A Lifetime Trip

…creating colorful memories


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Group Travel – A Boon For Solo Traveler

Just imagine seeing something nice like a beautiful sunset, a garment or an article and not be able to share and discuss it with anyone? One invariably feels, Oh! I wish so and so was here to see this or I wish I could have shared this with someone. Such is the joy of sharing. It multiplies with each share.

In the recent times, Indian society has faced several social challenges that have resulted in many people to willingly or unwillingly adopt single-hood. Unlike yesteryears many people travel through life on their own. Solo. There are many single parents, unmarried individuals, women who have chosen to be single, divorced persons, parents with children abroad etc. The Indian social fabric has learnt to accept these new individual citizens happily. Being solo is alright. Being solo doesn’t mean one can’t enjoy the same privileges as the others.

The travel industry is probably one of the first industries that welcomed the solo traveler and mingled them in the group travel programs. The group travel tours are a mixed potpourri, where solos and couples travel as a group and share the travelling experience. The Group Travelling tours are indeed a boon for a solo traveler. Any solo person, professional irrespective of age or gender bar can now visit and see all those beautiful destinations they wished they could see and enjoy. Travelling with a group tour is always a pleasure. It is like going with an extended family without any obligation.

The Top 5 Benefits of Group Travel For A Solo Traveler Are:

No Tedious Planning, just enjoy the group privileges:

When you travel in a group, you get all the travelling arrangements like ticketing, airline itinerary, hotel bookings organized by the tour operator, and you truly need not do much besides make the payments. This is a completely hassle free travel as all responsibility of arrangements rests with the Travel Agency or Tour Operator.

The Sense Of Security:

Travelling alone, especially in alien countries or locations, can be quite risky for both genders and a group brings an immediate security and protection to the solo traveler. An elderly solo traveler can find solace in realising his/her dreams, even at a late age, while basking in the safety of the fellow group members.

Save The Money:

When one travels solo, he misses on the discount part of the trip. The hotels, airlines do not make hefty group discounts available to solo travelers. For the lone passenger, the road transports like taxi and buses too are expensive as against group travelling in these vehicles. When a solo traveler joins a group, he/she can benefit from Insane Discounts that the group travelers usually receive. Many times when you travel in a group, especially in destinations with different colloquial language, an interpreter is available to explain the details of the surroundings, and the solo traveler can enjoy the visit far better than mutely watching the scenery.

Sharing & Joy:

Sharing is fun, happiness and contentment. Be it a tasty chocolate or a photograph, the joy of travelling in a group gives ample opportunities to share. While one has the company of like minded people, one can even choose to remain aloof and enjoy the travel experience in regular solitude.

Expand The Buddy Circle:

A Solo Travelers can find travel partners with similar travelling interest like wildlife or photography. Such group interactions that are at a personal level can bring around long lasting friendships for future travel trips or social friendships. So all those people irrespective of their reasons for being solo can fulfil their dream of visiting their favourite destinations. The reason a person is single no more matters. Literally. You can now enjoy any destination that you have always wanted to visit but could never plan due to lack of company.

At Alifetimetrip.com, we offer very customised group Travel Packages that accommodate the solo traveler. For more information on the upcoming Tour Packages, contact us by email info@alifetimetrip.com or follow us on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/ALifetimeTrip/

or simply call on 9416246010; 9251250807.


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A day well spent at Chandni Chowk, Old Delhi

A Day Well Spent at Chandni Chowk, Purani Dilli

Homework well done

Part of Mughal emperor’s Shah Jahan’s capital Shahajanabad, the old part of Delhi, now popularly called Purani Dilli, is deeply entrenched in heritage, culture, chaos, commotion and dotted with various mesmerizing sights. The crowded by-lanes reek of history, which is what the charm of the area is all about. And the crown of Purani Dilliis the boisterous and legendary Chandni Chowk, reminiscent of an era gone by, yet so famous and teeming with people all the time.

