Friday, March 20, 2015

Travel rules no one tells you

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If you haven’t heard of Robert Reid, do it now! A super awesome travel writer who has been published in so many prominent publications, I have lost count. From Lonely Planet to National Geographic Traveler to The New York Times... as I said he is super awesome. I LOVE his witty writing and his blog is full of inspiring anecdotes from his myriad travels. While reading one of his recent posts on 44 Little Travel Rules No One Tells You, I thought of writing a few of my own. They aren't as great as Robert's, but I hope you enjoy them anyway!

Have any tips you would like to add? Email them to me on ruchika@travellerstories.com and I will post them on my blog and on my Facebook page with your name and your website link.

  • It’s okay to watch TV in your hotel room.
  • It’s not silly to want to do touristy things. I giggled like a little girl out of sheer excitement when I sat in an ancient tram in Kolkata. Okay, that was silly. But it’s OKAY to be silly.
Yes. I clicked random people on the tram in Kolkata!
  • Be safe, but don’t be over cautious. Often the most memorable experiences are those that happen unexpectedly and often involve strangers.
  • It is good to get lost. Some of the best stories are about the times you got lost and all the things that went wrong. If you don’t like getting lost, sit at home.
  • Don’t judge people or places if they don’t uphold your values and beliefs. There is no right or wrong when you’re travelling. Travel is all about finding yourself in unfamiliar territory. Smile and enjoy it. That IS what travel is all about.
  • Accept kindness from strangers as often as you can. Yes, your mom told you not to speak to strangers. And there are plenty of evil people in this world, and shit happens all the time. But there are some insanely nice people out there too who you would regret not knowing just because you were too fearful.
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  • You don’t HAVE to follow the must-do checklist of a destination. You CAN visit Amsterdam and NOT smoke up or drink. There are other things to see and do. This is what I did.
  • It’s okay to visit a destination without knowing anything about it. I know how valuable it can be to know the place you’re planning to visit, to read about it or prepare a list of things you shouldn’t miss on your visit. But every once in a while, it can be fun not to plan anything at all. That is, if you like surprises. Although, if you don’t, why are you travelling at all?

Thursday, March 19, 2015

PHOTO FEATURE: Hotel Zilwa Attitude, Mauritius

Much like its cousin, Zilwa Attitude is quite the luxurious hotel. I particularly love the d├ęcor and the use of natural resources like bamboo and wood. The artwork in the room was exceptional; things I wish I could have taken home! There were paintings bearing short poems, driftwood mirrors and unique light fixtures. One of the walls bear a riddle written in the local Creole language. I managed to solve it only after some easy clues thrown my way from the hotel manager! I also liked the colour scheme in the rooms; mine was replete with red, grey and white, while other rooms replaced the red with yellow and orange. Just like Blumarine Attitude, the bathroom here was a screen separation away from the bed. The room opened out to a garden. Walk a few metres ahead and there is a pool and adjacent bar; all with a view of the beach.

Here are some photographs from my stay:

LOVED this artwork!























The sitting area in my room
 
The open bathroom

Poetry on canvas

Such a gorgeous mirror

Can you solve this riddle?

The subtle play of colours

This is the surface of a small table kept in the sitting area; love the texture
I love the way this lamp reflected light all around the room

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

PHOTO FEATURE: Hotel Blumarine Attitude, Mauritius

On rare occasions, I find myself lucky enough to stay in a luxurious property. Don’t get me wrong; I love staying in hostels and guest houses, but it is certainly nice to live in luxury every once in a while. Since my Mauritius trip was hosted by the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority, I had the opportunity to stay at two of the Attitude Group of hotels: Blumarine Attitude and Zilwa Attitude. 
Located on the north coast of the island, Blumarine Attitude overlooks the wide Anse la Raie lagoon. It contains182 rooms that showcase contemporary design. Some of the rooms have the showers integrated with the bedroom, giving them a fresh look. They have a lovely swimming pool and a private beach too.

Here are some photographs I clicked during my stay.

Sit back and enjoy the view...
























My room; beautifully set up for my arrival :)

























The new-age bathroom

A view of the spa from my room


You can swim in the blue waters during the day and stare at the stars at night.

Breakfast time at the restaurant

The island's famed dodo

Some of the deck chairs are placed in a tiny pool to soak your feet in
 
Clicked this walking around the property
 
Living the beach bum life

The serene blue waters




 
This trip was hosted by the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority

A photo feature on Zilwa Attitude, Mauritius, coming up.