Having travelled extensively over the past year, Nikita Biswas and Abhishek Dubey can confidently say they have seen gems like never before. Their motto? This wasn’t a strange place, this was a new one. Discovering new and less-visited spots brings them joy and cheer. The feeling of discovering unusual places is a constant urge within them. Fortunate enough to have completed their bucket list, the two avid travellers give us a first-person account of the 8 most unusual haunts they have traversed and loved, complete with tips and tricks for food, stay and how to get there.
Beaches and Beyond – Bohemyan Blue Café & Stay, Alibaug
We have been travelling for over a year now and nothing has hit us as much as Bohemyan Blue Café & Stay. Situated in a beautiful old-school Portuguese building with an elegant matte-finished combination of colours, this café serves just the right amount of serenity. We remember trying to order some fresh salad and couldn’t decide on which one. The host was kind enough to get us a custom-made fresh salad for the day.
While passing through their front yard, we remembered passing through their little jungle safari to reach the luxurious tent by the poolside. Their open kitchen allows for the smell of freshly made food to fill the heart. This is located at Alibaug in Maharashtra. With a low amount of visitors, it offers some of the best, less crowded, and clean beaches in India – just what we needed to get away from the hustle of city life.
Pelling – The Wonderland City in The Northeast of India
In one of our sojourns, we remember crossing the borders of West Bengal and finally reaching Sikkim. It was a hectic yet blissful journey; what came after that was the real experience. Pelling, a city in Sikkim, North-East India, delivers the promised view. The greenery alongside the beautiful landscape makes it picture perfect. The fact not many are aware of is that this place is just a few kilometres from Gangtok, yet not many visit this unbelievable patch of beauty. Be it the momos or the wide range of lip-smacking street food, Pelling did not fail in making us fall in love with mountains again.
The Palace On The Lake – Neer Mahal, Tripura
Tripura is one of the less-visited tourist spots in the North-East; however, we thought of visiting the unexplored. Trust us, this place is just so calm yet peaceful to be. Our journey was all worth it when we decided to visit Neer Mahal. Located in the middle of lake Twijilikma, it is rightfully called the lake palace. The fun part here is that after taking a cab from the main city of Agartala, you must then take a machine boat. At least, that was what we thought; however, everything changed when we realized that we can even hire a hand-boat. This might take a little longer, but the experience is worth it; plus, it doesn’t hurt your pocket either!
A Green Music Festival – Echoes of Earth, Bangalore
If you admire a zero-waste policy, this is your chance to have a guilt-free journey! Visit the beautiful musical festival “Echoes of Earth”! Considered as India’s 1st ecologically crafted music festival, it is held at the outskirts of Bangalore city, which boasts of an amazing landscape. They usually celebrate music every year around the end of the year where musicians from across the globe participate to explore different genres. We loved our experience when an artist played an entire set with just water pipes and water bottles to ensure reusing waste.
More Than Sand and Surf – Tropical Spice Plantation in Goa
Goa has been loved by many; however, the stereotype is to just visit shacks or sit by the beaches and party hard. In reality, Goa has so much to offer. We lived in Goa for over 4 months, and we discovered so many tropical places that could change your plans of visiting just the beaches. Something that we must talk about is the Tropical Spice Plantation. This is a garden which not just gives you a tour of different spices of India but also offers a delicious buffet after a walk of 30 minutes. The tour also has a mini shopping spree; we bought some dried mango sheets. The bonus was the lavender water directly dropped on the back of our neck after the walk. This is a perfect combo of spices, physical exercise, food, and relaxation.
Unmissable Landmark – James Prinsep Ghat, Kolkata
Many might know Kolkata to be a very busy metropolitan city; however, there is more to it. We wanted to explore food in Kolkata. Since we spent about 2 weeks there, it almost seemed like a full-fledged exploring. If you love food and want to enjoy it by the river, James Prinsep Ghat cannot be missed. While unusual for many coming from outside the state of West Bengal, this is a very known spot for sunset viewing among college students, friends, and lovers alike. The golden hour is something that cannot be missed. If possible, we would encourage people to try their peaceful boat ride experience. We also indulged in some tasty snacks including chaats and a great cup of tea.
Relaxation Like No Other – Adams Wood House Retreat, Kerala
Imagine the feeling of vacation, with a twist. Our twist was this place – Adams Wood House Retreat in Kerala. A vacation here will leave you with a relaxed body and mind. Yoga sessions and ayurvedic therapies make this a great vacation spot. Kerala is an exotic place to visit but it is often known only for its backwaters. It can truly be called God’s Land, given all the relaxation you can experience at Adams. From organic living standards to food, they serve you with great love.
A Splendid Lunch in Naggar – Jana Waterfall
It took us a while to soak into the beauty of Naggar, a town just 30 minutes from Manali. We thought, can anything be better than this? A visit to Jana Waterfall in Naggar changed our minds. Not many visit this place because it is far from the main city. Our host in Naggar insisted we come along with him to Jana Waterfall to have lunch. We can vouch that lunch has never been better than this. A mountain view and a waterfall on the other end; and you sit by the waterfall to have your lunch. To top it off, the food is an absolute traditional spread, served with red rice.
555 Café by the Dhakpo Shedrupling Monastery, Kullu
We wanted to visit the Dhakpo Shedrupling Monastery, but as destiny had it, it wasn’t open that day. We were upset at not being able to see the beautiful interiors; however, while we were waiting for our bus in front of the monastery, we noticed a small café by the name of 555. As always, we were hungry and the bus made us wait a bit, so we decided to give this tiny hole-in-the-wall a shot. The Chinese food we had was brilliant and the balcony we sat on had a view of the Beas river and the mountain range together. Pocket-friendly and friendly staff only add to the fresh food. You might have to wait a bit longer than usual for your food, but it’s all worth it.