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Culinary & Culture Deep Dives in Fiji




Without a doubt, Fiji is a country that has its roots in Polynesian heritage. A common misconception about Fijian culinary offerings is that meals consist solely of coconut, taro, cassava, breadfruit and pineapples. While these ingredients are present within many traditional Fijian dishes, you’ll find that today’s Fiji is a melting pot of cultures, and the culinary offerings are reflective of this. As such, unique international culinary techniques have benefitted this proud island nation on a grand scale. A visit to Vasaqa on Fiji’s main island of Viti Levu (near Nadi International Airport) is indicative of the convergence of Fiji’s multicultural society and related flavors through its delicious Fijian Soul Food cuisine.

    Kava is made in a communal bowl

    The national cultural drink of Fiji, Kava is served in a large communal bowl as part of a traditional ceremony.

    When staying at Matangi Private Island Resort - Opens a dialog you’ll experience a new dinner menu daily which will include modern takes on traditional Fijian cuisine as well as fare inspired by recipes from the East Asia and Western countries. Authentic cultural experiences are just a quick boat ride away to neighboring island Qamea island and its Togo Village. Several of Matangi’s staffers are from this island, they are very eager to show you around and introduce you to other residents of the village. And if the village chief invites you to a Yaqona ceremony, it is polite and customary to participate. This ancient ritual ceremony includes preparation of Kava (which is water that is combined with the powdered Kava roots and strained with cheesecloth). The culmination of the ceremony included the consumption of the beverage (Pro Tip: Play it safe and kindly ask for “low tide” (small portion) of the beverage).

      When staying at Matangi Private Island Resort - Opens a dialog you’ll experience a new dinner menu daily which will include modern takes on traditional Fijian cuisine as well as fare inspired by recipes from the East Asia and Western countries. Authentic cultural experiences are just a quick boat ride away to neighboring island Qamea island and its Togo Village. Several of Matangi’s staffers are from this island, they are very eager to show you around and introduce you to other residents of the village. And if the village chief invites you to a Yaqona ceremony, it is polite and customary to participate. This ancient ritual ceremony includes preparation of Kava (which is water that is combined with the powdered Kava roots and strained with cheesecloth). The culmination of the ceremony included the consumption of the beverage (Pro Tip: Play it safe and kindly ask for “low tide” (small portion) of the beverage).

        Kava is made in a communal bowl

        The national cultural drink of Fiji, Kava is served in a large communal bowl as part of a traditional ceremony.

        Kokoda served in a coconut shell

        Kokoda is made from fresh caught fish, marinated in lime juice and miti (fresh coconut milk).

        An abundance of fresh seafood is caught daily just off the coast of the all-inclusive Yasawa Island Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog . Lobster, various types of crab, prawn and other shellfish join Parrotfish, Yellowfin Tuna and Walu (Spanish Mackerel) on Yasawa’s menu throughout your stay. Speaking of Walu, this fish helps to create Kokoda, which is Fijian Ceviche. What makes Kokoda standout from traditional ceviche is the inclusion of coconut milk! To have a better understanding about the waters of Yasawa and the resort’s history, be sure to make time so to chat with Manasa, as he is the main reason why Yasawa Island Resort & Spa exists on the land which Yasawa sits on (the land originally belonged to his mother and it is now under the auspices of Manasa’s village). One key selling point for the surrounding village to approve usage of the land provided financial support of the locals. As a result, many villagers have been able to attend university. On that note: You should not miss paying a visit to the local village for a Sunday morning church service. While services are ministered in the Fijian language, the melodious vocal power of the Fijian choirs' singing is something that must be experienced firsthand as it is rousing and transcends any language barrier while stirring the soul.

          Cacao tree with cacao beans

          Get up close and learn how these cacao beans are transformed into chocolate.

