If you find yourself dreaming of a different kind of white Christmas, consider swapping your snow boots for sand between your toes in tropical Fiji. Here, the holiday season isn’t filled with shopping sprees and dizzying decorations. Instead, residents focus on reconnecting with family, friends, and neighbors.
Fijians love celebrating Christmas together and the holidays are a community affair. Traditional village festivities start two weeks before Christmas when neighbors gather at the largest house and celebrate there until the New Year. They light candles, string colorful ribbons around the trees, and sing songs together, as well as perform the traditional meke dance.
Holiday Feasts and Festivities
Like the chestnuts roasting on an open fire at home, Fijians prepare their holiday feasts using the traditional lovo, an underground stone oven. One of the most popular local dishes served with Christmas dinner is Palusami, or corned beef wrapped in taro leaves and cooked in coconut milk. Other staples include cassava, Dalo, and many varieties of fresh fish.
Then, of course, there’s kava, Fiji’s national drink.
Made from the yaqona root, kava remains an important part of community celebrations in Fiji. For visitors, the drink is best sampled under supervision in a traditional kava ceremony. You might find kava somewhat bitter, but when offered, it’s polite to accept the drink in one gulp and greet your hosts with a cheerful cry of “Bula!” (Hello)
300 Islands of Inspiration
With more than 300 islands making up the archipelago of Fiji, the variety of experiences feels endless. One constant this time of year is the warm, sunny weather, which draws everyone to the beaches for picnics, sunbathing, and water sports.
Below the surface, Fiji’s waters teem with marine life. Home to the world’s third-largest barrier reef, the island nation offers some of the most memorable scuba diving in the South Pacific. Consistent swells and exciting breaks entice surfers above while the powder-soft sand is perfect for those seeking relaxation back on land.
Inspired by salty breezes and tropical flavors, our Outrigger Resorts created a few seasonal cocktail recipes to help you capture the island atmosphere at home this holiday season.
Santa's Rum Punch from Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort
• White rum
• Melon liqueur
• Fresh pineapple
• Fresh lime
• Triple Sec
Mix It Up:
• Mix liquid ingredients
• Garnish with fresh fruit and herbs
Rainbow Christmas by Laisani from Castaway Island, Fiji Resort
• 30ml Czarina vodka
• 15ml Malibu
• 15ml Midori
• 5ml fresh lime juice
• 10ml strawberry puree
Mix It Up:
• Rim glass with dry scrape coconut
• Pour vodka, Malibu, and strawberry puree into a shaker, then add ice
• Shake and pour the mixture into a martini glass
• Pour Midori and lime juice into a blender and blend
• Pour into the glass and garnish with a cherry
Jingle Tingle by Shadow from Castaway Island, Fiji Resort
• 30ml white rum
• 15ml triple sec
• 15ml Midori
• 10ml fresh lime juice
• 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream
Mix It Up:
• Pour white rum, triple sec, ice cream and lime juice into a blender, blend until smooth
• Rim glass with green sugar and pour strawberry topping inside
• Add Midori and ice into the glass, and pour blended ingredients
• Garnish with strawberry waffle stick
And if you want to enjoy the flavor of Fiji on its beautiful shores, you can book your tropical getaway today. From sipping kava (or cocktails) in the local village to swimming in crystal clear lagoons, experience the spirit of the holiday season in festive Fijian-style.