A Travel Extraordinaire’s MUST-SEE Destination Guide

Disclaimer: I am a big believer that travel helps people and families bond. Also, it is a great leveler. It opens up your mind, enriches your life and makes (almost) everyone a good story-teller! What I don’t particularly like is when some experiences or destinations tend to get priced out of the reach of the majority. In fact, MakeMyTrip was conceptualized with an idea of democratizing travel in India – take control from the agent and empower the traveller with choice and transparency. With that principle as a base-line, this list comprises not the most exotic or exclusive, but the most diverse set of experiences I could think of!

Maldives: I usually take one or two holidays a year that are devoted to doing fun things with the family. We enjoy getting out in the open and having an active vacation. With kids, I think Maldives is the best destination to visit – there are so many water-sports to indulge in,
like Scuba diving, surfing, snorkeling, night-fishing, water-skiing, water polo, canoeing, parasailing, and banana boat rides. Adventure aficionados just cannot miss the opportunity to experience the world’s largest deep diving passenger submarine. The not-so-adventurous folks
can go whale-watching and check out dolphin shows. Scrumptious Maldivian food, luxurious spas and your very own private water bungalow make a holiday to Maldives a very pampering break! Deep blue sea, turquoise reefs, white sandy beaches, palm trees and a cocktail… Maldives is the ideal holiday destination to unwind and relax (and my absolute favorite)!

New Zealand: While it requires some planning, a visit to New Zealand will be well worth the effort. The diversity of experiences and contrast between the two islands is remarkable. North Island is more cosmopolitan and you can enjoy its hot pools, thermal geysers and
warmer climate. South Island on the other hand offers stunning scenery with ski-ranges and beautiful alpine drives. Kids will love the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Te Puia thermal reserve with boiling mud pools and roaring geysers, and the beautiful countryside. Those craving adventure can try skydiving from 12000 feet and a cruise ride in the Milford Sound fjord. If one has the time, a self-drive holiday is the best way to explore the country.

Portugal: This is for those looking to go on a laid-back holiday – since most of the interesting spots in Portugal be covered while being stationed at a single hotel in Lisbon. The country offer amazing sights and natural beauty, along with some of the most unique places in the world. A day-trip to Estoril coast, the village of Sintra (the Royal Family’s summer getaway) and the picturesque Boca do Inferno cliffs help the traveller familiarize themselves with Portugal culture and countryside. Cabo da Roca is the westernmost point in continental Europe. Along the coast, ahead of the Guincho beach, is the Boca do Inferno – a grotto created by the rain and sea erosion. Visit the north of Lisbon as a day trip to check out Nazare – a colorful Portuguese fishing village and Batalha Monastery, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture which is also a UNESCO heritage site.

Turkey: A unique country which is Asian in hospitality and European in vibe. Turkey is a great mix of culture and heritage amalgamated with a cosmopolitan lifestyle. One can set aside a week to explore Instanbul and Bursa. Stay on the European side, a little away from Taksim square which can be noisy and chaotic. Visit the Blue Mosque, Spice Market, and take a Bosphorus river cruise in the evening. Local food is very similar to north-west frontier cuisine. The weather is nice, the sights are beautiful and there is a lot to do, including bargain-hunting. Take the ferry to Bursa, visit ancient original Turkish Baths and old forts. A popular spot is the old jail which is now a great shopping-spot for clothes and jewelry and also hosts a nice coffee shop.

Ladakh: I also love exploring mountains. A few years ago, our entire family – parents, siblings and kids went on a holiday to Ladakh. It wasn’t laid back by any standard but we all enjoyed it thoroughly! Ladakh, Shillong and Tawang are destinations in India that all naturelovers must explore

Each one of us has a wandering heart with many latent travel desires and at MakeMyTrip we encourage people to listen to their heart. Travel, discover and keep exploring….kyunki Dil Toh Roaming Hai!

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