Why this remote far-flung Island Resort is closer than you think

Jean Michel Cousteau Resort has been nominated under Resorts for Conde Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice Awards 2023. Voting will run through June 30, 2023.Click here if you would like to vote for Jean Michel Cousteau Resort.

Known for its world class diving, magnificent pearls and charming harbourside town, Fiji’s “Hidden Paradise” feels far from the well-worn tourist trail yet Savusavu is a mere hour’s flight from Nadi International Airport. Yep, paradise is closer than you think.

Secluded beaches and spectacular reefs
Located on Vanua Levu’s remote southern coast, Savusavu is where you’ll find the five-star eco-friendly Jean Michel Cousteau Fiji Resort offering luxurious seclusion within easy reach of Nadi International Airport.

A string of secluded and (mostly) empty palm fringed bays and inlets along with world class snorkelling and diving on pristine reefs await.

Cousteau Dive Centre takes guests to incredible (and uncrowded) dive sites like Barracuda, Alice in Wonderland and the world-famous Namena Marine Reserve. At any one time only a handful of divers explore Vanua Levu’s pristine reefs. You’ll soon discover why Jean Michel Cousteau (son of famous ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau) refers to Fiji as the world’s soft coral capital.

Cool off at the stunning Nakawaga Waterfall
Head inland for an adventure of a lifetime at the incredible Nakawaga Waterfall. Tucked well of the beaten track in verdant jungle you’ll find the spectacular and powerful waterfall following a short but steep hike. Cool off with a dip in the natural pool at the base or, if you’re feeling adventurous, take an exhilarating leap from the top. Be sure and bring a snorkel mask so you can spot small fish and swim beneath the falls. While it feels a million miles from anywhere, the falls are in fact only 20 minutes from Savusavu township (JMC runs complimentary guided tours to the waterfall each week).

Do yoga on a private island
As the sun sinks over the Coral Sea, join a sunset yoga class with arguably the world’s best view. This once in a lifetime yoga class takes place on JMC’s very own private island reached by wooden runabout through dreamy, aquamarine-colored waters.

Known as Naviavia (which in English translates to ‘want to be’), this postcard perfect island is owned by local Fijians and lies just off the secluded shores of Savusavu Bay, on Fiji’s second largest island, Vanua Levu (Big Land).

Across the channel the thatched roofs of JMC resort’s bures are visible yet you’ll feel completely removed from life and its cares.

Lose track of time
Known as Fiji’s “Hidden Paradise”, Savusavu’s deep harbour, spectacular reefs and secluded, palm fringed bays are not just postcard perfect. Here the earth beneath your feet oozes an energy that instantly makes you feel calmer, walk slower, breathe easier. Time seems to slow down, and unfailingly you lose track of it.

Reset with a snooze in a hammock, a barefoot stroll along a palm fringed shore or just kick back with a book on a daybed with a cocktail. Life moves decidedly slower on Fiji time.

Get away from it all
Travellers can reach Vanua Levu’s luxuriant shores via a one-hour flight from Fiji’s Nadi International Airport, arriving at Savusavu Airport. From there, it’s a 15-minute transfer by air-conditioned minivan to Jean Michel Cousteau Fiji Resort.

It may feel like one of the most remote places on earth but truth is, it’s within easy reach. Read more about Travel & Leisure’s ‘12 of the most remote places on earth you can visit’ – including Savusavu home to Jean Michel Cousteau Fiji Island Resort.

Five reasons why an all-inclusive Fiji resort makes perfect holiday sense

Kick back, order a drink and do as much or as little as you want. Booking an all-inclusive stay at Jean Michel Cousteau Resort Fiji takes the stress out of travel.

1. Rest easy – everything’s taken care of
One of the biggest advantages of an all-inclusive resort holiday is peace of mind. Once you’ve budgeted the per night cost for your stay, (almost) everything else is included. No calculating transfer costs, budgeting for a nanny/babysitter, planning for meals or carrying around a wallet. Kick back on our sun lounger by the Serenity Pool – we’ve got this.

2. No hidden extras
At Jean Michel Cousteau Fiji Resort (JMC) there are no hidden extras. Our all-inclusive rates cover transfers, meals, non-alcoholic drinks, full time nannies and buddies, complimentary Bula Club access, a comprehensive activities program (including snorkelling trips, kayaks, SUP, sailing) and so much more. You can dine a la carte three times a day, order a bowl of fries for hungry kids post swim, enjoy morning and afternoon tea (yep, our staff are trained baristas) and we’ll collect you and deliver you back to the airport. If you’re travelling with kids, our full-time nannies and buddies are available from 8am to 9pm daily. No sweating the bill at checkout time – it’s all covered so you can relax.

