Goa has been my absolute favorite holiday destination ever since I first set foot in this gorgeous land of sun, sand and sea more than a decade ago. Every visit here has been like one big never ending party. In fact Goa has been and continues to be more than just a destination – It is an experience, a stress-buster, a guilty pleasure!

Goa offers gleeful peace in the middle of chaotically bustling markets; it gives me a sense of belonging amidst foreign faces on a crowded beach. It is a place of happy contradictions! During all of my visits to this party place, I have lived not like a tourist, but someone who has decided to make it her home for a few weeks. I have wandered its streets aimlessly, bought fruits from the local markets, made friends with the shack owners, and spent hour after hour getting myself tanned. It is a long distance love affair that continues successfully to this day.

Even though I have seen Goa in its many shades, I have restricted myself to the beaches, markets and churches of North Goa, not particularly exploring the many facets that add to the glory of this place.

Well, it is difficult to think of Goa beyond beaches, isn’t it? But it’s not impossible! When you get to know that there are other experiences on offer here, that will take you deep in the sea or high in the air then you will perceive Goa as more than just a beach destination! And I am anyway looking for reasons to plan another visit to my favorite vacation spot!

Cocktails and Dreams! pretty much sums it up!
Cocktails and Dreams! pretty much sums it up!

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do and the chances you didn’t take! So throw off the bowlines. Trek to that mountain, take an adventure, fly high in the air, go backpacking in some remote place, lose yourself in the forest, just do nothing and gaze at the stars as if they are there just for you and once in your life definitely meet the mighty Himalayas! Explore, Dream, and Discover!

Adventure is not about facing that struggle on the journey, it’s about your willingness to conquer it, and to get yourself at the doorstep of nature and thrill. Nothing is more delightful in life than to live inside the moment of adventure.  It is an outlandish wilderness experience that gives your life expectations and purpose.
There is nothing more exciting than to experience adventures in life without burning a hole in your pocket!
Here is a lowdown on some of the best adventure travel experiences in India that would fulfill your adventure needs.

Bungee Jumping in Rishikesh
Bungee Jumping is on every adventure junkie’s list! Rishikesh is the hub for adventure activities in India. Rishikesh is easily accessible from Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, and Delhi – Dehradun is one of the cheapest sectors. You could also choose to take a bus from Delhi, which starts from 350 per head and takes roughly 7 hours or a train journey from Delhi to Haridwar would also be easy on the pocket. Any of these options will take you to the adventure city well within budget. Bungee jumping promises the adrenaline rush like never before. Take this adventure at just 3500 per person!

Winter brings to mind all things cozy for most of us, like coffee and Christmas celebrations. But then there are a few, who, despite extra challenges or rather because of them, like to venture out to find beauty, goodness and adventure in the harsh snowy mountains in the winter season. With lesser influx of people, one gets to spend more time in peaceful solitude close to nature. As all good things come with an IF, this solitude and harsh weather can be a spoiler if necessary measures are not taken.

Walking on the frozen Zanskar River
Walking on the frozen Zanskar River

Beginners would do good to remember that the mountain air is extremely crisp and it requires the right kind of dressing-up, attitude and preparation to venture out for a trekking trip in these conditions.In order to make your winter Himalayan trek relatively stress free and a lot more fun,

Explore the vibrant festivals and fairs of India along with different cultures. Each corner has a different story! Find out the story and fall in love with India. Grab the chance to explore the true flavours of every region. Let the travel bug bite you and take you to these fascinating places with interesting fairs and festivals in India.

Hemis Festival, Ladakh
The colourful Hemis Festival is one of the biggest and the most famous religious festivals in Ladakh. The enchanting festival in the land of dreams is celebrated on the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava or commonly known as Guru Rimpoche. The Hemis Monastery is where the festival is celebrated. The monastery is itself a blissful place, surrounded by brown austere hills and bright yellow mustard fields. Its execution through the splendid masked dances by the Lamas is what takes your breath away. To see the celebration of good over evil in a different way, plan your next trip to Ladakh and witness this festival.
When – June or July
Where – Hemis Monastery, Ladakh

Hemis Festival in Ladakh
Hemis Festival in Ladakh

Let’s discover some of the most mesmerising natural wonders of India! These wonders will make you wonder, “How is it even possible?” Travel to these places and find out what’s the story behind them! I bet they will enchant you!

