Sunday Star-Times - - ESCAPE -

Shane Kennedy, owner op­er­a­tor, House of Travel Tau­ranga Q. I have been to De­na­rau Is­land and loved it but would like to head some­where more off-the-beaten track, but still ac­ces­si­ble, on my next Fiji trip. Where would you sug­gest? A.

De­na­rau de­liv­ers a great hol­i­day ex­pe­ri­ence but there are plenty more amaz­ing spots Fiji has to of­fer.

I rec­om­mend the Ya­sawa Is­lands – away from the main­land, yet are eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble by boat or air.

One ser­vice gain­ing in pop­u­lar­ity is Awe­some Ad­ven­tures and, a bit like is­land-hop­ping, it al­lows you to mix and match, en­abling a di­verse and unique hol­i­day.

Along with the ex­pe­ri­ence of stay­ing on re­mote and rather ro­man­tic lit­tle is­lands, chances are you’ll en­joy more sunny days here too, with the weather be­ing calmer than the main­land.

De­pend­ing on your bud­get and hol­i­day com­pan­ions, the Ya­sawas of­fer back­packer hos­tels, fam­ily friendly re­sorts and five-star re­sorts.

If you are up for more ad­ven­ture, some of the best dive spots sur­round the is­lands, and ex­plor­ing the Sawa-I-Lau Caves is a must-do. Flights from New Zealand to Fiji are read­ily avail­able and af­ford­able.

Got a travel ques­tion? We can help. Email your name, ad­dress and phone num­ber to with Ex­pert in the sub­ject line. Sam Managh, Flight Cen­tre Shore City

Whether you’re a self-con­fessed foodie or sim­ply love a good meal and fine wine, Syd­ney is ripe with new flavours, restau­rants and neigh­bour­hoods to try.

From talked-about cafes pop­ping up in leafy pock­ets to up­mar­ket restau­rants open­ing their doors, I hap­pily ex­plored this city, mouth­ful by mouth­ful, on a re­cent trip.

It’s hard to pick my favourites but The Port in Dar­ling Har­bour def­i­nitely de­serves a men­tion. A new French eatery with a con­tem­po­rary at­mos­phere and an ob­vi­ous love for seafood, you can sit out on the breezy har­bour front to en­joy the panora­mas.

Keep walk­ing along the wa­ter­front to dis­cover Syd­ney’s new­est eat­ing and drink­ing precinct – Baranga­roo. Sit down to sus­tain­able lo­cal seafood merged with na­tive Aus­tralian in­gre­di­ents at Cir­rus, en­joy Chi­nese-Aus­tralian fu­sion cui­sine at Lo­tus, or get a taste of Belles Hot Chicken – the chef, Mor­gan McGlone, honed his fried chicken skills in Ten­nessee so you know it’s go­ing to be fin­ger-lickin’ good.

Another pop­u­lar spot that’s per­haps not so well known among vis­i­tors is the hip in­ner-city neigh­bour­hood of Chip­pen­dale. Head to Spice Al­ley for your pick of six hawker-style din­ers in an at­mo­spheric laneway lit by glow­ing lantern ceil­ings, whether it’s Malaysian, Can­tonese or Sin­ga­porean that en­tices.


Baranga­roo is Syd­ney’s new­est eat­ing and drink­ing precinct.

For a fresh per­spec­tive on Fiji, try is­land­hop­ping in the Ya­sawas.

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