Meet Radhika Sharma, a 23-year-old commerce graduate from Delhi University and our ‘Traveller of the Week’. Radhika was born in Amritsar but brought up in Delhi and now works as a Business Analyst. She likes investing money in her travels rather than saving in bank accounts. All in all, she has taken 16 trips in the year ‘2016’ out of which one was a solo trip and the other one was her very first international trip.
Inspiro India: What motivated you to travel and tell us about your first trip?
– I’m from a family which worries a lot about their girls. Hence, half of my life was spent within the four walls of the room, with them I worried about it too.
Until I decided to step out with my friends on the New Years of 2015 to Corbett. I remember it was early in the morning and extremely cold, we took a jeep to spot tigers, our expectations were set but chances were we might not be able to see even a single tiger except deers and monkeys, but to our luck we spotted dancing elephants, four tigers in a row and a perfect surrounding due to mist. This is how it all began.
Inspiro India: How do you prefer to travel, solo or group?
– Nothing specific as such, if I have my friends or family to tag along they join me, else I plan to travel solo. I have done extensive travelling with my best friend. She stays in Hyderabad. So when I visit her we travel around Southern India and when she comes back to Delhi, we travel the North.
Inspiro India: Are you a full-time traveller? If yes, did you face any problems in terms of travelling or even with family?
– Well, I don’t know if travelling every weekend counts as a full time travelling. In September, I went on a back-to-back trip for three weeks. The challenges I usually face are extreme tiredness which was accompanied by the evil eyes of my parents. Although they do support me in the end because they’ve seen how happy I am when I travel.
Inspiro India: Are you a planned traveller or more into spontaneous trips?
– Both I would say since I am a budget planner, I try to find the cheapest possible accommodations and commute. But last year, I remember travelling to Mussorie without any gadgets or backpack or cash (due to demonetization). I had my cell phone and power bank and no plans or idea of where to go.
Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
Inspiro India: How many states have you covered in India? Any International trips you’d like to mention?
– Last year was my very first International trip I took to Malaysia. It’s a really beautiful country with amazing people. This year I plan to go to Indonesia (booked), Italy (booked) and Bhutan.
As far as the states of India, I have covered fourteen states spread across North, South, East and West.
Inspiro India: 5 must visit destinations to travel according to you and why?
– 1 Sikkim: This will always stay close to my heart as this was my first Solo travel. Sikkim is so beautiful and peaceful. I went to Zuluk which is again close to my heart because of its serenity especially the Zig-Zag route. You would not get any networks here and no hotels, only homestays.
2 Horsley Hills: Horsley Hills a small, not so famous place with viewpoints. the view is breathtaking. The wind blows at these viewpoints all the time.
3 Kedarkantha: This was my first Summit and first snow experiences where the temperature dropped down to -7 degrees celsius. We camped in snow, set bonfire, ate maggie noodles and sledged in the snow. It was amazing.
4 Triund: Triund is another place close to my heart. There were shooting stars and galaxies and camping and amazing sunset and even more beautiful sunrise.
5 Kasauli Hills: Kasauli is a really quite place and the best attraction here is Gilbert’s Trail where the sun appears all orange and disappears all at once.
Kasol, Parvati Valley
Inspiro India: 5 must haves for travelling and stay outdoors?
– 1 Power Bank
2 Cash (Many places do not have ATMs. Some ATMs run out of money or might be out of order.)
5 Hand Sanitizer
Inspiro India: What do you enjoy most when travelling?
– It will definitely be the nature and escape from the city life. The cherry on the cake in travelling is meeting amazing and kind people. I feel so happy when someone in an unknown place helps you out of kindness. This is the most surreal and beautiful thing.
Prashar Lake, Himachal
Prashar Lake, Himachal
Inspiro India: One life lesson you learned from travelling?
– Honestly, I haven’t pondered over it but I believe what we see and learn from our 9 to 5 jobs and getting accustomed to a routine or limiting our horizons will never be bigger than the life experiences someone gains through travel. You realise how limited you have kept yourself and in what conditions you have lived your life till now. You discover a bit of yourself, you realise your weaknesses and strengths, your bonds with other people grows, you become more confident and after all this, you realise, that the small petty issues of life are not really issues, in the end, life is bigger than that.
Images by ©Radhika Sharma