Having read so much about this place and wanting to experience the charming place myself, I decided to spend a day in Chandni Chowk.

How I reached

I have heard people say that reaching Chandni Chowk earlier was a nightmare. But the metro connectivity has made the old city easily accessible. I too boarded the Delhi Metro for a comfortable ride. As I alighted from the station right into Chandni Chowk, the buzz and liveliness of the place both shocked and enchanted me at the same time! From here on, I began to explore everything I had mentally noted down in a quick checklist in preparations for today. I was capable of walking throughout the market, but could not resist the thrills of a rickshaw ride, amidst close and tight jammed up vehicles on the road.

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Religious tolerance in complete harmony

What I found remarkable is that the marketplace has been here for three centuries and all possible faiths co-exist in this small area in total harmony. This is clear with the presence of the 16th century Digambara Jain Temple, next to the Hindu Gauri Shankar Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva. Up ahead there is the Svetambra Jain Temple, also the famed Sunheri Masjid, a mosque. The other end of the street is flanked by the holy Sikh Sisganj Gurudwara! Mini secular India, exemplary for the entire nation, don’t you agree? And one can walk into any of these religious and revered premises without inhibition, regardless of one’s faith.

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Shoppers haven

I found myself gazing with marvel at the varied bazaars, each one a theme market.  The Dariba Kalan Road is a haven for exquisite craftsmen who have been creating wonderful jewelry for generations. The Kinari Bazaar is colorful and is dedicated to the Indian wedding extravaganza, the bridal embellishments and zari outfits being the most coveted! The cloth bazaar of the Katra Neel beckoned me with the finest of linen. The Bhagirath Palace showed glittering lampshades, electrical lights and modern medical equipment. It is also the wholesale centre for allopathic machines. Perfect example of old traditional wares adapting well to the modern wonders.

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The best part that I liked was that the streets were full of tourists jostling for space with shoppers. Also dealing in bulk buying were traders from all over India, the northern part in particular. I was then told that Chandni Chowk is a hub for wholesale prices and many merchants operating in NCR and across the country come here to get bulk stocks. Interesting!

Tempting Eateries

Chandni Chowk is a gastronomical delight, with enticing smells of delicious foods tempting you from every nook and corner. I had gone empty stomach to be able to relish as many as possible of these culinary treats! I started out with the famousParanthe Wali Gali, where desi-ghee parathas of every imaginable stuffing are served with sumptuous accompaniments! Too heavy, but oh so tantalizing! And the malai lassiwas simply irresistible!

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Then to satisfying my sweet tooth, I headed to the Jalebiwala. I really wonder how they manage to make such heavenly jalebis? Is it syrup or pure nectar that runs through the twisted veins of the jalebis?

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After walking around a bit, I felt that my stomach may be able to accommodate just a teeny weeny more. So off I headed to the reputed Natraj’s Dahi Bhalle counter, established in 1940.  The dish was the best ever, tangy and digestive, with the softest of bhallas served with delicious tamarind chutney! The rush at this famous eatery was unimaginable . The staff was smiling and courteous, quite oblivious to and seemingly unperturbed by the awaiting frenzied crowd!

Took a bite of the rabri-falooda at Gianiji Ka Falooda and got some sinful sweets packed from Ghantewala Halwai and some namkeens from Kanwarji Bhagirathmal Dalbhajiwallah, having being too full by now! So much for the gastronomic adventures! Chandni Chowk lived up to its reputation to the hilt! And the rates are so reasonable!

A promise…

One day is surely not enough to enjoy the wonderful and enchanting Chandni Chowk. I did manage to get a small glimpse of it in one day. As I walked in the narrow alleys, I felt myself deported back in time and I could imagine the people living there decades and perhaps centuries ago. The perfect way to enjoy heritage at its best!