Lonar Crater Lake
Lonar Crater Lake has an interesting formation which is believed to be formed by a meteorite hitting earth 50000 years ago! It’s the world’s oldest meteoric crater lake and third largest in size. This highly saline and alkaline lake will fascinate you with its unique flora and fauna! It’s one of the most amazing natural wonders of India.
Location: Buldhana district, Maharashtra

“Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled.”

The words are enough to inspire someone to travel the world. We live in a beautiful world full of adventures and enormous experiences. There is no end to the adventures and experiences that we can have in this small world; all we need to do is to seek them with our eyes open. If you haven’t started your journey yet, remember this famous quote by Ruskin bond “All glory comes from daring to begin”.

Traverse to savour those moments, for they will not come in your way very often! How about starting to collect these moments and experiences from India? You would be amazed to know that some of the best travel experiences can be had in India. We always try and find happiness in materialistic things but how about travelling with your friends to some place you have never been to! Make memories out of some of these experiences that are a must do in India!

Trek on the Frozen River
Walking on the ice sheet of the Zanskar River will be one of the most breathtaking experiences of your life! Ladakh has always been a dream destination for adventure and travel lovers, including me! Keeping aside the enchanting beauty of Ladakh, trekking in Ladakh on the frozen river can be a life-changing experience.

Winter is usually the time to snuggle up with a good book in front of a fireplace, enjoying a hot cup of tea in bed every morning, or spending lazy afternoons. But winters are also the time to explore the new side of India’s popular destinations. Truly, India is an incredible country, geographically, historically and architecturally. It offers amazing geographical diversity with varied climates and seasons.  Winter season is no doubt the most loved by people of India. If you don’t feel like spending your winter snuggling in a blanket, then trust me you don’t have to!

So if you are planning your next vacation during winters, here is a list of some of the best Winter Destinations in India to choose from.

Orccha Cenotaphs
Orchha Cenotaphs

Khajuraho temples are among the finest temple arts in the world. The erotic sculptures, the minute carvings on the temple walls are worth exploring in winters when the weather is at its best.

Lost in the hustle bustle and crowd of the city? Or working like a zombie to fulfil the necessities of life? Well, then you deserve a break. De-stress, forget the troubles, let it all go and make some fresh and beautiful memories. Get lost on the magical roads of India and find yourself. Travel is the best way to rediscover yourself. It is said that “Blessed are the curious, for they shall have adventures”. So take an adventurous road trip and meet yourself somewhere on the journey!

  • Bangalore to Munnar– Let the wheel roll on the smooth roads! Get ready for an adventure trip through Ghat road, forests, hairpin bends, steep climbs and wildlife and misty routes. From the city of filter coffee travel to the city of Tea plantation. The breathtaking views of lush green plantations, the refreshing water of unexpected waterfalls and the amazing views of endless windmills running together will make you stop your car and capture the memories for lifetime. Don’t forget to pamper your taste buds by the local cuisine on the way!

        Distance: 477 KM
        Travel time: 10 hours

Picturesque roads from Bangalore to Munnar
  • Guwahati to Tawang- A paradise for bikers! Explore the picturesque beauty of North-East through this road trip which will take you to some of the most marvelous monasteries of India. You might find it a bit challenging but it’s a beautiful terrain which will make you forget the rough paths. Tawang has the largest monastery in India and the second largest in the world. Situated at a height of 10,000 feet, it is a beautiful offbeat hill town to explore.
    Distance: 521 KM
    Travel time: 10 hours

From endless gossips to crazy bonding, we have all had those days with our best buddies, but wouldn’t those moments get all the more precious, if we spent them in a special place and only with our girl gang. Well, you don’t need your guy friends around you for safety purposes. Sometimes you just need that girl time! Rediscover yourselves, make that bond stronger and just leave for the trip that you will remember forever!

Shopping together or watching a movie together till now was blissful, but gazing at the stars together and trekking together will be unforgettable. .

The fun part of the trip will be no stress and no boys!

Dudhsagar Falls
The perfect blend of adventure and scenic beauty! Selfies here will be something to boast about; after all you will be at India’s fifth highest waterfalls. It is located in the middle of the forest on Goa – Karnataka border and it is called the sea of sea for its milky white colour. Dudhsagar Trekking is the most amazing way to explore the place. Go trekking, rock climbing, swim in the pool of the waterfall or just sit and take in the beauty of the place. You can take a jeep safari from Castle rock of nearby village, which can guide you through the forest, you can train and start your trek from Bhagwan Mahavir National Park or you can travel here from Panjim, Goa which is approximately 60 km away. The girls will love the tranquility of the place! Don’t miss the Castle Rock Adventure Camp!

Dudhsagar Falls on the Goa Karnataka Border
Dudhsagar Falls on the Goa Karnataka Border

Wander through the Royal Ruins! Rajasthan is the life of India, essence of our country. The colorful, lively and traditional state of India has rich culture and history. Rajasthan has more history than the rest of India put together. There is a reason it’s called the “Land of Kings”, it is indeed a fabulous realm of maharajas and their majestic forts and lavish palaces. It has a romantic past which reminds us of heroism, honor and chivalry. Legend says that Rajasthan is home to Rajputs who have ruled Rajasthan for 1000 years and the fascinating part is that they claim to have originated from the sun, moon and fire. The Mughal Empire faced a lot of difficulty in controlling this part of India. Hence, they gave up and Rajasthan was ruled by its kings until the British Raj.

Amber Fort in Jaipur
Amber Fort in Jaipur

The mighty Thar Desert, the adventurous wild forests, camel safari and glimpse of tigers, shimmering jewels, traditional delicious cuisines, flamboyant art and vibrant culture, famous colourful fairs and festivals

A self-drive tour is an amazing way to explore a destination with freedom and flexibility. Travellers try to find adventure in the trips and they like experimenting with new destinations. In India people are looking for more flexible and adventurous tourism products like Self-drive tours. It is very popular among the travelers in Europe and US, but now it is gaining popularity among Indian travellers who travel abroad as well as in India.

Self-drive road trip is an old concept abroad but it has started recently in India. According to Mumbai’s RTO, applications for International driving license have gone up by 25% in past one year. There are at least 9 countries where you can drive with your Indian driving license. But you can drive only the type of vehicle you drive in India, so it’s better to opt for an international driving license while travelling abroad. The number is increasing as many Indian travellers look for more freedom and flexibility during their trips and do not want a set schedule.

A drive through heaven on earth - Kashmir
A drive through heaven on earth – Kashmir

North-East is one of the most unexplored regions in India. When you visit the place you’ll be proud to say that it’s in India. It’s a small world full of surprises if you are ready to explore.The breathtaking views of mountains, the endless verdant, the magical waterfalls, the wild caves and the distinct culture of North-East India will leave you with an amazing travel experience.You will drool over the North-eastern cuisines as these  have a lot of  variety and are different from the rest of  India.

North-East India has everything for you. You name it and you get to explore your kind of place. I wanted to experience the wilderness of the Natural caves. The caves are the home to many bats and different species of insects. Despite being scared of insects I dared to explore the dark caves and it was one of the wildest experiences of my life. Tiny waterfalls flowing through the lime-stones and the never ending darkness with bats all around made for  one of the most memorable days of my trip!

The beautiful villages of North-East will take your breath away. Some of them have interesting facts about them with the beauty. Let’s explore the Scenic Villages of North-East India.

Ziro Valley, Arunachal Pradesh
The least known place in North-East India, Ziro Valley has pleasant climate throughout the year, so you backpack to this place any day you want. It is just 115 kms from the state capital Itanagar and will take you around 4 hours to reach. Ziro Valley, also known as Apatani Plateau is home to the Apatani Tribes. The green rice field patches make the place look stunning! The Taley wildlife sanctuary, Kile Pakho ridge and the Bamboo groves are worth a visit. If you are planning an offbeat and peaceful trip then this is the destination for you!

The Scenic Ziro Valley Image Credit- thehindu.com
The Scenic Ziro Valley Image Credits – thehindu.com

The journey to Lahaul and Spiti Valley will take you to the roads less traveled, literally! It is “The Middle Land” between India and Tibet. From wide fields of snow to wide fields of barley, from lush green valley to cold desert with different shades of brown, it has the most breath taking scenery that you would ever see. The legend says that long ago in 8th century, Padmasambhava, the Indian Monk, established and blessed some of the monasteries in Spiti and ever since they have remained unchanged. Kunzum La – which rises to 15000 feet divides Lahaul and Spiti regions. Lose yourself in the most astonishing valley of the Himalayas, exploring the beautiful moon landscapes, deep blue lakes, golden snow peaks and the most remote villages of India.

