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Lions roar their way to Fiji for 'R&R'

3rd August 2017

Once the British and Irish Lions’ tour of New Zealand came to a close, after leaving with their heads held high following a historic 15-15 draw, three of the key members of the team sought some well-deserved rest, rejuvenation and relaxation in one of the most beautiful places on earth – Fiji.

Prop Kyle Sinckler, winger Anthony Watson and coach Warren Gatland enjoyed a world famous Bula welcome and experienced the friendly and welcoming hospitality from the Fijian locals.

During their time in Fiji, the two Lions were shown the sights by Moses Rauluni, former Saracens player and former captain of the Fiji 15s team, treated to a visit to see the National Stadium in Suva, as well experience training Fiji style with a trip to the Sigatoka Sand Dunes on the Coral Coast, where the sevens team train.

Sinckler and Watson also visited a community project where they gifted the local village rugby kits and equipment, some of which donated by Adidas.

Fanatical about rakavi (Fijian for rugby), Fijians are definitely seasoned experts in the game. Last year, Fiji picked up their first ever Olympic Gold medal with Fiji’s heroic rugby sevens team beating England in the final in Rio.

Coach Ben Ryan, who led the team to success, is the first European to be honoured with a chiefly name in Fiji - Ratu Peni Raiyani Latianara - following a ceremony in Serua.

He was also awarded the Companion of the Order of Fiji, the highest honour in the country.

With direct flights to Fiji from Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington to Fiji (just taking three hours), Fiji is a perfect location for post-rugby celebrations – whether that’s by relaxing on the many beaches or taking part in some adrenaline inducing activities.

Jane West from Tourism Fiji says: “Rugby plays a pivotal part in Fijian culture and there is no better way for visitors to meet the locals than getting stuck in to a ‘ruck’ in one of the many designated rugby fields or paddocks.

“With thousands of people in Fiji playing rugby, both young and old, fans of the game will be able to find ample opportunities to take part, either as a player or a keen spectator.”

For those who prefer to enjoy rugby as a spectator, a trip to the National Stadium in Suva is a popular destination. With several matches taking place throughout the year, the atmosphere is always electric as locals cheer on their favourite teams.

For those who want to keep the adrenaline flowing post-game, Fiji offers lots of activities that get hearts pumping and pulses racing. There are a number of opportunities to dive with sharks in Fiji, as well as take part in white water rafting, taking a trek through the rainforests and much more.

Fiji Airways provides flights from Singapore and San Francisco to Fiji. Fiji Airways also connects with flights from Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii and Los Angeles, so holidaymakers from the UK will need to change at one of these destinations. Korean Air also offers fares via Seoul.

For more information on Fiji please visit www.fiji.travel

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