Want to live on a desert island? Wake up to the sound of sassy waves, kick back in a bure for a week and sample the South Pacific life? (Nope, this is not a trick question. I REPEAT, THIS ACTUALLY EXISTS).
Somehow I jammily managed to take eight weeks off to travel solo around the world (hey what can I say, it's one of the perks of working for a gap year company!) and after making my way around Asia for two weeks - which truthfully, mainly involved stroking elephants, wolfing down pad thai and sussing out the night markets, I was well chuffed to touchdown in Fiji aka tropical central, for a week. Seriously guys, this really IS the spot - I couldn’t think of anywhere more beautiful to volunteer, meet new people and soak up island life. It is literally the perfect addition to any gap year.
I woke up last week in a safari tent, gazing out to the sea. I was all of half a step away from the beach (yes, I’m actually on it!) and I had my own hammock lying just outside my doorway, being propped up by two hefty palms. BLISSFUL.
The island that Real Gap sends its volunteers is proper castaway material - it has so much to offer travellers. This place is literally heaven! Aside from your volunteering work, which generally takes place between 8:30am-2pm each day, you’ll have THREE private beaches to check out in your spare time. Only 70 people can be accommodated on the island each night, so as you can imagine there’s plenty of quiet spots: whether you’re a hammock or a palm fan, to perch yourself under. The islands nearly always full - we’re sold out of a large portion of our dates over the summer, which means you’re guaranteed to meet tonnes of new people! Nightlife here is awesome too; last week I took part in coconut bowling, country vs country quiz offs and had many Fiji Golds in the beach bar. Fiji Golds are GOOD, let me tell you that for something!
The main portion of my chill out time last week involved 1) eating like a queen (the coconut milk based curries? Hello!) 2) meeting an amazing group of people, there were 17 other volunteers out with me and 3) taking the time to chill out in my hammock. I watched four sunsets in a row; there’s no way I could EVER get bored of that!
Over the next few weeks I'm going to be showing you all what volunteering is like in Fiji: I'll give you all the inside information on the projects, more about Fiji and how to have the best few weeks of your life out here. For now, moce mada!
Laura's our social exec here at Real Gap Experience, and tomorrow she's going to be taking part on our New Zealand Experience. Follow her along with the ride, and catch up with all things Fiji over the next few weeks! (She never shuts up, so she's going to have a lot to say!)