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These days when we go on a holiday, we plan in advance, months in advance because we want to have good deals. Vacations are expensive! Besides, if you are flying or taking trains, you have no choice but to book in advance or blow a huge hole in your pocket. For me, vacation is a time when I get away from my 24X7 schedule. Even though, I don’t work weekends, there is plenty of cooking, cleaning and catching up on household chores that one has to do. So getting away means no scheduled chores which in itself is a lovely break for me. Yet, I desire minimum amenities like my internet connection, newspapers and some television (especially for kids). If you don’t have them then the kids are on your head all the time asking you to play a board game or something else. It is very difficult for them to fathom that mom or dad would just want to sit on a chair quietly and watch the silent rain turn the greenery glossy. That doing nothing is an activity in itself. Or that they just wants to spend hours on end reading a book sitting by the stream or day dreaming, savoring the utter peace and quiet. It is so difficult to find that silence in our cities. Best part about these places is that one gets really good sleep.

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Vacations have changed a lot for me over the years. Now, it is more about getting away and not following a set path that tourists take. Living in the plains, we love to take off to the hills or the beaches. And just like to laze around, go for treks, read and sleep off. It is refreshing for the soul. Somehow, I am off the touristy urge to fill too many things on my plate while vacationing. I see tourists making mindless rounds to hyped places and coming back exhausted and disappointed too sometimes that the place did not live up to the expectations. Somehow, our itineraries are being dictated by what the travel magazines or travel portals tell us to see and do rather than what we want to do with a vacation. No wonder then that a vacation sometimes feels even more hectic than normal working days. And you’d need some de-stressing after getting back :).

Not only holidays but it helps to get away from the noisy festivals that we are subjected to every few days in India. The noise is getting bigger and the oppression on our ear drums acute with each passing year. As much as I enjoy seeing the festivity and joy in the air, I hate the commercialization and excessive noise that is a part and parcel of any festival in India. These days the heart yearns to get away from it all.

For us, one major pain point of going on a vacation is leaving Coco at a dog kennel. Invariably, the poor guy catches ticks. And it is a problematic process to get them off him, not to mention that we hate being away from the sweet fellow. The most beautiful part of coming back is the way he greets us!

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Remember those of you with kids, don’t get lured by “the back to nature trips” or be ready to play referee to persistently bickering kids who find it hard to stay occupied unless a parent plays with them. Keep it reasonably natural in a resort with enough games or stuff to occupy them.

The best part about any trip is in meeting interesting folks. You always find solo travelers, kids or families that engage you and enrich your vacation experience.

What kind of holidays do you enjoy?

All pictures courtesy: Freedigitalphotos.net

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62 Thoughts on “When you get away!

  1. I have also moved on from touristy holidays to seeking pleasure and calm. We also seek for places that have enough to keep the kid busy and we enjoy the nature as much as possible. Loved the last pic πŸ™‚

  2. There is no better way to enjoy than exploring the unknown and making your own way!

  3. Just back from a holiday, I agree with you on taking it easy and having your own schedule rather than the ones dictated by others.

  4. You are spot on when you say vacations sometimes turn out to be more stressful than routine days. We once went on a trip to Gangtok and Sikkim with two other families. Don’t even get me started on it. There was difference of opinion in where to stay, which places to go to and what not! Honestly, the beauty of those places was lost somewhere in the constant bickering. As a family, we learnt a lesson from the trip. Choose your friends (read: travel companions) wisely. Now we make it a point to keep pleasure trips all pleasure and relaxation. πŸ™‚

    I was nodding away at all the points you made.
    All this talk about holidays makes me want to go on one!

    • Oh, I can’t agree more about travel companions. Going in groups has its own challenges like you pointed out unless you are really in sync with the other family. Go on and plan one. Me, I have to always align mine with the kids’ holidays :).

  5. What kind of holidays do I enjoy ? This calls for a blog post πŸ˜›
    Loved the pics Rachna, specially the last one of sunlight through the trees .. surreal !
    I usually stay away from TV and internet when on holidays. Infact I ensure that my Out of office msg on work e-mail says “will have no internet connection/network for the duration of my leave” πŸ˜›

    • And so let us get that blog post out of you :). You can see the Coorg pics on FB. I have uploaded some of them there. I stay away from TV even otherwise but it helps with the kids. Normally, G and I go for treks and kids are left to watch TV or play games on their gadgets. But this vacation, we had no electricity or TV and it was challenging to keep the kids occupied especially since it was also raining. I only need internet to see news. At this retreat there was no mobile connectivity either. That felt eerie, sort of cut off from the world.

