We all get holiday blues on return from travelling, and as a part time traveller I’ve seen plenty of friends and colleagues visit the beautiful places I experienced while I’m doing the daily grind. Besides the obvious envy over the wonderful time they’ve had I’ve been wondering what I would have done differently and what I wish I could see again in more detail.
Of course, I wouldn’t change my trip for anything, it was perfect in its occasionally chaotic way! Even while travelling I worry about missing out on particular hidden gems and experiences, but with limited time and on a backpacker budget choices always must be made about the priorities of your activities. So, should you revisit countries you feel a strong pang of nostalgia for? Where would I return to see and do more? How has this impacted what places I miss most? Here’s a quick run-down for a trip down memory lane.
1. Vietnam: A country that keeps cropping up with new spots I missed first time around, I could easily return for an extended trip in this historical and fascinating country. At the time, visa limitations for UK passport holders meant I could only visit for 15 days visa free, or else pay a fee along with filing the tricky paperwork through the Vietnamese Embassy.
As of February 2017 you can instead get an evisa online for a small fee and visit for up to 30 days – a much more flexible and backpacker friendly arrangement! On such short time we managed to cram a lot in, despite long bus rides between locations taking up a lot of precious hours. However, this is truly a country to explore in depth and really soak up all the stunning views on offer, and as my favourite SE Asian country I would eagerly take a chance to visit again and tick off several places I missed first time around. As I feel like there’s still so much to see here, I’d put this top of my list of revisit destinations.
2. Fiji: Following a cyclone which ripped through the country, visiting Fiji in March was experiencing the aftermath of the many island resorts getting back on their feet. The islands we visited were for the most part recovered from a guests perspective besides a few sorry looking palm trees, so the only real damage we encountered was in Nadi where roads were often impassable. Despite a severe case of conjunctivitis caught as a result of a country-wide epidemic, I’ve not been put off and would love to explore more of this beautiful little spot of paradise, island hop, and catch the country in its prime.
3. New Zealand: Of course my beloved Kiwiland is getting a mention! I’m lucky enough to have been back since my 3 month visit last year, and with every new place I visit I gain another 4 ideas and my wanderlust explodes all over again. I recently entered into a South Island vs North Island debate, and for me South wins every single time. However, there are still corners of the North I’m yet to explore, and would jump at an opportunity for an lengthly road trip around those country lanes! As a result of my infinite NZ adoration, this is definitely the place I miss the most.
4. Laos: At the time I didn’t fully appreciate the beauty of this country. I was a little preoccupied and overwhelmed with the heat and bugs, maybe I was not fully prepared for what to expect, and so missed out appreciating and learning more about my surroundings. On return to Laos I wouldn’t be afraid to explore more of the more remote and rural areas, as well as spending time delving into the old cities to understand its history.
5: Australia: As such a large country I knew what I’d be seeing would be just a sample. Although I’d happily return to areas along the East Coast where I spent my time, it would be great to compare the other areas more centrally and in the west to fully satisfy a sense of completion in Australia. Lastly, I’d always be happy to revisit Melbourne because I fell in love with that quirky city in less than a day with it’s colourful character literally beaming from the city’s walls. As also the first stop on my solo trip, it’s definitely somewhere I find myself missing at times. Oh nostalgia is a wonderful thing!
Would you revisit places you’ve enjoyed?
All in all, I’d go and see it all again if I could, because a traveller will never get bored when they’re exploring no matter how many times they’ve visited. When limited for time, it’s crucial to remember that whatever your chosen activities are on a trip you will always have the memories to cherish, and there’s certainly no wrong decision on how to travel!
After you’ve visited a place that you have fond memories of, it’s easy to look back and wish you could go and see even more again and again! And I think that’s awesome. Of course, a trip cannot be perfectly replicated. #takemeback exists for a reason to preserve and demonstrate nostalgia, and I think it can be worthwhile to maintain good memories of a trip or destination rather than return and potentially spoil those memories. However, if we can and want to, we should go back.
We’re very fortunate to live in an age where travel is more and more accessible, so if you’re able to return to where you’ve already visited, then go for it! Missing a place and feeling glad you’ve been is the best testament to how it’s given you a positive experience in some way, and that is just what travel is about; learning and appreciating the world around us.
Where would you go back if you were given the chance? What are the places you miss the most? Would you want to revisit places you’ve been to?