Best time to travel to Fiji

Swimming with Manta Rays in Fiji

This is one of those rare places in the world where you can swim with these majestic creatures!

Best time: May–October

What can be more spectacular than swimming with manta rays in their natural environment? Throughout six months, especially from May to October, you can swim with magnificent manta rays in Fiji. This is a really incredible experience. You can expect to see large numbers and different sizes of these creatures. In Fijian manta rays are known as Vai. Sometimes their wingspans reach more than six meters across. Their brachial slits are located on the belly and oversized pectoral fins on their heads enabling movement. They are gracious and look almost like underwater birds.

Yasawa Islands Archipelago offers excellent opportunities for swimming with manta rays. The most popular area is the Mantaray Island—the name speaks for itself. The neighbouring Dravaqa and Naviti Islands are also good.

Practical info

When can you find manta rays in Fiji, and why is it the best time to see them?

Manta rays can be found in Fiji from May to October, which is considered the best time to see them. During these months, the water is clearer, and visibility improves. The manta rays also migrate to Fiji's shallow waters during this time to feed. As a result, you are more likely to encounter them during these months. Show more

Which is the best region in Fiji for swimming with manta rays, and why is it important to choose a reputable tour company?

The Yasawa Islands Archipelago is one of the world's best places to swim with manta rays, with Mantaray Island being the most popular area for manta ray encounters. However, it's crucial to go with a reputable tour company with experienced guides who follow sustainable tourism practices. This reduces the risk of damaging the ecosystem and increases the chances of having a safe and memorable experience with these majestic creatures. Show more

What is the average wingspan of manta rays in Fiji, and how long can their wingspans grow?

Manta rays in Fiji have an average wingspan of four to five meters (13 to 16 feet), but they can reach over six meters (20 feet) during the mating season. These wing-like structures are both used for locomotion and can grow up to twice the length of their bodies. Show more

How do manta rays navigate and eat, and what makes them so agile in the water?

Manta rays navigate and eat by using their pectoral fins located near their heads to undulate and swim. They are also agile and can swim backward or loop around. Manta rays conserve energy and move with ocean currents and tides. They are filter feeders and feed on plankton by filtering the water through their gills using their large mouths. Show more

What is the Fijian name for manta rays, and why are they significant in Fijian culture?

The Fijian word for manta rays is 'vai,' which means 'water.' It refers to their habitat and graceful swimming style. Manta rays are important to Fijian culture and ecosystem, and they appear in traditional dances and art. Fijians view them as sacred creatures that signify good luck, and they take measures to protect them. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin