On the occasion of International Women’s Day, a huge shout out to all ladies out there, who are, traveling solo, breaking all shackles, stepping out of their comfort zones and exploring the Himalayas on their own terms. We are proud of you, and fortunate enough to have you part of the High on Himalayas community.
Here are some of the women travellers, who we’ve been following regularly on Instagram, and you should do too.
Kopal Jain | @traversedlands
Hi there! I am Kopal Jain, a travel blogger, photographer and a self-proclaimed enthu-cutlet. But this is not how I introduced myself a year ago. While working full-time in Bangalore till September 2018, I often wondered if I belonged there. After losing myself to the concrete jungle and its shenanigans, I eventually quit my job, donated half of my belongings and packed my bags only to find sheer happiness and contentment. I now travel full-time to collect stories, capture moments, meet beautiful souls and make memories that make me want to be a better version of myself every passing day.
After taking up this nomadic lifestyle in this digital era, my initial time was spent exploring the Himalayan valleys, which also became a constant source of inspiration and endurance. I also spent some time exploring tropical regions and western deserts. My travels not only helps me sustain this balanced lifestyle but it also helps me narrate these stories to those you are ready to listen, mostly via my Instagram account and my blog.
I sincerely hope to explore the world and find a place for myself in it, one destination at a time.
Read more about this journey on her blog Traversed Lands.
Ankita Kumar | @monkey.inc
I am Ankita Kumar, a solo traveller and blogger at MonkeyInc. I have been traveling extensively for the past three years. My longest adventure till date has been backpacking across South America for four months to Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. I also travelled across India in a caravan at the beginning of this year. We built the caravan from a 20-year-old Matador and went all the way from Kerala to Himachal Pradesh. Here are a couple of videos that were produced about my journey:
I had also given a TEDX talk on my “Life as a Full Time Traveller” : TEDX Bangalore
Debjani Lahiri | @the_vagabong
Hello, So I am a vagabond traveller from the City of Joy. And, though I am officially known as Debjani but I think I am more familiar with calling myself as a Vagabong traveller with a hobo mind.
Let just say that madness rules me, life loves me and a wanderlust travel junkie defines me. I have been a tourist for many years from now. But, adopted my travelling soul when I went for my very first backpacking Trip to Bhutan in 2016 which was a healer trip as well. As it helped me to overcome a crisis I went through .
Hence, I understood myself much better, that nothing could give me more joy than travelling. And that’s how my journey started. Presently I have a corporate job to sustain my travel mania.
Kalpana Razdan | @kalpanarazdan
I have come a long way in the past 3 years. Although I am nowhere close to what I had set out for myself but that really doesn’t matter anymore.
In the past year, I have travelled solo across a lot of places in India. This has given be a lot of perspective into myself and broken a lot of myths.
I don’t feel constrained by a geographical location anymore. I feel I belong to this earth. I connect with everyone.
Ram Sa in Pushkar who took care of me like a daughter, Yashwant uncle in Maharashtra who cooked me my favorite dishes or Lobzang uncle in Ladakh who got me a new pair of gloves. I feel all of them, I know all of them. I consider everyone as family.
This year has been monumental for me as I launched my own blog to help fellow backpackers.
I am in love with the person I have become, with the woman I have become. I have made mistakes and learnt from them.
I still have fears and demons of my own but I have learnt to tame them, to accept them as part of myself, as something that defines me.
This is one lesson I’ve learnt over time – Self Love – it is the most luxurious possession. You only spread who you are.
Niharika Arora | @the_iffy_explorer
I am a 24-year-old adult who is still exploring what life is all about and stays often confused in making choices about anything and everything, hence the username the_iffy_explorer.
While growing up, as a girl, I was majorly an introvert which caged me even more than the protective upbringing. In college, thanks to my architectural course, I learnt the importance of interactions and journeys. I took baby steps to learn even more and got out there, through college projects. And sooner than I could have imagined, travel took a grip of my heart so much so that I refused to practice my degree commercially and thus started a journey towards travel blogging.
I have a high enthusiasm for people and a great spirit to learn about their lifestyles and habitats.
Being an architect, it gives me an immense happiness to learn about various vernacular techniques of different regions and accordingly I am able to understand an area better. And along with this comes my zest and zeal for self-expression which I do through my poetry, blogs and photography.
Himalayas have been a conatant source of inspiration, motivation and a place to add a full stop to fears. They have been a muse to my poetry and my photographs. Regions like Kinnaur in Himachal, Sikkim and Nepal in the east and the beauty in Kashmir, Himalayas have called me time and again to them. I have learnt some of the most important life lessons in their crib.
All I am is an explorer, in quest of a great discovery and stories and ultimately, make the world, CARE.
“As I look down from the window seat of my plane, I crave to go near you.
To get lost in your curves
To look through your rigid heart.
I crave to climb upon you
That though i feared you for so long
I still do
But fear is something that has
Brought me closer to you
More than ever
More than I am to anyone.
I want to look at you
From my zero
To your zenith.
So, keep a space for me
In one of your valley’s
I will come someday
To touch your peak
And look at your pride.
Till then the kilometres
Will keep me counting
Days to cover them.”
Neha Ralli | @himalayan_girl
My profile doesn’t say that I am a traveler, and nor do I ever say that myself. I was born and brought up in Himachal and that pahadi gene is there in me. So yes, I like long walks, I trek a lot and that’s what makes me curious and a traveler for many.
My life is like a dream for a lot of people, they all want to know how I manage my travels, how do I get time to do photography. Well, it’s simple. I have a full time job. I save. I travel. I work 6 days a week, save my leaves and then plan my trips around it. It’s just like any other job in the city. The only difference is that I live on the mountains. I have not traveled much (but of course due to limited leaves), but whatever I have till now has always left me baffled and awestruck.
If you ask me, looking at a mountain thrills me, and I want to climb it and simply enjoy that journey of reaching the top. Being curious and excited to see a new place is very important if you want to call yourself a traveler.
If something doesn’t excite you, then it’s not your cup of tea. I have always loved to be blank on seeing a beautiful place. There is nothing so relieving than not thinking about anything. And maybe that’s what traveling is all about. Travel more to stay stress free and clear minded.
Prachi Mishra | @shop.travel.repeat
Hello fellow Wanderers,
I am Prachi Mishra, Delhite, a Digital Marketer and an ever curious kid. It’s hard to say what triggered the traveller gene in me but I would certainly owe it my friends and their one crazy trip to Rajasthan that pushed me to pack my bags and become a wanderer for life.
Like every newbie traveler, I started exploring ‘why I find my solace in travel’. Traveled to the mighty himalayas because well, everyone says so. The serene beaches of India because they were so picture perfect. The Great Rann of Kutch because you have bit been to Kutch, you have not seen anything.
But, the journey over the last couple of years completely changed the answer. I want to explore the remotest of the places to disconnect from the world and reconnect with myself.
Different people have different reasons why they travel. Some people do it to introspect their life, find peace amidst the hustle and bustle of life, witness the extraordinary nature, experience traditions, indulge in luxury, or probably just to do nothing. For me, it is more about just looking up at a beautiful milky way in -28°C, standing in the middle of the road, and wondering what did I ever do to deserve this phantasmagoric moment in my life.
To all the fellow travelers, there’s never enough time to do all the nothing you want. There is no perfect moment to take that plunge. Go for the kill, discover, reflect on your life, introspect, and heal! 🙂
Surbhi Sabharwal | @born_to_hop
I am not who wants , three story houses, Fancy walk-in closets,over sized rooms full of things which I don’t need, diamonds which are merely just like any other stone, a fixed time to talk , share and love.
I’m more of a hobbit house hidden under the earth ,a walk- in photo gallery and library, oversized garden to dream, and freedom to love, talk , share around the clock
Hi! I’m Surbhi, a designer by profession , who, not too long ago got introduced to the world of traveling. Since then, I’ve traveled to over 16 new places in 2018 with my full time job and have knocked some big adventures off my bucket list.
Born and brought up in the beautiful valley of Dehradun, I grew up watching the mountains with the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets.
After Graduating from NIFT in 2014 and working for 2 years, I had an urge to explore the world and experience the adventure of my life. I took a break and traveled to Rishikesh for Bungee Jumping , Dubai to Skydive and then went on a 12 day bike trip from Manali to Leh on Royal Enfield. About a year and a half later I came back to my profession but with a different perspective of living my dream beside my regular job.
So, currently I am working in Noida . I travel on weekends to my second home,that is the mountains.
Traveling to mountains makes me happy as it holds a sense of belonging and energetic rejuvenation.
They have been my constant and my love for them is unconditional . They have been my greatest teacher by keeping me grounded and at the same time testing my patience. The roads I have traveled, the hikes I have accomplished , the people I met and the mountains I have climbed will stay close to my heart forever and as you read about my love for mountains I hope we cross path some day and exchange stories and experiences of our journey.
Till then its a long long road ahead. Go find your way or just get lost in the woods.
Shivangi Sharma | @the.vagabond.lawyer
Hi, I am Shivangi Sharma known by the name of The Vagabond Lawyer. As the name suggests itself I am a lawyer by profession and Traveller by spirit. I always wanted to travel and I used to travel a lot during my college years but that was with group.
And solo traveling was something which never clicked my mind.
So, I decided to do my solo trip and that too of London and I was inspired by Bollywood movie Queen but unlike movies my experience was really different. I had not got any friends I was the one who used to sit in the corner and just looking at people that how they are chilling and it kind of hit me the thing that Maybe I am not meant for this world.
But that time changed my entire life. From a law student to a failed civil service aspirant to a lawyer than a solo traveller my entire journey was nonetheless a Bollywood movie. But somehow, I started loving myself. I always believed in one thing you and only you are responsible for your own happiness.
Then I learnt driving car and within 6 months I hired a car and went to South India and decided to do a 10 day road trip and I can’t even explain in words that how liberating that drive was.
When from a shy girl who hesitated to strike a conversation, I started inspiring and making family in every corner of the world never knew. Now I travel, drive all alone to the remotest corners of the world and make videos about hidden places and unsung heroes of India.
My purpose is all to prove that India is safe for solo female travellers. No doubt we have to take certain precautions but that’s not only in India that’s everywhere else.
I decided to embark a journey which was landmark in itself. It was to drive across 29 states of India in 39 days all alone and that drive was to say that India is safe. But in the end, I realised I cannot generalise it so I just want to say that move out and don’t stop.
Disha Nagarkar | @passportsized
Hey there! my name is Disha Nagarkar. I’m an Architect by profession and a true free spirited traveller at heart.
A few months ago while I was casually surfing through Instagram, it suddenly hit me that we are unconsciously always looking for inspiration on the internet! And that day I decided to be one, by posting my travel journey as a woman, around the world. The architect, curious traveller and wanderer in me was ready to jet set and go!
My passion for travel started taking its course when I discovered myself standing in cold breezy weather, amidst the Himalayan ranges, in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh. With absolutely no network, just some fresh mountain air and clear blue skies. That was the moment I felt complete and most alive! We sat sipping on lal chai and interacting with the locals while they graciously made some lip-smacking maggi for us. Oh! I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. This exchange of culture is what I look for when I travel, and there has been no turning back since then.
I want to use this article to urge women to travel more and hopefully inspire one another with their travel tales. There’s so much to see and so much to do. So this women’s day let’s conquer the world one travel at a time!
