Fiji covers a total area of some 194,000 square kilometres (75,000 sq mi) of which around 10% is land. Fiji is the hub of the South West Pacific, midway between Vanuatu and the Kingdom of Tonga.. Fiji consists of 322 islands (of which 106 are inhabited) and 522 smaller islets. The two most important islands are Viti Levu and Vanua Levu. The islands are mountainous, with peaks up to 1,300 metres (4,250 ft), and covered with thick tropical forests. Viti Levu hosts the capital city of Suva, and is home to nearly three quarters of the population. Other important towns include Nadi (the location of the international airport), and Lautoka, Fiji's second city with large sugar cane mills and a seaport. The main towns on Vanua Levu are Labasa and Savusavu.
The climate in Fiji is tropical marine and so warm most of the year round with minimal extremes. The warm season is from November till April and the cooler season May to October. Temperature in the cool season still averages 22 °C.Rainfall is variable, the warmer season experiences heavier rainfall, especially inland. Winds are moderate, though cyclones occur about once a year (10–12 times per decade). ...Climate
The main challenges to the environment in Fiji are deforestation, soil erosion, and pollution. Over the last 20 years or so, 30% of Fiji's forests have been eliminated by commercial interests. The rainfall pattern, the location of agricultural areas, and inadequate agricultural methods contribute to the loss of valuable soils. Fiji is also concerned about rising sea levels attributed to global warming caused by the burning of fossil fuels in the industrial world. The land and water supply are polluted by pesticides and chemicals used in the sugar and fish processing industries. The nation has about 6.9 cu mi of water with roughly 60% used for farming purposes and 20% used for industrial activity. The nation's cities produce 0.1 million tons of solid waste per year. As of 2001, four species of mammal, nine types of birds, six species of reptiles and one type of amphibian were considered endangered, as were 64 of Fiji's 1,600-plus plant species. Threatened species include the Fiji banded iguana and crested iguana, the Fiji petrel, the insular flying-fox, and the Samoan flying-fox. The bar-winged rail has become extinct. ...Forestation...
Fijians have adopted chilli peppers, unleavened bread, rice, vegetables, curries, and tea from the Indian population, while Indians have adapted to eating taro and cassava and drinking kava, a narcotic drink. However, the diets of the two groups remain noticeably different. A traditional Fijian meal includes a starch, relishes, and a beverage. The starch component, which is referred to as "real food," is usually taro, yams, sweet potatoes, or manioc but may consist of tree crops such as breadfruit, bananas, and nuts. Because of its ease of cultivation, manioc has become the most widely consumed root crop. Relishes include meat, fish and seafood, and leafy vegetables. Canned meat and fish are also very popular. Vegetables often are boiled in coconut milk, another dietary staple. Soup is made of fish or vegetables. Water is the most common beverage, but coconut water and fruit juices also are drunk. Tea and an infusion of lemon leaves are served hot. People generally eat three meals a day, but there is much variability in meal times and snacking is common. Most food is boiled, but some is broiled, roasted, or fried. Cooked food is served on a tablecloth spread on the floor mat inside the house. The evening meal, which is usually the most formal, requires the presence of all the family members and may not begin without the male head of the household. Men are served first and receive the best foods and the largest portions. <<Daily Meals>>
In a culture of gift giving, feasting on special occasions is a common practice among ethnic Fijians. The offering of food in substantial quantities ( magiti ) is an essential aspect of traditional community life. Ceremonial foods may be offered cooked or raw and often include entire pigs, oxen, or turtles as well as everyday foods such as canned fish and corned beef. The offering of ceremonial food often is preceded by the presentation of a "lead gift" such as whale's teeth, bark cloth, or kava. Among Indo-Fijians, feasting is associated with marriages and religious festivals. Kava and alcoholic drinks may be drunk on these occasions. ~Festive... ...Food~
National holidays include major Christian, Hindu, and Muslim holy days: Christmas, Easter, the Hindus' Diwali, and the prophet Mohammed's (S.A.W.) birthday. Purely secular festivals include Ratu Sakuna Day, which honours the man whom many regard as the founder of modern Fiji; Constitution Day; and Fiji Day. None of these holidays provokes intense patriotic favour. <<<Holidays>>>
This is a magnificent feast, cooked in the earth. It's like a barbeque, only a little more smoked, and a very efficient way to cook large quantities of food at the same time.
