With manicured lawns, leafy roadways and a chic, waterside retail district,Pacific Harbour is one of Fiji’s most desirable lifestyle areas.
Aside from this charming outset, the area is more profoundly known as the country’s adventure capital, with an emphasis on heart-pumping, outdoor activities cementing it as a major bucket list destination for adrenaline junkies.
Pacific Harbour is nestled on the water's-edge of Rovodrau Bay along the Queen's Rd, commanding a direct lookout to the fire-walking island of Beqa and the surfing retreat of Yanuca. It is less an hour’s drive from Suva City and two and half hour drive from Nadi Airport, Fiji’s main international gateway.
And with a breezy 49 kilometres from Fiji's capital Suva City , provides a favourite weekend retreat for city dwellers.
Pacific Harbour was first developed in the 1970s as an upmarket residential canal subdivision and resort development for both expatriates and locals.With over 1000 lots, there is a large network of resales and prime rental properties availed, with many villas nestled in amongst the waterways and golf course.From its formative years as a resort development, the area retains a strong sense of community, with residents often lounging on the pondside cafes of its retail district, children indulging in afternoon sport and tourists mingling with the locals when not shark-feeding, river rafting or taking up other outdoor activities that the area is renowned for.
Unlike most of Fiji, Pacific Harbour inland waterways includes a lake that exists to the ocean via the Qaraniqio River, whose banks include resort and residential properties.
Also marking a central feature of Pacific Harbour is an 18-hole championship golf course that was one of the first in the country and remains a favourite green for golfers.
The retail centre is known as the Arts Village and a quirky mix of fabulous resort wear retail, live jazz and steak restaurants and tour operators. The building is owned by Yatu Lau Company Limited, the investment arm of the Lau Provincial Company.
Economy & Main Industries
Real estate and tourism play central markets in Pacific Harbour. There are many villas set amongst the lakefront and canals of this scenic residential area, with a limited series of commercially-zoned lots.
Uprising Beach Resort, The Pearl South Pacific and Nanuku Auberge Fiji rank amongst the most popular hotel properties in the area and provide considerable employment for locals in the vicinity and related services.
(Photo courtesy of NanukuFiji.com)
Key Areas of Development
The Pearl Resort is a major wedding destination and has also hosted major beauty pageants, including the Miss World and World Supermodel competitions and in late 2015, added a new wing to its itinerary. Nanuku Auberge Resort also holds its own as an eminent property and has recently added pre-selling 1 and 2-bedroom beachfront and garden villas alongside existing property. These expansions mark the growing demand and availability of upmarket lodgings in the area and permanent offerings for buyers who can rake in rental income when not in resort residence.
Weather, Climate & Geography
Fiji’s distinct wet season runs from November to April, while May to October is usually drier. The south eastern parts of the country such as Pacific Harbour generally get a monthly rainfall of 150mm during the dry season and 400 mm during the wettest months.
Pacific Harbour enjoys a mostly flat topography and tucked between the beautiful beachfront and jungles of Namosi.
Population & Demographics
Pacific Harbour’s locality falls within Namosi, Fiji’s smallest province. The nearby town of Navua was an active sugar and cotton-producing hamlet until the closure of its sugar mill in 1923 led to an economic decline. The development of Pacific Harbour and resort properties and related employment in the 70s has rebooted its economy.
Fiji’s adventure capital maximises the outdoors, with river rafting, shark diving and feeding, surfing, snorkeling, golfing and zip lining making up an exciting itinerary of things to do.
Rivers Fiji offers hugely popular white water rafting in the upper reaches of the nearby Navua River, where several waterfalls and lush wilderness shroud the rapids of this gorge. The company’s office is located directly behind the Mobil service station in Pacific Harbour.
Beqa Adventure Divers has an office at Fairway Palms, Pacific Harbour and with a team of highly experienced team, gives both novices and seasoned divers a close encounter of various shark species in the lagoons and reefs of nearby Beqa Island, which is visible from Pacific Harbour and famed for traditional fire-walking ceremonies. Aqua Trek is also a popular and pioneering shark diving operator that hosts dives and PADI and Master dive courses.
Abseiling, cave tours are available through Zip Fiji, which takes visitors 25 minutes East of Pacific Harbour for thrilling swings over the Wainadoi River and the natural canopy of a private, eco reserve. Pick up points in Pacific Harbour include the Arts Village and all resorts.
Pacific Harbour’s recreational antics extend to deep sea game fishing, spas at local resorts such as Nanuku Auberge Fiji, golf at the 18-hole Pearl Championship Golf & Country Club, annual music and rugby festivals at Uprising Beach Resort and live jazz, cultural shows or retail therapy at resort boutiques around the Arts Village, which overlooks a picturesque lily pond.
Schools & Educational Institutes
The area’s main educational facility is the Pacific Harbour Multicultural School along Great Harbour Drive and describes itself as an
independent, non-sectarian, coeducational day school that offers a challenging American-based educational program from Elementary school through to Year 12 for students of all nationalities. There are other institutions located in Navua, the closest town to Pacific Harbour. These include Lomary Catholic Primary School, Rampur College and Vashist Muni Primary and Secondary School.
Healthcare & Emergency Services
There are several public health providers near Pacific Harbour;
Navua Maternity Unit (3460181), the Serua/ Namosi Subdivision Health Office (3460105) and Navua Hospital (3460007).
Pacific Harbour Health Care (3450922) is located at the Arts Village.
Key Transport Services
There are frequent bus services that travel through Pacific Harbour on the route between Lautoka City and Suva. Taxis are also plentiful, or you can make your own way in a rental car. Koro Makawa Rentals & Tours offers all transfer needs for Uprising Beach Resort, Rivers Fiji, Freedive Charters and other business houses in Pacific Harbour, and includes group transfers, VIP transfers and private charters for the guests. Chauffeur drivers and taxi services with the meter for long and short distance transfers are also availed, as well as tours for visitors.
Types of Properties
Pacific Harbour is generally regarded as Fiji’s first resort lifestyle community, and continues to offer a wide selection of villas and resort-style homes that are generously spread over large tracts of leafy flatlands.
Many of these are placed on the letting market, as well as being fully occupied by retirees and families. Pacific Harbour is home to a rare lake, and residential addresses such as Viti Levu Drive, Hibiscus Drive, Mala Circle and other smaller drives enjoy the splendour of waterfront lifestyles. There is a hotel that partially sits on the lakefront. The lake exists through the Qaraniqio River, which wraps around an islet with further residencies (River Drive, Evuevu Place, Belo Circle and Donu Place and connected to the mainland by bridges.
Many Pacific Harbour homes have private swimming pools, which are considered a luxury in local homes, and there is a great inventory of lots that include Freehold waterfront, agricultural and farm lots.
Its retail precinct is primarily centred at the Arts Village, while commercial buildings are sprawled along the Kings Highway.
Many of the houses draw attractive rental returns and include holiday homes that are permanently on the rental market and periodically hired for vacations.