I still wonder how we managed to pack our bags the night before our trip. We were tipsy, incredibly sleepy even though it was only nine pm, and lazy. It was clear that we really didn’t care about clothes, or shoes.”It’s New Caledonia”, he kept on telling me. “It’s an island and it’s going to be hot! Surely we don’t need more than three t-shirt.” He was right.
Though it was only a week, we regarded our trip to Noumea (New Caledonia) as the Holy Grail of holidays. This was going to be my first in two years and his well deserved one following several weeks of hell at work. We found out about New Caledonia perfect beaches and delicious food only a couple of months ago. I did a quick research on winter destinations reachable within only 3 or four hours flight from Sydney. The images posted on many blogs and websites were breathtaking. It didn’t take long for us to fall under this island’s spell.
We woke up relatively early and went to the airport in excitement. Once we went through the security check we rewarded ourselves with a sandwich and a cappuccino. I don’t know why but even though we were waiting to board our flight we still didn’t feel like we were going to Noumea. It took us the whole day to get into holiday mode.
We were greeted by a breathtaking sunset which, up until that moment, I only saw depicted in postcards or seen in documentaries. Its vivid colors contrasted with the already darkened surrounding landscape showing only silhouettes of palm trees and pines. That view left us mesmerized.
Our pre-booked shuttle didn’t show up and the last bus shuttle, Arc en Ciel, left before we realized it was our only option to easily reach the hotel. The two ladies working at the information desk were lovely and tried their best to help us out. We had to catch the local bus to the city center (a 45 minutes trip) and then call a taxi to Anse Vata. By the time we reached the hotel we encounter numerous people who didn’t let a small thing like not being able to speak English in the way to help us. We reached the Chateau Royal around dinner time and following a delicious dinner in one of the hotel’s restaurants we quickly fell asleep. We knew that it was going to be an amazing holiday.