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Art Village @ Pacific Harbour in Fiji

If you are going from Nadi to Suva, you will pass what they call the Art Village in the Pacific Harbour on the main island of Fiji. It was his grand plan to develop a city for people to retire to. It didn’t work out but it does have some very cool stuff for backpackers now.  Read more

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Nauru Airlines goes to Marshall Islands

If you have traveled in the Pacific, you know there is one major challenge: you have to fly to Hawaii just to change from the South Pacific to the North Pacific. However, it seems that “Our Airlines” or Nauru Airlines has opened a route from Nadi, Fiji to Majore, Marshall Islands via Nauru. This is BIG news! Read more

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Fiji Water: Should you buy it?

Fiji Water is from the Fiji Islands, right? Kinda. It is tapped and bottled in Fiji but it is not really a Fijian company. It is an American owned company and has been for a long time. While you might think buying it is good, it probably is not really helping very many locals. Read more

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Fiji weather is bizarre!

If you are going to be in Fiji, you need to get ready for how Mother Nature acts. To say that the Fiji weather is weird would be an understatement. It can be wet in one village and dry in the next. I have literally seen one village have to go to the next to get water because of the lack of rain. Read more

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Fiji holidays for the Backpackers

If you want to do some Fiji holidays, you don’t need a million dollar to pull it off. While most people are looking to go and break the bank in Yasawa Islands, you can for sure do the trip very cheaply if you know what you are doing and where to find the information. The good thing is Backpacking the Pacific is a great starting point. Read more

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Smuggler’s Cove Beach Resort for Backpackers?

The best thing going in New Town Nadi is the Smuggler’s Cove Beach Resort. This is the hotel that owns Horizon Beach Backpackers.  They are pretty the epic-center of the who strip there at Wailoaloa Beach. It is not the Sheridan but they it is a legit hotel for sure. Read more

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Taking the local bus in Nadi (Fiji)

If you are in Nadi, there is a very good chance that you will take the local bus around to where you are going. Backpackers tend to use local transport alot, after all. Read more

Horizon Beach Backpackers Review

The first place I stayed when I went to Fiji was called Horizon Beach Backpackers. (Hostel World link) It was right in the cluster with Bamboo Beach Hostel and a few others. At the time, Horizon was actually owned by the main operations known as Smuggler’s Cove.

What I can say about Horizon Beach Backpackers is they have an amazing location, a brand new swimming pool, the food is decently priced and the they are right on the bus line. According to Hostel World, the current prices for a dorm is around $10. Here is their official website. 

In the research for this article, it seems all the prices in New Town Nadi have increased so check with the backpackers directly before taking Backpacking the Pacific’s word for it. This might be due to the monetary value of the Fijian dollar right now. (May 2016)


What Horizon Beach Backpackers does right

They have a pretty basic restaurant but they are affordable and they open until 10 or so. They also have drinks pretty much any time you need them. It is handy to have the restaurant right there. The other good thing is they are not like Bamboo Beach Hostel, they have a menu for you to pick from.

They have have pretty decent wifi that works without failure. I could upload videos from there and doing any work that I needed online. If you are a freelancer while traveling, having stable internet is critical and Horizon did have that.

The best part is probably the new swimming pool that they have for the guest. I really enjoy to take the afternoons and just relax in the pool. It is not very big but it is still refreshing to take a dip to get away from the heat in Fiji.

As I said, they are right on the bus line and that that is very helpful for when you are going to town to get things.

The other cool things is because they are owned by Smuggler’s Cove next door, you can go and use all the hotel’s stuff like the Kayaks and chill out over there. It is much nicer and it is a legit hotel.


Why you might not stay there

While the dorm is not very well ventilated. It does get pretty hot in there. I do remember going and sleeping out by the pool once because of how hot the dorm was. This might have been fixed since then. I do know they did some remodeling.

The other issue is the staff. The Indian girls at the desk act like they can care less you are in Fiji and they are just there to pick up a paycheck. The manager (Fijian) is not much better. They do not have that Bula smile at all.

With that said, there is girls who have complained on Trip Advisor about the boys working there trying to hook up with guests and even asking for sex. I do not know the details of this to say if this is true or not. Yet, something to consider at least.




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Professional Hostel

One of the double edged swords of a professional hostel is they just become a business. This place is all about selling you packages, programs and anything they think you will buy. It is not a family that is running a small business like many hostels in Asia. This is big business at Horizon Beach Backpackers. It is actually owned by another hotel just two doors down.

When I was there, I felt like they were selling everything and they did not want to give any information to you that would not result in a sale. If you wanted to do  something they didn’t offer, they weren’t that interested in helping you. Many wouldn’t mind this but it didn’t sit well with me.

An example of this is they pick people up from the airport (because competitors do as well) but if they are going to the airport to get someone the same time you are flying out, they will only take you if you pay them. It is business first, hospitality second.

I am from the Midwest and I understand that we are a little anal about bad hospitality but just some of the things done by Horizon Beach Backpackers really hit a nerve with me. It was also like that I was not a person or a customer but just a walking ATM machine with a debit card in hand.

 

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Bamboo Beach Hostel (Fiji) Thoughts

While I was in Nadi, I use to stay at Bamboo Beach Hostel in New Town often. I would not stay there again but more on that later. It is in a good location and they are mastering the online platforms for hostels. I do have to give it to the owners for that. I also think they have made the operations into quite the success over the years. Read more

Mango Bay Resort is for flashpackers!

There are backpackers and there is what they call flashpackers. Mango Bay Resort is for those flashpackers. I stayed there for a night and it was pretty cool. Pricy but still cool.

I was living in Suva at the time and I just needed a break from the city and all the drama of living in the only decent size city in the South Pacific. A friend suggested that I check out Mango Bay Resort. I was able to get a pretty good deal on a dorm so I did it. Here is their Hostel World Page. Read more