Tell Us About yourself?
Chetna Khetawat, from the beautiful city Guwahati and living in Pune currently working as a Social Media and Content Executive. I am a lazy fat ass traveler who loves to be on the roads but not a daredevil adventurist! I love to go on unplanned road trips to the mountains and stay with locals at home-stays or farm-stays! While I like the pace of life, I also like to take a journey slow and imbibe a place within me! A hardcore mountain fan and almost married to coffee, I love drafting my experiences in the form of travelogues and share with the world.
What’s your favorite place so far?
Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh! Irrespective of the number of places I have travelled to, Spiti remains my favorite! Gorgeous in every season, this breathtaking place teaches you how “less is more!”
What can’t you travel without?
I can’t travel without my camera, instant coffee sachets and a travel hoodie.
Do you prefer solo travel or with someone else?
Doesn’t matter. I have travelled solo, in small groups and joined large groups as a solo traveler myself. All that matters to me is the experience and the destination. Although I tend to avoid joining the large group pre designed trips, but these are best options when low on budget and works just fine unless the co-travelers are annoying.
Which country has the friendliest people?
Haven’t really travelled much abroad, in India I can say Himachal Pradesh definitely has the friendliest and warm people I have come across.
Who is the most interesting person you’ve met so far?
There are many people I have met and talked to in my travels and I have found many of them pretty interesting. I have met Americans who have left cushy jobs and have come to the Himalayas in search of peace, bikers who have won global awards, an old woman who can’t walk and yet chooses to work at Vrindavan and many more who teach me a lesson or two about life,
What’s been your scariest moment?
On my recent trip to Tirthan Valley, we had lost our way on return from a trek. It was dark and almost night and I had lost my phone on the trail some where. The torch batteries were out, it was freezing cold and the water was all over. So we were stranded in a deep forest without water, light, phone,food, no protection from weather and almost no trekking experience! Luckily our guide found a way to some road downhill and we somehow made it till the road.
That moment of realization that we are lost in this forest was definitely a scary one!
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Traveler | Dreamer | StoryTeller
What is your dream travelling experience?
I want to travel to Scandinavia and stay there for months, from witnessing a midnight sun to Northern lights and staying in glass igloos and drive across the Atlantic Ocean highway.
Who is your dream travel companion?
I am a huge fan of The Shooting Star-Shivya and sincerely hope to travel with her some day.
What was the best place you stayed in?
Lakeside camp near Pangong Tso has been the most beautiful stay experience for me.
How many photos have you taken?
When you are a travel blogger, you can’t keep a track of your photos. I must have clicked over 15,000 photos by now or maybe much more than the same.
What’s the most interesting animal you’ve seen?
I was lucky enough to spot Blue sheep in Ladakh. Have also spotted one-horned Rhinos,flamingos and other rare birds a number of times.
Do you prefer hot, cold or temperate places?
Would you rather see a lot of places or get to know one really well?
Again it depends on the place I am at. If I can connect with the particular destination,I am more likely to spend some good time there and know the place better;otherwise I am good with a to-do list kind of journey too.
What’s the longest single journey you’ve taken?
The longest so far has been a 20 days road trip to Parvati Valley and Ladakh.
Which religious or spiritual sites have you visited?
Numerous.From gorgeous and grand temples to serene and hidden monasteries, popular mosques and churches to peaceful Gurudwaras, I have had a number of religious trips, both planned and unplanned.
Which country has the best weather?
Haven’t travelled abroad much so can’t comment.
Do you prefer to walk, take public transport, or take private transport?
Depends.I love short hikes and walks, but prefer private transport when low on time and have some spare bucks to afford a personal transport.
What destination have you found to be overrated?
What’s been the best street food you’ve had?
I am a foodie and I love to try local cuisine and street food at most places I visit.However my favorite would be the street food in Rishikesh. Local Nankhatai, Chhola Kulchas, Gol Gappas and Chaats.
Beer or wine?
Coffee over both, any day.
Finally, What are your thoughts about Himachal Tourist Places blog?
I am really glad I came across the Himachal Tourist Places Blog for two reasons. One, that it has a lot of engagement with many travel bloggers making it a good platform to read about other bloggers as well. Two, I love the details and information provided in the blogs which could be really helpful.