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Best time to visit Kashmir

Kashmir is an year round tourist destination but if you are still looking for the best time, then the months of March till October are considered as great. During this period the weather conditions in Kashmir are just perfect. Blossomed gardens, chirping birds, alpine meadows and refreshing air is what would welcome you in this land. Kashmir.jpg

This whole period covers three seasons in Kashmir i.e. spring (March-early May), summers (early May-late August) and autumn (September-November). Pahalgam is popular from April to November for activities like rafting and horse riding. If Golf is your sport, then April to November months are the best time for you. What waits for you is the highest green golf course anywhere in the world, situated at an altitude of 2650 m, spread over 52 sprawling acres of lush land.

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From December to early March is the winter season for Kashmir, when the entire valley is covered with a white blanket of snow. Breeze is chilling and sunshine tender. But if you are a winter sport lover, travel to Gulmarg in these months for some of the best skiing and snowboarding. You would be awestuck by the views you would get by Gondola cable car rides at this period of year.

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So see what type of traveler you are and then go ahead to soak your soul in this paradise on earth!


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Destination Rajasthan: Unveiling its rich heritage

Do not get carried away by the title because Rajasthan has much more to it than what meets the eye. Now that we have your attention, let us address the elephant in the room – the gem of a place that is Rajasthan. Without one shadow of a doubt, it is one of the most vivacious and vibrant states in India. Not only does it boast of a rich cultural heritage that is preserved in pockets till date, but it is also the home to many magnificent palaces, sumptuous and lip smacking food and most importantly, it is a popular shopping hub for traditional clothes, jewellery and artifacts! Let us take a sneak peek into the beauty and richness that thrives in every nook and corner of Rajasthan.

Rajasthan has always attracted tourists because of the grand hospitality that runs down its history along with some spectacular sites. There is something for everyone here. In fact, Rajasthan has lately emerged as the most sought after site for destination weddings. Not only Indians, but couples from overseas as well are choosing Rajasthan to take their vows. Much credit needs to be given to Bollywood, which is the linchpin when it comes to recreating the magical Rajasthan on celluloid and taking it across countries.

Here we have listed a multitude of places that are a must visit if you are planning to have a piece of Rajasthan anytime soon. There is just so much to discover, travel and unleash in Rajasthan that any no matter how much time you spend there, you can never have enough of the place!

Jaipur: This is the most obvious entry in our list. The ‘gulabi town’ is indeed one of the most important cities in Rajasthan. It is the capital city in true measure and has successfully managed to preserve the cultural heritage while taking forward strides into the modern world. It has all the elements that define a developed city, like commercial malls, broad clean roads, fancy restaurants, picturesque palaces and the constituents of the old world charm. No matter what you do, do not forget to splurge in the local Johri Bazaar, Bapu Bazaar and indulge in the ultra famous Rawat ki kachori.

Udaipur: The city of lakes is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Rajasthan, which comes as no surprise really. Laden with aesthetically pleasing scenic beauty and serenity, Udaipur was previously called the Venice of East. The plethora of lakes and innumerable palaces make for the most spectacular sites in the city. Do make a point to stop by the Kumbhalgarh Fort, lake Pichola, and Fateh Prakash Palace among other sites. In fact, a heritage walk in Udaipur will be a great idea.

Jodhpur: One of our personal favourites, Jodhpur is a place we just can’t get enough of. It is the second largest city in Rajasthan and has a tremendous and fascinating history behind it. The Umaid Bhawan Palace is one grand site to stop by. The Mehrangarh Fort is one of the most popular tourist places in Jodhpur. It rises above the city and is a site of sheer cultural heritage. You must also visit the old market and the Clock Tower. It is chaotic, colourful and beautiful all at once, known for colourful handicrafts, accessories and home utility products. Though overcrowded at times, but it transcends the actual essence of the city.

Jaisalmer: Like every city in Rajasthan that has a unique past to boast about, Jaisalmer has a tale of valour that runs down history. This of course, is in conjunction with the vibrancy and colourfulness that is a trademark of Rajasthan on a whole. The Golden Fort of Rajasthan or the Jaislamer Fort is nothing short of magical. The architecture too is simply majestic. The positioning of the Fort amidst the desert speaks of the finesse and genius that went behind its planning. Other noteworthy sites include Patwon-ki-Haveli, Sam Sand Dunes (perfect for a desert safari) and Gadisar Lake among many others.

