Monday, 9 September 2013

Shopping in the Fiji Islands

Fiji offers a broad and interesting shopping experience with many items of interest. There are stores for local arts and crafts, books, fresh food markets, sporting equipment and apparel, clothing, food  and beverages, local music including musical instruments, natural beauty products, jewellery, and souvenirs throughout the country.

Opening hours

Fiji's business hours for most stores range from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on Monday through to Friday and 8:00 am to 3:00 pm on a Saturday with only a select few local stores remaining open on Sunday.


Morris Hedstrom (MH), RB Patel and New World are the main supermarket chains in Fiji and are situated in all major town offering fresh fruit and vegetables as well as local and imported groceries. Morris Hedstrom (MH) is one of Fiji’s largest wholesale and retail organisation with a chain of supermarkets and variety stores.

Shopping Arcade at Port Denarau  |  Traditional dance on show

Handicraft and Duty Free

Popular tourist boutiques and duty free shops include Jack's of Fiji, Prouds Jewellers and Tappoo. They offer a range of tourist souvenirs and duty free goods. These major stores can be found on Queen's Road in Nadi Town, at Port Denarau, Sigatoka and in shopping arcades of the larger hotels.

Most of Suva city's major tourist stores are located along Victoria Parade and on Cumming Street.  Jack's of Fiji is located on Thomson and Pier streets, opposite the Fiji Visitors Bureau; Prouds, in the Suva Central building on Renwick Road; and Tappoo, which has a large store at the corner of Thomson and Usher streets. Note that Jack's Suva store has a very small handicraft section; here, you will find mostly clothing and accessories. The prices are fixed in these stores. Suva has some fine tropical clothing outlets, several of them on Victoria Parade near the Regal Theatre. The upmarket resort and beachwear specialist Sogo Fiji is on Victoria Parade, opposite the Village 6 Cinema theatre. See here for more information on Suva City.

Handicraft  |  Knives, woven fans and traditional on tapa cloth

A fantastic array of locally made handicrafts that can be found include masi or tapa cloth, woven goods, carvings and pottery. These artifacts represent the Fijian heritage and tradition and occupy a very special part of shopping in Fiji. They are available from some of the larger stores however the higher quality products are usually found in local villages (road side stalls are plentiful) at lower prices.

Woven pieces such as mats, baskets, purses and fans are also popular Fiji souvenirs and are mainly produced using products of the coconut tree and also utilising reeds grown locally.

Bear in mind that not all wood and local material will be properly treated according to the customs regulations of your country of origin. It is always a good idea to check customs rules and regulations prior to purchasing handicraft anywhere in the world.

Fiji shopping is also renowned for its clothing including local sports apparel, "bula" shirts, swimwear as well as a wide range of local fabrics which can tailored to your liking by local tailors. Nadi town is well known as the best place for shopping in Fiji. It is home to many recognised shopping outlets and boutiques. In Nadi town, the upper level of Jack's of Fiji is filled with local clothing and leather apparel. Tappoo carry a broad range of merchandise, including electronics, and sporting goods. Prouds concentrate on perfumes, watches, and jewellery including Fiji's black pearls.

Fiji's Black Pearls

Black Pearls

No Fiji holiday is complete without seeing the nation's famous black pearls. Retailing from FJD $400 to FJD $4,000 these exquisite pearls are found in the waters off Savusavu Bay. These are great ornaments on their own or as part of a jewellery piece. They can be bought from duty free stores at the airport in Nadi and at several tourist shopping areas in both Nadi and Suva. Obviously the better the quality of pearls the more expensive. Size and colour also affects the price.

The pearl farm is located  on the northern island of Vanua Levu in the town of Savusavu and worth a visit. More information can be found on J. Hunter's Fiji Pearls site.

Point to note - haggling is not commonplace and most stores nowadays have fixed prices.

Have you recently been to Fiji? How was your shopping experience there? Please feel free to share and comment below.

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