We all have friends we love and like to spend time together. Be it a Sunday morning while savoring delectable breakfast or hanging out in evenings after office, friends make those moments count. They say, when you are busy chasing things, what happens in the background is life. Friends make this life full of memories which you can reminisce anytime and be thankful.
But, the memories made while traveling with friends occupy a corner in the heart which is irreplaceable. Catching the first ray of the sun together, navigating a hike through rough terrains, letting the window down and allowing raindrops to fall on your palms, every memory is made unforgettable when shared with friends.
Enjoying rain in Goa with a friend
I have traveled mostly with friends and every single instance, our friendship bonds have grown stronger, deeper and more meaningful. Not only in good times, but also in frustrating times. Once I remember we couldn’t find our homestay and we were on road for 12 hours already! Under such frustrating circumstances also, I had a friend or two who would cheer me up, crack a joke and make the atmosphere light.
I have tried solo travel. But, frankly, I would prefer traveling with friends every time. You can admire the sunset while your feet hanging in the air as you sit at the edge of a cliff. But, if you don’t have a friend sitting next to you, the moment would be enjoyable, but not unforgettable. Friends have a superpower to make even ordinary moments special.
For me, sharing a cup of tea with a friend, on a highway, as we recover from a long drive is a better moment than reveling in luxury of a resort alone. The experience of exploring unknown streets together, to satiate late night hunger pangs is better than Scuba Diving alone. I would rather go to a trail next to my homestay with a friend than summit Mt Everest alone. “It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” I’d ask my friend and he would just smile.
If I have to list down my personal favorite travel experiences with friends, I would list several. But, the top of the list would be river rafting in Dandeli, attending Sunburn in Goa, Pub hoping in Phuket, Road tripping to Coorg, exploring the countryside of Bhutan and enjoying long bike rides in South Goa! These experiences have etched in my memory, wrapped in golden foil. If I am feeling low or nostalgic, I open up my laptop and disappear into oblivion as I scan through the numerous photos which I consider to be my treasure. A glimpse in the memories captured on celluloid gives me an instant mood boost.
However, solo travel is not that bad but I need to make friends on the go. Some trips I plan are long and it is impossible to schedule it with friends. On such occasions, I leave alone. But, I make sure to stay in hostels or use Couchsurfing in order to make new friends and share an experience or view. I made a lot of friends when I visited Indonesia & Vietnam as a solo backpacker and I had a lot of fun.
All in all, it is one thing to travel alone and marvel at the magnificence of this world. But, when you travel with friends or even one friend, the experience becomes a memorable one, one to cherish for the rest of life!