The Indian Subcontinent is an incredibly diverse corner of the world, filled with epic landscapes, incredible cites and wonderful wildlife. It is also home to countless fascinating cultures so when it comes to a family vacation with a difference, it really is hard to beat.
India is a whirlwind of colour and sound, its energy undeniably contagious. There are incredible palaces and forts to discover, whose stories come to life with expert private guides. There are vibrant bustling cities, quaint colonial towns and peaceful hill stations each offering an insight into the different ways of life in this hugely varied country.
For active families, there are epic hiking trails through the mighty Himalayas as well as cycle paths that wind their way through hills and lakes. And then there’s the wildlife. Few who come to India fail to be mesmerised when face to face with majestic tigers and leopards who stalk through the grasslands, playful monkeys screeching as they swing through the trees and colourful birds flit through the skies above.
Sri Lanka may be small in comparisom, but this island nation packs an awful lot in. Ruined cities, golden beaches, tea plantations and national parks teeming with wildlife make this an incredible destination for families looking for adventure. Sri Lanka is more laidback than India, making it ideal for those with smaller children. Friendly and welcoming locals make it a wonderfully relaxed destination and with so much to see and do, there is something for everyone.
Nepal is another country that may be small in size but more than makes up for it in character. This is a fantastic destination for families who love to hike, with spectacular trails that wind their way through the Himalayas.
Bhutan is another small but incredibly diverse country. The Land of the Dragons is celebrated for its peaks and its unspoilt natural environment hosts a huge range of biodiversity. It is rich in primate life and home to the Bengal tiger, clouded and snow leopard, sloth and black bear and red panda.
And for those that love the beach, the picture-perfect islands of the Maldives are hard to beat. With incredible underwater worlds to discover and luxury hotels with activites for children of all ages, it is a beautiful destination that caters to everyone.
How do I put into words a trip of a life time? I don’t say this lightly as I have traveled the world and been fortunate to experience many awe inspiring moments. How did it all begin? My 34 year-old son, Anthony wanted to go to Nepal and asked me to come along to celebrate my 60th birthday. Nepal would not have been my choice. Thank God my son is more intelligent than I. Anthony chose Jacada to put together a 10-day tour which included a four-day trek up Poon Hill, tours of Katmandu, a helicopter ride to Mt Everest’s base camp, and a two night stay at Chitwan National Park. From start to finish we were handled with the utmost care. Professional guides that shared moments of wonder (a Bengal Tiger sighting, crystal clear sunrise on the top of Poon Hill, the celebration of Holi in Pukhara, picture perfect morning at base camp, tours of ancient temples) that left us feeling deeply connected… a new Nepalese family! I still cry when I look at my photographs. The memories my son and I have from our time in Nepal will last forever in our hearts. Another bond that was created as a mother and child and we can’t thank Jacada enough for making it happen.