What is traditional Fijian massage?

No one knows how to relax and unwind better than Fijian locals – they seem perpetually at ease. However, the island nation also has a rich history which has blessed locals with colourful traditions and rituals. 

Traditional Fijian massage effortlessly combines the Fijian knack for relaxation and this culture to create something truly special and unique. 

What are the origins of traditional Fijian massage?

There are over 100 inhabited islands in Fiji spread out over 194,000sq kilometres throughout the Pacific Ocean. In the past many of these islands did not have access to western medicine, instead using their own traditional healing techniques passed down generation after generation. 

Traditional Fijian massage is one such technique. In the past, and even today, work on Fiji's remote islands is hard and physical – watch a local climb a coconut tree and you'll agree! If the muscles ache after a hard day working locals head to their village's masseuse to ease their pain.

While the technique itself is often different from island to island, the end result is the same – complete and utter relaxation. 

What are the benefits of Fijian massage?

Some Fijian massage involves deep tissue massage using the edges of the feet, a technique that's more effective at loosening muscles than most that use hands and elbows. 

Others use locally sourced, natural ingredients such as nut and coconut oil, along with long rhythmic strokes of the hands. Fragrant tropical aromas and deep tissue massage creates a feeling of bliss that has to be felt to be believed. However, a true modern Fijian spa experience combines the best of all of the island nation's techniques to provide a massage unlike any other. The end goal is to ease tension, loosen muscles, detoxify the body and enable relaxation.

To find out more about traditional Fijian massage techniques and to experience ultimate relaxation for yourself, why not book a stay at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort today?

Why is Vanua Levu such a great spot for a family holiday?

Family holidays should be relaxing, fun and rejuvenating. That's why Savusavu Bay, nestled on the gorgeous southern cost of Vanua Levu, is the ideal location. With incredible wildlife, diverse and delicious cuisine, world class facilities and award winning child care – a luxury family holiday in Vanua Levu at Jean-Michel Cousteau is always memorable.

Incredible sea life

Fiji is known as the soft coral capital of the world, as well as one of the best snorkeling and swimming locations. The water temperature ranges from 28 degrees Celsius in March to just under 25 in August and September, so make sure you leave your wet suit at home. 

If your kids are older or confident in the water, they'll love the guided snorkeling tours offered here in Savusavu Bay. With the help of a fully trained diver or marine biologist they'll discover vibrant and colourful coral, colourful reef fish straight out of Finding Nemo and perhaps even beautiful, rare sea turtles.

Adults are always welcome to join, but if you'd rather enjoy some well earned pool time there's always a sun lounger waiting for you. 

Activities galore

The last thing you want on a family holiday in Fiji holiday is bored kids. Luckily, when they're done exploring untouched underwater worlds, there's dozens more activities to enjoy here in Savusavu Bay. Your kids can go paddle boarding, swimming, kayaking, sailing and fishing. 

If they're not keen on getting wet, there's tennis, volleyball, table tennis, hiking and bird watching to enjoy too. To get a taste of local culture little ones can join in on a traditional storytelling sessions, where they'll learn the tales from over 3,000 years of Fijian legend. 

The South Pacific's best family holiday

Fijian hospitality is legendary. It's not put on or embellished for guests – the people here are just uncommonly warm, friendly and welcoming. Perhaps that's why Luxury Travel Magazine gave Jean-Michel Cousteau in Vanua Levu a Gold award and called our Bula Kids Club one of the best in the South Pacific. 

It's a paradise for little ones featuring a kid's pool, nursery bure, trampoline, flying fox, jungle gym and an incredible tree house. There's daily educational activities and excursions where kids can hang out with locals and learn about local Fijian culture, the natural environment and cooking. 

Children under six are assigned their own nanny, while kids six to 12 are looked after by a Fijian buddy in groups smaller than five. The best part? Most of the child care and activities are included as part of your stay.

To find out more about the incredible family holidays on offer at Jean-Michel Cousteau resort Fiji check out our all inclusive packages today. 

What makes the people of Fiji so happy?

