Here are some interesting facts about Fiji which were chosen and researched especially for kids.
1. Fiji is located in the southern Pacific Ocean - thus in the Southern Hemisphere. Fiji is part of Oceania.
2. Fiji belongs to the Polynesian islands. The archipelago lies about 3,000 km/ 1,900 miles off the eastcoast of Australia and more than 4,000 km/ 2,500 miles to the Southwest of Hawaii.
3. Fiji consists of 332 islands, only one third of the islands is inhabited. About 500 small islets also belong to Fiji.
4. The largest island of Fiji is called Viti Levu and covers more than half of the country's land area.
5. The two main islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, are mountainous and the lowlands are used for agriculture, mainly for sugar cane farming. More than half of the land area of Fiji is forest. (55.5%)
6. The highest peak is Mount Tomanivi with a height of 1,324 m/ 4,344 ft.
7. The longest and widest river in Fiji is called Rewa river and on Viti Levu.
8. The capital city is called Suva and is home to about 180,000 people.
9. The national symbol is the Fijian canoe and the national colours is light blue.
10. The flag of Fiji shows the country’s link to Britain with the Union Jack and a shield with the St George’s Cross and a lion holding a coconut which is also on the country’s coat of arms that also depicts sugarcane, palm tree, bananas, and a white dove of peace.
11. About 944,000 people live on the Fiji islands. About three quarters of all iTaukei people live on Viti Levu. About one third of the People living in Fiji are of Indian descent.
12. About 60% of the people are indigenous Fijians. The islands are inhabited by Austronesians, Melanesians and Polynesians since 2,000 BCE. Europeans only settled here from the 17th century.
13. Fiji was a British colony for almost one hundred years from 1874. Fiji gained independence from the UK on 10 October 1970.
14. Levuka Historical Port Town is an Unesco World Heritage Site in Fiji. This town was the first colonial capital of Fiji.
15. The majority of Fijians are Christians (64%) or Hindu (28%). About 7% are Muslims. The largest Hindu temple in the Pacific is located in Nadi on Viti Levu.
16. The official languages of Fiji are English, Fijian Hindi and iTaukei. iTaukei refers to the Fijian people who refer to themselves as iTaukei. "Bula" means "hello" and "vinaka" means "thank you".
17. Over 99% of the population over 15 years can read and write. And Fiji is one of the most developed economies in the Pacific Ocean.
18. Fiji is known for its many paradise beaches such as the ones on Yasawa Islands or the Mamanuca islands.
Or the tropical scenery of the Mamanuca islands, as here on Castaway island which houses a popular tourist resort.
Fiji invites for canopy walks in the lush forests and there are numerous hotsprings. There are canopy walks and zip lining activities on Viti Levu and on Taveuni you can experience the Lavena coastal walk.
On Taveuni, the third largest island of the archipelago, you can also admire the scenic rockformations at Lavena beach.
19. The Fijian National animal is the Collared Lory. This colourful rainforest lorikeet can be seen in urban areas in the capital city. The local people call this bird "kula".
20. The Fijian Crested iguana is a critically endangered species that lives in the dry forests on the northwestern islands of the archipelago. This iguana was only discovered about forty years ago on fourteen of the islands. Today, there are only about 13,000 left and they are only found now on three islands. Bush fires and predators such as feral cats are their main threat.
21. The Fijian coral reefs are home to some 1,500 species of fish and over 300 species of hard corals. Fiji is also known for its many species of colourful soft corals. Fiji is known for the many prime snorkelling and diving spots and here you can even swim with mantarays!
22. The currency of Fiji is the Fijian dollar which is divided into 100 cents. Here you see the colourful banknotes.
23. The main agricultural products are sugar cane, cassava, fish and coconuts. Fiji is known for high quality bottled water.
24. The main trading partners are USA, Australia, Singapore, China and New Zealand.
25. The most popular dish is called kokoda which is a raw fish salad. Many meats or fish dishes are prepared in a lovo, which is a special way of steaming food in taro leaves or placing food on hot stones and covering the food.
Most Fijian dishes include coconut meat or coconut milk, root vegetables such as taro, yams or cassava, as well as chicken or fish.
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