Year End Review: My travel adventures in 2015

Finally I am sitting down to write my year end review for 2015. I love this exercise, it allows me to just sit and reminisce the years memories.

2015 is in a way a most memorable year for many happenings in my life. In the travel spectrum there was a big trip – Solo cycling Berlin to Copenhagen. Not only was the cycling and camping a first time experience but everything else – from getting a month and half long visa for Schengen as a solo traveler to planning my accommodation & flights for this international trip was a new challenge. I guess I put in about a months work into it.
In case you came in late and are wondering Why long distance cycling? This post explains it.

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Ooh yea, cycling Berlin to Copenhagen!
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On a cycle we go…. laa laa laalalalaaaa

After this cycling trip in Germany & Denmark, I spent a week in Switzerland with my parents. Yet to write about that. I also spent a few days in Budapest, Hungary. This was when the refugee situation was slowly escalating in the area. I visited the Keleti station in Budapest to get an on the ground idea of the situation. This was a really exhilarating trip for me. Seeing the ‘first world’ up close was a learning experience. I have so much to blog about this trips experience, I have no idea when I will get around to it. 🙂

Returning to India and settling back into this life, I made a quick 3 day trip to Nashik for the Kumbhmela. I had been wanting to visit one for a long time and was glad could make it this time. I didn’t go for any of the shahi snan (important bath) days as I wasn’t sure I would enjoy the crowds so much especially back from cycling in the European countryside. So I went on the quieter days and really enjoyed. Here are some blogs on that,

Notes for Solo Travelers to Kumbh Mela
My Travelogue
A guest post on the well maintained arrangements at the Mela

Earlier in 2015 I had been yet another time, to Matheran, a hill station near Mumbai. It is usually a family destination and so I never really explored it as a traveler. This time however I did just that… and I enjoyed it a lot more than other times.

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Want-to Twitter? 😀 A horse in Matheran patiently waiting….

Another hilly town I visited was Chikmagaluru of the South Indian coffee fame. Again a short visit with family to a coffee estate. Nice to break the routine life in Mumbai and be with nature. The journey to Chikamagaluru was fun. I took the overnight train from Mumbai to Mangalore – this is a Konkan route, in the morning it was very scenic. From Mangaluru to Chikamagaluru in local ST bus for a few hours, all for a small 3 day trip. Heh, it is good I like traveling so much. 🙂

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Beautiful Western Ghats – enroute Chika…

While writing this post I realised that last New Year started off with a very lovely trip to the Maharashtra backwaters with my friends @Netra and Snigdha. We were up for some exploration but the untouched beauty we found took all of us aback. The Maharashtra backwaters are beautiful and so unexplored! I didn’t get down to blogging about it yet, but have put up some pictures,

So for traveling year 2015 has been pretty great…. I am currently figuring out the right balance between work and travel for me. It is a common dilemma for a lot of us travelers because we want to travel more. And all of us have our individual ways to go about it. The thing with me is that I love my work too… and it is a large contributor towards my personal growth so I am looking at the right balancing combination which is best for my life situation.

One thing I want to highlight here is that Travel is after all towards a better life. The whole hype around travel has led to a lot of silly noise around it, which may imply that you should drop everything else and just start traveling like it is the end all of everything. No. Please look at your life situation and understand it. Travel can be a great way for growth and rejuvenation. So see how you can travel some and improve your life.

Happy New Year 2016 🙂