Chittorgarh: Another fascinating location in Rajasthan is Chittorgarh. The place is sure to immerse you in the rich historical traditions reflected in the architecture and the serenity of the city. Sites which you just can’t afford to miss out on are Vijay Stambh, Chittorgarh Fort, Padmini’s Palace and Fatta Haveli. There are innumerable temples that are architecturally rich and enable you to get in touch with your religious selves. Moreover, Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary is one to watch out for all nature lovers out there.

Mount Abu: The only hill station in the desert state, Mount Abu has enjoyed an unparalleled status since years. In a nutshell, the site is beautiful, peaceful, and serene and stands in sharp contrast to the other cities of Rajasthan that are replete with forts and palaces. That being said, it is not without its share of historical and cultural importance. Mount Abu has a number of pilgrimage sites and temples that attract tourists all year round. It provides respite from the scorching sun and takes you in the lap of nature surrounded by lush greenery and pleasant weather. Ergo, it should come first in the pecking order in your Rajasthan travel itinerary.

Pushkar: Everyone has heard of the famous Pushkar Fair that is central to the mythical town of Pushkar. It is a beautiful small town to visit in Rajasthan that has a unique mythological history behind it. Bordering the one and only Thar Desert, the town is set on Pushkar Lake which is considered as a sacred holy Hindu site laden with 52 stone staircases. Once there, you are bound to visit Brahma’s Temple and Dargah Sharif as well.

Ranthambore National Park: After having visited a number of opulent forts and palaces and experiencing the cool breeze of Mount Abu, you ought to pay visit to the Ranthambore National Park, one of the largest national parks in North India. In case you happen to be a photography aficionado, then this wildlife experience is surely meant to satisfy your senses.

So, go and immerse yourself in the rich history of Rajasthan and revel in the true spirit of the vibrant land!


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10 Reasons to love Ladakh

Ladakh is the crown-jewel of India and a hot-spot that attracts tourists from India as well as all over the world. But what is it that makes it a ‘must-visit’ tourist destination, despite that fact that it is not a very easily accessible place and the facilities available are not exceptional either?

The charm of Ladakh cannot be expressed enough in words, nor contained in a few expressions. Here are some of the best reasons why you SHOULD take that life-altering  and alifetimetrip, guaranteed to fall in love and wanting to come back again and again!

1. Intriguing beauty

As you come into Ladakh from the Manali-Leh Highway, you would see an abrupt change in the landscape after crossing the Lahaul Valley. If you come via Srinagar, the same is visible as you cross Zoji La.

The lush green expanses suddenly turn to rugged mountains that are devoid of any forms of vegetation. The rustic appeal is both daunting and intimidating, as you face the harshness of nature. The desert-like expansiveness of raw mountainous terrain makes you feel the powerful forces of nature and how you are but a tiny speckle in the magnanimous environs. Places like Nubra Valley allow you to experience the clear flowing river and sand-dunes of the desert, and are a photographer’s delight!

2. The land of blues of all hues

Where else will you find the azure blue lakes competing with clear blue skies, embellished with pristine clear clouds? The legendary Pangong Lake that stretches for miles, crystal-clear, shimmering, enticing! The Tso Morriri, Tso Kar, Kiagar Tso, Tso Kyin – and so many more – each charming, untouched and breathtaking!

3. Explore nature on foot – the picturesque trekking trails

Ladakh is the epitome of pleasure for a trekker. So many routes have been trod upon by enthusiastic folks who love to be one with nature, as they enter her deepest folds and discover her delightful secrets. If you have a backpack, a tent, a map and some provisions for yourself, along with a daring spirit, just set off on this awesome experience! The famous Chadar trek  is very popular, as is the Markha Valley trek. For those who like adventure, Stok Kangri trek has some surprises and challenges!