Ankita | @tipsybanjaran
I am Ankita, known as Tipsy Banjaran in the digital world. I have been traveling around from last 7 years, perks of being a freelance graphic designer. My essentials are backpack and laptop bag. I cannot imagine my life without these two. I have covered most of South, North and West of India, either solo or with family and friends. Initially I was little skeptical about going out alone but once I have started traveling solo, I got more and more comfortable in my own skin. It’s a hassle to ask friends for company because everyone has their priorities and seeing the fact that people are very caring and considerate about single girl, has given me more confidence to travel anywhere in India with no itinerary. Little bit of nervousness is always there once you go to new place but then again if you have good heart, you’ll meet similar people and I must tell you Universe has always taken care of me in the best way possible. While writing this, I am ending my trip of Uttarakhand, which has a piece of my heart now.
One last advice: Always travel in a shared cab or bus, you’ll make good friends with locals and you’ll have home for next time.
Go follow her on Facebook as well.
Vartica Goel | @vartickaa
I am CA Vartica Goel (Chartered Accountant), and work in Debt Financing mostly for SME’s, and running my Consulting practice Noida. I am self-taught Yoga Teacher and practitioner, fitness enthusiast, also a part of Delhi Acroyoga community. I love writing poetry and deep poetic captions, conducting yoga workshops for people, interacting and travelling solo, since it connects me to amazing like-minded travellers and expands possibilities and opportunities.
I believe that life is too short and we have lots to do and so we need to be fast, but once in a while relax with some Pranayama, Meditate and then get back in the game of wanting to DO IT ALL, fly , run, dive, ski, climb, all of it.
I Have been High on Himalayas since my first high altitude trek and high on beaches since my first solo trip. Travel teaches us that life is a constant adventure, and taught me that there is struggle, in everything, but we will always find a road leading to somewhere we belong, and help will come whenever we need it, just if we believe , something similar to what Dumbledore always said. Yes, I am a Potter head too.
Now there is a big to do list I need to tick off before I start seeing wrinkles on my fingers, and my body no more allows me to do stuff where I can jump off cliffs or touch the ocean bed, and so I will concentrate on that, while I draft a poem and plan my next yoga workshop, next trip, maybe both.
Wings we are,
We are life,
We are open hearts,
And back benders,
We are strong hands,
And beautiful faces,
Pointed toes we are.
We raise each other up.
We love and hug and melt.
We fall for souls that vibe with us,
This earth’s true soul we are.
We simply love this piece which she wrote 😍. Also,You can follow her journey on her blog Keep Cup Letters.
Anoushka Panwar | @anoushkapanwar
I am Anoushka Panwar, being born and brought up in a military environment led my inner self to explore a lot and travel places I had never heard of. It was after class 12th I realised I wanted to do something extremely different, and I went on doing my adventure sports because I always had a knack for sports I did my scuba diving course and then a mountaineering course from HMI, Darjeeling.
All this faded somewhere and I started travelling solo to places and it helped me had a totally different opinion about people and culture. I have an extremely different eye to look at places now. I have recently picked up skiing and that gives me immense freedom.
Diksha Tripathi | @travelnama.dk
“I am just a girl standing in front of an airport waiting for the plane to take me to another new adventure”.
Hi I am Diksha Tripathi a normal girl who did her engineering and now working in a normal 9 to 5 job as an SAP Consultant but dear my dreams are not normal! Because everyone has the right to have a dream and should have the guts to follow it too! I want to travel the world and crazy for exploring new places.
Early in my childhood I never got the chance to travel a lot and the first time I went to mountains was when I was just 19years old, and since then I haven’t looked back. In 2018 I promised myself to go to a new place every month. Although it’s tough to choose between beaches and mountains but since I stay In Delhi so going towards mountains on weekends or for a short trip to recharge myself is my favorite thing.
If I talk about my experience well its amaaazing!I have seen the most beautiful places in India that blew my mind and met people who inspired me to be kind and generous, traits which we are forgetting in our fast paced city life, people who taught me that don’t just exist but live your life and changed my perspective.
In my solo trips I never felt alone and found my confidence and friendships I cherish! I would like to urge everyone to do something that put your soul on fire and you don’t have to throw your existing career out of the window, it can be anything, for me it was travelling! Go Dream!!