          You might be surprised to learn cocoa grows in Fiji. When visiting Savusavu island for your stay at the all-inclusive Namale Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog be sure to plan a visit to KokoMana. While visiting this cocoa farm in a lush setting, you’ll learn how KokoMana grows sustainable cocoa which results in the production of their delicious chocolate candies. Throughout your stay at Namale, you will enjoy an amazing array of fresh & flavorful meals – 80% of which is sourced locally, with much of the produce grown at the resort’s farm. One thing that you should not miss during breakfast are the pancakes which are garnished with a very tasty, caramelized coconut topping (made with fresh coconut from the farm). These delectable pancakes are accompanied with Namale’s house syrup which includes very simple ingredients: simmered fresh coconut cream, sugar and vanilla. Another culinary gem you should experience is their Chili Crab (word of advice: don’t wear light-colored clothing when enjoying this dish, as it is quite saucy, but it is VERY good!).

            You might be surprised to learn cocoa grows in Fiji. When visiting Savusavu island for your stay at the all-inclusive Namale Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog be sure to plan a visit to KokoMana. While visiting this cocoa farm in a lush setting, you’ll learn how KokoMana grows sustainable cocoa which results in the production of their delicious chocolate candies. Throughout your stay at Namale, you will enjoy an amazing array of fresh & flavorful meals – 80% of which is sourced locally, with much of the produce grown at the resort’s farm. One thing that you should not miss during breakfast are the pancakes which are garnished with a very tasty, caramelized coconut topping (made with fresh coconut from the farm). These delectable pancakes are accompanied with Namale’s house syrup which includes very simple ingredients: simmered fresh coconut cream, sugar and vanilla. Another culinary gem you should experience is their Chili Crab (word of advice: don’t wear light-colored clothing when enjoying this dish, as it is quite saucy, but it is VERY good!).

              Cacao tree with cacao beans

              Get up close and learn how these cacao beans are transformed into chocolate.

              As the staff of Namale primarily comprises of staff from the neighboring villages, these individuals are keen to immerse you in their culture – and this shines in their traditional dance and song performances. You can get further acquainted with the local culture by visiting the two local villages: Vivilli Village (which is just across the road from the resort) and Naidi Village (a five-minute drive from the resort - resort transportation is available). While you’re visiting the local villages, the villagers are eager to help you understand their way of life. And if you are fortunate enough to interact with a village chief, they will be happy to tell you about the history of their village, as well as sharing the history of Fiji’s connection to the continent of Africa (Fiji’s first inhabitants were from the Lake Tanganyika region in southern Africa).

              After you finish your cultural interaction with the locals, you should continue your immersive cultural experience with an authentic Fijian Bobo (pronounced “Bom-Boh”) spa treatment at Namale’s Spa. This effective treatment is accomplished by a therapist massaging you with their bare feet while supporting themselves from handlebars which are mounted on the ceiling. This treatment is especially ideal for those who are suffering with lower back pain.

                As the staff of Namale primarily comprises of staff from the neighboring villages, these individuals are keen to immerse you in their culture – and this shines in their traditional dance and song performances. You can get further acquainted with the local culture by visiting the two local villages: Vivilli Village (which is just across the road from the resort) and Naidi Village (a five-minute drive from the resort - resort transportation is available). While you’re visiting the local villages, the villagers are eager to help you understand their way of life. And if you are fortunate enough to interact with a village chief, they will be happy to tell you about the history of their village, as well as sharing the history of Fiji’s connection to the continent of Africa (Fiji’s first inhabitants were from the Lake Tanganyika region in southern Africa).

                After you finish your cultural interaction with the locals, you should continue your immersive cultural experience with an authentic Fijian Bobo (pronounced “Bom-Boh”) spa treatment at Namale’s Spa. This effective treatment is accomplished by a therapist massaging you with their bare feet while supporting themselves from handlebars which are mounted on the ceiling. This treatment is especially ideal for those who are suffering with lower back pain.

                  Sign Up for Costco.com Emails

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                    Once You Are Ready to Travel, Costco Travel Can Help

                    We invite you to take some time to browse around and dream of your next vacation, rental car or cruise, whether you’re booking for next month or toward the end of next year.