We don't just think Fijians are the happiest people in the world, we know it! After speaking to 54,000 people from 55 countries, the results of a Gallup study found 92 per cent of Fijians to be happy or very happy with their lives, placing them in the number one spot.

So, what's the secret to their happiness? We think we have a few ideas…

The unbeatable community spirit

Whether immediate family or neighbours, the bond Fijian people share is enviable. Due to Fiji being comprised of predominantly smaller villages, residents are able to maintain strong connections with others living there, resulting in unbreakable ties and a tight-knit community like no other.

Fijians often share child care duties and ensure that the elderly are well looked after and respected. Resources are shared to ensure no one ever goes without, and in times of hardship, people pull together to confirm just how strong Fiji's community spirit really is.

At the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort you'll experience this hospitality first hand and see how our staff bend over backwards to ensure all guests have the best time possible. Here's what past guests had to say on TripAdvisor:

"Staff were outstanding and made my partner and I feel at home from the moment we arrived", said one reviewer. Another followed with, "The setting is beautiful and the staff is filled with truly the nicest people on the planet." 

Find out what makes the people of Fiji so happy.Experience the incredible hospitality of Fiji when staying at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

Stunning scenery and enviable climate conditions

if you regularly woke up to shimmering oceans, palm-dripped beaches and balmy blue skies we think you'd be pretty happy too! Not only is Fiji home to some of the world's finest landscapes, it's also a haven for warmer weather.

A healthy exposure to sunlight is believed to increase the brain's production of serotonin (these are the neurotransmitters responsible for making a person feeling happier), and with Fiji receiving annual temperatures of 24.9 degrees Celsius on average, it's not surprise that Fijians are in such good moods!

Tropical flavours and fantastic food

Succulent fresh fish, tropical fruits and Asian-inspired curries are just some of the delicious delights synonymous with the cuisine of Fiji. The majority of these food items are locally grown and sourced, meaning that many Fijians get to enjoy feasting on such incredible ingredients every single day. And if that's not enough to make anyone smile and lick their lips, we don't know what will! 

Here at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, guests can enjoy dining on authentic South Pacific fare from breakfast right through to dinner, and trust us you'll never go hungry! 

There's no better place to experience the happiest country in the world than at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. Find out how we can make your trip to Fiji one to remember by getting in touch today

Cocktail recipes inspired by the tropical paradise of Fiji

If you're feeling excited for your luxury couples holiday to the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, why not start the celebrations early by learning how to create three tropical South Pacific-inspired cocktails in your very own home?

So, what are you waiting for? Dig out the cocktail umbrellas, shaker and rum, and have your own little Tiki party!

Pina colada

It's a tropical cocktail classic, and one that features a heavenly blend of three typically Fijian ingredients: rum, pineapple and coconut. The below recipe yields two glasses, so adjust accordingly depending on your party size.


  • 1 ½ cup ice.
  • 50 ml pineapple juice.
  • 50 ml white rum.
  • 30 ml coconut cream.
  • Pineapple wedges and glacé cherries to serve.


  • Pulse all ingredients except pineapple wedges and cherries in a blender until smooth.
  • Pour into chilled highball glasses and garnish with pineapple wedges and glacé cherries.
Find out how you can make pina coladas in your own home. If you like drinking pina coladas, you'll love this recipe.

Passion fruit mojito

Give the classic mojito a tropical twist by adding the fruity flavour of passion fruit – you won't regret it!


  • 1 tsp brown sugar.
  • 5 – 10 fresh mint leaves.
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice.
  • 1 tbsp passion fruit syrup (this can be found in most supermarkets).
  • 2 tbsp white rum.
  • 70 ml soda.
  • 1 cup ice cubes.
  • Lime wedges and extra mint to garnish.


  • Muddle (gently combine) mint, sugar and fresh lime juice at the bottom of the glass.
  • Stir in rum, passion fruit syrup and 70 ml soda.
  • Add ice cubes to fill and garnish with lime wedges and fresh mint sprigs.
Try your hand at making a passion fruit mojito.Give the classic mojito a tropical twist with passion fruit.

