We asked Peppy Travel Girl aka Preethi Parthasarathy, Travel Stories By Us aka Jinali and Malav, and The Traveling Desi aka Mohit Manocha about their favorite summer travel destinations!
With everyone rushing to Maldives and Dubai each time they needed a break during the lockdown, a lot of us didn't feel like running off to these locations because these felt so done to death. Coming across perfect summer travel destinations is a task in itself because a lot of our time goes into research and sometimes in spite of all that effort, it's hard to pick a place because we aren't always sure of what to do there and Google can only help you with so much beyond a point.
Talking to Preethi Parthasarathy, Jinali and Malav and Mohit Manocha helped us understand where we can go this summer and they also helped us with what to carry and what to expect from these locations.
Here's what they had to say!
Where should one travel in summer?
Jinali and Malav feel that one must visit Ladakh and Singapore in the summer. Whereas Preethi believes that Europe is usually a very popular summer destination, and she'd recommend heading to Turkey for its sheer diversity in landscapes that one can experience in great weather. Mohit Manocha suggests Nepal - Kathmandu, and Pokhra specifically.
Why do you suggest this place?
If you want to skip the heat and visit a cooler place then it's definitely Ladakh, according to Jinali and Malav. "The best time to visit Ladakh is during the summer season. Summers in Ladakh are truly beautiful with moderate temperatures and a hospitable environment for tourists. Moreover, it's during summers that you can enjoy the entire setup of the place in totality. Summer is also considered the best time to visit Singapore. As the weather transitions out of northeast monsoons, the weather is sunnier and less cloudy in Singapore. One can enjoy the varied interesting festivals and events hosted during this time." Preethi, on the other hand, believes that Turkey has crazy landscapes, rich culture, amazing food, and plenty to see and do for every kind of traveler. "It’s also a country that you can explore regardless of your budget."
To avoid the crowd of popular summer destinations that get very busy during summertime, Nepal is a good option, according to Mohit. "As an Indian, you don’t need a visa so it's a spontaneous plan, Indian currency works at a fixed rate of 1.6 NPR for 1 rupee. It's widely accepted and it's overall cheaper than major cities like Delhi and Mumbai in terms of food, accommodation, taxis, and guide." Kathmandu has a popular tourist district with trendy hostels, cute eateries, and inviting coffee shops and peppy bars that make you feel like you are in a popular Asian destination full of western tourists but you get all this at a fraction of the price and you can pay in your local currency! "Pokhra is one of its popular mountain destinations where nature lovers can enjoy the peace and also experience several outdoor activities like parasailing hiking, boating, and biking." Being technically off-season, one will get easy access to one of the most important and historic Hindu Temples, Pashupatinath, and other attractions. "You will get better prices on your accommodation. Prices are also much cheaper during this season - if you want to go on day tours, adventure activities, or rented taxi tours."
What would you normally carry with you to these places?
People should definitely carry dresses and hats to Singapore. Jinali and Malav believe that one should definitely carry winter wear to Ladakh. "Return ticket, Visa, negative RT PCR, double vaccination certificate, arrival card, and travel insurance are the other things that you should carry." Preethi would carry some long, loose items of clothing that cover her head, shoulders, and knees for when she needs to enter religious places. "Comfortable walking shoes are a great idea because it’s easy to cover parts of cities on foot and I’d want to be comfortable. For the photo-conscious, something long and flowy would be great for photos in Cappadocia. It’s a good idea to keep a light jacket handy because temperatures can change in different parts of the country. I always keep swimwear with me, in case I plan on visiting a beach or want to go to a Turkish Hammam."
Mohit would carry a rain jacket, a good pair of shoes, and his camera. "Everything in Nepal is fairly affordable and accessible so I would not carry too much extra. Can indulge in local shopping as well."
Any experiences you'd like to share about this destination?
Jinali and Malav love walking around the Leh Market which is one of the busiest, most colorful places in Leh. "You can get everything imaginable here, from groceries to clothes, jewelry to local street food.
River rafting adds to another top experience you don't want to miss in Ladakh. The best places to enjoy river rafting in Ladakh are its two popular rivers - Indus and Zanskar." They also loved discovering the best of horticultural, sustainability, and architectural design at the award-winning Gardens by the Bay.
"Singapore has some truly gorgeous streets. We love walking around the colorful streets."
Preethi had an incredible experience in Turkey. The country has a rich heritage and culture and there’s so much to discover. "One of my favorite things to do is walk around and stop wherever I felt like. A top experience for me was definitely the hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia - that city has the craziest landscapes imaginable, and it was surreal seeing the sunrise from the balloon. I got to tick off a bucket list item when I visited Pamukkale, though. There’s something ethereal about the travertine terraces and it’s an experience one cannot miss. There’s so much in terms of food and wine as well! The Turkish Pide and Kunefe are favorites! One of our favorite things to do in any city is to simply walk around and explore on foot." You get to wander down so many lanes, experience aspects of local life and discover the quaint shops. Preethi did this in Istanbul. "It’s a fun way to take in the city’s vibe away from the crowds, and there’s something to see even in the quietest lane. Found some beautiful buildings and mosques and also cute little shops with the sweetest people."
Mohit took a short trip to Nepal last month and he's planning another trip this month too! "Nepal is a very vibrant and beautiful country. Although it's very close to India in many ways, it still has a unique flavor to offer and it’s definitely worth a visit. I especially enjoyed visiting the Pashupati Nath temple with thousands of years worth of history around it and having more than 10 types of different momos was a great experience there!"
Do you have any summer travel destinations in mind? Tell us in the comments below!