                      Without a doubt, Fiji is a country that has its roots in Polynesian heritage. A common misconception about Fijian culinary offerings is that meals consist solely of coconut, taro, cassava, breadfruit and pineapples. While these ingredients are present within many traditional Fijian dishes, you’ll find that today’s Fiji is a melting pot of cultures, and the culinary offerings are reflective of this. As such, unique international culinary techniques have benefitted this proud island nation on a grand scale. A visit to Vasaqa on Fiji’s main island of Viti Levu (near Nadi International Airport) is indicative of the convergence of Fiji’s multicultural society and related flavors through its delicious Fijian Soul Food cuisine.

                        Kava is made in a communal bowl

                        The national cultural drink of Fiji, Kava is served in a large communal bowl as part of a traditional ceremony.

                        When staying at Matangi Private Island Resort - Opens a dialog you’ll experience a new dinner menu daily which will include modern takes on traditional Fijian cuisine as well as fare inspired by recipes from the East Asia and Western countries. Authentic cultural experiences are just a quick boat ride away to neighboring island Qamea island and its Togo Village. Several of Matangi’s staffers are from this island, they are very eager to show you around and introduce you to other residents of the village. And if the village chief invites you to a Yaqona ceremony, it is polite and customary to participate. This ancient ritual ceremony includes preparation of Kava (which is water that is combined with the powdered Kava roots and strained with cheesecloth). The culmination of the ceremony included the consumption of the beverage (Pro Tip: Play it safe and kindly ask for “low tide” (small portion) of the beverage).

                          When staying at Matangi Private Island Resort - Opens a dialog you’ll experience a new dinner menu daily which will include modern takes on traditional Fijian cuisine as well as fare inspired by recipes from the East Asia and Western countries. Authentic cultural experiences are just a quick boat ride away to neighboring island Qamea island and its Togo Village. Several of Matangi’s staffers are from this island, they are very eager to show you around and introduce you to other residents of the village. And if the village chief invites you to a Yaqona ceremony, it is polite and customary to participate. This ancient ritual ceremony includes preparation of Kava (which is water that is combined with the powdered Kava roots and strained with cheesecloth). The culmination of the ceremony included the consumption of the beverage (Pro Tip: Play it safe and kindly ask for “low tide” (small portion) of the beverage).

                            Kava is made in a communal bowl

                            The national cultural drink of Fiji, Kava is served in a large communal bowl as part of a traditional ceremony.

                            Kokoda served in a coconut shell

                            Kokoda is made from fresh caught fish, marinated in lime juice and miti (fresh coconut milk).

                            An abundance of fresh seafood is caught daily just off the coast of the all-inclusive Yasawa Island Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog . Lobster, various types of crab, prawn and other shellfish join Parrotfish, Yellowfin Tuna and Walu (Spanish Mackerel) on Yasawa’s menu throughout your stay. Speaking of Walu, this fish helps to create Kokoda, which is Fijian Ceviche. What makes Kokoda standout from traditional ceviche is the inclusion of coconut milk! To have a better understanding about the waters of Yasawa and the resort’s history, be sure to make time so to chat with Manasa, as he is the main reason why Yasawa Island Resort & Spa exists on the land which Yasawa sits on (the land originally belonged to his mother and it is now under the auspices of Manasa’s village). One key selling point for the surrounding village to approve usage of the land provided financial support of the locals. As a result, many villagers have been able to attend university. On that note: You should not miss paying a visit to the local village for a Sunday morning church service. While services are ministered in the Fijian language, the melodious vocal power of the Fijian choirs' singing is something that must be experienced firsthand as it is rousing and transcends any language barrier while stirring the soul.

                              Cacao tree with cacao beans

                              Get up close and learn how these cacao beans are transformed into chocolate.

                              You might be surprised to learn cocoa grows in Fiji. When visiting Savusavu island for your stay at the all-inclusive Namale Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog be sure to plan a visit to KokoMana. While visiting this cocoa farm in a lush setting, you’ll learn how KokoMana grows sustainable cocoa which results in the production of their delicious chocolate candies. Throughout your stay at Namale, you will enjoy an amazing array of fresh & flavorful meals – 80% of which is sourced locally, with much of the produce grown at the resort’s farm. One thing that you should not miss during breakfast are the pancakes which are garnished with a very tasty, caramelized coconut topping (made with fresh coconut from the farm). These delectable pancakes are accompanied with Namale’s house syrup which includes very simple ingredients: simmered fresh coconut cream, sugar and vanilla. Another culinary gem you should experience is their Chili Crab (word of advice: don’t wear light-colored clothing when enjoying this dish, as it is quite saucy, but it is VERY good!).