4. The charming monasteries – the Gompas 

Dotting the mountains are quaint monasteries – the Gompas – prides of Ladakhi population. Vibrant and somewhat startling wall murals adorn these, but the Gompas inside are melting pots of heritage, culture, ancient Buddhist scriptures and are the main source of strength of the community here, to live in such harsh conditions, with a smile. Inside the monasteries there is a soothing environment; the simplicity and dignity of the monks rubs on to you as well. Little monks who are but boys, despite the heavily austere robes, take your heart away!

5. The colorful festivals

Ladakh festivals are vibrant and full of dance and gaiety. These are the best places which bind all the community members together, where everyone comes together joyously. Their colorful dances such as the Cham are bold and bizarre. The monasteries host many of these festivals and a famous one is the Hemis festival. Many festivals such as Ladakhi Losar, Spituk Gustor, Thiksey Gustor and Stok Monastery Festival occur in winter and are thronged by tourists.

6. Clear skies for astronomic wonders – perfect for stargazing

Ladakh is very popular amongst photographers and astronomers for its clear vision of the night sky – unpolluted. In fact, many like to pitch tents in the wilderness and simply connect with the universe at night. A special permit can take you to Hanle, the paradise for those wanting to spot the Milky Way! This is home to the Indian Astronomical Observatory, which boasts of having the highest telescope in the world!

7. Lovely and warm Ladakhis

It is impossible not to be bowled over by the simple and sweet natured Ladakhi residents. Cheerful, despite the harsh life, and God-fearing, they are very hospitable and friendly.  In fact, if you are lucky, the locals may even offer you a sumptuous yet simple meal. If you can get to stay with a local family, you would have hit the jackpot! It’s the perfect way to get a first-hand experience of the local lifestyle!

Our travelers with the shy Ladakhis

8. The ‘oh-so innocent’ cute kids

The kids are so cute! They do not possess the modern gadgets and live childhood the way as it is probably supposed to – pure, close to nature and full of human touch. Their innocent smiles are sure to touch you! This happy disconnect with the unnecessary complications of the modern world gets on to you and you begin to feel child-like yourself!

9. Safe heaven for women

Ladakh is very respectful towards nature and its creations. So many women travelers alone or in groups have recounted wonderful experiences where they roamed around freely without the constant fear of being stalked, stared at or touched. A message for those in the rest of the world, if they care to listen!

10. The Rarest Wildlife

Ladakh is home to the rarest species of wildlife. The Snow Leopard, innumerable birds, kiangs, marmots and charming furry friends can be spotted here. Habitat to yak, ibex, bharal and the like, this is a favorite for those who love to be with the creatures of nature and wildlife photographers.

God’s own creation – the picturesque land of Ladakh – is frequented by many via road or by air. Those who want to push their own body to the extremes love to take bike trips here on the world’s highest motorable roads.

Truly Ladakh is and will always engage, astonish, inspire and mesmerize visitors! No wonder than that whatever has been said and written about this marvel is never enough!


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Havelock – A Honeymooner’s Paradise

So your wedding bells are ringing! You want to take off to a secluded, wondrous part of the world to spend some romantic ‘we’ time with your beloved, where peace and quiet do not disturb you? Would you like to experience heavenly bliss in a not-so-hyped getaway? Where the clear blue skies meet the expansive blues of oceans, amidst the vast gazes of sandy beaches! Welcome to Havelock – a paradise and perfect destination for honeymooners!

A Brief

This island is one of the many in Ritchie’s Archipelago, lying towards the east of Great Andaman, in the Bay of Bengal, that belongs to India. There are many charming villages that dot this island, adding to its rustic beauty. It was colonized by British and named after the English General Mr. Henry Havelock.

