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Fiji Islands were formed through volcanic activity started around 150 million years ago. The first voyaging people came to these islands from the west about 5000 years ago. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the Dutch and the British explored Fiji. Fijians first impressed themselves on European consciousness through the writings of the members of the expeditions of Cook who met them in Tonga. Living deep in the heart of the humid jungles of these equatorial islands, Fijians were described as formidable warriors and ferocious cannibals, builders of the finest vessels in the Pacific. The ferocity of the cannibal lifestyle deterred European sailors from going near Fijian waters, giving Fiji the name Cannibal Isles. They called their home Viti, but the Tongans called it Fisi, and it was by this foreign pronunciation, Fiji, first promulgated by Captain James Cook, that these islands are
now known. The country comprises an archipelago of more than 332 islands, of which 110 are permanently inhabited, and more than 500 islets – atolls.
At night, in the Villages lost in the middle of the jungles of Viti Levu, the magical world of Fiji comes back to life through the famous Fire Ritual. Fijian warriors performing the Meke and the fire dance, retelling the legends of their ancestors, in the torch lighting ceremony which awakens the the magical world of Fiji after the sunset.
Cava or Kava, the drink of the native Fijians. It is made from the root of Piper methysticum, yellow in colour, tastes like muddy water and has a strong narcotic effect (including the numbness of the mouth). The kava ceremony includes the ritual making and drinking of kava together with a ceremonial feast. It’s euphoric effect was used in the gods divination rituals.
Occasions for the kava ceremony can be social, such as a gathering of chiefs, a visit of a chief from a neighbouring island, or a gathering before battle, or it can be ceremonial, such as the conclusion of a public assembly presided over by a chief or king, the inauguration of a new chief, or a meeting with a god or gods for divination.

Categories & Keywords
Category:Travel and Places
Subcategory:Australia and Oceania
Subcategory Detail:Fiji
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Fijian warriors performing the Meke, the Fire Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comViti Levu Island. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijian warriors performing the Cava/Kava Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijians. Villages in the jungles of Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijian warriors performing the Meke, the Fire Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijian warriors performing the Meke, the Fire Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijian warriors performing the Cava/Kava Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijians. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijians. Villages in the jungles of Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijian warriors performing the Cava/Kava Ritual. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijians. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.comFijians. Fiji Archipelago - The Cannibal Islands. South Pacific. 2010 © Nora de Angelli / www.noraphotos.com