Fiji Travel

Useful Fijian Words and Phrases

Although English is the official language and is widely spoken in Fiji, here are some useful Fijian words and phrases to get you started.

Useful Fijian Words and Phrases

Useful Fijian Words and Phrases – Photo © Gourmantic

Useful Fijian Words and Phrases

Here is a selection of common Fijian words and expressions have collected during our stay in Fiji. Each word is translated to Fijian and spelled out phonetically in brackets.

  • hello – bula (mbula)
  • goodbye – ni sa moce (ni sa moe they)
  • please – yalo vinaka (yalo vee naka)
  • thank you – vinaka (yalo vee naka)
  • yes – io (eeyo)
  • no – sega (senga)
  • excuse me – tulou (too low)
  • good morning – ni sa yadra (ni sah yan dra)
  • lady – marama (ma ra ma)
  • man – turaga (tu ran ga)
  • drink – gunu (go noo)
  • coconut – niu (new)
  • quickly – vaka totolo (vaka toe toe lo)
  • eat – kana (ka na)
  • village -koro (ko roh)
  • house – vale/bure (valeh/mbureh)
  • one – dua (ndua)
  • two – rua (roowa)
  • shop – sitoa (see toah)
  • toilet – vale lailai (vale lie lie)
Useful Fijian Words and Phrases

Sunset Over Malolo Island – Photo © Gourmantic

Fijian Pronunciation Guide

Fijian pronunciation is similar to English with a few exceptions. You may be familiar with the word Nadi pronounced as “Nahn-di”. Here is an easy guide to help you with your stay in Fiji.

  • a is ah as in father, but shorter.
  • b is pronounced “mb” as in bamboo. you’ll hear “bula” or “hello” many times. You may notice the slight humming “m”, almost silent at the beginning. When something precedes the “b”, then the “m” sound becomes more pronounced. The formal “hello”, Ni Sa Bula, is pronounced “ni sahm” boola”.
  • c is th as in this.
  • d is nd as in candy.
  • g is ng as in singer.
  • i is i as in sit or ee as in routine.
  • q is ngg as in finger.
  • u is oo as in bamboo or u as in put. 

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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is a drinks writer, author of GROW YOUR OWN COCKTAIL GARDEN, SHRUBS & BOTANICAL SODAS and founder/editor of Gourmantic, Cocktails & Bars and The Gourmantic Garden. She has been writing extensively about spirits, cocktails, bars and cocktail gardening in more recent years. She is a spirits and cocktail competition judge, Icons of Whisky Australia nominee, contributor to Diageo Bar Academy, cocktail developer and is named in Australian Bartender Magazine's Top 100 Most Influential List. Her cocktail garden was featured on ABC TV’s Gardening Australia and has won several awards. She is a contributor to Real World Gardener radio program and is featured in several publications including Pip Magazine, Organic Gardener, Australian Bartender and Breathe (UK). Read the full bio here.