Decided to travel to Plantation Island for a 10 day holiday at the last minute. Friends of ours and their 2 kids were already heading there for their holidays so we decided to join them. Had stayed at nearby Castaway Island 7 years prior and enjoyed the experience so much we hoped this would be similar. Plantation Island though is much cheaper and more family oriented than Castaway, so we had to adjust our expectations significantly. We stayed in a 1 bedroom garden terrace room on the westerly side of the island. This side of the island is definitely the nicer side of the island, with the gardens neatly manicured and the quieter beaches. The garden terrace rooms are spacious and reasonably well maintained, though you are in a block of 4 so you need to have good neighbors. Unfortunately, we had a small child staying next to us who woke us most mornings from 6.30am with his running inside and out of the room yelling and crying at the top of his voice - not a relaxing way to start a day for a couple with no kids looking for a quiet getaway. Daily activities are offered on the island. I took a short boat trip out to the sand bar snorkelling tour in the afternoon for $15FJD. Easy snorkeling over the duration of an hour with lots of different fish to see. Although the coral is fairly dead and lacks colour, would recommend this tour to all who stay on the island. I also did the 1.5 hour trip out to Lana Reef, located near the sand bar which cost $30FJD. Although this offered glimpses of blue star fish, giant clams and better coral, the fish types were not as diverse or voluminous as at the sand bar. I also took a 4 hour game fishing trip out past Malolo, Castaway and Mana islands which was terrific despite us only catching 2 trevalley. Cost $150FJD. Other activities include banana boat rides, parasailing, kayaking, sailing, knee boarding, diving and island hopping (visiting other islands by boat such as Beachcomber, Castaway and Treasure islands). Best snorkeling we found off the island itself was on a small reef adjacent to the pontoon off the beach to the west of the jetty halfway between the jetty and Lomani resort which adjoins Plantation. Easy to swim to and offers a reasonable diversity of fish but again coral is largely dead. Lomani resort is an adults only (16 years and over) resort adjacent to Plantation island resort. It has a beautiful pool which adults staying at Plantation Island can use. Guests at Plantation Island can also dine at the Lomani resort restaurant, Flame Tree. Average main meal costs around $35-$40FJD. The worst thing about Plantation as other reviewers have noted is the food. We chose not to purchase a meal package on the basis of other reviews we had read. Proved a very wise choice. The themed buffet dinners are very ordinary - although the best nights were probably the curry night, roast carvery night and the mongolian BBQ nights. Cost $40FJD. Breakfasts were also ordinary. You would think it would be difficult to go wring with breakfast, but somehow they don't seem to get this right either, with processed bacon offered every second day and fruit options limited to banana, paw paw, pineapple, watermelon and tinned fruit salad while we were there. Suggest you bypass the powdery scrambled eggs and choose the eggs freshly fried by the cook in front of you. Cost $26FJD. Buffet option was available at lunch also but found this too much food to contend with in one day. There is only one snack bar option available for lunch though and this is located adjacent to the Black Coral restaurant which is located back from the beach slightly. Lunch options were limited to Chicken pies (which were curry in flavor and had strange pastry), hot dogs (which contained strange looking white sausages), toasted sandwiches (the best of a bad lot in my opinion) and pizza (do not go near this - was the sloppiest, flavorless pizza I have ever tasted). Cost $8.50FJD. The Black Coral Restaurant offers a la carte dining at dinner or lunch, and you can order take away off their menus also. Average price main $20-$40FJD. Dined at this restaurant once. Although the food was slightly better found the place had no atmosphere or view. Other dining options were limited to Anandas restaurant which was around 10-15 min walk easterly towards Musket Cove or Flame Tree at the Lomani resort. Ananda's appeared to offer a la carte dining with similar offerings and prices to the Black Coral restaurant but at least was located on the beach as is Flame Tree. Lomani resort has the best swimming pool of the 3 on offer - Plantation island's 2 swimming pools are smaller and geared to kids. Plantation Island offers a resort shop, 2 supermarkets, souvenir shop, coffee shop, kids club, massage salon, hairdressers and laundry where you can do your own washing - tokens are $2FJD each for washer and dryer and washing powder can also be purchased. Enjoyed our stay but would have enjoyed it more had the food been much better. Seriously needs to improve it's dining experience for it's patrons. Fijian service staff are always friendly and make you feel at home. Rooms have good beds and all have air conditioning which makes it easy to sleep at night.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled on the 553 acre island of Malolo Lailai, part of the Mamanuca Group of Islands, Plantation is surrounded by 23 acres of tropical gardens, coconut palms and white sandy beaches that front a beautiful sheltered lagoon. Plantation offers several accommodation options to suit most budgets, and is great value for families, students and fun loving couples. Most of the activities are complimentary including the 'Coconut Kids Club'. Come experience the friendly Fijian hospitality! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Plantation Island Hotel Malolo Lailai Island
- Plantation Island Malolo Lailai
- Island Plantation Resort
- Plantation Island Resort Fiji/Malolo Lailai Island