JMC All-Inclusive Resort SUP Stand up paddling

3. You can try everything on offer
Fancy snorkelling? Our all-inclusive rate includes twice daily adult and family snorkelling trips including quality snorkel and mask sets. Want a hit of tennis? Grab a racket and our court is all yours. Want to take a catamaran out for a spin? Be our guest. Kids want a quick SUP before breakfast? Let us set the boards up for you and store them when you’re done. We’ll take you on complimentary tours to the farmer’s market, mangroves, waterfall, local village and more. Do as much or as little as you like knowing it’s (pretty much) all included.

4. No forking out every time your child wants something
We all know how expensive travelling with kids can be! Our all-inclusive rate covers three meals a day for kids as well as morning and afternoon tea, snacks and drinks, complimentary Bula Club access and best of all a full- time nanny or buddy from 8am-9pm daily. How good is that?! If you’ve got multiple kids, JMC’s all-inclusive rates are a no brainer when it comes to value.

JMC Resort All-Inclusive Resort Massage

5. All you need is spending money
Once you know how much your holiday is going to cost all you’ll need is some spending money for cocktails by the pool, dive trips or a well-earned massage or two in our rustic spa bure lapped by the waves. Oh, and we have a boutique too stocking a range of locally made handicrafts, jewellery, resort wear and more if you want to treat yourself.  You’re on holidays after all.

3 steps to getting a private island in Fiji and 3 reasons you deserve it

Here are three steps to having a private island with three reassuring reasons you deserve the experience:

First, allow a scene to be set. You’re in Fiji, the sun is shinning, you’re standing on a sand beach with the warm ocean lapping at your feet, teeming with colourful marine life. You look up to intermittent white clouds dotting an otherwise clear blue sky. Light shimmers on the gentle waves all around you and as you look around you confirm that you and your loved ones are the only people there. This is not a TV show. It is not a trick. You’re on a private island in the South Pacific Ocean. It looks like paradise and yet it is all yours. You haven’t won the lottery, it just feels like it.

You have options. What will you do? You might snorkel, you might lay on the beach, you might explore the land and its plants and trees. Are you hungry? Because a meal was prepared by a masterful chef. Probably best to do all of the above. Will you share this rare luxury with the world on social media, or maybe you’ll only message your nearest and dearest. No matter how you use this time, there are simple steps to make it your reality.

Confirmation you deserve it

We hope you can accept this: You are awesome. So is your family. You deserve wonderful experiences. You deserve to know amazing things are real and available to you. The more unusual the experience is the more our minds take it in, the deeper the memory and the more lasting the connection. Your children and your spouse deserve these exceptional memories too.

You won’t be buying a private island, you’re visiting. It is a treat. What is fundamental to a private island experience is what it removes. There is no competition. There is no comparing yourself with those around you. There are no demands of your attention because everything there is the experience. There is no judgment. There is only this and your belonging there. It is liberating. These are all things you deserve, because we all do.

A Private Island brings privacy. This might seem obvious but the reality of it is rare. You are outside and maintaining privacy. You can be alone, or with those you love most. You can shout and dance and sing without being enclosed and without being viewed. It is freedom. Embrace your inner child and live with abandon.

Fiji Private Island Beach

So, how do you make this happen?

Three simple steps:

1. Fly to Fiji. You can learn about flights to Fiji with Fiji Airways https://www.fijiairways.com

2. Secure a place at the award-winning Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. JMC Online Availability and Booking

3. After you arrive at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, inform staff you want to experience the private island exclusive to resort guests. There are four sessions a day and can include meals if that is what you want. The resort staff will arrange everything for you and will do all they can to ensure you have the Private Island experience you want.

Great Romance Begins with a Loving Gesture

Romance is all about making your special someone feel valued and appreciated. Therefore, you owe it to yourself and your partner, to share an adventure that sparks an abundance of romance into your daily lives. The excitement of a trip, the thrill of the unknown, and the reliability of the award-winning, Jean-Michel Resort in Fiji.

To help in your decision, Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort has special offers available for our guests seeking the allure of connecting with their partner, including a Romance Package: Pay for four nights and receive two free nights!  This world class resort destination is not only perfect for Valentine’s Day, but is also a year-round lovers’ paradise – ideal for couples looking to experience magical natural surroundings, exceptional dining, scuba diving, and an authentic Fijian experience.

Here are three Fijian dishes you can cook at home!

Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort offers a nearby private island which you can have all to yourselves. If that wasn’t enough, a meal can be prepared, delivered, and set for you there. With champagne on ice and the luxury of privacy, couples can feel truly free together. Listen to the gentle waves beat against the shore as palm trees sway above and know this is yours alone. Romance to remember.

Visit a waterfall and hold each other as the fresh water falls upon you, nudging you downstream in each other’s arms. Just like a scene from the movies — kissing in the tropical South Pacific  under a waterfall. Yes, please.

Snorkeling or scuba diving: which is right for you?

Be among tropical fish and colourful coral, the likes of which you have never seen before. Learn to Scuba Dive or snorkel across the surface and explore the exquisite and vibrant underwater world among some of the world’s finest dive sites. Be hand in hand under warm water and experience so much for the first time. There is so much more going on underneath the water than you can imagine.

Luxurious spa treatments are awesome, but are they romantic? Yes, completely. What is better than laying in each other’s arms after being pampered, completely relaxed, and fully removed from the stress of work and home?

Indulge the senses. Having amazed your eyes underwater, your ears with nature and your touch by receiving the best massage, it’s time to tickle the taste buds. Meals and cocktails served at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort make full use of the local exotic ingredients. There are unusual and strange sounding foods you haven’t tried before, but they are prepared by master chefs who blend new delights perfectly with foods you know and love.  

To enjoy these activities and so much more, book a stay with Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. Fiji is a welcoming and open place with a slow and natural pace. Being with us at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort Fiji brings you to our level, which is excellence at ease.

Where is the best family holiday? What makes it special?

From our award-winning Bula Club for kids, which encourages our young guests to explore Fijian culture and learn about the world around them, to customized activities for teens, our designated one-on-one nannies for children under six, to swimming with brightly coloured fish, or trying exotic new foods, Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort is one of the world’s best family destinations. All of us at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort are proud of our excellent service and we are grateful to offer the parents the welcome option to have a break and let the children be happy will a variety of supervised activities offered by our Bula Club.

Guests of all ages can experience inclusive and immersive award-winning programs, ecological explorations that showcase the essence of the Fijian environment and culture, including the new School Under the Sea program, which offers educational and explorative opportunities for kids, led by the resort’s resident marine biologist.

We promote the Bula Club often because it is worthy of the praise frequently heaped upon it. What we might not highlight often enough are the benefits of your quality time with your children, or grandchildren, while staying at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. Time with your relatives is the most important part of your stay and goes beyond the fun found making new friends, trying our expertly crafted menus, being pampered in a beach side spa, or sampling shore-side cocktails at sunset.

The greatest reward of a life well lived is to share in the happiness of children, to be hand-in-hand with those most precious to us, to explain the new sights and to learn and experience so much together. That is the ultimate day well spent. 

To help make it easier for you to make the excellent choice of staying at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, we offer a special promotion where two children under the age of thirteen stay for free!

One such adventure offered by Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort and our awesome Cousteau Dive Centre are the guided snorkels at exceptional sites nearby the resort. A brief boat journey over the Fijian waters is nice enough, but not as much fun as seeing what lives beneath the surface. The boat will remain nearby to ensure safety as an experienced guide is in the water with you pointing out the many living wonders frolicking and feeding beneath the waves. To hear a child say over dinner that they swam with sea turtles, eagle rays, harmless sharks, or brightly coloured tropical fish, it’s energizing. To be the person to confirm it is true and celebrate the adventure together is life affirming and why you go somewhere special on your vacation. We have seen the delight in loved ones eyes after witnessing what is wonderful and new, so we have seen the place where memories are made: Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort in Fiji. 

Top 5 Things To Do In Fiji For Nature Lovers

If your ideal vacation entails seeing the unique natural wonders your destination has to offer, then Fiji is a fitting locale for your getaway. The island is chock full of stunning sights, from spectacular waterfalls and lush rainforests to shimmering waters teeming with diverse marine life. The only challenge? Fitting it all in. If you're wondering what to do in Fiji on your next romantic getaway or family vacation, then you'll definitely want some insight into these sightseeing activities.

Nakawaga Waterfall
Without a doubt, one of the top 5 things to do in Fiji is visiting this breathtaking waterfall nestled in the jungles of Savusavu. After making a 20-minute hike, cool off by taking a dip in the natural pool at the base – or, if you're feeling adventurous, boldly take a dive from the top. In addition to wearing a swimsuit under your clothes and a pair of comfy closed-toed shoes, we suggest you pack a picnic to enjoy while you soak up the waterfall's natural beauty.

