re celebrating something special, like a birthday or anniversary, you can even organize a cake! 

You can book these after you get your booking confirmation for the tour by sending the company a message through Viator. And for some of the activities, like spa treatments, you can arrange them once you actually get to the island. 

9. What is the food like on the Tivua Island day trip?

Salads at the Tivua Island buffet in Fiji
Salads at the Tivua Island buffet in Fiji
Meat and fish selection on Tivua Island as part of the included buffet
Meat and fish selection on Tivua Island as part of the included buffet

In a word, it’s delicious! It’s a freshly cooked tropical barbecue with tons of different options, and you can eat as much as you like. They have some vegetarian options, too, and everything is made with fresh local produce. We really enjoyed it! 

Related Read: Fiji is a popular place to stop over on your way to Australia. Check out the best things to do in Sydney here!

10. Are there free sunbeds at Tivua Island? 

Shaded cabanas on Tivua Island, Fiji
Shaded cabanas on Tivua Island, Fiji

Yes, there are lots of them, so you don’t need to book a private cabana unless you’re in the mood to go all out! There’s not a big scramble for the free sunbeds which is great, but it’s worth walking around the island to claim a good spot. 

11. Is the snorkeling good at Tivua Island? 

A shark swims in the shallow waters of Tivua Island with the jetty in the background in Fiji
A baby reef shark!

We were impressed! It’s not the best we’ve ever experienced in Fiji, but it was better than a lot of other island day tours we’ve done. There were plenty of tropical fish around and we even saw a few reef sharks, which was really cool. You actually get to see a lot of baby sharks, as they tend to stick closer to the shore – just pray that no one around you starts singing that annoying song! 

Overall, I’d give it 8/10. 

The only issue was that they didn’t have tons of snorkeling gear on the island, so we had to wait our turn while others used it. This isn’t a huge deal, but it would have been even better if there had been more equipment available. So if you have your own equipment, I recommend bringing it!

12. Is Tivua Island the best small island getaway in Fiji?

The jetty leads through the shallow waters to the boat at Tivua Island in Fiji
We were sad to go!

Honestly, it’s not my top choice, but it’s still one of the best tours in Fiji. Personally, I preferred the Malamala Beach Club and South Sea Island tours, as they’re closer to Port Denarau so you spend less time on the boat and more time enjoying the island. Malamala is also more modern and has a beautiful infinity pool.

However, the surrounding reef and water were nicer at Tivua Island, making it better for snorkeling and watersports. So if that’s what you’re looking for, then Tivua is a great choice. It’s also cheaper because it’s all-inclusive and there’s no need to pay for a sunbed, so it’s a great budget-friendly option. And at the end of the day, you’ll still find yourself on a gorgeous island in beautiful Fiji!

Where to Stay in Fiji

the private island of Beachcomber Island Resort
This place is just wow! Photo Credit: Beachcomber Island Resort

There are so many great areas to stay around Fiji. You can choose to stay on the main island of Viti Levu or venture out to the smaller surrounding islands. With so many choices, it can be hard to narrow it down. To help, these are my top picks for each area in Fiji that fit a range of budgets.

Nadi – The Ramada

Located right on Wailoaloa Beach, the Ramada Suites by Wyndham is the most luxurious hotel in this area. It features an exclusive pool and restaurant for guest use only. It is the tallest building in the area offering incredible views of the coastline and sunsets!

Because of its close proximity to the airport (only a 15-minute drive), many people stay here for a night before or after their flight. It’s a good place to spend some time before catching a ferry out to an island. A King Studio Room with a sea view goes for around $200 USD. Check availability and book a stay at the Ramada here!

Port Denarau – Radisson Blu Fiji Resort

The Radisson Blu Resort is just stunning, and for what you get, the price is very reasonable too. This resort is huge offering tons of activities for both families as well as couples. There is an adults-only pool as well as an area specifically for kids. It is beachfront and offers spa services as well.

Rooms here start from around $400 USD per night and range from standard hotel-style rooms with king beds or two queens, up to two-bedroom suites. Some rooms feature courtyard views while others have a view of the lagoon. All rooms have a balcony and minibar. Check availability and prices at the Radisson Blue Resort here!

Yasawa Islands – Barefoot Manta Island Resort

Barefoot Manta Island Resort is perfect for those wanting a real island getaway experience without paying huge amounts of money. Surrounded by a vibrant protected coral reef, this is the best place to go for ocean lovers. You can even swim with manta rays just off the shore from May to October!

You can easily get to Barefoot Manta Island Resort on the Yasawa Flyer ferry that departs Port Denarau regularly. The ride should take about 3 hours.

They offer dorm beds for only $29 USD a night. There are also private beachfront bungalows available starting at around $200 USD per night. Check prices and availability for Barefoot Manta Island Resort here!

Mamanuca Islands – Beachcomber Island Resort

Beachcomber Island Resort is one of the most popular island resorts to stay in Fiji. Its affordable pricing mixed with its close proximity to Viti Levu make it one of the best places to stay in Fiji. You can reach the Beachcomber Resort from Port Denarau by riding the Yasawa Flyer ferry. The ride should take about 2 hours.

There are many different rooms and bungalows to choose from – something for every budget! Remember all these prices also include ALL your meals. Dorm beds go for as little as $60 USD per night, whereas you can get a standard twin room for $225 USD. Check prices and availability at Beachcomber Island Resort here!

Coral Coast – Maui Palms

Mixing beach life and luxury, the Maui Palms is perfect for those wanting a bit of pampering on their holiday. There are lots of on-site activities and the snorkeling right in front of the resort is great. Expect an infinity pool, games room, bar, restaurant, and beautiful ocean-view villas with private balconies!

The location on the Coral Coast means you don’t need a boat to get there but can still experience some of the tranquility and beautiful beaches you might find on the smaller islands. There are also a few restaurants nearby, so you won’t be confined to the hotel.

Rooms and villas here start at around $250 USD and up. Check prices and availability for the Maui Palms here!

If you’re looking for more info about where to stay in Fiji, be sure to read our blog. It includes detailed info on each area, the best things to do nearby, prices, getting to hotels, and so much more.

Thanks for reading!

Daniel and Bailey take a seflie with friends while relaxing on Tivua Island in Fiji
Thanks for reading!

There you have it, a low-down on everything there is to know about Tivua Island! I hope you found the information you needed and are excited to visit this gorgeous island. If you’re still unsure and want some more options check out our post on all of our favorite Fiji Island tours here.

We also have many other Fiji blogs to help you plan your dream trip. Here are some of our favorites:

13 BEST Things to do in Suva – A Guide to Exploring Fiji’s Capital City

12 Things to Know BEFORE Visiting Seventh Heaven Fiji +Our Review

Is Viator Legit? Our Viator Review based on Experience