Nidhi Kurian from Kochi wants to experience first-hand how safe the country is
“India is a world of many wonders, but we need to see it from the eyes of a traveller, and not a tourist. Travelling solo gives that liberating experience of soaking in every ounce of the beauty from the simple life of the countryside to the evolving beauties of cities across India,” says Nidhi Kurian, a 34-year-old solo woman traveller, on a nationwide tour from Kochi.
A creative head of a film production house, Ms. Nidhi embarked on an all-India tour on February 7 from Kochi. Calling her journey as ‘The Great Indian Solo Trip,’ she says it was planned with a purpose to “experience first-hand how safe” India is, especially for women, as well as to document her travel experiences for her next book.
“I had earlier written two travel books based on my journey through different regions. But this one is special because I had been waiting to do a solo trip for a long time. When you are alone, you are more attentive. The journey is almost meditative,” she says. Ms. Nidhi has so far covered 2,300 kilometres crossing Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. In her next leg of the journey, she will be heading to Odisha and West Bengal travelling Northwards and intends to complete 100 days of her solo trip by covering 25,000 kilometres.
Travelling on a shoestring budget in a Renault Kwid, which she fondly calls as Kuruvi (meaning a little bird in Malayalam), Ms. Nidhi’s red car stands out in a crowded road with the map of her travel route marked prominently on it. For the tour, she made some basic ergonomic interior modifications in the car. Halting in the Youth Hostel Associations and other budget-friendly accommodations, Ms. Nidhi says her journey so far has been memorable and enriching. From interacting with tribals in Araku to soaking in the countryside charm of Andhra Pradesh, she made pit stops across the region to document the heartwarming stories of agrarian success from the rural parts.
Ms. Nidhi’s journey is completely plastic-free since she believes in the principles of sustainability. “I carry my own plates, cups and bottles and ensure that there is no wastage of food,” she adds. To sustain energy levels, Ms. Nidhi prefers a fibre-rich meal, and always carries a reserve of dry fruits, seasonal fruits and water to stay hydrated throughout. The journey has been a test of physical endurance as much as of mental fortitude and Ms. Nidhi says her years of yoga practice has helped her to stay fit.
Carrying a DSLR and a GoPro, she has also been documenting her journey and plans to bring her travel book based on the materials she garners. So, what does she plan to do once back in Kochi? “I’ll have a lifetime of treasured memories to reminisce about,” says Ms. Nidhi.
Source: Read Full Article