© Tourism Fiji
© Tourism Fiji

10 Tips for Taking a Small-Ship Cruise in Fiji

© Tourism Fiji

Advice for Fiji’s Cruises

See more than the average tourist on one of Fiji’s cruises. Fiji is a place for a small-ship cruise experience, with a new stunning island anchorage each night, delectable cuisine and a range of adventure, relaxation and cultural activities. If you have your sights set on the small-ship cruises in Fiji, like Blue Lagoon Cruises or Captain Cook Cruises, then this list of tips should make for “smoother sailing”.

For more information on the cruises of Fiji, take a look at The Guide to Cruises Around Fiji.

1. Book Your Cruise Directly for the Best Deals or with Booking Websites for a Better Cancellation Policy

If you’re looking for the best price on cruises, it can often be found directly on the cruise company websites, with past deals being similar to 25% off the full price and “single specials”. However, with some cruises needing to be booked far in advance, you might want to turn to booking websites like Viator or Tripadvisor for a more consumer-friendly cancellation policy. Find out more in How to Book Cruises Around the Fiji Islands.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Tourism Fiji


2. Be Flexible with Your Dates

Speaking of good deals, it pays to be flexible with your dates when booking a cruise to Fiji. While discounts are more evident between October and March – Fiji’s low season – for both Blue Lagoon Cruises (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor) and Captain Cook Cruises (on Viator and Tripadvisor), Captain Cook Cruises also has “Hot Deals” on certain dates on their website.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Blue Lagoon Cruises


3. Most Cruises Sail the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands

If you’re looking for a cruise in Fiji, know that the vast majority of cruise departures are for the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands. While these are the most visited outer islands in Fiji, they still have a feeling of tranquillity with remote island villages and glorious beaches. Learn more about these island groups in The Complete Guide to the Mamanuca Islands and The Complete Guide to the Yasawa Islands.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Tourism Fiji


4. Book Cruises to the Other Islands as Soon as They are Available!

Captain Cook Cruises also offers a few select cruises throughout the year to the Lomaiviti Islands, Taveuni, Vanua Levu, Kadavu and even the Lau Islands. These cruises to Fiji’s less-visited islands are high in demand, usually selling out within days of bookings being open. If you want to visit these islands on a cruise, it’s a good idea to book cruises to these islands as soon as bookings become available. Find out more about Captain Cook Cruises on Viator and Tripadvisor.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Captain Cook Cruises


5. Get Familiar with Port Denarau

All small-ship cruises depart from Port Denarau. This manmade island, town and marina are approximately 15km (6 miles) from Nadi International Airport, where you can either arrange a transfer through your cruise (meeting their terms and conditions) or make your own way there following our advice in the 5 Ways to Get to Denarau Island. It’s also worth considering staying at one of the luxury resorts of Denarau the night before your cruise. Check out the 10 Best Resorts in Denarau Island for recommendations.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© FijiPocketGuide.com


6. Choose the Right Cruise for Your Travel Style

Both Captain Cook Cruises and Blue Lagoon Cruises are small ships with a boutique vibe. However, note that Blue Lagoon Cruises is an adult-only cruise (with a few select family cruises throughout the year), while Captain Cook Cruises strikes the right balance of being family-friendly without being “overcrowded with kids”.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Captain Cook Cruises


7. Fiji is Ideal for Cruising All Year Round

Fiji has a warm tropical climate all year around. Although the rainy season, which is from November to April, seems off-putting for most, the wet season is usually made up of plenty of sunshine with only one or two down-pours once every one, two or even a few days. Get familiar with Fiji’s climate in What is the Weather Like in Fiji?

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Pxhere.com


8. Check-in at Least an Hour Before Departure

The small-ship cruises in Fiji require passengers to check-in their luggage at least one hour before departure. The cruise ship counters at Port Denarau are typically open from 8.30-9am for checking in, so you can check your luggage in early and spend the rest of the morning at the fabulous eateries of Port Denarau before departure.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© FijiPocketGuide.com


9. Know What to Pack

Aside from tropical attire, some key things to pack for a cruise in Fiji are some clothes that cover the shoulders and knees for village visits, some shoes to wear in the water as there are wet landings on some islands. Casual clothing is good for the daytime, while smart-casual clothing is recommended for dinnertime. Check out more recommended things to pack in The Complete Packing List for Fiji.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© STIL on Unsplash


10. Don’t Get Fiji’s Small-ship Cruises Confused with International Cruises

If you’re used to going on large international cruises, don’t get this mixed up with Fiji’s small-ship cruises. The cruises in Fiji are much more intimate. And if international cruises to Fiji were, in fact, what you were looking for when you stumbled across this article, then be sure to check out The Guide to Taking a Cruise to Fiji.

10 Tips for Taking a Small-ship Cruise in Fiji© Captain Cook Cruises

More Tips for Taking a Small-Ship Cruise in Fiji

That’s it from our tips for taking a small-ship cruise in Fiji. Check out more transport options around the islands in our Fiji Transport Guide: 16 Best Ways to Get Around Fiji.


Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor in chief and co-founder of Fiji Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in the South Pacific over 10 years ago with nothing but a backpack and a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to explore a paradise such as Fiji. She knows the islands inside-out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience Fiji’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also editor of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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