Music is woven into the fabric of Fiji and the Meke embraces traditional song and dance to tell of legends, love stories, history and spirits of the islands. It can vary from a blood-curdling spear dance to a gentle and graceful fan dance. There are two groups in the make - the orchestra (Vakatara), who sit on the ground and sing or chant for the second group, the dancers (Matana). The instruments are percussion (hardwood gongs, bamboo tubes, beating sticks etc). For the Meke the performers wear garlands of flowers (Salusalu), the men wear full warrior costume and the women, in traditional clothes, glisten with scented coconut oil.
Yaqona (pronounced yangona) is Fiji's national drink. It's made from the pulverised root of a member of the pepper family. It's believed to have medicinal qualities (apart from making you feel mellow). Legend has it that the ceremony came from Tonga where the plant sprang from the grave of a Tongan princess who died of a broken heart. In a formal yaqona ceremony authority is given by the village spokesman to begin mixing the kava. When mixed, a server will carry a cup ('bilo') to the chief guest, who must clap ('cobo') once before and after completely drinking the first cup. The order of serving depends on the status of those present, from the highest-ranking chief down. Drinking yaqona has proved to be a great social unifier - it's hard to be angry with someone after sharing kava - and it usually leads to relaxed chat not unlike that in a casual bar.
January 1 -New Year’s Day Celebrations can continue for a week, or even a month, in some areas. It is common practice in Fiji to beat drums and shower one another with water. Fireworks and an annual Street Party is held in the heart of Suva, the nations capital to welcome the new year and is one of the largest new year celebrations in the South Pacific.
February/March – Holi Hindu "Festival of Colours" This however is not a public holiday. February/March – Holi Hindu "Festival of Colours" This however is not a public holiday.
March - National Youth Day Public Holiday celebrating the Youth of Fiji, which comprise a large part of the population and their contributions. March/April - Ram Naumi Hindu celebration of the birth of Lord Rama. This is also not a public holiday. March/April – Easter Major Christian festival; the Friday (Good Friday) and the Sunday (Easter Sunday) are both official public holidays. There is also a Public Holiday on Easter Monday, the Monday soon after Easter Sunday. March/April - Palm Sunday Also celebrated as Children’s Sunday by Fiji's Methodist ,it is not a public Holiday.
May - Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna Day The celebrations in honour of Fiji’s first modern statesman actually begin a week early. It is almost always celebrated on a Friday.
June 15 - Queen’s Birthday Official birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, former and traditional Queen of Fiji. June 15 - August - Bula Festival Celebrated in Nadi
June 15 - August - Hibiscus Carnival/ Festival Celebrated in Suva June 15 - September - Sugar Festival Celebrated in Lautoka
September - Friendly North Festival Celebrated in Labasa September - Coral Coast Festival Celebrated in Sigatoka
October - 10 Fiji Day The anniversary of both Fiji's cession to the United kingdom in 1874 and attainment of independence in 1970. The week leading up to Fiji Day is called Fiji Week, a week of religious and cultural ceremonies celebrating the country's diversity.
November –Diwali Hindu "Festival of Lights," in honor of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. The Public Holiday is a day of colour and celebration amongst all of Fiji's races and creeds not in its religious aspect but for its festive and cultural one. Hindus in Fiji usually open there homes to other families to share in the traditional sweets and foods of Diwali in Fiji.
December - 25 Christmas Christian festival, though celebrated by the country as a whole. December - 26 Boxing Day The day after Christmas.
Thank you for your time and patience... Presentation by Zaynah Yusuf :]