Ibn Battuta was a Moroccan explorer, recognized as one of the greatest travelers of all times. He said that traveling leaves you speechless; then turns you into a storyteller. The journey to the valleys of Lahaul and Spiti will be the most adventurous story you will have. Lahaul and Spiti lie exactly between the Mighty Himalayas and Pir Panjal ranges. A trip to this place will give you the most peaceful time of your life when you look at those ranges standing by the banks of the Spiti River. More days you spend in this enchanting place, more interesting things you will discover about the people and the place.

The grandeur of the mountains!
The grandeur of the mountains!

One story from this place fascinates me more than any other I have heard so far. Legend says that many centuries ago Spiti – then a part of Tibet – faced a terrible drought. Rivers had almost dried and people were starving to death. To make the situation better, monks from various monasteries took to solitary meditation in caves in the rocky mountains. One of them was the famed Giu Lama.

Incredible India it is! It is the land of rich culture and heritage which holds a glorious past. The heritage of India will effortlessly turn back the time for you. India has some of its best attractions mentioned as UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. The legacy of India lies not only in its striking monuments but also in its natural beauty. India has its own wonders. Let’s take a look at some of the must visit UNESCO world heritage sites in India.

Kaziranga National Park, Assam
It is the oldest park in Assam along the floodplains of the river Brahmaputra on the north, and Kabri Anglong hills on the south. Declared as a national park in 1974 and a UNESCO world heritage site in 1985, Kaziranga is known for the great one-horned rhinoceros. With the sheer forest, tall elephant grass, rugged reels and shallow pool, it is the best place to experience raw nature. Kaziranga has been a source of inspiration for several books, documentaries and songs; it is altogether a different world on its own. The serenity and unique biodiversity that Kaziranga has in terms of its flora and fauna makes it perfectly suited for wildlife safaris that include Elephant safaris and Jeep safaris.

One horned rhino at the Kaziranga National Park
One horned rhino at the Kaziranga National Park

Blue, green and brown were my most used pastel colours all through my childhood not knowing that these colours will forever leave firm imprints on my life. I am a total hill person. I love anything and everything about mountains, clear blue skies, vast green meadows and dense forests. I don’t remember what kick started this love but it’s there now for a while and one thing that I am sure of is that it will last till my legs give away. I often venture out to high altitude terrains to move away from the dust and pollution of city life, sometimes to take a break from repetitive and boring life and mostly to have some private exclusive time with the mountains. Mountains have given more than have taken from me. Here are my five life lessons or the 5 things I learned from my trekking experiences – 

1. You can’t succeed if you don’t try. You could only fail if you didn’t try
I have been a reader and traveler since childhood and was automatically drawn towards mountains and their beauty. Often times reading several adventure series and travel books made me wonder if I could also embark on such journeys! What would it be like treading difficult paths like these amazing men did? I used to underestimate myself thinking I can never scale such heights till I made up my mind one day to give it a shot and there hasn’t been any stopping since then.

At Tumling - From my first trek to Sandakphu and Phalut
At Tumling – From my first trek to Sandakphu and Phalut

Travelling is a pleasure, when you want to spend some time with yourself away from the city life inhaling the fresh mountain air while hiking in the woods, walking through fragrant orchards, lazing around and feeling the warmth of the sun.

But if your idea of travel involves some adventure and taking the off-beat track, then a trek is all you need.

If you want to explore Himachal beyond Shimla and Manali and move beyond Dehradun and Mussoorie, see Ladakh beyond Leh and Sikkim beyond Gangtok, then stretch your leg muscles and get ready to venture into these 10 beautiful picturesque Himalayan treks across India. What could be more stress- busting and soothing than experiencing these breathtaking views?

As Ruskin Bond has said, “The adventure is not in arriving, it is in the “On the way” experience. You are not choosing what you shall see in the world but giving the world an even chance to see you.”  So pack your bags and embark on these 10 most picturesque Himalayan treks across India.

Chadar Trek: Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir

One of the most challenging treks as it involves walking on the ice-sheet of Zanskar River.  Chadar trek is not only a miscellany of adventure, but also melody of emotions. You will be awestruck when you see the frozen river, icy caves, unusual campsites, frozen waterfall and changing of the colour of the ice bed of Chadar. The trek became famous when pictures of Buddhist monks walking barefoot on the frozen river in -30 degree temperature went viral.

Chadar Frozen River Trek
Chadar Frozen River Trek

Parang La Trek: Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir

Himachal Pradesh is beyond doubt one of the most verdant and naturally beautiful states in India. With 3 mountain ranges, namely Pir Panjal, Shivalik, and Dhauladhar, in its vicinity, this state literally is the home of snow. It has so much to offer that no matter how many times you travel here; there will always be something new to witness and experience.