Savusavu Bay Mangroves
Looking for some amazing things to do in Fiji that can have a positive environmental impact? There's hardly a better way to learn about the astonishing tropical ecosystem in Fiji than by exploring the mangroves in Savusavu Bay. Fortunately, we offer a unique opportunity to engage in this educational experience with the expert guidance of our resident marine biologist. While observing the wildlife firsthand, you'll also have the chance to plant mangrove seedlings.

J. Hunter's Pearl Farm
If you've ever been curious about the science behind pearls, be sure to take a guided tour of the legendary J.Hunter Pearl Farm, which is conveniently located just a short distance from our resort. Not only will you get to see gem-quality pearl oysters at different stages of growth, but you'll also get to observe technicians begin the culturing process if you happen to be visiting Fiji during the period of seeding and harvesting (from April to May and October to November).

Flora Tropica Gardens
While strolling along the stone paths and elevated walkways at this bayside botanical garden, you can marvel at the more than 250 palm species — one of the most varied collections of palms in the eastern hemisphere, which includes many rare and endangered varieties. The garden is also home to a plethora of other plant life, from orchids and water lilies to more than 40 types of tropical fruit trees and other flowering shrubs. Whether you're looking for photo ops, interested in bird watching, or simply want to absorb some of nature's most beautiful blossoms, this is the place to do it.

Feeling inspired? For more information on the many nature-related adventures offered at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, take a look at our excursions.

What is the best new activity to share as a family?

SCUBA stands for Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus. It is possible to become trained in scuba diving and gain a globally recognized PADI certification, all within a family vacation.

You can learn the science and techniques of spending so much time underwater. You can swim with fish large and small, connect with the tranquility of Fiji’s tropical waters and broaden your understanding of how spectacular our planet is. There is a small amount of studying and a huge amount to talk about. This is an ideal activity to share with your nearest and dearest as they get older and start taking part in the world on their own.

Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort’s professional dive centre offers experienced  instructors catering to all of your needs at competitive prices. Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort trains more divers in Fiji than any other resort. To take part you need to be at least 10 years of age. The most basic course is an Open Water Diver certification, and students younger than 15 years of age who complete the course become Junior Open Water Divers. For those who are 15 years of age and above, the full Open Water certification is something you can keep and use for the rest of your life and is recognized all over the globe.

Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort offers resident marine biologists to assist with expanding your knowledge.

To learn more about scuba diving with Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort Fiji you can refer to our frequently asked questions about diving or you can choose from one of the dive packages.

And don’t forget: Two children under the age of thirteen stay for free when you book your holiday with Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. 

Reasons to have a destination wedding in Fiji

Exchanging your vows in an exotic location is one way to ensure your ceremony is magical — but a destination wedding in Fiji takes your big day to a whole different level of memorable. Between the picture-perfect white-sand beaches and vibrant coral reefs, Fiji provides a breathtaking backdrop to tie the knot. Moreover, the islands offer a plethora of exciting aquatic activities and adventures, which present the perfect opportunity to bond with loved ones before and after your special day.

Considering a destination wedding in Fiji? Here are just a handful of the many reasons why you may want to get married at a 5 star Fiji resort.

Breathtaking photos
It probably goes without saying that Fiji boasts stunning scenery — which can provide some unparalleled photo ops. Considering that you'll look back through your wedding photos for decades to come (and may be investing in a professional photographer to capture the memories) it's certainly worth having the right backdrop. Having your ceremony in paradise is sure to make your wedding photos even more beautiful.

Special packages that simplify the planning
One of the greatest perks of planning a destination wedding is that you can let the resort take on some of the responsibilities and allow the staff to advise you on the details, meaning you're able to relax and enjoy the ride a little more. Our intimate wedding package not only includes round-trip transportation to and from the airport, but also your accommodations, the ceremony, a-la-carte meals, WiFi, up to five off-site scheduled excursions, and access to scheduled boat snorkeling trips, as well as many other resort activities. And what better way to prep for your big day than by indulging in a tension-relieving ocean-side couple's massage at the on-site spa

A seamless transition into the honeymoon
Another perk of a destination wedding is that it can easily segue into your honeymoon. So, after your family and friends have hopped on a flight back home, why not enjoy a romantic Fiji getaway? While hiking through lush rainforests on a waterfall tour or kayaking down a picturesque river you're sure to kick off this new chapter of your lives on a blissful note.

Memorable bonding opportunities with loved ones
One of the many benefits of a destination wedding in Fiji is that it allows you to spend some quality time with friends and family engaging in activities you'd never otherwise get to do together — like snorkeling, scuba diving, and paddleboarding. You can even take a tour to a pearl farm together, and learn about the local aquatic life from our in-house marine biologist. These are the kinds of memories you're guaranteed to hold onto long after you've said your "I do's."

