Your choice to make every moment count
You only live once but you can always go on another Contiki tour to do it all again with like-minded fellow travellers, writes Alexandra Burnie
JACK Black once said: “I’m fairly certain that YOLO is just carpe diem for stupid people.”
While I entirely agree with that sentiment, one can’t help but adopt the “You only live once” motto while travelling on a Contiki tour.
From skydiving, to skinnydipping, chugging beer and chucking up in the Great Barrier Reef, if you’re not #YOLO-ing, you’ll be feeling massive #FOMO (fear of missing out).
If you’ve heard about Contiki, you’ll certainly have some misconstrued ideas about it, such as: Contiki is a party tour. While it’s true that there’s no party like a Contiki party, it’s your choice whether you drink every night until you forget what country you’re in. You might feel massive FOMO but if you want to save your energy for a day of exploring the next day, then that’s your choice.
It’s only for singles who want to sleep around.
Contiki is good for all traffic lights: green (single and ready to mingle), orange (it’s complicated) or red (no, you can’t sleep in my bed tonight). It’s not about sleeping around but you certainly can.
It’s about travelling and meeting new people from across the world. You have to be outgoing.
Contiki encourages you to be a Tigger and not an Eeyore but it’s definitely OK if your thing is exploring museums and botanical gardens.
I recently travelled on a twoweek Contiki Beaches and Reefs Tour that began in Cairns and ended in Sydney. It was my second Contiki, my first being a European tour in 2011.
Each tour is different, so no matter how many you do, you’ll always have new experiences.
So what’s a Contiki tour really like? Who goes?
Contiki is for 18-35 year olds. My tour had Canadians, Brits, Americans, a German, a Brazilian and a Kiwi.
The average age was mid20s, with jobs such as nurses, fire fighters, a social worker, a dentist and other employment.
Most were single, with one married couple on the tour.
Make sure you arrive at the starting destination the day before. Explore the city – in this case Cairns – by day, and then meet up with your Contiki crew at night.
Find out you’re in a room with three friendly Americans, only to offend them when they tell you they were Canadian.
An optional tour to the Great Barrier Reef. Board a cruise in the morning, travel to the GBR,