In my 20 things I learned by 20 post, I mentioned the Importance of travelling, so in today’s post, on the one year anniversary of the start of the best 23 days I’ve ever had, I thought I would talk about my Contiki trip I did in October 2015.
I don’t want to make this like a “this day we did this…” sort of thing, so I just want to mention 5 reasons, I’d jump in a time machine and do it all again in a heart beat. In another post, maybe in a few weeks, I’ll post some tips I have for going on Contiki! Stay tuned.
1. The Contiki family
It sounds cliche, and stupid, but from day one, our tour manager Scotty had said “look around, the 53 people on this bus are your family for the next 23 days” and my god was it true. We became such a close group of friends, it was honestly so heart warming to watch people from all over the world, of all different ages just get along. I still keep in contact with many of the beautiful people I met on the trip, whether it be a random message, a snap chat here or there, or an hour long phone call once a month. I am also so notorious for sending out a mass snap when Shut Up and Dance With Me by Walk The Moon (our contiki day song) comes on, whether I’m in Coles, out partying or listening to the radio. My point is, no matter whether I talk to these people every day, once in a blue moon, or run into them at my local Kmart, we are a little family, and I am a better person and forever grateful for meeting these people.
2. My life doesn’t function properly without a day sheet
The second Contiki ended, I felt lost. THERE WAS NO DAY SHEET. Essentially a day sheet is just that. It outlines what we were doing for the next two or three days, what time we had to be where, when and where breakfast was, what time the bus was leaving etc etc.. The first few days without this beautiful piece or art, I had no bloody clue what was happening. Actually having to organise myself was such a challenge!
3. The stunning places we went.
Have you ever walked barefoot down the streets of florence at 4am? I have (also don’t recommend, but thats a different story). Have you ever fallen so in love with a place and it’s people so instantaneously that you never wanted to leave? check. Have you ever won 200 euros in Monaco ? yep! We visited so many stunning cities over our short time, and ever single one of them surprised me. My favourite city was, Vienna. Vienna was my number one, because, for starters it was the first place we’d come to where I wasn’t offered a selfie stick or pub crawl or hat by someone on the street, AT ALL. But mainly because of how pretty it was. We had just hit autumn and the leaves were changing colours and the shopping street was stunning, and my favourite part, the traffic lights were two people in love. It was either a boy and boy holding hands or a girl and girl with a love heart or a boy and a girl holding hands. It was such a beautiful reminder that love is love. Vienna gets it right. Whilst in Vienna we went to the opera and that amazed me beyond belief. The people were lovely and Vienna just surprised me vastly more than any other place we had visited, it’s definitely somewhere I want to go back to!
4. All days are good days
I’m not gonna lie, when you’re on a bus of 53 people and you’re sick and you’re tired and you’re travelling with your bestie who is more like a sister (meaning you fight like loving sisters too) you’re gonna have crappy days. It was the crappy day’s and times I fell to pieces that I look back on and think, they weren’t that bad, they were kinda good. I won’t lie, I had my fair share of days where I wasn’t in a crash hot mood or feeling 100%, but you know what. I never let it stop me. It may have affected the way I did things or how I acted that day, but I never stopped, I kept on keeping on. I was determined to see and do things, no matter what. It showed me that sometimes, you just got to let things go and move on and enjoy the place/ situation you’re in.
5. I learned a lot
I learnt so much about the cities we visited, the people I was with, and myself. It was such a beautiful learning curve to be a part of and I would not change a thing about the trip.
I honestly could not recommend Contiki more, it’s such an amazing way to see the stunning sights not only in Europe, but around the world in a short period of time. Because of Contiki, I have so many lovely people in my life and I now 100% know the places I want to visit again. I can’t wait to get back into travelling! (after uni… of course)
Quick little shout out to the beautiful people I was able to share this experience with, you all, one year on still on rock and I miss you dearly, please come to Melbourne and see me.
Shoutout to Sophie for not murdering me during the trip, you were a fab travel buddy!
The trip I went on was the Winter Wanderer if anyone was wondering!