Lets make a cocktail to all the fearless and strong woman out there. To women who are not afraid of being themselves, to woman who shine a light to the world and make things better just with their smile and presence. And to women who are not afraid to tread new and unknown paths all their own. If you are are also one such woman who loves to go on adventures all by themselves, here is little ode to your spirit. Or rather, new destinations which you can conquer next. Add a bunch of adventure, a dash of safety measures, and tons of experience that lasts a lifetime and will also help you kick away your fears, anxieties, self-doubt; and make you grow as a person. Life is short, you see; hit the road Here are five offbeat places to travel solo:
Mashobra, Himachal Pradesh
Start your day with a long nature walk along the windy Himalayan roads lined by tall pine trees. Or maybe, hire a bicycle (your resort might help), hit the road, taking in the chilly Himalayan air. Barmain- Basantpur Road is one popular trail among bikers, we hear. Stop for a rhododendron juice, maybe and a meal with the locals. Himachali delicacies, being rich in lentils will provide you the vigour needed for your adventures. Look out for madra, siddu, and dhaam, the complete meal as it is called.
And when you are done exploring the land, soar through the skies with a paragliding session and taste the thrill at its best.
The best thing about Mashobra is that it effortlessly drives you away from the noise and crowd of the city while also keeping you close to its liveliness. The gorgeous town of Shimla is just 40 minutes away.
If you plan to stay in Mashobra all the time (we totally recommend that), go for a birding tour. The Reserve Forest Sanctuary, rich in water and marshes, is touted to be a heaven for bird-watchers. Find pheasants, partridges, and Himalayan eagles so you roam around with your binoculars.
Not into birding? Choose a trek trail (Shali Tibba is one of them) based on your prior experience and strength, and spend hours reading (or writing) a book you have always wanted to, occasionally taking in the views of the sunrise or sunset. Spending your night at a camp, gazing at the stars isn’t a bad idea either.
Whats offbeat about Goa? Apparently, a lot. Ever jumped into a well to celebrate the Sao Joao festival? Taken a spice farm tour? Done kayaking in the backwaters? The sunny state in the western India is a treasure trove of offbeat experiences never even heard by many. This time, plan a solo trip to Goa.
Hire a bike and get lost in the numerous lanes and bylanes of Goan villages; Olaulim is one among them. Stop at a small bakery and eat bebinca (a layered Goan dessert) and freshly-baked pois (breads). Go island-hopping. Explore a lesser-known fort; Fort Aguada is intriguing. Spend away your days reading your favourite title soaking in the sun by a swimming pool at a quiet villa.
Visit Bhimtal to shut the physical and mental noise stopping you from embracing your inner self. Theres not much that happens at Bhimtal. Except the chirping of a hundred odd vividly-coloured birds, or the rustling of leaves by the gusts of cool Uttaranchal breeze blowing through the pine and fir trees, or the sound of water emitting from Bhimtal lake as and when a conical wooden boat passes through it, making concentric waves.
Of course, there are touristy spots in Bhimtal like the ancient Bhimeshwara Mahadev Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, or the Folk Culture Museum, or the Bhimtal Island aquarium, having fish from faraway countries. By the way, there is a small island in the middle of Bhimtal Lake. A colourful helmsman-driven boat would carry you to the little piece of land.
Small markets offering wooden artefacts, jewellery, carpets, candles, and Garhwali paintings can also keep you engaged during your stay in the small Utttarakhand town. In case you crave some hustle-bustle, Nainital is just 41 minutes away, easily connected by buses, cars and cabs.
Orchha, Madhya Pradesh
There are ornate palaces and majestic forts, ancient temples and royal chhatris (cenotaphs). Apparently, every inch of this small town of Madhya Pradesh boasts of historic tales of kings and queens, battles and kingdoms. Located on the bank of river Betwa, Orccha offers enormous displays of Mughal-influenced Rajput architecture.
When in Orchha, visit Orchhat Fort located on an island in Betwa river, or go animal-spotting at Orchha Wildlife Sanctuary; they say you may even find a tiger, if you are lucky. Or just marvel at the rich architecture of the 14 chhatris, constructed beside Betwa River, distinctively defining the landscape of the town. The cenotaphs speak about the pomp and grandeur of the Bundelkhand dynasty. The historical town of Jhansi isnt too far either. At a distance of just 17 km, the town opens for you another plethora of stories from the times gone by.
Visit the 16th century town of Orchha when you are yearning for some time away from the hustle-bustle of the metropolitan, when you are in search of an offbeat experience close to the cultural heritage of India, or when you are seeking some stories unknown about the bygone era.
Not too far from The Great Wall of India, Kumbhalgarh Fort, Ghanerao is a small village located in the Pali district of Rajasthan. Hidden from the eyes of a majority of tourists, this offbeat location houses a 500-year-old castle. The royal family still resides in the castle; you can too. Exquisite jharokhas, wooden artefacts, and a gorgeous candlelight dinner space by a splendid blue swimming pool make it one unmissable destination.A clear starry sky ensures that you have a dreamy experience in the royal state of India.
And when you are done exploring the castle, step out to spend some time with artisans living in the nearby villages. Sit with them, try your hands at shoe-making, pottery, and painting.
Crave some time alone? Head to the step-wells Ghanerao has been preserving for years. A delight for lens and book-lovers, the spot will effortlessly give your hours to spend in solitude.
Need some adventure? Head to Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary, not more than an hour away. Go on a safari, chase wolves, get lost in the wilderness of the Aravallis. You might also want to explore the former hunting ground of the royal family in Ghanerao. Now turned into a heritage resort, the lodge may offer you stories unheard by many.