You know when you feel so passionate about something that you just can’t stop talking about it? You visit somewhere once and fall in love with it forever; I know countless people do it with New York or Paris… but what about somewhere a bit more off the beaten track?
I did it with Chatham Islands. There’s something so quaint and quirky about the place that is simply irresistible. With rugged coastlines and spectacular coastal views it is truly picturesque. But a lot of places are picturesque, so what sets this place apart?
I wasn’t born in Chatham Islands and I didn’t grow up there. I don’t have childhood memories of fishing and farming with my father to look back on kindly. And yet, I feel like I have a home there somehow. I know this isn’t my childhood but in a large way I believe it is a big part of who I am. Or me discovering who I am at least. I felt like I found myself exploring the nooks and crannies along the coast, spending my days hiking and really getting back to nature.
The population is so small that after a few visits you feel like you know almost everyone! And people get to know you. There’s something about that that I can’t quite put my finger on. It feels like home when you arrive and are recognised rather than being a face in a crowd, yet another tourist.
There’s a million and one things to do, so many places to explore I never feel bored or run out of activities for the day, time flies and the day is always over before you know it.
I may be biased but I really feel like there’s something for everyone too. Because the climate is so temperate it doesn’t really matter what time of year you go and there’s a range of sporty and active or more relaxing activities to try so any couple or family could come and every individual could do different things, each suiting themselves. And because all the locals are really friendly and welcoming you never worry or feel unsafe which is yet another thing I adore about this place.
There are so many things I adore about this place I could go on about it all day, but this page should really be about me so I will try to summarise by putting my philosophy to you all. I didn’t feel like I had a direction, I didn’t always feel like I really knew where home was. I always felt like a bit of an outsider, but when you find somewhere that fits you, there’s no experience to match it.
That is really what I want to share, that’s what I think my key message is here. No matter who you are or where you go, just GO. Go somewhere that really calls to you. Go somewhere that feels more like your home that anywhere else does.
There is no feeling to match it in the whole world. I can promise you that.