I was recently asked yet again, ‘what’s your favourite place?’
Yet again I sighed and said gave my standard response ‘That’s such a difficult question to answer’
However I was then met by a response I don’t think I have ever had
‘Well what was the most fun when you were single’
Again really tricky to answer but immediately my exploration of the Fijian Yasawa and Mamanuca islands came springing to mind.
Why? Well that’s a very easy question to answer…
I was in the final month of a year’s travel, having already worked my way through Asia, living and working in Australia, and a quick exploration of New Zealand. I was essentially heading home, but what I didn’t realise was that Fiji would make such a dramatic impression on me.
The Yasawa and Mamanuca chains are made up of a number of small, mainly rugged islands dotted along the west coast of the main island of Viti Levu. These islands range in size and get lesser commercialised the further away from the main island you venture.
I had no plans in Fiji, I arrived in Nadi unprepared, with just a hostel booked for a couple of nights. I know this doesn’t sound like the A Wandering Memory planning we refer to in many of our posts.
My 2 weeks in Fiji were undoubtedly 2 of the best weeks of that year, why?
Well, I didn’t have any plans and took things as they came (not something I always recommend), I met some incredible people and hooked up with some previous travelling friends I had already made in previous countries. I let go of the desire to see and do everything and just made on the spot decisions based on how I felt that particular day.
I may feel like just sitting in a hammock on the beach and watching the world go by, or visiting a local community, interacting with the inhabitant, or snorkel the wonderful marine reserves, or even drink all day and night, ending in some crazy dancing on a beach in the pitch black. Or I could sleep all day, waking up just to watch the night stars,
I didn’t need to be anywhere but where I wanted to be…
I hadn’t truly learnt that until this very moment!
Of course the sunshine, tropical forest, serene beaches, crystal clear waters and maybe a bit of alcohol also helped.
But all of those were just bonuses, my fellow travellers and the locals were what made the Fijian islands the most fun.
Here’s to Shannon, James, Katie, Jenny, Lindsay, Tom, Charlotte, Frenchie, Cheese and Katie.