– By Garima Jayaswal
– To find yourself, you must first lose yourself.
Being in your twenties is the most tumultuous, chaotic yet the most memorable and rewarding part of your life. It’s the time when life gives you lemons and you have absolutely no idea what to do with it!
Being in your twenties is no cake work. You are told to act like an Adult, get real in life, and do what is expected of you, which almost always is at odds with what you want to do. The key to knowing what you want is to first know who you really are. Where to start you may ask? TRAVEL! Because when you travel you grow, it’s not just about feeling but experiencing; not just seeing but believing; losing time but gaining knowledge and memories
After watching Dil Chahta Hai, Zindagi Naa Milegi Dobaara, Eat Pray Love, Queen, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani etc. countless times, it’s finally time for you to pack your bags and GET OUT! Let the wanderlust consume you, because well, YOLO!
1. GOA: Thanks to Bollywood it’s almost symbolical to coming of age. East meets West in this sun-soaked state, where Indian culture intertwines with Portuguese influences. The beaches have long served as a magnet for serene hedonists. To the north, the tourist centric scene is prevalent, Travel south for stretches of unspoiled sand and an escape from large resorts. Temples, mosques and wildlife sanctuaries provide diversions from the beach.
2. PONDICHERRY: Is your idea of a party a good book, great food and an amazing sparkling blue beach? Then Pondicherry is the just the place for you. Eat. Pray. Love. Eat all the French food you can. Connect with you inner self. And fall in love with yourself. If peace and a break is the most sought after, then Pondicherry is surely one of the choicest holiday destinations. The town offers a unique experience with its mix of modern heritage and spiritual culture. Puducherry was under French rule until 1954 and some people here still speak French. Hotels, restaurants and ‘lifestyle’ shops sell a seductive vision of the French-sub continental aesthetic.
3. MANALI: The towering peaks and verdant terrain of Manali attracts adventure travellers, with heli-skiing, hiking, mountaineering and river rafting the favoured active pursuits. Come down from your endorphin high by breathing deeply at the four-story, wooden Hidimba Devi Temple, which sits in the middle of a nearby deciduous forest, or take a medicinal soak in the hot springs burbling from the ground a 30-minute walk from town.
4. AMRITSAR: Amritsar is a major commercial and cultural centre in the heart of Punjab. The city is the spiritual and cultural centre of the Sikh religion and is home to the Harmandir Sahib, also known as the Golden Temple. Respectfully marvel at the Indian and Pakistani soldiers who march-off nightly at the Wagha Border and at the Jallianwala Bagh, the site of the 1919 Amritsar Massacre in 1919.
5. JAIPUR and UDAIPUR– If you take one look at the glorious stucco buildings that line Jaipur’s wide streets, you’ll understand why this is nicknamed “The Pink City.” Spend your days exploring City Palace, Hawa Mahal, and Amber and Jaigarh forts. And if you’re looking for a unique souvenir, head to one of the bazaars, where you can pick up a pair of camel leather slippers.
Udaipur, known as the Venice of the East, boasts several sparkling lakes against a backdrop of the Aravalli hills. Famous palaces include the magical Lake Palace, now a luxurious five-star hotel, and the massive City Palace on Pichola’s east bank, featuring epic courtyards and stunning paintings.
You may forget the exact hue of the sky standing or of the ocean that day, but you will never forget how it made you feel. Through your eyes, it opens your mind and liberates your soul. Pack a camera while you are at it, some memories etched in your camera reel, the rest will be forever etched in your heart.