Most people hear the phrase "island life" and think of beach lounging, umbrella-drink sipping, and ocean dipping. That's certainly the case on many tropical islands, but not all islands share the same atmosphere. Some islands feature volcanoes, frozen lakes, or apple orchards. It seems there is one common thread, though: Island dwellers believe islands to be very special places. They can be places where everyone knows each other, local businesses thrive, and an emphasis is placed on communing with your neighbors and living with the environment instead of against it. There is a sense of community on an island, whether it's felt in an early morning surf or snowed-in story-telling around a fireplace.
Global Yodel sought out locals from eight islands around the world to find out what "island life" means to them. Scroll through the photo gallery to see (and hear) stories from islands on all corners of the globe.
-- Abbie Redmon for GlobalYodel.com
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Wyatt Shaw took this photo on Kauai, "a small island in Hawaii where everyone knows everyone." According to Shaw, a perfect day on Kauai includes lots of surfing and lots of eating, including trying a "spam musubi," a local invention of spam wrapped in seaweed and rice.
Orleans Island in Quebec City, Canada, is often covered in snow through the winter, but Alex Strohl captured this scene as that snow was melting away in spring. Strohl asks, "Can you imagine living in a big city that has all the advantages of a busy city but being able to get here in 10 minutes?" He says one of the best things to do in Quebec is catch the sunset on Orleans Island.
Shetland is often called "Ultima Thule, which refers to any distant place beyond the known world." David Cooper took this photo in winter on the west side of Shetland, and "the unique combination of freezing temperatures, thick snow, thick mist and blazing sun had transformed the wilderness over the hill from my house into a landscape similar to the planet Hoth in Star Wars." The Shetland Islands are in the North Sea, to the northeast of Scotland.
Sabino Aguad tells us a little-known fact about Chiloé Island: The most widely grown potato in the word is indigenous to Chiloé Island; "It’s all about potatoes there." A journalism student, Aguad spends time on the island taking photos in Chiloé National Park. Chiloé Island is just south of Puerto Montt off the coast of Chile.
Nathan Myers and his wife traveled to Bali unsure of how long they would stay. Now that they have a dog and a son, "a little while" has turned into a little longer. Myers includes a beautiful spoken description of a normal day in Bali for his little family -- click "play" to listen.
Alek Lindus took this photo in Karlovassi, Greece, on the island of Samos, which is in the Aegean Sea, off the west coast of Turkey. Pythagoras, the inventor of the Pythagorean Theorum, was born on Samos, and there is a monument to him on the island. Lindus claims the shoreline of Samos is disappearing, so visit soon.
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