Mai Tai

While the Mai Tai may have originated in Oakland CA, this tropical concoction certainly embodies the island flavours of Fiji. This rum-based cocktail yields one serving.


  • 2 tbsp dark rum.
  • 2 tbsp light rum.
  • 2 tbsp orange juice.
  • 2 tbsp pineapple juice.
  • 1 tbsp Curaçao.
  • 1 tbsp lime juice.
  • 1 tsp white sugar.
  • 1 tsp orgeat syrup or 1 drop of pure almond extract.
  • Dash of grenadine.
  • 1 cup ice cubes.
  • Fresh mint to garnish.


  • Place all ingredients into cocktail shaker (except grenadine) and shake for 20 – 30 seconds until shaker is frosty on the outside.
  • Strain into short glass filled with ice cubes.
  • Add a dash of grenadine into the top and garnish with fresh mint and a straw.

These three cocktails are the perfect accompaniment to our Fijian-inspired recipes, that you can learn to create here. And of course, you can enjoy all these and more in our very own bar lounge when staying at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. 

Cultural activities to get involved with on your Fijian holiday

Fiji is brimming with ancient traditions and a history like no other. As a proud Fijian establishment, and a place that accommodates people from all corners of the world, here at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, we love nothing more than to show off and teach such cultural practices to everyone that steps through our doors.

Discover a world of tradition through our range of cultural activities.

Enjoy a traditional lovo feast

Every Tuesday night, our in-house chef Raymond Lee and his team treat our guests to a traditional Fijian lovo feast. This cooking method has been adopted throughout the South Pacific and delivers unbeatable flavour and juiciness.

The lovo involves wrapping an array of ingredients in banana leaves and cooking them in an underground fire pit for a number of hours to create tender and delectable results.

Once cooked, Raymond presents the delicacies in a buffet style for everyone to dig in and enjoy.

Have you experienced a lovo feast?A traditional Fijian lovo feast is a must-do when staying at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

Experience a Fijian kava ceremony

On Tuesday, we also give our guests the opportunity to partake in an authentic kava ceremony.

This age old tradition features the kava drink – a safe, non-alcoholic beverage made from the ground root of a South Pacific black pepper tree. Kava has been found to induce relaxation and give a slight numbing effect, which is completely normal and safe if consumed in moderation.

It's important to follow the cultural practices when accepting kava, all of which can be found on our recent kava ceremony blog post.

Join our complimentary village excursion

Tuesday is a non-stop day of culture as it's the day of the week where guests can join our complimentary excursion to the local Nukubalavu village. Here, visitors can meet the village chief, Tui Nasavusavu, and spend the afternoon watching traditional dance presentations, and arts and craft demonstrations. It's a great trip for the whole family to enjoy, and the perfect way to immerse yourself in Fijian culture.

Enjoy cultural demonstrations at the local Fijian village.Watch cultural dance presentations at the local Fijian village.

Visit a local church service

In Fiji, Sunday is 'Siga Tabu' –  a day of rest and relaxation. It's also the day of the week where guests can experience a traditional Fijian church service.

Transport runs to various denomination services including Methodist and Catholic for the 9am services. Visitors can listen to the angelic voices of the choir and find out what is involved in these religious practices.

It's important to wear smart, modest clothing, with shoulders and knees covered.

In Fiji, Sunday is 'Siga Tabu' – a day of rest and relaxation.

Learn how to weave

Every Friday, guests can sign up for a lesson in weaving held by ladies of the local village. Here, you'll use a variety of traditional Fijian methods and materials to create authentic wares and gifts. This is fun for all the family and a great way to learn a new skill in stunning surroundings.

Listen to traditional Fijian stories

Every Tuesday, guests of all ages can sit with the elders and listen to the ancient myths that have become part of the folklore over more than 3,000 years of Fijian history.

The Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort is the perfect place to immerse yourself in luxury and tradition. Find out how we can make your stay even more magical by getting in touch today

What is a traditional Fijian kava ceremony?

