A solo trip to India’s West Coast – Lonavala and Kumarakom

Sometimes city life can take the life out of your life. Since I was looking for a way to break the monotony of the city, I decided to take off on a short trip to Lonavala and Kumarakom. After traveling on one of the many Bangalore to Mumbai flights, a casual drive from the airport took me to the lush green hill station of Lonavala.

While at Lonavala, the Karla and Bhaja Caves left me spellbound with its 2nd Century inscriptions that depict the beliefs and scriptures of Buddhism. The horseshoe arched entrance was the gateway to Chaityagruha or the main hall of the caves. As I made my way past the entrance, I was completely taken aback by the attention to the detail given by the craftsmen in the caves.

The caves simply transcend you in a well preserved but distant past. They have impressive wooden structures that comprise of tables and musical instruments dating back to over 2000 years ago. The Bhaja Caves were part of the early era of Buddhism while the Karla Caves were a mix of Hindu and Buddhist influences.

Karla and Bhaja Caves, Lonavala

Karla and Bhaja Caves, Lonavala

I wanted an offbeat adventure on my own and found myself a quiet spot just for ourselves at Phanasrai for the perfect campsite getaway. Surround yourself in unreal greenery, gurgling streams, and mossy woodlands as you put your feet up and enjoy your holiday at your own pace!

The Western hills offer you an unparalleled experience that encompasses you as you become one with nature. One look around and one witness a ton of adventure seekers that foray into flying fox adventure sports and others that get their adrenaline rush from waterfall rappelling.

 Kumarakom, Kerela

Kumarakom, Kerela

For an even better experience of the West Coast, you should book your stay at the Kumarakom Lake Resort in Kerala. I didn’t think twice as it is known for its serenity and it's a place that I had been waiting to experience! After I had acquainted myself with the pleasant and welcoming Kumarakom, I signed up for a relaxing backwater cruise.

Traditionally, these houseboats were used to transport vast amounts of rice through Kerala’s waterways. These houseboats are popular with both domestic and international tourists that love to indulge in a simple and refreshing experience. The backwater runs parallel to the saline waters of the Arabian Sea is fed by 38 rivers that open into five large lakes. These manmade and natural lakes are pristine and are home to large pockets of wildlife.

I kept an eye out to spot the local wildlife, flora, and fauna that are unique to this area. As we gently glided through these waters, I got busy capturing beautiful photographs of birds like the Kingfishers, Cormorants, Darters, and Terns. These backwaters are commonly known as the ‘Venice of the East’ as if they are so well connected with its large network of canals and backwaters.

A short getaway can always be on the cards for anyone and what better way to relax and detox than a solo trip to Lonavala and Kumarakom.

For more info do check: www.ekeralatourism.net

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