Savusava is often referred to as Fiji’s Hidden Paradise. The city was founded in the 18th century by English settlers as a port for the export of sandalwood and trepang. Today, Savusavu is a quiet coastal resort whose economy is based on growing coconut and exporting copra.
Note: according to allcitypopulation, the population of Fiji is 902,899 (2021).
Slow-paced, full of smiles from locals, trips to delicious restaurants and the scent of hibiscus, life in Savusavu attracts tourists so much that many stay longer, if not forever. In other words, the expat community here is only growing year by year.
How to get there
Savusavu Airport, located 3 km south of the city center, receives domestic flights from Nadi and the country’s capital. You can get there by bus or taxi (about 4 USD).
The bus station and taxi stand in Savusavu is located in the city center, near the market. It is from here that buses leave along a surprisingly scenic road through the mountains to Labas (7 USD, 3 hours on the way, 5 departures a day from 7:20 to 15:30). Among tourists, the route from Savusavu to Labasu through Nateva Bay is also popular, it is longer – the bus runs 6 hours, departs once a day at 9 am, the fare is about 19 USD. In addition, here you can “catch” public transport to Napuka (10 USD and 4.5 hours on the way).
It is customary to order a taxi in advance or catch it right on the street; there are usually a couple of cabs in the parking lot, but there may not be – this type of transport is popular among tourists.
The city has only one main street – this is the center of business activity for the entire southeastern part of Vanua Levu. There are shops, a market, a library, a post office and banks. Savusavu’s community center is the Planters Club, the Yacht Club and the Wai-Tui Club.
And Savusavu is the only place on the island where yachts can moor. Two excellent marinas located in Savusavu Bay fill up with sailing and motor beauties during the season.
Entertainment and attractions in Savusavu
The main attraction is the hot springs. Hitting the surface almost throughout the city, they, by the way, also serve as a kind of “hob” for local residents: they often come to the sources with their saucepans. (You should be careful, you can get burned, as steam is sometimes knocked out right from a crack in the asphalt or on the lawn!) These springs are evidence of active volcanic processes that once took place on the island.
Noteworthy is the two-kilometer Nasonisoni Canal, where you can lazily drift downstream at a fairly high speed. Lazy is until you see local barracudas.
From Savusavu, past luxury resorts, the Hibiscus Hwy stretches for almost 110 km. Here, perhaps, the most virgin landscapes of the region, which can be considered a separate attraction. In the presence of blue bays, ancient plantations, emerald palm trees and everything that is so dear to the heart of every lady who has seen enough advertising of the Bounty bar.
Popular excursions from Savusavu include visiting a pearl farm and adventure cruises on the old Tui Tai ship.
Like all the islands of the Fiji archipelago, Vanau Leva is considered a paradise for lovers of diving. And Savusavu is no exception. Almost the entire coastline of the city is a series of excellent beaches, from where you can and should dive. But, they say that the best dive site here is the Dreamhouse reef with an unrealistic variety of sponges and soft corals. The two-kilometer Nasonisoni canal is also remarkable, where you can lazily drift downstream at a fairly high speed. Lazy is until you see local barracudas.