Fiji is a country brimming with fascinating history, ancient traditions and a vibrant culture that we're endlessly proud to embody here at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

The kava ceremony is just one of the time-honoured practises held at our five star luxury resort. But just what can you expect from this world-renowned ritual?

Find out what a kava ceremony involves below.

What is kava?

Kava is a traditional, non-alcoholic Fijian drink made from the ground root of the piper mythisticum – a type of black pepper plant grown in the Pacifics. It contains a number of natural active chemicals known as kava lactones. These have been found to produce a number of effects such as muscle relaxation, medicinal benefits and a slight numbing sensation – all of which are safe if consumed in moderation.

Upon harvest, kava is ground and mixed with water to dilute the substance for safe consumption. It's then strained to deliver an earthy flavour and appearance, ready for drinking at special events and ceremonial occasions.

Are you ready to experience a kava ceremony?Kava plants can grow up to 2.5 metres tall!

What happens in a traditional kava ceremony?

Kava is often consumed as part of a tradtional ceremony at local Fijian villages. If you're lucky enough to join, there are a few rules you must adhere to. Before entering a village, visitors must first gain formal permission from the chief. This traditional protocol is otherwise known as sevusevu and involves the presentation of kava to the village chief on arrival.

When joining our complimentary excursion to the local village of Nukubalavu, the sevusevu is done on your behalf. If you do meet the chief during this visit, it's important to stay below his eye level to avoid causing disrespect. Always bow, introduce yourself and back away without turning away.

When accepting this traditional Fijian drink, clap once with cupped hands, take the drink, and consume the entirety of it. Once finished, return the cup to the person who gave it to you and clap strongly three times. You may feel a slight numbing sensation on your tongue, but kava is considered very safe to drink in small quantities. However, if you are on any type of medication or are of ill-health, we suggest politely declining this drink. If this is the case, extend both hands outwards with your thumbs overlapping and say 'vinaka', which means no thank you. 

You may feel a slight numbing sensation on your tongue, but kava is considered very safe to drink in small quantities.

How the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort can bring you closer to the action

Guests of the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort can partake in a traditional kava ceremony most evenings and when joining our complimentary excursion to the local village of Nukubalavu.

We're extremely proud of our heritage and work to practise various traditional Fijian traditions wherever possible. Guests can experience a cultural lovo feast, take part in a Fijian story-telling session and of course, immerse yourself in the unforgettable kava ceremony. Discover a world of culture and tradition when staying at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.  

Get ready to feel the music of Fiji

Are you ready to feel the rhythm of Fiji? While enjoying your holiday at our five star resort, don't be afraid to get those hips shaking and feet tapping as you sway along to the soundtrack of the islands.

With undeniably catchy beats and hypnotic rhymes, learn all about the music of Fiji before departing on your luxury family holiday to the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. 

An overview of Fijian music

Traditional Fijian music is a heavenly blend of both Polynesian and Melanesian styles which come together to create a unique and beautiful sound. This genre includes a lot of percussion instruments, typically made from resonant wood. Lali and slit drums are often played to provide the background beat, delivering deep and mellow sounds when hit. These indigenous drums were once banged to announce important events such as victories, births and deaths. Today, they're played to call the locals to church or for social gatherings. 

The melody for traditional Fijian music is typically played on guitar, ukulele and mandolin. Pairing deep, hollow sounds from the drums with the mesmerising rhythm of the string instruments, along with rich vocals, the end result is beautifully upbeat.

Are you ready to enjoy the music of Fiji?Feel the music of Fiji at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

Famous Fijian artists

Fiji is the birthplace of several talented musical artists. Here are a few of the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort's favourites below:

  • Laisa Vulakoro: Laisa Vulakoro is a Fijian singer specialising in disco and folk music, and is often called by her stage name, Vude Queen. Vulakoro has gone on to release 16 albums, full of toe-tapping beats. 
  • One2eight: Popular Fijian band One2eight deliver energetic and soulful performances whenever they play. You'll never be able to resist the urge to tap your feet and move your head in time to their catchy tunes!
  • Daniel Rae Costello: Daniel's music career has sent him around the Pacific and the rest of the world, performing his infectious Fijian anthems to fans for nearly 40 years!

