Nadi is Fiji's third-largest center and its gateway town. Most budget and mid-range accommodations as well as the vast majority of shops and restaurants are in or just north of the town center. A 20-minute drive over a short bridge to the east lies Denarau Island, home to six international luxury hotels (and counting), the Port Denarau shopping complex and marina, and large private homes. From the country's major international airport, one can be whisked to a five-star resort or catch an open-air public bus to a lively hostel, and most accommodations in-between. On Denarau Island, a shared beachfront and free shuttle bus makes it easy to access the restaurants and spas of each hotel. Many excursions to the Mamanucas and Yasawas islands leave from Denarau Marina.
Owing to its relatively large commercial center, Nadi Town is one of the best places in Fiji to shop for souvenirs amid chatty Indo-Fijian shopkeepers, or to try a local restaurant. Yet it's a bit rough around the edges and decidedly lacking in major attractions for visitors, many of whom spend just one night here before catching a ferry from Denarau Island to the white-sand beaches of the island groups to the west.