The Yasawa Islands are a group of islands in north-western Fiji. Approximately 30 resorts are spread through the 12 major islands in the group. Most resorts provide basic accommodation and meals with access to natural and cultural sites.
The Yasawas are beautiful and unspoilt. The best two natural activities are hiking (many of the islands have high hills that provide great views of all the nearby islands) and snorkeling or diving.
Snorkeling and diving are excellent. Some islands even have spectacular snorkeling right off the beach. Diving rates are cheap. You can get certification if you need it. Manta Ray Island Resort offers special snorkeling trips to see manta rays when they are passing a shallow passage between islands.
Most islands have good hiking, e.g. Wayalailai where you can climb to the top to see the sun rise, or hike the length of the island and cross the spit to Waya. Guides are available, or you can go alone.
Almost all islands will have someone who can teach basket or bracelet weaving, using palm fronds and banana leaves.
There are regular kava ceremonies on many islands. Guests are invited to join. On smaller and more intimate islands it would be rude to refuse.
Various day trips are available including the Cave trip (diving through a tunnel 30cm down and 1.5 metre long to visit several underground caverns), the Blue Lagoon (not the real one, which is privately owned) and local trips such as fishing or snorkeling. You can also do day trips on the island to visit local villages and schools.
Some islands have souvenirs but these are generally cheaper to buy on the mainland (e.g. in the streets and markets of Nadi). The key souvenir you may like to buy is a local sulu for that resort. Otherwise, your money is likely to be spent on drinks (water, beer or cocktails) and snacks (chips, biscuits, etc.).
There are three levels of catering – (i) sparse plates and buffets that run out, (ii) generous serves of high carbohydrate meals and (iii) broad balanced meals with endless buffets to suit all appetites and preferences. If you like fish, please be sure to let the locals (especially the chef) know – they often think people prefer chicken. Beef is quite expensive in Fiji and you are not likely to see it very often. Vegetarianism is generally poorly understood and for strict vegetarians or people with allergies it can be quite difficult to explain that even sauces, spices and flavourings are not suitable.
Most people are reasonably happy with the food provided at resorts, although healthier eaters may miss a balance of non-starchy veggies.