The soundtrack of your stay at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort

On arrival, the sweet sounds of our singers and guitars are there to greet you, making your welcome that extra bit special, but the music doesn't stop there. Our band will serenade you with island music as you enjoy dining in the stunning surroundings of the resort. Here's what one of our past guests had to say:

'They had the best band playing island music the night we were there which added another dimension to the experience," one past guest told TripAdvisor. 

If you choose to join us on our complimentary excursion to the local Nukubalavu village, you may experience traditional dance presentations set to the tune of lali drums and singing – a real treat!

Get ready to feel the rhythm of the island as you immerse yourself in the music while staying in the tropical paradise of the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. 

Enjoy a taste of Fiji in your own home

Whether you've recently returned from your luxury family holiday in Fiji or you're getting ready to fly to the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, there's something about the tropical cuisine of the islands that gets tummies rumbling no matter where you are! 

For a true taste of Fiji, why not try your hand at creating some of the most popular dishes eaten across the islands? 

Glean a little inspiration by checking out some of the Jean-Micheal Cousteau Resort's favourites below. 


Kokoda is a traditional Fijian raw fish salad that is extremely delicious and extremely easy to replicate in your own home. This recipe will serve around five people as a starter or side. 

Ingredients include:

  • 100 ml coconut cream
  • 500g fresh white fish, thinly sliced
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 1 chilli, minced
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes


Allow the fish to marinate in lime juice for two to three hours before draining. Next, mix the chopped vegetables and coconut cream together, and add the marinated fish. Chill well and garnish with lime wedges and coriander before serving.

At our five star Fiji resort, we're passionate about serving these traditional meals alongside other delicious dishes, such as the magical Lovo feast!


Palusami is a popular Fijian dish of meat, coconut cream and various vegetables, wrapped in taro leaves, then baked. This recipe is a great appetiser for a party and will serve around eight people.

Ingredients include:

  • 2 dozen young taro leaves (washed and softened in hot water)
  • 400ml coconut cream
  • 1 brown onion, chopped
  • 250g cooked corned or minced beef
  • 2 tomatoes, sliced


Hold the pliable taro leaf in your hand to form a cup shape. Spoon in a small amount of coconut cream, cooked beef, and layer the onion and tomato on top. Fold over the leaves to make a parcel and secure in place with toothpicks. Wrap in tinfoil and bake in the oven for around 30-40 minutes.

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Fijian banana cake

Who could forget about dessert? This moist and fluffy banana cake is served at Fijian celebrations and is a tasty treat for after dinner. 

Ingredients include:

  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed 
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cup self raising flour


In a large bowl, mix the mashed bananas, eggs, sugar, vanilla and melted butter together until fluffy. In a separate bowl, combine baking soda and self-raising flour. Gently fold the dry mixture into the wet ingredients until a smooth batter is formed. Pour into a greased and lined cake tin, and bake for around 30 minutes at 170 degrees Celsius (or until a toothpick comes out clear). 

We don't know about you, but all of this talk of Fijian food is making us hungry. Come and experience the deliciousness for yourself while staying at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort! 

3 reasons to spend Christmas at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort

Christmas is a time for fun, family and festivities, but amongst all of the holiday cheer, people can often be left feeling stressed when trying to please everyone.

Instead of spending your time off work worrying, why not take a holiday in the holidays to really maximise time with family?

Discover how the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort can create a 5 star family holiday in Fiji that you'll never forget.

Enjoy spending Christmas at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.Enjoy spending Christmas at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

Set your body clock to island time

Christmas can be a stressful time, what with buying gifts, cooking enough food for everyone and making sure the kids are entertained. Leave work and worries at the door before jetting off to Fiji, like the 35,000 Australians who visited the tropical islands in December 2016, according to Fiji Bureau of Statistics. 