This island’s native population is almost extinct, now reduced to a very small number, of Aborigine descent. There tribes that reside here are of the lineage of Negros. But most of the other population comprises of migrants from Myanmar and Bengal. Shy and friendly, you may be able to make friends with a few locals that can actually show you some ‘off-the-cuff’ spots that you can quietly sneak away to with your better half!

Accommodation

Havelock has so many hotels for both of you. If you like the plushness of a resort, there are lavish luxurious ones to choose for. Or if you like to be in a rustic cottage, you can find many that suit your budget. There are also the ‘do not disturb’ semi-furnished self-contained accommodations that let you live and cook by yourself and be virtually ‘left alone’! You can choose from beach resorts to hotels near the green rainforest areas, or do a mix of both!

Tantalize your senses with the mesmerizing ocean creatures

Take a scuba diving experience with your love and you will both feel exhilarated. There are a number of diving sites with stunning coral reefs hidden within the depths of the seas. Or try snorkeling in the tropical waters and share the world of corals and marine life. You both will feel rejuvenated and enriched, inspired by the fantasy like underwater world.

Suntan or laze at the beach

The beaches are numbered here there are so many. Some popular ones have names too such as the Radhanagar beach where green forest seems to create a picturesque alcove that is a feasty sugary sandy curve next to perfect lapping waves. Sunset is the best time to soak in the scene here, and as you walk away from the main entry, hand in hand, you will get private places away from prying eyes!

Zoom away!

Take a Scooty and ride along the narrow mesmerizing roads and along sandy beaches, at your pace. Stop wherever you want, whenever you feel like. Interact with locals if you want to, eat at the local joints tucked away in non-tourists spots and taste authentic sea-food cooked in the traditional way!

Ride away for private golden moments

Hire a couple of bicycles, pack in a backpack or two with camping gear, get some maps and other equipment and set off. With its bamboo-hut accommodations and excellent camping grounds, both in the green areas as well as near the not so touristy coasts, you can have quiet romantic moments, just like in the movies! Dare to take it rough, sleep under the open sky and be one with nature, with your love snuggled up to you.

Some daring challenges

Gone are the days when newlyweds liked to spend days gazing onto each other’s eyes – the stuff that makes up the oh-so-outdated romantic novels! Today’s confident young couples want to share their bolder adventurous passions, daring to prove their mettle against challenging feats.

Havelock offers a number of trekking trips into its jungles for spectacles of the rainforest jungles. The slippery forest floors are surely tricky to tread on!

The ocean offers a number of water sports along the coasts, especially at Elephant beach. Try some sports and see who does better. How about some kayaking? It is not as easy as it looks!

Be a bird amidst the clouds

You can take a seaplane ride to one or more beaches! This is a truly lovely and amazing journey! They can make you hover over the beaches and islands nearby, giving you a bird’s eye view akin to a portrait of myriad colors and hues! Enrapturing for sure!

Truly a week in Havelock will refresh you as you enjoy some of the most precious moments of your life. The perfect time spent here with your beloved, is a promise that you make to each other – to carry memories of this beautiful trip as you embark together on a glorious journey called life!


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India for a solo traveler

India is a mine of cultural gems, vibrant and poignant. There are many ways to experience its warmth, charms, romance and intriguing traditions. Many travelers, both from the country’s own soils and others from global lands, like to traverse the length and breadth of this huge country alone.

Whilst this gives you a chance to travel as you like and is the perfect recipe for adventure, it is good to travel responsibly to enjoy and cherish your trip. Here are a few tips that can come in handy while you take the solo path to enjoy ‘Incredible India’!

 

  • Take it slow

India is a vast country and it simply cannot be covered in a single trip, unless you are stretching it on for months. Instead of making your trip hectic, localize your visit to cover destinations that are close to each other. This saves time, is budget friendly and can give you more time to explore the intricacies of each place that you visit. If you desire, make multiple trips to cover different parts of this beautiful country. The more you see of this wonderful land, the more you will be left yearning for – that is a promise!!

