“Travelling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” -– Ibn Battuta
I couldn’t agree more! Half our conversations today begin with – “you know the time we were in….”
Yup, we have umpteen stories to tell and so glad we started this blog!
Travelling has definitely broadened our perspective in many ways. For us, travelling is discovering new cultures, exploring new cities, meeting new people and making lifetime memories.
Over the past few months while thinking about pursuing this new found passion of ours – I realized that you don’t have to fly half-way around the world to travel, it could be exploring a nearby village, town or city or the country next door. It is all about breaking your monotonous routine, finding some adventure and just experiencing something new!
So this new year, as a part of my yearly resolutions, I decided to focus on travelling a bit more.(Yes, I make a list every year and believe it or not I do follow it 😉 ). And, since I like realistic & measurable targets (the goal-oriented me), we started with #TripEveryMonth.
So, here is the Q1 WhiteCollarTraveller Update :
January: Nainital – Lake District of Uttarakhand
I last visited Nainital about 15 years ago and I don’t remember much but was completely mesmerized this time with its oh-so-gorgeous scenery – sun-kissed mountains and picturesque lake in the center.
A trip to Nainital might not sound that exciting to some, but it truly is one of the most relaxing getaways for us Delhiites. This staycation with the family in a cozy cottage was all about spending quality time (read: fighting for a spot closer to the fireplace! Hello, -2 degrees!).
Making most of the pollution free surroundings we spent our time exploring the town taking in the stunning views and discovering new walking trails. I was completely amazed by how neat and clean the city was. Apart from lazying around and enjoying the snow – we did cover some of the obvious choices:
- Naini Lake: One can enjoy boating, yachting or paddling in the lake for peaceful views of the beautiful surroundings. Yes, clichéd but still a must do!
- Tiffin Top: This famous viewpoint offers some of the most breathtaking views of the Himalayas. Since we went in January, we were lucky to see some snow and the strenuous 2km hike up was completely worth it! Amongst, all the viewing points, this definitely was our favourite. What works in its favour is that the hilltop is non-motorable, hence less crowded.
- Mall Road: We did spend some time strolling here and enjoying the perfect backdrop of the lake and hills.
February: Quick Trip Home – Pune
Nothing makes me happier than a quick trip home. Getting pampered by mom, eating yummy home-cooked food and trying out new restaurants is how we spent our weekend.
There is no dearth of restaurants or cafés in Pune and while we have our favourites – we did try the Independence Brewing Company. Checked all the boxes – Good food, good beer and good ambience as well as music!
March: Wah Taj – 24 hours in Agra
Just 3.5 hours away from Delhi (thanks to the Yamuna Expressway), we made a quick trip to Agra during the Holi weekend. We stayed at the Grand Imperial – a boutique heritage hotel just about 10 mins from the Taj. We fell in love with the poster beds, high ceilings, wide verandas, beautiful gardens and great hospitality.
What all did we cover?
Mehtab Bagh: This was the highlight of our trip. While we have been to Taj a few times, this was the first time we visited Mehtab Bagh! Situated across the Yamuna river, right opposite the Taj Mahal – the gardens offer great uninterrupted views which are perfect during sunset! Shah Jahan believed it was the perfect place to view and appreciate the Taj and we so agree!
Fun Fact: Mehtab Bagh is also known as the Moonlight garden as one can enjoy a spectacular night view of the Taj Mahal under the moonlight!
Taj Mahal: We spent the morning, walking along the complex, staring at the beauty and obviously taking a gazillion pictures!
Agra Fort: This is a UNESCO world heritage site and very similar to the ‘Lal Quila’in Delhi. The fort itself is gorgeous and offers great views of the Taj. They do have a light and sound show in the evening – which in our view can be missed.
The philosopher me has realized that life is short, so why not pursue things that make you happy! Find something that you are passionate about, something that brings a smile to your face! It could be anything – travelling to new places, learning a new language, joining a dance class or just spending some quality time with your family!
I call them “Happiness Goals”!
My other goals for this year include – reading a book a month, setting up the travel blog, running 10k etc. etc. (yes, I have a big list).
So here’s to goals and making them happen!
Do comment and share your goals for 2018!