Our five star Fiji resort allows families to enjoy island life to the fullest, with feet up and refreshing drink in hand. Every little detail is taken care of so that you have more time to spend with the people you care most about.

Leave work and worries at the door before jetting off to the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

We're not the only ones who think that Christmas spent at the resort is a great idea, our past guests do too:

"It really was a special Christmas for ourselves and the kids, surrounded by beauty, amazing staff, good people and an intoxicating air of relaxation", writes one TripAdvisor reviewer.

Leave boredom at the door

Instead of wondering how to entertain the little ones over the Christmas break, at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, children will never have an excuse to be bored. Instead, watch their little faces light up like a Christmas tree when they discover the action-packed activities on offer at the Bula Club

If there's more energy and excitement to burn off, leave them in the capable hands of our friendly nannies and buddies, while you enjoy an afternoon relaxing in the adult-only facilities. Watch as they make new friends, learn about wildlife and Fijian culture in a fun environment and splash around in child-friendly facilities. 

Enjoy family outings with our fantastic range of complimentary excursions that can take you to Savusavu gems such as hidden waterfalls, traditional Fijian villages and local markets.

Spend Christmas with the family in our five star resort.Spend Christmas with the family in our five star resort.

Enjoy a change of scenery

Fijians love Christmas just as much as you and your little ones. Help the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort staff decorate the Christmas tree before joining in the church service where carols are sung and spirits are high.

The stress of Christmas dinner isn't on you this year! Instead, you can dine upon traditional Fijian fare such as a Lovo feast in gorgeous surroundings.

Spending a family holiday in great company at the Jean-Michel Coustea Resort is the best gift worth giving this Christmas. Find out how we can make your holidays the best they can possibly be.

3 reasons why Fiji should be top of your travel bucket list

Looking for a new, sun-filled holiday destination? Join the 350,000 Australians who, according to Fiji Bureau of Statistics, visited Fiji over the course of July 2016 to June 2017. There's a reason, after all, why the country consistently makes the top ten list of travel destinations for Aussies.

As experts in everything 'Fiji', allow the five star resort of the Jean-Michel Cousteau to explain why the tropical paradise of Fiji should be at the top of your travel bucket list.

1. Bask on beautiful beaches

If you're dreaming of postcard-worthy beaches surrounded by gently swaying palm trees, you're in luck. On the second largest island in Fiji – Vanua Levu – where the Jean Michel-Cousteau Resort is located, stunning stretches of sand are the norm – a particular treat while enjoying your romantic Fiji getaway. And, best part is, they are just a short stroll from your accommodation!

Spend your time relaxing on the shores or take to the clear waters for some of the world's best snorkelling. We have our very own dive centre that allows guests to experience the Namena Reserve in all it's glory. Swim with four of the world's seven sea turtle species, keep an eye out for playful Bottlenose dolphins and see more than 400 colourful coral species.

2. Immerse yourself in the culture

As soon as you step into our five star resort, a swarm of smiles and 'Bulas' will greet you. Our friendly staff are a shining example of the country's warm and welcoming demeanour and they work to ensure that your stay is nothing short of magical.

Expect to have a permanent smile plastered on your face when joining one of our complimentary excursions that explore Savusavu and beyond. Interact with locals at the Savusavu Saturday market and experience the hospitality and warmth for yourself as they guide you through their offerings and homemade crafts.

Here at the Jean Michel-Cousteau Resort we love nothing more than celebrating our great culture and what better way to do so than by experiencing a traditional Lovo feast? Watch as chef Raymond Lee cooks the ingredients in an underground fire pit – a time-honoured Fijian method.

3. Experience the adventure

The Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort is proof that you'll never be bored when holidaying to Fiji. Take to the water and enjoy snorkelling, diving, boat rides and kayaking. If dry land is more your thing, hike to secluded waterfalls, visit a Fijian village or create your own traditional wares – the possibilities are endless!

We knew it wouldn't be hard to convince you that Fiji is the perfect holiday destination, so what are you waiting for, contact the Jean Michel-Cousteau Resort to see just what we can do for you.