  6. I prefer any place close to nature with lots of water around. I am a beach person. But clean secluded beach resorts are hard to find in India. I loved Krabi in Thailand.
    Hope u had fun with family.

    • South God resorts are very good, have excellent beaches and no crowd. Kerala is excellent too. It was very relaxing for us though the rains were a dampener. There were many missed treks there :).

  7. Your thoughts are your own- nice & authentic, touching upon the real day to day issues.Nice,liked it.

  8. When someone asks me how different is Australia from India, I tell them I discovered what silence means. There are days I crave the chaos, the sounds I left behind.

    A lovely post, Rachna.

    • I totally get you, Purba! There are times when one loves all the fun and frolic, banter and noise. But subjected to the same day in and day out, the heart craves silence. And my two boys, they bicker, howl and yell incessantly :). Sometimes, all that the both of us want is just some silence :). Thanks for reading!

  9. My main purpose in going for a holiday is to rest and enjoy the nature mostly,no, always hills.I too dislike ticking off items on a list of must see places.

    • Then you and I think alike. Except with young kids, I look out for things to keep them occupied. Too basic and they find that they have nothing to do.

  10. mahabore on October 17, 2013 at 1:00 pm said:

    Between my wife and me we prefer going to places with natural beauty and not too many things to do on a vacation. We are able to keep our two year old daughter engaged with her running around and playing in the grass, etc. Plus the fact that if one reads out her favorite books to her again and again, she is more than happy to be outdoors. That being said, we have gone only on a couple of vacations with her. But the preference remains places with natural beauty.

    • Looks like a lot of us enjoy taking a break rather than running around from one destination to another on a vacation. For me, my two boys are constantly on each other’s back and are cribbing about getting bored. At 11 and 7, they are a bit of a challenge when it comes to keeping them occupied especially when it is raining outside :).

  11. Very nice post Rachana and you read my mind. I also returned from a 3 day vacation in Goa at the same time almost that you did. And it was the same experience for me too. Inspite of having an active 2 1/2 year old with me, It was still good to get πŸ™‚ We too just spent time in the resort, pool and beach and quit the sight seeing. Luckily there was a play room for kids too so we relaxed with a book as the kids played :).

    • This place we went to did not have any activities for the kids and due to the rain, the outdoor activities suffered. Add to it no TV and it got a bit troublesome for the kids. Ah Goa! I love that place. I am sure you had great fun there. Thanks for stopping by, Poornima :).

  12. I agree with you but there are folks while on vacation in resorts wanting to be always on their feet with outings arranged for entire day.The source of joy for each is different. and depends on age too and how long married.
    For some lazing around in sofa watching the verdant scenery over a cup of coffee or tea with a plate of namkeen is heavenly.Different people,different strokes!!

  13. We go for a holiday to be away from the daily hum drum, when you don’t have to worry about what to cook, I love to be one with nature.

    • Cooking off my back is a huge relaxation :). I agree that I love going to places that take me close to nature but with young kids, I prefer them to have activities that keep them occupied and happy.

  14. Oh yes, vacations take a lot of planning for us too, especially because of Pablo. I’m glad you had a good one.

  15. Ha! That vibed – this perpetual ticking off of places that hv to be seen on a vacation is more like work than work ever was πŸ™‚

  16. The thrill of unknown is exciting . I love such adventures . Gr8 write up !!

  17. Lovely post Rachna.
    I believe in going to less famous cities lying adjacent to the bigger cities. For ex. I prefer Nice to Paris (no, I have not traveled to either of the cities :-D)
    I don’t like to go by travel agency, too much stress indeed and we cant be ourselves. I like to travel for architecture, museums, paintings, culture, food. We also plan trekking once in a while. We are now planning to visit beaches, but they are still in pending in our lists.

    While I was in India, I was too much occupied into work (more of being a slave!), I have not even visited, Belur Halebid. πŸ™
    My main mission in life is to travel across the world. πŸ˜€
    Hope we can start soon, we have agreed that is a good life’s plan for us…

  18. When I travel someplace far away, I like to see as much as I can of that place. But sometimes I just want a quiet holiday. In such cases I’d prefer someplace close to home but far enough to feel that I have left my chores behind for a while. πŸ˜‰

    Most of the time, I just need a change of place, it doesn’t matter if I’m running around seeing the place or just having a lazy weekend there. I’ve found that a little escape from regular life, does me a lot of good. πŸ™‚

    OMG isn’t it something to have your pet dog come running to you and letting you know how much you were missed and how glad he/she is to have you back home. Aww!! Love those creatures. πŸ™‚

    • I love these doggies as well! They are the sweetest :). I love a change of place like you and no routine chores for perfect relaxation. A place like a beach or hills is good!

