330,000 in Fiji (1996 census). 10,000 in Kadavu (1,500 Nabukelevu), 20,000 in Northeast Viti Levu. Population total all countries: 337,320.
East half of Viti Levu and eastern offshore islands, Kadavu island, Vanua Levu and offshore islands, Nayau, Lakeba, Oneata, Moce, Komo, Namuka, Kabara, Vulaga, Ogea, and Vatoa islands. Also in Nauru, New Zealand, United States, Vanuatu.
4 (Educational). Statutory language of national identity (2000, Constitution, Article 4(1)).
Bau (Bauan, Mbau), Central Vanua Levu (Baaravi, Nabalebale, Savusavu, Seaqaaqaa), Kadavu (Nabukelevu, Ono, Tavuki), Northeast Vanua Levu (Dogotuki Saqani, Korolau, Labasa), Northeast Viti Levu (Lovoni, Namena, Tokaimalo), Southeast Vanua Levu (Baumaa, Navatu-C, Naweni, Tunuloa), Southeast Viti Levu (Lutu, Naimasimasi, Nandrau, Waidina), West Vanua Levu (Bua, Navakasiga, Navatu-B, Soolevu). Southern Vanua Levu has several dialects similar to Bau dialect. On Northern Vanua, Levu, and adjacent islands people speak a somewhat related variety. Bau is very similar to standard Fijian, used as traditional lingua franca among Fijians.
320,000 L2 users (1991 UBS).
Christian, traditional religion.