The first thing you feel when you disembark from your plane in Fiji is a sense of relaxation. As you walk through the open balcony of the airport the topical breeze hits your face, combined with the instant warmth of the locals you can feel the stresses of every day life evaporate. If you’re like us then you probably feel an even greater sense of relaxation knowing you managed to make it through the 4 hour flight without everyone on the plane hating you because of your twin toddlers.
Fiji is marketed as one of the most friendly family places to visit from Australia and with our 2 and a half year old twins in tow, we were certainly going to put this to the test.
Leaving the airport was easy, after one of our toddlers decided to have a complete meltdown just after we collected our bags (note to Dads probably avoid toilet stops they seem to initiate breakdowns in children who think you are never returning!!), we were off to find the taxi. There’s a visitors information centre right in the middle of the airport so if you’re like us and just wing shit ( in other words didn’t organise transfers), then he will happily help you out with buses, taxis and appropriate tariffs.
We were off to Denarau in what is probably the most cliche Fiji holiday you can have but I was keen to see if it still lived up to it’s reputation. Hopping in the taxi and the first thing I ask is for the meter to be on (a trick for young players meters are generally more accurate), old mate at the info stand had assured me that on a meter it should be no more than $27. Instantly I was argued down by the taxi driver who informed me it was a flat rate of $30 (and $40 in return because apparently coming back is more expensive)! 25 year old, savvy traveller me was about to lean forward an launch into a rather large’if you don’t put your meter on and charge me less than $27 I’ll be out of this taxi and telling all the tourists not to take it’ rant, however doing the maths of $3, Mum me simply said ‘Well we will have to agree on $30 then won’t we!’ and we were off.
There’s something excitingly exhilarating about a taxi ride when you are 2 years old and restrained in seat belts and mum and Dad’s arms not in car seats, and there is something crazy cool about watching the excitement on your toddlers faces as they experience looking at a new place for the first time! There we were pointing out every car, digger and bus between Nadi and Denarau!
Finally we arrived at our destination. Our home for the next 7 nights was the Wyndham resort. As resort that is open for people to book but is also part of a time share that my Mum invested in many moons ago and this week we were the lucky beneficiaries.
I have stayed at many reports in my life and straight away this one simply felt like another well maintained, well organised resort like any other. Immediately the staff were warm and compassionate. Taking our bags, engaging with the children and quickly and efficiently checking us in.
As soon as we were shown our room I immediately understood why this kind of accomodation is appealing to the family travellers. A spacious 2 bedroom appartments with a large lounge area, dining and kitchen greeted us. I have never been a fan of self-catering holidays (my pure laziness and desire to self indulge on a holiday creates a dislike of cooking and cleaning), however it turns out this holidays and this resort would be the one to change my thinking.
Immediately we unpacked our things and set out to explore what our hotel had to offer. It didn’t disappoint. A luxurious long lagoon pool complete with bridges that were set to cause us numerous headaches when we had to drag the kids away from them. A fabulous swim up bar (that we would not end up being able to swim to as …well we have toddlers), a playground and kids club area (although kids club is from 5 but all ages can use it) , kayak area, and a beautiful beach restaurant that we promptly found ourselves settled in to with a beach front area perfect for the kids to run along while we sipped our first cocktails, relaxed and knew this was the beginning of a great holiday….