  19. Great Post Rachna. Though, for me, and particularly these days, vacation means going to a place where I can hear some sound, see more people and feel the vibrancy of a place. I live on a remote island in Andamans.. and here it is too serene, calm and peaceful that sometimes it gets on to my nerves and I want to break away. That is when I head to Port Blair πŸ˜€ the nearest busy place.. even though for people in mainland Port Blair is still a symbol of peace and calmness.. πŸ˜€

    • Ah wow, you live in the Andamans! Sigh! Some people have all the luck in the world :). Since you are on a perpetual vacation, for you getting away would mean running towards chaos :). Thanks for dropping by, Surabhi!

  20. Oh yes,I for one get out with the family to a place where one is to one self..One such place is Kasuali.
    During my next trip to Blr…we intend covering Coorg

  21. I too love to take the less traveled path and just explore. The kids today do not seem to understand the concept of quiet…when I welcome the break from the gadget, my son atleast should have a TV to watch…else, he will kill my peace. But, we do talk a lot and play outdoor games…a time for some quality bonding too.

  22. Having traveled around the globe, its quite joyous to know that nothing is more beautiful than the land you belong to. I want to explore the North East now. Your post made me plan my next trip!!!

  23. Hate vacations with touristy schedules. Relaxing, unwinding and doing nothing at nice serene place is what appeals to me now-a-days!

  24. I was waiting for this post.We don’t have kids yet so i guess can afford to play tourist for a little while. It never cease to amaze me our own country is full of spectacular places but when it come to vacation specially “honeymoon”, people prefer to go overseas.Am glad we spent our HNM in God send place Kerala.Btw I loved all your family pictures on FB and the scary snake. OH!!

    • Thank you, Anu! Yep, you can be pretty casual when you are single or a couple. With kids, one has to always keep in mind what activities will engross them.

  25. Beaches and hills are my preferences and a combination is ideal.
    I am craving for a holiday right now. The last one I took was in Feb 2012. I have almost forgotten how a holiday feels like. πŸ™

  26. What kind of holidays do I enjoy? Frequent πŸ˜‰ I enjoy equally a getaway weekend to another city, or a couple days on the beach. Lately I find myself less in the mountains due to the lack of a travel partner, and when I do go it’s just ‘seeing’ the mountains, not exploring with day long hikes. Getting lost in the mountains used to be my favourite holiday as a child – if you seek any clues what the boy may like πŸ™‚ A forest always seemed like an endless fun – you conquer, you explore, you make things out of nothing, you learn, but my Dad had to be there with me. These days vacations are like you say – changing gears, or (most often my case) justifying luxury πŸ˜‰ No matter the format – it’s all about fun, laughter and some inner peace, creating a beautiful memory to cherish and share πŸ™‚

    • Creating a beautiful memory to cherish and share — so resonates with me. These days, it is not about taking photographs but just reveling in the silence. I love to be surrounded by greenery and nature. Seriously, the kind of sleep one gets here is peaceful and copious :). G and I would love to take off on hikes but with kids there are concessions that one ought to make for their needs while on vacation. Sid and I love reading but Gautam is still too young for it. Once he catches on, any journey will be a pleasure :).

  27. I like varied landscapes and enough time to absorb. Hate rushing around and barely scratching the surface. Getting back home and the joyous welcome from your dog – totally relate to that!

  28. What kind of holidays I like?I just want to go home to my parents and my sister.. Sit at home, eat food cooked by mom, watch tv with my sis and talk, talk and talk – the four of us just like old times !! Ahh…! And I just back after a holiday at my mom’s… I felt so peaceful there… And now I feel so depressed !

    Loved your post as always… been away from reading for some time but getting back in the zone now …and back to reading blogs I love !

    • I saw your lovely snaps. Indeed, being with the family is one of the best holidays. I am glad you had a good time with your family. And hope that your dad is doing fine. Thanks for your warm words, Naba!

  29. I enjoy a relxed holiday but hardly get one! My best holiday till date has been the best holiday we had πŸ™‚

    And yes I totally agree with you about planning the holiday because these things have become so difficult. And proper planning means baad main less tension.

    • Sahi boli :). I didn’t get the first part of your comment. Which was the best holiday you had?

      • Arrey I am having serious issues in commenting on your blog. The site hangs when I type a comment :-\

        My best holiday was Shimla-Manali trip we took!!! We Relaxed, we roamed around and we stayed in budget!!! πŸ˜€

  30. I am yet to enjoy a perfect holiday πŸ™‚

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