The Fiji Museum was founded in 1904 in the old town hall and is now located in the heart of Suva’s Thurston Gardens. The current museum was opened in 1955 by the Governor of Fiji, Sir Ronald Garvey and it holds the most important collection of Fijian objects in the world. Archaeological material dating back 3700 years and cultural objects representing Fiji’s indigenous people, as well as other communities that have settled in the island group over the past 200 years, make up most of the museum’s collection.
The museum is divided into halls, with the most precious and historic items placed deeper within the display areas. The first hall displays traditional Fijian double hulled canoes called ‘Druas’ which are considered the most seaworthy of all sea voyaging canoes in Oceania. These canoes were once used by Fijian ancestors to travel from one place to another, from one island to another. They were also used for fishing and as battle ships as well in the early 1900s.
Also displayed at the museum is a whole variety of Indian historic items from the time of when the first indentured laborers came to Fiji from India. It provides a rich textual and pictorial proof of how life was in the early years. Historic items such as broken jewellery, photos and other things used are displayed there. These provide a rich and educational concept of the lives of both Fijians and Indians in the early years of time.
Take a walk-through the Thurston Gardens before or after your museum experience. It has a myriad of European plant and tree life, a legacy of Colonial times, and sections that display the vibrancy of indigenous tropical flora. Enjoy the peace and tranquil of the beautiful surroundings whilst smelling the gorgeous smells of the flowering blossoms in contrast to the salty smell of the sea.
The museum is also a research and educational institution, which encourage school field trips.
Monday – Thursday: 9:30am – 4:30pm
Friday: 9:30am – 4:00pm
Saturday: 9:30am – 4:30pm
There is a small admission charge.
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