                                You might be surprised to learn cocoa grows in Fiji. When visiting Savusavu island for your stay at the all-inclusive Namale Resort & Spa - Opens a dialog be sure to plan a visit to KokoMana. While visiting this cocoa farm in a lush setting, you’ll learn how KokoMana grows sustainable cocoa which results in the production of their delicious chocolate candies. Throughout your stay at Namale, you will enjoy an amazing array of fresh & flavorful meals – 80% of which is sourced locally, with much of the produce grown at the resort’s farm. One thing that you should not miss during breakfast are the pancakes which are garnished with a very tasty, caramelized coconut topping (made with fresh coconut from the farm). These delectable pancakes are accompanied with Namale’s house syrup which includes very simple ingredients: simmered fresh coconut cream, sugar and vanilla. Another culinary gem you should experience is their Chili Crab (word of advice: don’t wear light-colored clothing when enjoying this dish, as it is quite saucy, but it is VERY good!).

                                  Cacao tree with cacao beans

                                  Get up close and learn how these cacao beans are transformed into chocolate.

                                  As the staff of Namale primarily comprises of staff from the neighboring villages, these individuals are keen to immerse you in their culture – and this shines in their traditional dance and song performances. You can get further acquainted with the local culture by visiting the two local villages: Vivilli Village (which is just across the road from the resort) and Naidi Village (a five-minute drive from the resort - resort transportation is available). While you’re visiting the local villages, the villagers are eager to help you understand their way of life. And if you are fortunate enough to interact with a village chief, they will be happy to tell you about the history of their village, as well as sharing the history of Fiji’s connection to the continent of Africa (Fiji’s first inhabitants were from the Lake Tanganyika region in southern Africa).

                                  After you finish your cultural interaction with the locals, you should continue your immersive cultural experience with an authentic Fijian Bobo (pronounced “Bom-Boh”) spa treatment at Namale’s Spa. This effective treatment is accomplished by a therapist massaging you with their bare feet while supporting themselves from handlebars which are mounted on the ceiling. This treatment is especially ideal for those who are suffering with lower back pain.

                                    As the staff of Namale primarily comprises of staff from the neighboring villages, these individuals are keen to immerse you in their culture – and this shines in their traditional dance and song performances. You can get further acquainted with the local culture by visiting the two local villages: Vivilli Village (which is just across the road from the resort) and Naidi Village (a five-minute drive from the resort - resort transportation is available). While you’re visiting the local villages, the villagers are eager to help you understand their way of life. And if you are fortunate enough to interact with a village chief, they will be happy to tell you about the history of their village, as well as sharing the history of Fiji’s connection to the continent of Africa (Fiji’s first inhabitants were from the Lake Tanganyika region in southern Africa).

                                    After you finish your cultural interaction with the locals, you should continue your immersive cultural experience with an authentic Fijian Bobo (pronounced “Bom-Boh”) spa treatment at Namale’s Spa. This effective treatment is accomplished by a therapist massaging you with their bare feet while supporting themselves from handlebars which are mounted on the ceiling. This treatment is especially ideal for those who are suffering with lower back pain.

                                      Sign Up for Costco.com Emails

                                      If you are interested in great deals Costco Travel has to offer, click here to sign up to receive emails. This will ensure that Travel and Costco.com values are sent directly to your inbox.

                                        Once You Are Ready to Travel, Costco Travel Can Help

                                        We invite you to take some time to browse around and dream of your next vacation, rental car or cruise, whether you’re booking for next month or toward the end of next year.


                                          About the Author: The above piece was written by Jason Gordon, a guest travel blogger, and Costco enthusiast.


                                           
                                           
                                           
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