White, palm-lined beaches, carefree smiles, and fit Fijian men with muscles on top of muscles. Yeah, Fiji is pretty great. Though if your expecting an off the beaten track, adventure driven experience, Fiji doesn’t have much to offer. The majority of tourists that come here are couples or young families from Australia, however there are a mix of backpackers that venture here too.
This aims to be a rough guide to ‘Gay Fiji’, based on my experience there of over half a year. There doesn’t seem to be much content on gay Fiji online, so here’s a rough guide on gay Fiji.
Where can I meet other gay guys in Fiji?
Everyone here seems to use Facebook. It’s common for young gay men to have two separate accounts, a ‘normal’ one and one used to meet other men. To preserve anonymity some men have limited, random pics on their profiles, however once you get chatting their likely to send you some photos or link you to their real profile.
Use these links to Facebook pages to meet other gay guys:
2 / Grindr / Scruff / mobile based apps
Pretty hit and miss. The 3 rows down and people that appear are from Vanuatu. Mix of locals and travellers.
3 / Walking around town
It’s all about picking up on minute expressions of desire, interest shown in a glance held longer than usual. It’s all about learning to identify these signals and similarly having the guts to show them too. Where guys tend to meet:
Suva: Seawall/waterfront at dusk
Lautoka: Waterfont and Shirley’s park at dusk
Nadi: bus station, park near the bus station
Background on homosexuality in Fiji:
Only in 2010 did Fiji legalise same sex conduct. With strong influence from the church – theres a strong public opinion against homosexuality. Despite this, there are some exceptions. Ladyboys/transgender men are often seen doing a killer spike and any given game of volleyball. Discrimination they experience is less then you’d imagine, and they are very much accepted by society.
Men who have sex with ladyboys or feminine men are seen as straight in the eyes of other Fijians. As a Fijian friend put it, ‘it’s harder being a straight acting gay guy than one who is like a girl’ in Fiji.
Fiji has a similar attitude towards homosexuality to what I’ve observed in the Philippines. Despite a dominant christian culture, homosexuals who fit the widely held stereotype (men who may exhibit feminine qualities, and vice versa for women) are somewhat accepted and understood. However gay men and women who don’t fit this stereotype experience challenges.
The population of Fiji comprises of 57% indigenous Fijian (iTaukei), 37% Fijian Indian, and 6% as pacific island, Europian or East Asian ancestry. Ninety nine percent of indigenous Fijians (iTaukei) identify as Christian, while the majority of Indo-Fijians are Hindu and Muslim. Pressure to marry is high in the Indian community, and it is not uncommon to meet previously married, or married men who are into men while your over there. The case is less with iTaukei.
My experience of Fiji
Despite initially feeling underwhelmed to how similar Fiji felt to Australia, Fiji grew on me as time passed and the intricacies of culture became apparent. I dated a Fijian guy for a couple of months until my visa expired. He was incredibly sincere, accommodating, kind and lived in the moment. He was also massive and sexy. When it would bucket down we’d run outside and have a rain bath, and try and see how long we could spend under the drain pipe gushing with water that seemed to crush your skull.
Fijian men express love in different ways compared to what is considered normal in the west. They’ll work hard for you, whether it’d be at work, outside or around the house. Communication style in Fiji is indirect, and non verbals hold a lot of weight. I remember telling my man that I loved him (after really thinking hard about this for a while), and he didn’t seem to respond much, and continued what he was doing. I asked him afterwards whether he loved me. And he said yes, naturally, as if it was an odd question to ask. Fijians place high value family, and family can sometimes come before a relationship.