Sigatoka Town
Viti Levu

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Sigatoka Travel Guide
Viti Levu, Fiji

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Sigatoka Town is a busy market centre buoyed by the surrounding tourism industry. The town has little appeal except for some reasonable restaurants and a well stocked fresh produce market, although market vendors are known to be aggressive sales people towards tourists. The main attraction of Sigatoka is the surrounding countryside. To the west of Sigatoka Town , towards Nadi, is the Sigatoka Sand Dunes, a National Park with walking trails whilst inland is the tranquil Sigatoka River Valley with historical sites and pleasant scenery.

There’s little in the way of accommodation in Sigatoka Town but there are several budget motels and resorts at Korotogo Beach , 10- km along the Coral Coast .

Sigatoka Sand Dunes
Two kilometres before reaching Sigatoka Town , the National Trust administered Sigatoka Sand Dunes makes an inspiring day out. The Visitor Centre has an informative display highlighting the ecological importance of the region and can also provide guides. The dunes cover an area of 650 hectares, stretching for three kilometres and petering out to a sand spit at the mouth of the Sigatoka River and in places rise to eighty metres high with fantastic views along the beach and of the crashing surf. There are two designated walking trails from the Visitor Centre to try and preserve the fragile environment from unnecessary erosion. The Clark Lookout trail heads uphill for ten minutes and follows the rim of the dunes for panoramic views of the area. A longer one hour walking trail cuts through the flat coastal forest towards the ocean and leads along a designated path to the more stable middle section of the sand dunes ending at the beach.

Along the beachfront you’ll find plenty of driftwood and if you look carefully you’ll come across small sherds of Lapita pottery, evidence of human settlement from over 2000 years ago. There’s good surfing around the Sigatoka River mouth at the southern end of the beach although the sea can be ferocious at times with strong currents - locals can advise the safest entry points for both surfers and swimmers.

You can stay at the budget Sand Dunes Inn to explore the area fully, with direct access to the dunes and a ten- minute walk along the beach to the surfing break. Well used surf boards can be rented for $25 a day or you can rent boogie boards or sand boards for $20 a day.

Sigatoka River Valley
Along the banks of the Sigatoka River are some of the most fertile farming lands in Fiji with plantations of fruits, vegetables and sugar cane. A dirt road travels either side of the river from Sigatoka Town, that on the west side, known as the Valley Road extends into the very heart of Viti Levu to Bukuya Village where the road branches off to Nadi, or continues across the centre of Viti Levu to Ba on the north coast. The road makes an excellent walking track and passes many villages and viewpoints along the way.

On the east side of the river is Tavuni Hill Fort a fascinating example of Fiji ’s tribal past. In the 18th century, Tongan invaders begun to push further into Fijian territory and established a base on a fantastically steep hill overlooking the Sigatoka River . They waged wars on their surrounding enemies until 1876 when the Tongans were subdued by native troops under British control. What remains is a well excavated and easily accessible hill fort with stone foundations, rock barricades, ceremonial grounds and the chilling vatu- ni- bokola, or killing stone, where victims’ heads were placed and smashed with a war club. The views from the hill top are worth the visit alone.

To explore the river on an organized tour, Adventures in Paradise  drive up to Tonga village for a village visit and kava ceremony, a twenty- minute hike to the chamber caves of Naihehe and a float down river on a bamboo made bilibili raft.

Korotogo Beach
Eight kilometres beyond Sigatoka Town , past the final stretch of working sugar cane fields, is Korotogo, hidden down a dead end road from the Korotogo roundabout, known as the Sunset Strip. The beach itself is ordinary and not great for swimming but the two- kilometre long strip has a pleasant holiday feel with a few restaurants, budget motels including Bedarra Inn and the large Outrigger Lagoon Resort.

The highlight of Korotogo Beach is the Kula Eco Park, Fiji’s largest collection of native wildlife. The park is arranged considerately in a temperate forest with self guided boardwalks meandering through aviary cages and past snake, iguana and aquarium enclosures. The large crested iguanas are its highlight, endemic to Fiji , rarely seen and limited to only a couple of islands off Vanua Levu and Yasawa.

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