  • Carry first-aid and some handy snacks

Pack in come usual medicines and a first-aid kit, in case you need them when you travel alone. Medical shops may not be available everywhere and in any case may not stock up what you need. Likewise, pack in a few energy bars and light snacks, at least for the initial days till you get familiar how to move around.

  • Understand the Indian culture and mindset

India is a traditional land, and one with many religions. The culture by and large is one that respects people. Before visiting a place, read up about its culture and the general thought-process of the inhabitants.  This will help you mingle in better especially when you interact with the locals. Dress moderately, especially if you plan to visit places of religious worship, as some of these have some basic rules for dress codes.

  • Give Indian hospitality a chance

Indians by nature are very friendly and open up easily in fluent and warm verbal exchanges. These are valuable opportunities to get insights about their beliefs, lifestyles and you might learn a few things that may not be available in any tourist brochure. These glimpses of local life will stay with you forever! You can get handy and practical tips from the locals as well. You never know, you could end up forging a real friendship!

  • Taste the local flavors first hand

If you have been to India and not savored its gastronomic delights, you’ve missed something awesome! India is a land of spices, and flavor and food habits change every few miles. Pamper your taste buds with the local dishes. Most of the hotels and restaurants will dole out these for you lovingly, being their pride and tradition! If you are the adventurous type, ditch the expensive hotels and head down the by-lanes and streets for the true Indian cuisine wonders.

Be aware that some of these eating joints may have hygiene issues, so be sure to check them out well. Also, Indians go high on spices, masala and oil, so be careful what you pick to eat!

  • Avoid travel at night

It is advisable to travel during the day, since you are traveling alone, as far as possible. Avoid going into the city or desolate areas around dusk and later. This is even more important if you are a woman. If you do have to travel at night, be sure to use public and well-habited modes of transport such as trains or planes.

  • Stay Connected and Safe

Enjoy the joys of the virtual connectivity, and keep your family and loved ones informed about your safety. Use Wi-Fi hot-spots and Internet mobility to send regular updates back home. Buy a local calling card or a local mobile SIM card and talk to your family at least once a day. You can purchase a SIM card at the International Airport on arrival and saves you a lot of hassles/formalities to procure one outside. Every International Airport in India has telecom operators, selling these cards inside the airport. Download some of the safety apps on your mobile and configure them for emergency contact numbers for emergency.

  • Never compromise on your accommodation

Save in other places, but never compromise on the quality of your accommodation, since this is linked to safety and your well-being. Having a good manager with helpful staff is very important to make you feel happy and relaxed. Choose a budget hotel or warm family home-stay options if you want to cut costs, but one that is well known and has good reviews.

  • Don’t be wary of public transport

Public transport is safer as compared to taxis. They are cheaper too, especially the buses and trains. They also give you a good chance to meet locals and interact with them! Check out the bus, metro and train routes well in advance when you make your detailed plans. Download mobile apps of Indian Railways, Metro routes & bus routes. India is a technologically advanced country now, we have a lot of such technology readily available.

  • Don’t stick to the tourist hot-spots

Touristy places may sound ‘safer’, but are also commercialized and overcrowded. You may find a pleasant village tucked away nearby, relatively untouched by the money-making frenzy. This could be the perfect quaint place to visit, even though it may not have fancy offerings. This shall give you genuine first-hand experience to soak in the local ambience, perhaps at the cost of a bit of compromise on comfort. Don’t miss it!

  • Don’t forget to keep a self-defense weapon with you

Being safe and well-equipped for any unforeseen emergency is always good. Carry a handy weapon like a pocket-knife or the very suave and effective pepper-spray with you. Hopefully, you shall never need it, but it’s always good to be prepared, isn’t it?

So go on let the country soak you in its myriad colors and inspire you. Never cease to be surprised, as each of the 29 states has its own set of unique dialects, languages, food, culture and traditions. Travel well, travel smartly, safely and enjoy a memorable trip!

You might like to read more on traveling to India below: