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Reviewed 26 June 2018

If you are at all like me you are looking at Wananavu Resort and VioliVioli and saying to yourself .... which one do I stay at? I went back and forth for a couple of weeks and then decided on the Wananavu. I made this decision with one caveat that I would use the dive shop at VioliVioli, Ra Divers.

So using both resorts I have a unique view on both of them and will relate my experiences.

First the good from Wananavu :
- Well run resort
- Restaurant dinners are really good
- Staff is courteous and friendly
- Beachfront Bures are private (beach seems man made)
- Very secluded
- Sunset is viewed off the balcony of the restaurant with the other guests

Now you would read that and think it is a great place and let me be honest if you are looking for a quite get away to be by yourself then you are correct.

What I didn't really care for
- As a previous guest mentioned the pillows need to be replaced. They are older and just smell like a hundred of people have used them. I had to double them up in pillow cases just to sleep
- Only the security guard and Viti in the restaurant knew my name. Everyone else pretty much knew me by my bure number 6.
- Breakfast is the same every day and adding in a little variety would be nice
- In room coffee is instant with powder creamer and not refilled fully each day
- I felt more like staying in a hotel than being in a community

I know you are reading this saying you are in a hotel / resort and I am being picky. If I didn't spend time at the other resort I would agree. Here is what happened at VioliVioli
- Upon checkin the front desk knew my name even though I had emailed them days prior and did not tell them when I would be there to dive. (Sort of freaked me out)
- After checking in to the front desk I began to make my way down to the dive center and as I walked past people that worked there they all said you must be Rex. (Again Freaked me out)
- By the time I left for the islands even the cooks would call out from the kitchen as I walked by "Bula Rex!! are you coming to eat with us again"
- They showed me the rooms and they were very nice with small kitchenettes
- Coffee in the rooms where real coffee with french press's
- Sunset is down at the beach with with a stellar view with bar and bbq
- Dive shop shop is top notch and super friendly
- Within 3 days I was friends with most of the staff and I would give some rides to their homes is Rackiracki.
- When I left I hate to go because I may not see many of the friends I just made again

All in all both resorts are nice and you will unwind well at each of them. However at one you will be in a resort and the other will feel like a community you don't want to leave. Good luck on your choice.

  • Stayed: June 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Rex C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2018

My wife and I chose Wananavu specifically to dive the Vatu i ra passage dive sites which are reported to be among the best in Fiji. Unfortunately out of 6 days of diving we only visited the passage 3 times. It is an hour boat ride from the resort to the passage but well worth it. The sites we dove were classic Fiji - strong currents, beautiful soft and hard colors and millions of fish - really spectacular. There was some cyclone Winston damage in certain areas that appears to be on the mend - though sadly this seems to be the trend over all of Fiji. Also, the dive sites appeared big-fished out but hopefully with the recent establishment of the Vatu-I-Ra Seascape protected area the big fish/turtle populations can begin to recover.

In contrast, the local dive sites were about 20 minutes from the resort and not really worth the time or costs. For various reasons and against the desires of many guest divers half of the dives we did were at local dive sites. This seemed to be mostly a resort management decision as on at least 2 of the 3 days we didn't dive the passage the weather was perfect (getting out to the passage can be weather dependent) . The dive operation is top notch though - safety conscious, well run and the dive crew really goes the extra mile to insure the guests enjoy the dives.

The resort is not, IMHO, a 4 star resort. It is advertised as beach resort but there is no swim-able beach in the classic sense. We stayed in a "beach front" duplex type bure that had great ocean and sunrise views but could use a little refurbishment. The food however was not great. The vegetarian meals were heavy and repetitive - and though on the meal plan we skipped 3 dinners. Also, be aware that the first and last days lunch is not covered by the meal plan so expect that charge on your final bill(they wouldn't give us credit for the 3 skipped dinners). The couple of messages I had were excellent. The landscape and grounds are beautiful and the staff overall are wonderful.

  • Stayed: June 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Astrix123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2018 via mobile

Time changes all things and Wananavu today is both different and the same. Its different in that there's been some cost cutting (eg.the nightly band is now only 1 person - although he's excellent), on the other hand the friendliness, excellent staff and reasonable value (even allowing for the new tourist taxes) are still there. Its Fiji so occasionally maintenance can be a touch spotty, especially after the series of hurricanes over the last couple of years. But the important things, and from my point of view that includes the dive operation, have never run better.

Stayed: May 2018, travelled with friends
1  Thank scubal0ver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2018

We stayed 5 nights at Wananavu and overall we had a good relaxing time. The distance from the airport is significant at 2 and a half hours, we didn't realise that we should have had a free shuttle as we stayed 5 nights and it was not cheap at 165 fiji dollars each way. The driver arranged through the hotel was brilliant, very informative and friendly even though we were an hour late and by the time we got to the hotel at 11:30 everything was closed and only the security guard to show us to our room. We had though we could get a drink or a snack but it was off to bed hungry for us. The location is the best part of the hotel, glorious beach, beautiful gardens, clear water quiet with stunning views and amazing sunsets. We upgraded our bure to an ocean beach one so we took advantage of the view sitting on our balcony. The rooms are dated as other guests have mentioned but in their favour they are spotlessly clean. Pillows need changed as they're unpleasantly thin and uncomfortable. The bed itself was good.

I had to say the Fiji welcome was very mixed depending on the staff member. There was one lady at reception, an older woman who might be the manager who always looked like she was sucking a lemon. I thought she just didn't like me, but I noticed she was like that with everyone. We did see the manager walking through the restaurant one night doing a bit of gladhanding for about five minutes, but the staff seemed to be left to get on with it and they worked hard.

The food was disappointing, heavy and unappetising although I did have a nice meal one night- maybe the chefs night off - and as we hadn't hired a car we were stuck so suggest you rent a car. There is another resort over in Volivoli and we heard that was good so we walked over for lunch maybe a 30 minute walk.

Drinks out of happy hour were expensive as was bottled water so get your booze at the airport when you arrive and get your driver to stop off for bottled water on the way there.

I'm giving it 4 stars only because of the amazing location and some of the staff otherwise it would have been only 3 star.

Stayed: May 2018, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Weebee07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2018

Resort well sited in nice gardens.Rooms fine but could do with some refurbishing.
Emphasis of resort seems to be diving&weddings. For others very few activities.other than expensive outings away from resort. Pool or beach only activity for children.
Probably the best part was the drive to this resort from Nadi, to see large part of the country.

Stayed: May 2018, travelled as a couple
Thank FrequentTripperUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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