Car Hire at Nadi International Airport
This information is correct as of August 2015.
Nadi, one of the primary cities of island country Fiji and an important regional hub in the Pacific, can be a dynamic place to be. Despite its relative isolation in the Far East, Nadi serves as a hive of commercial activity in the island, as well as a base for day trips to the surrounding areas in the island. Shops, restaurants, and cafes also abound here, making it a pleasant interlude before exploring the interior.
Where to hire a car at Nadi International Airport
Upon arriving at Nadi International Airport, you can consider various modes of transport, such as rental cars. Budget, Hertz, Thrifty, Avis, and Europcar offer a diverse range of selections. Local operators like Khan's Rental Cars, Central Rentals, and Sharmas Rentals also provide options here, allowing you to consider different types of vehicles for your needs. Pre-booking can be done here, which can make the transaction easier on the first day of your trip.
Overseas licences are honoured in Nadi and the rest of Fiji, making it easier to manage the requirements in renting a car. You should discuss everything with your provider, so you can prepare them all beforehand. The terms and conditions should also be clarified, so you can determine if you are given a fair deal.
What to expect when hiring a car from Nadi International Airport
Fiji, with around 3,300 kilometres of roads, makes a relatively easier place to drive on. You must contend with cattle, horses, and goats feeding on the edge of the highway, though. They often wander across at night, which makes it necessary that you pay strict attention on the road. The routes surrounding the airport connect to Queens Road, a major highway in the island. This can make it a bit difficult to navigate, especially during rush hours in the morning and afternoon.
Due to the lack of high volumes of traffic, toll roads and congestion charges are not implemented in Fiji. There are plenty of one-way and out-of-the-way road systems here, though, which makes it necessary to have at least a modicum of knowledge on where the various side routes lead. Cycling lanes are not found here, as bicycles are not a popular mode of transport in the area. If you need to refuel, you should head to Nadi proper or stop first by the Queens Road near the airport.
Driving around Nadi International Airport
When going to the town proper, you can head on to Wailoaloa Road and then turn left onto Queens Road and a right onto Grey Road. Driving can take around 10 minutes or so, depending on the exact location of your destination in the city centre. Make sure to remember the driving regulations, as the mandatory rule is to stay on the left-hand side of the road. Seatbelts should be worn and speed limits kept to 80 km/h on the open road and 50 km/h in the towns and other built-up areas. Defensive driving must also be applied, as Fijians tend to drive fast even on the narrow, crooked and poorly maintained parts of the road.
Getting to your destination
Lautoka, also known as the Sugar City, makes a pleasant area to check out. Its wide streets are rich in foliage with a picturesque esplanade. There are also a number of cafes and the view of Mt Koroyanitu to enjoy. The Sri Krishna Kaliya Temple is also an attraction to visit here, which is the largest temple belonging to the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON).
To get to this area and take in these sights, you will need to get through via Queens Road. The estimated travel time is 45 minutes, with limited parking opportunities to find here.
Sigatoka, a town situated at the mouth of the Sigatoka River, features various attractions such as the Kula Eco Park, housing around 100 species from various tropical countries. The Sigatoka Sand Dunes National Park is also nearby here, which show ancient Lapita artefacts and birdwatching. Coral Coast, Fiji's coastal tourism belt also has a range of leading hotels and resorts in the area.
When going here, you need to head south and continue onto Wailoaloa Road and then turn to Queens Road. The drive can take more than an hour, as long as there are no disruptions along the way. Parking can be found in different establishments in the area.
Koroyanitu National Heritage Park
The Koroyanitu National Heritage Park is also a marvel to visit. You will find on the way enchanting panoramic views of the Mamanuca and Yasawa groups of islands, as well as the entire Lautoka city area. Upon arriving at the village, you will witness a traditional kava ceremony and go on a guided tour of the village to meet the locals. You can also go trekking and birdwatching, as well as take a dip in the cool waters.
You can reach this area via Queens Road at around an hour of driving.