There are some things in life that you must do on your own, all by yourself and at least once. Solo Travel is gaining popularity among the travel community steadily due to the sheer spontaneity that comes with it. The quest to discover oneself along with spiritual rejuvenation and flow of adventurous adrenaline becomes a perfect reason to pack your travel bag and climb those serene mountains or stroll by silent beaches, all by yourself. Solo travel also allows you to not be enslaved by the whims and fancies of your fellow travellers, and your planning is largely unmarred by group dynamics. So if you want to trek up that hill on your next trip to the Himalayas, or watch the sunrise by the beach on your next trip to Gokarna, get ready to go! You get a sense of independence and freedom, from being out of your comfort zone while also getting cool stories to tell people back home! Here are some places you must explore if you’ve been bit by the little bug called wanderlust!
1. Sandhan Valley
Referred to as the Grand Canyon of Maharashtra, the Sandhan Valley is a trek of a lifetime for the thrill-seeker in you. It’s a combination of a valley with a canyon. Accessible from November to May, this water-carved valley has Ratnagad and Ajoba mountain ranges around it. Going back to basics, it is the quintessential tent-pitching camp where food is cooked in campfires with the aroma filling the air around. The trek takes five hours to finish with activities like rappelling to really get your adrenaline pumping.
Getting There – Reaching here is half the fun with a train journey to Kasara and then a bus till the Samrad village where it’s located in the Bhandardara region. You can also fly to Mumbai and then go on with the train.
The most isolated of all the Himalayan valleys, Zanskar is to be explored by those who want to experience untouched, pristine beauty in India. The frozen waterfalls and the Chadar trek along with the frozen Zanskar River is a must-do while visiting here. Buddhist monasteries are also worth the visit here. The best time to visit is April to August.
Getting There – This is a destination which you must cover on a road trip to Leh-Ladakh. A bus or on a motorbike is the best way to get here.
One of the most unexplored terrains in the country, Lahaul-Spiti is definitely a trip of a lifetime. Mountains and monasteries await you here. You can either make a long road-trip of these two places while passing Manali, Rohtang Pass and Leh, these destinations can be visited individually also.
Getting There – This trip is strict to be taken by road to actually experience what it is all about. Some of the highest motorable roads in the world exist here. Best time to visit from May to October.
Old and new are both beautiful when it comes to visiting Manali. Thick pine forests and a gushing river make it seem like you’ve stepped into a perfect world that only exists in books and imaginations. Manali is also a starting point for many while going to Spiti and Leh. Having two major seasons of summer and winter, you can take your pick of which season you want to visit in to experience Manali in a different way. If you go in February, the Tibetian New Year and Lossar Festival happen then which is an extravagant affair. Temples, hot springs, monasteries, German bakeries are just some of the places to visit.
Getting There – You can either fly to Bhuntar which is 10 kms from Manali or take a bus or train if you want a longer, more scenic path along the rivers.
If you want to go to France but don’t have the money yet, go to Puducherry instead! With French influence in its architecture, this sleepy little place is perfect for a serene, beach getaway. The food has a lot of French influence too and beer is cheap, making it a place to if you want a real culinary experience. The Auroville temple is a place to visit if you want to reconnect with your spiritual side.
Getting There – You can get here by driving down from Chennai on one of the most scenic rides in India. While there, you can walk around town and explore. It’s also famous for its incense at the Aurobindo Ashram shops. October to February is the best time to visit with the minimum temperature not going below 17 degrees.