This Castaway Island review talks you through everything you can expect from a holiday on this beautiful Fiji Island resort.
Located in Fiji’s Mamanuca Islands, a 90-minute boat ride from the mainland, Castaway Island resort is renowned as one of the best resorts in Fiji.
This is the dreamy Fijian beach holiday you have dreamed of: Crystal clear turquoise water, white powdery sand, swaying palm trees… this Fiji luxury resort has it all.
With just 64 bures, Castaway resort Fiji has an intimate and exclusive air to it, while maintaining a rustic and laid back ambience. Barefoot luxury is the name of the game at this Fiji island resort, with shoes entirely optional at dinner.
Despite 90% occupancy during our visit, Castaway Fiji never felt busy and it was always easy to find a secluded spot from which to gaze at the ocean.
Read our full Castaway Island Fiji review below to learn more.
Bedtime at Castaway Island resort Fiji
The Castaway Island Fiji accommodation comprises 65 individual bures (bungalows), which are connected via meandering pathways through tropical gardens.
The bures are divided into three categories: Beach, Ocean View and Island. There is also one family bure, which features 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. This books up quickly, so book well in advance if you like the sound of this one!
Firstly it is worth noting that, with the exception of the one Family bure, all the bures are exactly the same. The only difference in the Castaway Island accommodation categories is their proximity to the beachfront and their views.
The Castaway Island Beach bure is the most popular category thanks to its location right on the beach, with uninterrupted views out to sea.
The Ocean View bures are set on the path behind the Beach bures and have views out to sea between the Beach bures.
Some Island bures are neighbours to the Ocean View bures but do not have views of the ocean. They are still mere seconds walk from the beach though. Others are set a bit further back within the tropical landscaping. They would still only be a few minutes walk to the beach.
My Fiji resort accommodation for my stay was a Beach bure on the South beach, and I have to say it was incredible to be able to lie in bed and gaze straight out to sea. You can easily stumble out of bed from these Fiji bures on the beach, and within a few steps jump straight into the ocean.
However, when I return to Castaway Island in a few months all the Beach and Ocean View bures are already sold out, so we will be staying in an Island bure. While I was disappointed of course, it was by no means enough to deter me from booking. The magic of Castaway Island extends well beyond its bure beach views.
All Castaway Island accommodation boasts traditional thatched roofing and I particularly loved the high vaulted ceilings lined with the traditional hand painted tapa cloth.
The bures are spacious enough for the whole family, with one king bed and two single day beds in the living area.
The two sleeping areas can be separated using a sliding privacy screen, giving both parents and children privacy from one another. A rollaway bed can be provided for a third child on request.
All bathrooms have walk-in showers (no baths) and a separate WC.
Playtime at Castaway Island Fiji
For such a small island, there is plenty to keep the whole family entertained.
As you would expect on a Fiji island resort, waters sports are a big part of the entertainment on Castaway Fjii. Kayaks and paddle boards are available free of charge and it takes around 40 minutes to paddle the whole way around the island.
Snorkelling gear is also provided free of charge and you can choose to snorkel alone on the house reef that surrounds the island, or book a snorkeling trip to a nearby reef accessible via speedboat.
During our stay we helped plant coral with environmental officer Koli as part of the Outrigger reef conservation program OZONE. This is a great activity to get the kids involved in and to help their understanding of the dangers that our reefs face.
For those who love to scuba dive, or have an urge to learn to dive, Castaway boasts a PADI Five Star Gold Palm dive centre offering a wide range of dive course options for kids aged 10 and up.
PADI Open Water certification can be done over 4 days and there are over 30 dives sites within 20 minutes of Castaway.
Island hopping excursions can be arranged, which include a picnic lunch. The island is also just a short boat ride away from famous floating bar/restaurant Cloud 9.
One of the most popular Castaway Island day trips, and a highlight of our visit was a trip to Modriki Island – the Tom Hanks Castaway movie island.
This ultimate Castaway island tour took us to the very location of the Tom Hanks island movie set and included a sumptuous champagne lunch while we were there. We even got to meet Wilson! Definitely recommended!
The Kids Club on Castway is not much to look at, but that is almost the whole point! Kids don’t waste time hanging around here, they are far too busy hunting for coconuts or crabs, making shell necklaces on the beach or learning a traditional Fijian dance.
The kids club is open to kids aged 3 and above, and includes a comprehensive list of fully supervised activities from 9am-4pm and from 5.30pm-10pm.
As I visited Castway Island without my kids I don’t have much of a review of the kids club, but I will update after our visit in April.
There is no official spa on Castaway, but a menu of massages are on offer at the tranquil and secluded massage bures that are tucked away within the tropical gardens. For more active pursuits, there is also a tennis court, and beach volley ball and morning yoga on offer.
Despite the island being surrounded by gorgeous crystal clear water, there are also two swimming pools – one aimed at adults with a swim-up bar, and the other for families.
Dinnertime at Castaway Island Fiji
We started every morning with a breakfast buffet at the beachfront Water’s Edge restaurant – the perfect way to start the day, gazing out to sea!
Water’s Edge is open for breakfast (buffet), lunch and dinner (a la carte). I enjoyed a delicious meal under the stars here one evening. The turmeric panko crusted grilled reef fish served on kumara mash with coconut miti sauce was one of the highlights of the trip!
Dining at Castaway Island’s signature restaurant, Restaurant 1808, is a real treat. Dining under the stars with your toes in the sand at this adults-only restaurant, you can enjoy a feast of Asian/South Pacific fusion cuisine. The restaurant uses fresh organic produce from around Fiji, including the resort’s own herb farm. Everything we had here was delicious.
For a casual lunch or dinner, parents and kids alike will love the wood fired pizzas at Sundowner, which is open from 12pm – 9pm. These can be eaten in the restaurant, which enjoys an elevated position over North beach with views out to sea – or you can get pizzas boxed up to go for a beach picnic in a location of your choosing.
Another good option for lunch as a family is Naku Marau, which is located right next to the family pool. The Asian and Polynesian menu here includes sushi and poke bowls, as well as burgers, wraps and fish & chips. If you are a late riser and miss breakfast at Water’s Edge, you can also enjoy a late breakfast here until 11.30am.
In addition to Sundowner, there are two other bars on Castaway Island. A small makeshift beach bar is the ideal place to order cocktails to be sipped on your sun lounger, while the fully stocked Lali bar in the main restaurant area stays open until the last person leaves!
Note that Castaway prefer the restaurants to be child-free from 7pm, and the kids meal plans include meals in Water’s Edge and Sundowner until 7pm.
Free kids club activities are provided throughout the evening, from 5.30pm-10pm – so I’m pretty sure most kids would rather be out on the beach having fun on their Fiji family holidays, than stuck in a restaurant with mum and dad!
Save the date! Wednesdays are cultural day on Castaway Island and are your chance to sample a traditional lovo – a Fijian specialty where local food is cooked in a Fijian earth oven. This is accompanied by traditional entertainment and should be a fun evening for the whole family.
Top Tip! Keep a look out for the Castaway Island meal plan options. These represent really great value for money and in my opinion are well worth signing up for. These daily plans include all food – breakfast, lunch and dinner – in all restaurants, with no additional supplements.
If you are planning to stay longer, then try to sign up for the one-time payment plan (not usually available during peak periods). You pay the same price no matter how long you stay, so the longer you stay, the better the value! They are really one of the best value meal plans I have seen in any resort anywhere.
Kids under the age of 3 eat for free, and chefs will also prepare baby food free of charge.
Conclusion of our Castaway Island Review
Before I had even left Castaway Island I had asked the staff to check availability for me to bring the family back at Easter time – that is how much I loved it here!
Although Castaway Island is only a 4-star resort, do not let this fool you into thinking there is anything down-market about this resort. Star ratings are based on facilities, and it is true that Castway does not have either a spa or a gym. However, in all other areas, I would definitely describe Castaway as 5-star.
The island is stunningly beautiful, the food excellent and the warmth and welcome of the staff is second-to-none. I have no hesitation to recommend this as one of the top Fiji resorts for kids.
One warning – Castaway Island only has WiFi in the restaurant areas. There is no WiFi in the bedrooms or elsewhere on the island. Before you throw your arms up in horror, let me tell you that this is actually one of the reasons I wanted to return here, and in particular with my overworked husband.
How often do you wake up and the first thing you do is reach for your phone to check your emails and log onto social media? Well on Castaway Island you can’t do that! And it’s amazing the difference it makes to your relaxed state of mind. By day two you don’t even bother reaching for your phone, and you go back to sleep instead! Bliss…
If this is your first time visiting Fiji, I really recommend combining your trip to the islands with a visit to the mainland, even if only for a few days. We combined our trip to Castaway Island with a visit to Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort. I loved visiting the mainland to get a glimpse of the ‘real’ Fiji, visiting the local villages and trying out some of the fun activities there.
Read our full review of the Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort here to get an idea of all the fun things there are to do on the mainland.
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Disclaimer: I was a guest of Castaway Island for the purpose of writing this review. This in no way affected my review, and all opinions as always are honest and my own.
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