I sit 30,000 feet high, writing this as the sun sets above cotton-shaped clouds. The last two months have been a roller coaster ride, along the beaches of Karnataka, the backwaters of Goa, the terraced valleys of Kumaon, the forests of Madhya Pradesh, on trains and buses, and now, on my Indigo flight, headed to where it all began, Bangalore.
It’s been two months since I packed up my life from Delhi and went location independent (Read: I’m Hitting The Road, Indefinitely). I’m euphoric on most days and nervous on some. I’m introspective on some days and carefree on others. As Shams of Tabriz once said, with a home nowhere, I have everywhere to go. Read more
I find myself penning this post rather unexpectedly. I’m staying at a 500-year-old Portuguese house, restored by a charming Goan family, in a sleepy little village called Aldona, in the hinterlands of Goa. This will be my home till the end of September. I’ve spent the last few days strolling along pristine backwaters, little hamlets stuck in time, lush green rice paddies, and streets adorned with abandoned Portuguese houses and old churches. Wake me up when September ends. Read more
This was long coming. I’ve been planning and un-planning, thinking and re-thinking, and I’m finally going to do it. I’ve given up my apartment in Delhi, I’ve sold / given away most of my possessions, I’m leaving some clothes at an aunt’s place and some in the boot of a friend’s car, and I’m hitting the road. Indefinitely. Read more
This post was initially intended to be a rant, about how my life as a travel blogger isn’t as perfect as it can seem, how everyone’s always asking for free content, and how ‘knowing people’ can have more value than good work. I’ll be honest; July has been a pretty terrible month. Having reached a point where I really needed to focus on earning some money, I decided to put all my travel plans on hold this month and work with a vengeance (Read: How I Afford My Travels and How You Can Too). Let’s just say I didn’t meet my financial goal, but that wasn’t the disappointing part. The disappointing part was that karma, and I dare say life, bitch-slapped me in so many ways this month.
In the midst of penning this rant, I started to recount how amazing the first half of my year had been – I got my first taste of the Middle East in Bahrain, stumbled upon hidden beaches in Thailand, journeyed from coast to coast in Canada, reveled in the festivities of Las Fallas in Spain, walked down memory lane in Singapore, and most recently, discovered the virgin beauty of Sri Lanka‘s hill country and its eastern beaches. I quickly realized that I had no right to rant about being a travel blogger! Read more
This week, two years ago, I tendered my resignation at my first and only corporate job. I was 23, restless, and ready to chase bigger dreams – of which travel was one. I didn’t know then that becoming one of India’s top travel bloggers was on the cards for me! But there were other things I didn’t know, things that would have saved me so many sleepless nights. As I reflect on my transition in the last two years, from a cubicle dweller to a digital nomad, I hope to give you some practical perspective on what it’s like to quit your job and travel the world (Read: The Story of How I Quit my Job to Travel). Read more
One month ago, when I became one of the four worldwide ambassadors of the #WeGoSolo movement and announced a contest in partnership with Hostelbookers, I didn’t know that it was my turn to be inspired.
I received over a hundred entries to the contest, and besides sharing your dream solo travel destinations literally in every part of the globe, you shared your stories and how you faced or plan to face your challenges. As the sisterhood of women travelling alone grows from strength to strength, the time has come to announce the contest results (oh yes, the EUR 150 voucher from Hostelbookers.com) and answer the big questions – why women travel alone, and what is on their list of dream solo travel destinations. Read more
As a child, I always dreamt of being a writer. While my friends fantasized about being astronauts and detectives, I wished I could weave stories that would give wings to the imaginations of those who read them. I wrote often, but mostly for myself or on the many blogs I started before this one. It was only after I quit my job and moved back to India in 2011 that the dream of seeing my words in print revisited me. Read more
Planning your first solo trip can be a daunting task, exciting as it is. From the best places to travel solo, to where to stay when you are travelling alone, what to pack, and how to prepare, here are practical tips based on my own solo travels.
So you’ve decided to stop waiting for company and take the plunge to travel alone. Fantastic! As you make your first foray into the world of solo travel, your mind must be boggling with questions. Where should you go? How should you break it to your family and friends? Should you book everything in advance? What should you pack? Use these ideas to get started: Read more
It is absolutely normal to feel anxious at the thought of travelling alone for the first time. I recently shared tips on how to plan your first solo trip, but if it drives you too far out of your comfort zone, you may be better off considering one of the following alternatives to solo travel, and gradually easing yourself into travelling alone. Read more
With the media lately giving a lot of attention to women travelling alone and women travelling together (without men), I thought I’d contribute my 2 cents too, with a list of travel destinations friendly towards single women, and women travellers in general. Not just from the perspective of safety, but also from that of accepting that there’s nothing wrong or strange about solo women travellers. Read more