In the end of May this year i flew from Fiji to Tuvalu. I guess the majority dont know where Tuvalu is but explained easily its between Australia and Hawaii somewhere. To get here you either take the Fiji Airways flight that fly inn 2 times a week or by boat, but that will take you 3 days.
Tuvalu is a isolated island nation with only 12.000 people, its one of the least visited countrys in the world and is what most people dream of, – paradise on earth. Its a total of 9 different islands but most people will stay on the island of Vaiku were most hotels are and also the only aiport that will transform into a playground when planes arnt flying in or out. Getting around here is mainly done by scooter or car, or by walking. Between islands there are only boats. Much of the islands is a marine park and going around there means you need a special permit.
Arriving here you find that everything goes really slow, and this is in my opinion a real dream for the ones that want that. There are a few hotels, some small supermarkets, a bakery, a telcom office where you can by wifi cards – but dont be fooled, it doesnt last long.
The day i flew in i listened to a couple of guys talking beside me, and there was this greek engenior that asked the other guy why he was visiting Tuvalu. He then replyed. “im on a quest to visit every country and this is my 195th country, only Tuvalu and Nauru left”. I just smiled and i knew i had someone to talk to for the next few days. The traveller were Jordan, an American from Texas that had been around, and now on his last leg.
When we got out of the plane i already had a booking at a guesthouse, but when i got there it was full so i had to check in to the main hotel Vaiaku Lagi. Luckily they had a spare room. I met with Jordan and we went out to see if we could rent scooters. The local scooter rental had all his scooters at repair, but there was this guy living close to the rentals that sayd we could use his, later on he told us he would try to find another one. Suddenly we were off driving first to one corner of the island and then to the other corner. This island only had a two lane road along the island and when you have kids playing, dogs sleeping etc it made it a bit crowded.
Our second day we rented a guy and his wife, to take us out on some more remote islands on the other side of the lagoon. It took us an hour to get there but oooohh, what a paradise it was. Me and Jordan walked around the island while the couple started to cook us some grilled fish and opened a few coconuts. This was it, just loved it. Went for a snorkel before we left for another island were birds were nesting. Later that day we got interviewed by Tuvalu Radio about our travelling. The same night we met up with a few guys that worked for the World Bank, one of them a swedish guy, had dinner with them before i went out for a walk on the airport.
The day we were leaving the island waiting for the plane, a girl stumbled into the departure lounge. I asked her who she was as i haddnt seen her on the island the days before, she mentioned she just arrived with the same flight we were leaving with. She was also going back with the same flight. This was Cassandra de Pecol, a girl from Connecticut, US that were on a expedition around the world to become the fastest person to travel to all the countrys in the world. When entering Tuvalu she had visited 115 and today when i write this post, she is about to become historical with 191 visited. So here we were on the flight back to Fiji, 3 extreme travellers sharing storys and tips. The world got smaller by the minute.
Out of the islands i travelled to in May 2016, Tuvalu is one of my favourite ones, and i will definitly come back here one day.