Shruti Verma | @musafirshruti
I am lucky to have travelling in my genes. For me travelling has been a therapy for life and I don’t really need any reason to step out of my city to explore new places.
With the base in the capital city, Himalayas are quite accessible and I can even plan trip at the last minute to wake up in the lap of Himalayas. A decade ago when I was on pilgrimage trip to Amarnath ji, I slipped while descending and from there I am carrying the fear of heights. But never ever, this stopped me from coming back to the mountains and even go for treks. Whatever the season or reason maybe, Himalayas always have the answer to all the questions. The very thought of watching the clouds playing among the mountains or the kiss of sunset/sunrise hues on mountains can easily pull me to the bus seats to Himalayas.
Pratibha Singh | @pratibha176
Hi, I am Pratibha, a design graduate working into e-commerce industry and based in Gurgaon. Well, when I was studying design, I got to learn a lot about people and different cultures, something which excited me a lot. I guess that’s when the bug caught me…
Only a few years later I figured it was a travel bug.
I’m genuinely a curious kind of traveller. Eyes, ears, mind all wide open with weapons of my choice – iPhone & Pixel3XL always ready for rare, precious and beautiful shots.
My tip to everyone will be to Respect the locals and their culture and to be ready for the unexpected and always enjoy the moment. Also do a little research before heading upto your next destinations, it always helps
Rachita Saxena | @meanderandwander
Hi, I am Rachita Saxena, a travel blogger based out of New Delhi. I did my Bachelor’s in Information Technology from VIT, Vellore and worked three years in Deloitte, Hyderabad.
My family traveled a lot when I was a kid, especially during the holidays, so I always loved traveling. And then reading novels and watching movies further inspired me to travel far and wide to explore the world. From as long as I can remember, I have wanted to go to Disneyland and since then, my travel bucket list has just expanded.
I love spending time in the beaches or the mountains and even love exploring historical and culturally rich places. Also, I believe in exploring a place and experiencing a culture so I have never cared if I stay in a hut or a resort. And I don’t believe that it is the destination which only matters, I feel journey is as important if not more.
If you like traveling then that doesn’t mean you have to choose between your life, job or traveling. You can actually do it all together, you just need to plan properly. So, go and travel and learn everything that this world has to offer you.
You can also follow her journey on her blog Nomllers
Kanchi | @wonderful.wild.weird
Hi, My name is Kanchi, I’m basically from Rajasthan, an ex-IITian, current mathematics teacher and a traveler by heart. I’ve been traveling since may 2016. I got into travelling by chance. After being frustrated with a corporate life, Delhi party scenes and senseless shopping extravaganzas I took a trip to Kasol in may 2016 , Chamba and Dharamshala in June and then Kinnaur – Spiti in September. I was in Kinnaur and Spiti for almost a month and I think that trip changed everything. Since then there has been no looking back. Travelling comes a priority naturally to me now. It’s a necessity.
I’m a curious Traveller, whatever place I go I try to find out everything about that place, its Mountains, rivers, forests, about its people, customs, local food and everything. I keep my eyes, ear and mind open and try to soak in the vibe of the place.
And that’s why I prefer traveling on low budget and by public transport because that’s how you get to interact with the locals and actually know about the place, and well it’s economical too.
Only advice that I can give or I actually follow myself is that be a responsible and sensible traveller. Be sympathetic and humble to locals and a little less fussy about the facilities and luxuries in Himalayan regions.The life there is tough and since development is less the natural beauty has been preserved. It’s unfair to expect five star facilities in a remote Himalayan village. You’re lucky if you’re getting food and a place to sleep.
We are extremely fortunate to have such an amazing tribe of Women Travellers part of the ever growing High on Himalayas community.
If you aren’t already, you too can become a part of the community today, in a few simple steps.
And if you have travelled extensively in the Himalayas and want to share your experience and story with others, simply drop in a mail to contribute@highONhimalayas.com.
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