In addition to being home to some of the most popular hill towns, like Shimla, Dharamsala, Dalhousie and Manali, it is also a favorite among adventure seekers, particularly trekkers. There are many treks in the state that originate from Manali and Dharamsala. In addition to trekking, you could also enjoy paragliding in Manali as well as Bir Billing.

Here is a lowdown on some of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh

Hampta Pass Trek

Hampta Pass Trek

This trek begins from Manali and is ideal for beginners. With maximum altitude of 14100 feet, this trek takes 5 days to complete, covering a total distance of 26 kms.  Bookings now open

Skiing is a recreational activity as well as a competitive sport and its history dates back to 600 BC when it is believed to have been practiced in what is now China. Modern skiing has evolved from Scandinavia and the word Ski has originated from Old Norse word Skið meaning split wood or firewood. The sport has grown so popular over the decades that most people have a good understanding of what Skiing is all about. Balance, weight, and edge control are the key skills needed in Skiing.

There are 2 types of skiing widely recognized – Alpine and Nordic. Alpine skiing is a downhill skiing that involves sliding down hills with fixed heel bindings. For Alpine Skiing, one needs mechanical assistance to get to the top of the hill as all the equipment makes walking or hiking almost impossible. Nordic Skiing on the other hand is a cross country skiing with free heel bindings. In Nordic style, skiers can freely climb up and down the hills without any mechanical help.

Popular Skiing destinations across the world –

1.       Interlaken, Switzerland – Interlaken is one of the most ideal skiing locations in the world and it has no fewer than four beautiful ski resorts to choose from. The spacious ski slopes, long cross country pistes and snow parks make it perfect for experienced as well as amateur skiers. There are many snow-sports schools here as well, that can make a beginners experience rewarding and fun. All the equipment is available for hire. One of the most popular regions in the Interlaken is the Jungfrau Region. Interlaken is well connected by road and air, with as many as 5 airports within a 2 hour drive. Berne airport is just an hour’s drive away.

Interlaken cable car
Interlaken cable car

2.       Oslo, Norway – Oslo is a perfect winter and skiing destination with more than 2,000 kms of prepared cross country ski trails that lead one into the beautiful Norwegian forests. These are just 20 minutes away from the main city. Oslo city also has its very own modern alpine ski centre called the Oslo Winter Park, which offers plenty of challenges for downhill skiers as well as snowboarders. With more than 60 cozy cabins available for stay, this makes for a great place to go to with family and friends alike. Here you can also ski after dark as almost 90 kms of the track is well lit till 10 PM.

CrossCountry Skiing Oslo
Cross Country Skiing in Oslo

Waterfalls are beautiful, captivating, inviting and heavenly. There are innumerable waterfalls around the world that arouse our interest and curiosity. While some are geographically significant, others have popular fables attached to them. Here is our list of the 7 most beautiful and fascinating waterfalls in the world:

1. Bigar Waterfall, Bozovici, Romania – Located in southwestern Romania in the administrative territory of Bozovici, Bigar Waterfall is a protected area. It is often considered to be one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world and it is also fascinating that it is located at 45 degrees North, at the halfway mark between Equator and North Pole.

Bigar Waterfall Romania
Bigar Waterfall Romania

2.      Kuang Si Waterfall, Luang Prabang, Laos – Easily among the most beautiful waterfalls in the world, Kuang Si is located 29 kms from Luang Prabang. One of the most stunning things about it is its 3 tiers and the many blue pools that the cascading water collects into and also that some of the pools are even open to swimming. It is a very well maintained site with bridges and walkways.

Kuangsi Waterfall Laos
Kuang Si Waterfall Laos

3.      Iguazu Falls, Misiones Province, Argentina – A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984, Iguazu Falls forms the border between Brazil and Argentina and is geographically a part of Argentina. It is made up of many cascades and is 80 meters high. Iguazu literally means Great Water and these falls divide the Iguazu River into upper and lower Iguazu. Its existence first came to be known in 1541.

Iguazu Falls Argentina
Iguazu Falls Argentina

4.      Dynjandi, Westfjords, Iceland – With a combined height of 100 meters, Dynjandi is a series of waterfalls located in Westfjords in Iceland. Dynjandi means Thunderous and each of the 7 sections of the waterfall has its own name. This place is extremely popular with tourists, with many tourist buses stopping here, and is also considered tourist friendly with regards to the facilities.