The latest edition of Moon Handbook Fiji is out. Although I still haven't managed to actually get to Fiji, I still love to plan that someday trip. Perhaps this new edition will give me a little extra motivation I need.
I see quite a few changes from my old 2004 copy. It would seem that the text has been completely reorganized. The background information that used to be at the front of the book is now in the back. There are also a lot more colour illustrations, especially at the start of the book. As expected, there are a lot more websites listed along with phone contacts and addresses of the various resources.
As before, the chapters are conveniently grouped by island group. One thing I really like is that the author includes prices and often subdivides accommodation by price range for easy reference and planning. At this stage of my planning, my favourite feature is the Where to Go and 10-Day Best of Fiji chapters. It gives me somewhere to start.
This book IS Fiji. Even the people who live there should own a copy for themselves as a guide to their islands' resources.
The indispensable information and guidance within Moon Fiji about trip planning, transportation, dining, lodging, entertainment, recreation, tours, events...will save the traveler the cost of the book many times over.
I've edited other publishers' guidebooks and am most impressed with the excellent composition and layout of this book, the perfect refinement of seven previous editions. It is amazing that: so much information has been included; the type size is big enough to be easy to read: and yet the book is small enough to carry everywhere.
Don't waste your time searching the Internet for information about the Fiji Islands. It's all in this book, including reviews, maps, photos, telephone numbers, schedules...and, if you must, a list of the top twenty Fiji websites. There is too much more info to mention.
Let me be succinct and direct: Anyone who is planning to visit the Fiji Islands must have this book--they will be handicapped there without it.
As a frequent visitor to the South Pacific I have found David Stanley's Moon Handbooks to be the perfect traveling companions. Following his recommendations I have never been disappointed. There have been several times that I have avoided hassles and delays by listening to his advice. My wife and I are going back to Fiji in a few months and I just purchased the new Fiji Handbook. The new layout, color maps, internet resources and pictures make this the only handbook you need to bring on your trip!
We've been talking about going to Fiji for years, and have looked at other books, but this book trumps them all. It's very thorough, with excellent descriptions that make us wish we could pack our bags and go today. Author David Stanley obviously loves Fiji, and his passion comes through in his writing. We also appreciate the way he doesn't sugar coat the less than perfect. This seems like a book you can really trust. And the history sprinkled throughout (great stories of Capt. Bligh, for instance), the interesting boxes full of fun information, and the very useable maps make it easy to get educated in all things Fijian. We also love the beginning section with beautiful color photography. It would be nice if all photos could be in color, but we'd happily trade the excellent info in the book for color pictures.
This book provided us with our new dream adventure vacation: A stay on the Yasawa Islands, where there are no motorized land vehicles or roads. You can stay in a thatched "bure" and make a vacation exploring the island chain via a catamaran line that offers a kind of "Eurail Pass" for island hoppers. Who knew such a place still exists?!
I thought that most of the information in this book was interesting and well written but a few things got on my nerves. The author gave me the impression he didnt like many of the resorts hotels in Fiji. Making general statements about 'rude staff' I thought was a bit ridiculous. It got to the stage where he practically had nothing good to say about any of the hotels. If i want hotel advice I can go to tripadvisor. I want facts from a guidebook. Yet when I came to read the section on Nadi itself which is a key location in fiji there was about 8 pages out of a 380 page guidebook. Most people visit maybe nadi and one small island so you probably won't read 80% of the book. I don't think it works very well. I think you can get the same info on the net. And of course theres virtually no pictures so a good souveneir it does not make. I would think twice about this purchase.