Ready to book your destination wedding in Fiji? Check out our latest packages to make your fantasy a reality at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

Authentic Fijian dishes to try on your trip to the islands

One of the best ways to get to know a new locale, immerse yourself in the culture, and experience the unique pleasures that it has to offer is by eating the local food. Between the abundance of fresh seafood, the wide array of unusual produce, and the innovative cooking methods and techniques, there is no shortage of delicious fare to indulge in on the Fijian islands, whether you're on a romantic Fiji getaway or a family vacation. Unsurprisingly, the cuisine highlights the food that is naturally available including seafood, root vegetables, coconut, citrus and tropical fruits, as well as chicken, pork and lamb. And many of the dishes you'll find on local menus are recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation.

Ready to discover the flavors of Fiji? These crave-worthy dishes are definitely worth seeking out while dining around the islands.

Baigan Valo
Making this Indo-Fijian fusion dish entails cutting an eggplant in half and stuffing it with fresh fish before steaming it. It is typically topped with a drizzle of rich coconut cream before serving.

There's hardly a better way to experience Fijian cuisine than by enjoying a lovo — a traditional feast that entails wrapping fish, meat, and vegetables in banana leaves and then slow cooking them for several hours in an underground fire pit. Since a lovo is typically only prepared on special occasions (like weddings, holidays, and special festivals), it can be hard to come by. Luckily, at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort, we bring the traditional Fijian lovo to our guests every week — Executive Chef Raymond Lee relies on centuries-old recipes and serves the lovo buffet style, so you can enjoy your fill of this hearty feast firsthand.

If you're a ceviche fan be sure to try this Fijian take on the raw fish dish. Kokoda is made with fresh fish (usually mahi-mahi or snapper), which is marinated in lime or lemon juice, and then typically mixed with coconut cream, red onion, tomatoes, cucumber, and chillies. It's often served in a coconut shell or traditional kava bowl and can be enjoyed as an appetizer or a light lunch.

To prepare this dish, taro leaves are stewed in coconut milk to create a warm pudding — the ultimate comfort food — which is usually served as a side, or appetizer, much like a soup. Occasionally, seasonings like ginger, garlic, or nutmeg are added to enhance the flavor.

Taro leaves are boiled and mashed to create this dish, which might remind you of stewed spinach. Palusami is often served with coconut cream, and occasionally, chunks of lamb.

To find out more about the delectable cuisine Fiji has to offer, check out our diverse dining options at the Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort.

When You Think of Sustainability, What You Should Ask

When you think of Sustainability, ask: How do I want my world to be like and how do I sustain that?

Sustainability is a popular and worthwhile idea, but what would sustainable employment look like? At
Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort there are many people who have worked here for twenty years and
longer. That’s pretty sustained, but not what people mean by “sustainable”.

Empowering Employees in Local Communities

Meet Pete (pronounced “Pe-tay”), Pete is one such twenty-plus year employee at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort. Pete works in guests services and he’s from Nukubulavu village, which is the nearest village to the resort and where the majority of resort employees come from. No lengthy commute required, with some people walking along the beach to work (yes, please). Because Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort puts so much time and effort into training employees and developing leadership roles, this has a long-term benefit to a community who are made up of highly skilled and highly trained people. This might be the key to sustainability, by spreading knowledge and with it empowerment, influence and independence.

Pete is a friend and teacher to many
Pete is a friend and teacher to many
Would you like this to be your walk to breakfast?
Would you like this to be your walk to breakfast?

Relationship with the Natural Environment

Conscientiousness comes naturally in Fiji. For most who make the excellent choice to stay with us, it is the connection made with local people which fills the heart with goodness. You can’t train someone to be a pleasure to be around, it comes from the Fijian way of living and the innate openness and sincere enjoyment people in Fiji live with. That’s sustainable.

Bonds that Last

This is Maria. Maria is a nanny and she is part of the fabulous Bula Club, where young children staying at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort receive one-on-one care. By developing new friendships and connections between guests and workers, those who return home have a piece of a distant land in their heart, carrying a greater understanding of those from a different and distant culture within. This is a key part of sustainability globally, as people from different walks of life get to know and enjoy each others company spreading laughter, mutual appreciation and respect. Sustain that!


Jean-Michel Cousteau resort is also more typically sustainable with many years of planning and action in becoming a leading Eco Friendly holiday destination in addition to being an award-winning family friendly resort offering world-class diving and snorkelling.  

Fun with Friends
Fun with Friends

Enquire Now to learn more about availability at Jean-Michel Cousteau Resort and share the wonders of Fiji with your family.

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