The Fijians are pretty easy-going, but if you are invited into a village, wear modest clothing and take off your hat (wearing one is an insult to the chief) when in the village. Leave your shoes outside the door when entering a home and keep in mind that it’s also insulting to touch someone’s head – which can be tempting when you are surrounded by wide-eyed, smiling children.
If you are invited to drink kava, don’t ask, just enjoy the ritual and the tumb noungue, sorry – the numb tongue.
When visiting a village, it is customary to present a gift of kava, which is also known as “yaqona”. The gift, (a “sevusevu”), will cost less than F$20 for a half kilo. If you are accompanied by a guide, he/she will look after that. The sevusevu is presented to the traditional head of the village (“Turaga Ni koro”). After it’s been pounded into powder and mixed with water, it is usually served in the head person’s house.
Be prepared to shake hands and answer personal questions like, where are you from, are you married, how many children do you have… and so on.
Fijians are the friendliest people in the world. Your respect for their customs and traditions will not only make you a welcome guest in their villages and homes, but add another dimension to your Fijian holiday. For the lovo, meke and yaqona (kava) cermonies.
Acknowledgement to Tourism Fiji