A pre-departure briefing will be held at your respective University around mid-December (for Australian students) and mid-May (for US students). Students will then be briefed on what they need to make their stay more comfortable whilst in Fiji. A number of students usually leave for Fiji a week before the course starts, for some sightseeing. Flights come in to Nadi International Airport and students may opt for the 3-hour bus ride to Suva via Coral Sun coach or the 30-minute domestic flight to Nausori via Pacific Sun. Taxis from Nausori to Suva cost around FJ$30 and it takes 30 minutes to reach USP campus in Suva.
A number of hotels, motels and back-packers are located along the Nadi-Sigatoka-Suva corridor which students may visit before or after the course. Students would also have the opportunity to go scuba diving and shark feeding in one of the many tourist attraction sites in Fiji.
What to bring to Fiji
To make your stay more comfortable, you will need to bring the following:
- Clothing appropriate for field work, including sturdy footwear, hat, raingear, extra t-shirts;
- Toiletries, towel, sunscreen, insect repellent, sea sickness medication;
- Swimming costume, sand shoes and/or Tevas/Reef walkers (you may be required to wade in waist-deep water);
- Wet suit and/or snorkelling equipment if you have it (Supervised snorkelling for all swimmers);
- Flashlight (if you want to go spotlighting);
- Binoculars (if you have them);
- Day backpack to take things out in the field;
- Water Bottle;
- Notebooks, pens and a calculator.
ANZ, Westpac and Colonial National Bank are the major banks in Fiji. ATMS are common throughout Suva. There are ANZ and Westpac branches as well as ATMs on USP's main campus. Students are therefore strongly advised not to carry more cash than is necessary.
Accommodation at USP
Students will be accommodated on campus, in one of the residential halls, in a secure and convenient location, close to all amenities. Each student will be allocated to a single room. The room comes with one single bed plus mattress, a mattress cover, bed sheet, one fan, study table, chair & study light.
Students have a wide range of choices with regards to their meals. There is a Coffee Shop (Baristas) on campus and there are several eateries within walking distance from campus- MacDonald’s, Pizza King, Vegetarian outlets, Curry house and the seaside favourite, Dan's Fish & Chips. For a wider range of choices, Suva City is a 10-minute bus/ taxi ride away.
There are a variety of recreational facilities around campus. These include a state of the art gym, a swimming pool, tennis court, squash court, basketball & volleyball gym, plus soccer and rugby fields.
In addition, students can go to Pacific Harbour, about an hour out from Suva, to enjoy the day at its long beach. It has back-packer accommodation and dive operations which include shark dives. A good source of information on upcoming events and activities around Suva is the Kulcha Vulcha newsletter, updated every week and available here: http://kulchavulcha.interactive.com.fj/