A question that’s constant in our minds right now, when will we be able to travel again? And more importantly, how will travel look like post-COVID 19? These are questions my wife and I talk about often with our expat friends in India. Though we do not have answers to these questions, we agree that travel will never be the same. In fact, it might only normalize after we’ve found and distributed a vaccine worldwide.
Expat life in India has given us an opportunity to travel as much as we can, around India and to its neighboring countries too. When Delhi gets too tough for my family and me, during Diwali for example, we make a quick getaway elsewhere, where the air might be slightly better and where it won’t be so loud. And though, Delhi’s air is a lot better now, I still can’t help but plan about where we’d head immediately after the situation gets better.
Now, I don’t know how you plan your travels, but for my family, the hotel is as important as the trip itself. So, when we decided to plan a trip to Ranthambore, staying at Aman-I-Khas was a given. It’s a luxury to be so close to nature, and Aman-I-Khas seems to be nestled right in the middle of it!
One thing aspect that makes this place even more appealing to me is the child-friendliness of the hotel, from a kid’s menu to activities catered just for kids, and babysitting options for when my wife and I want a date night.
My wife and I agree that a few of the several things we need to impress on our kids are an adventurous spirit, a desire to live responsibly, and a respect for nature. Hence, we love taking them to safaris and parks where nature and wildlife are celebrated. Luckily, we have so many of them here in India!
A lot of research goes prior to any travel we make, reasons being 1. we have kids, 2. we want to be responsible and ethical travelers, 3. we love unique experiences. So, when we came across Suján’s Jawai, it felt like we found a treasure. Not only do they have a beautiful story, but they also seem to have a strong commitment to community, culture, and wildlife! To top that all off, the hotel looks beautiful!
My eldest is obsessed with rhinoceros, so for his birthday, hopefully, we are free to travel then, we’ve planned to take him to Kaziranga National Park, a World Heritage Site, where he can get up close and personal with one. While looking for hotels, the Diphlu River Lodge, came highly recommended by other expats in India, the more we asked around the more this hotel’s name popped-up, so we checked it out, and we fell in love. The cottages look like luxury treehouses packed with culture and tradition. The best part of it is how this lodge seems to be located in the park itself, we will be surrounded by different species of animals and plants!
The Ultimate Luxury Camp, Nagaland
My wife has been talking about visiting Nagaland for a while now, our Naga neighbours have told us so much about the weather, food, and mountains of Nagaland (but emphasized on the food). They also told us about the culture and music festival in December called the Hornbill Festival. So we’re extremely excited about this, even more so because so far, the people we’ve met from over there is so much fun!
Like I said earlier, where we stay is important for us, and while looking for a place for me and my family, we started losing hope a little, until we stumbled upon The Ultimate Luxury Camp. They weren’t kidding when they said this was luxury camping!
My wife and I had already planned a trip to Varanasi, but I guess the universe had another plan for us because right before we booked our tickets and the hotel, COVID 19 happened, and a nationwide lockdown was issued. Varanasi sounds very fascinating to me because it is one of the most religious places in India. I’ve heard that it’s become a little more touristy than normal these days, but that doesn’t hinder pilgrims to go and pay homage to who and what they believe in.
We’ve stayed in Taj hotels before, so it was a no brainer when the option to stay in Taj was presented to us again. The comfort and service they offer are always impeccable.
Like I said earlier, travel will never be the same. If I’m completely honest, I sense that traveling in 2020 might not even be possible. Nevertheless, I choose to remain hopeful like many other expats living in India that the situation is temporary. It will be over soon, and we can travel, meet loved ones, and once again celebrate this thing we call life.