According to Fijian legend, the great chief Lutunasobasoba led his people across the seas to the new land of Fiji. Most authorities agree that people came into the Pacific from Southeast Asia via the Malay Peninsula. Here the Melanesians and the Polynesians mixed to create a highly developed society long before the arrival of the Europeans
The European discoveries of the Fiji group were accidental. The first of these discoveries was made in 1643 by the Dutch explorer, Abel Tasman and English navigators, including Captain James Cook who sailed through in 1774, and made further explorations in the 18th century
Fiji has a warm tropical climate perfect for beachside holidays. Maximum temperatures rarely move out of the 31°C (88°F) to 26°C (79°F) range all year round. Southeast trade winds from March to November bring dry weather and the rainy season runs from December to April. On average there are 15 cyclones per decade, and two to four actually cause severe damage. They occur from November to April and with greatest frequency in January and February. There is more risk in the outlying northwest island groups.
Education is not compulsory but is free through the first eight years. Schools from pre-school to secondary are mostly managed by either the government, religion (Catholic, Methodist, Sabha or Muslim) or provinces.
Higher education is offered at technical institutes and is structured around two-year Diploma programs. There are also four or five-year professional degree programs in specific fields.