Geological Tourism of Fiji

Volcanoes

Fiji has a number of volcanoes that are scattered across the countries. While some have not erupted in about 500 years others are still active. Taveuni Island which is the third largest island in Fiji has a huge shield volcano with over 100 cones. Taveuni summit is 4071 feet high. Other volcano mountains in the country include Koro and Nabukelevu. Koro volcano refers to a 1713 feet high, basaltic cinder cone volcano mountain that is situated between Viti Levu and Vanua Levu islands on 16 x 9 km wide Koro Island. Some of the koro volcano cones are probably below 10000 years old. The Koro youngest lava erupted from its cinder cone chain in NNE-SSW-trending, from a flat field of lava normally limited to the central plateau.

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Nabukelevu is an andesitic-dacitic complex lava domes that are located at south western end of Kaduva Island (Begg and Gray 4). The Nabukelevu erupted last at around 1660 and its highest point is 2641 feet. The volcano summit is regarded as Mt. Washington, where presence of flat flows of lave can be seen at Cape Washington located at the North Eastern cost Talauli Bay and on the west coast. The trending NNE faults cut the complex dome of Nabukelevu in various locations, outlining its eastern boundary. Native legends and geological records demonstrate that various eruptions have taken place at Nabukelevu in the past centuries. Ash flows and block deposits demonstrate that there was active growth of the dome in the past few 100 years (Cronin and Neall 417).

Cone Shaped Mountains

Fiji has a number of cone shaped mountains. They include Mount Uluigalau which is the highest mountain on the Taveuni Island and the second highest in the Fiji group. Uluigalay is 4072 feet high. There is also Mount Manuka whih is located at Vanua Levu and it is 3917 feet high. Other mountains in Fiji include Mount Buke Levu which is Kadavu Island’s highest mountain with a height of 3800 feet, and Mount Delaitho that is situated on Gau and it is 242 feet high. There is also Mount Delaiovalau that is located on Ovalau and it is 2053 feet and Mount Manuka that is situated on Vanua Levu and it is 3917 feet high (Miller 1).

Different Islands in Fiji

There are over 300 islands in Fiji. Some of these islands include Pacific Harbor Island, Wakaya Island, The Coral Coast Island, the Mamanuca Island Group, Taveuni Island and the Yasawa Island group among others (Neall and Trewick 3295).  Among all these islands, biggest of all is Vita Levu which is comprises of denarau, Coral Coast and Pacific Harbor among other surrounding islands. The Vita Levu Island measures 4042 square miles, where about 70% of the Fiji residents reside. The second largest island in Fiji is Vanua Levu which measures 2160 square miles and where the second largest number of people in Fiji resides. These islands act as the habitat for various unique plants and animals’ species, which are only found in Fiji. Fiji Island acts as the home for the capital city of the country, the Suva coastal city. The interior of Fiji Island contains dramatic landscapes of mountain terrain, waterfalls, and tropical forests (Foye 305).  

Rocks Found in the Island

The eldest rocks in Fiji are island-circular segment volcanic of Late Eocene age framed by westwards subduction of the Pacific plate underneath the Australian plate along the Vitiaz curv. In addition, Fiji Island is made of volcanoes and thus, the half of the western part of Viti Levu island, is extensively made of intermediate and basic volcanic rocks, arenites and rudites composed of volcano argillites, mudstones and detritus. There are also acid plutonic rocks that have intruded different points of the island especially the south-western parts of the island. In addition, most of the areas in the island have organic rich limestone especially at Cuvu around Sigatoka. Other rocks include peat bogs that stand for the initial stage of formation of coal (Crook 681).

Want to Learn More About Makes Fiji Unique

Crook, A. C. Keith. Burial Metamorphic Rocks from Fiji. New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics, vol.6, no.5, 1968, pp. 681-704.

This article analyses rocks found in Fiji especially due volcanic activities. The article analyses the metamorphism of the rock buried in the island and the kind of secondary minerals formed in the sediment rocks and tertiary volcanic rocks especially from the western parts of Viti Levu, Fiji. This article will be used to expand more on the kinds of rocks found in the island and how they are formed.

Miller, Lauren. “What Landforms Make Fiji Unique?” USA Today, 2018,

The article discusses all landforms found in Fiji Island including islands, mountains, volcanoes, and coral reef. The article discussed the main aspects of each of the above identified landform and the most unique features that make the landform distinguishable from others in the world. This article will be used to add more information on different geological features found in Fiji Island and noting some of their unique features that make them distinguishable.

Cronin, J. Shane and Neall Vincent. Holocene Volcanic Geology, Volcanic Hazard, and Risk on Taveuni, Fiji. New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics, vol.44, no.3, 2001, pp. 417-437.

This article features Taveuni which is the third-biggest island of the Fuji groups. The article reviews the physical details of the island into details include physical features, rocks found in the area and how they were formed, the island geographical settings and some of the risks that some of the features in the island pose to people living in the area. This article will play a great role in informing the research about Taveuni Island and some of other geographic features in it.

Neall, E. Vincent and Trewick A Steven. The Age and Origin of the Pacific Islands: a Geological Overview. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci, vol. 363, no.1508, 2008, 3293-3308.

This article reviews about the pacific island formation process, Fiji being part of pacific islands. The article discusses forces that were involved in the formation of various features in the pacific oceans which made every created island unique. The article provides rich information on history of pacific island and forces that were involved in their formation.

 Foye G. Wilbur. The Geology of the Fiji Islands. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol.3, no.4, 1917, pp. 305-310.

This article features different geological features of Fiji Island focusing more on the largest islands in Fiji. The article features different islands, the rock found there, volcanoes, and vegetation among other things. This article will be used to expand knowledge on various geological features found in island in Fiji.

Begg, Graham and Gray R. David. Arc Dynamics and Tectonic History of Fiji Based on Stress and Kinematic Analysis of Dikes and Faults of the Tavua Volcano, Viti Levu Island, Fiji. Tectonics, vol.21, no.4, 2002, pp. 1-14.

This article features the formation of Fiji Island through tectonic and arc dynamic movements. The article gives detail information of forces involved in the formation of Fiji and other oceanic islands and features that resulted from these forces including faults, dikes, and volcanos in Fiji. This article will be contribute by adding rich history of Fiji geology and featuring history of some of geological features that are relevant in tourist attraction today in Fiji.

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