Here’s our list of what to do on a vacation:
- Do nothing.
- Seriously, stop planning so much. You’ll figure it out once there.
- Go with the flow. Yeah, you don’t have to do anything specific.
- Nope, no must-dos, must-sees, must-trys. It’s a vacation!
- Yes, do absolutely nothing. Sit back and relax and take it as it comes.
People plan too much – places to see, itineraries, things to do and other details and expectations – into a vacation, and basically getting stressed!
Certainly explore the place, understand and experience the livelihoods, go birding, get a sense of the forest close up, visit old temples and pick up some local history, take in the pretty sights and try the amazing food, and breathe some clean, fresh air while you get some exercise. But don’t become slave to a list of things you come prepared with, and must then tick off.
Just go with the flow, and you’ll discover so much you can keep doing around these places! At your own pace, when, and to the extent you feel like.
Another part of “doing nothing” on a vacation is to stay away from an interrupt driven life, that both sucks up time and attention, and prevents you from lingering – over a long conversation, at a roadside spot where the views are stunning, or doing a long walk or spending uninterrupted with those you care about most.
So we strongly suggest you switch those devices off, or at least keep them in a corner someplace.
Slow down. Drop anxiety.
Most of us have learned to “spend time usefully” and while this is great for productivity, unstructured, unplanned time is a healer, and makes for wonderful vacations. So take it one step at a time – the afternoon can be planned once lunch is over
It does take a half day to slow your mind and thoughts down, but once you do, it’s very rewarding, and you truly have a do-nothing time, even it’s full of treks, barbecues, visits to places around and long mornings watching the birds.
We don’t really agree with the idea and tag of eco-friendly travel, unless you’re cycling or walking all the way from home. A flight across thousands of miles or a drive across hundreds already destroys any notion of eco-friendliness one might nurture, to start with!
But there’s much we can do as responsible travellers.
- Respect the local – food, customs, livelihoods, pace, everything
- Leave nothing but footprints
- Support ethical practices – Look beyond the transaction. Pay/play fair
- Help foster pride
- Build a community of stakeholders, not “Resources”
- Keep an open mind and learn
- Participate, don’t merely consume
- Let go of fear – embrace the new!
“Of all things, vacations should not be a source of stress!”
That’s the idea Linger started with, and we have learned much along the way.
Linger was born from a dream to make vacations fun and relaxed again. To make them about forgetting time of day, day of week, to not obsess about getting your money’s worth, or seeing enough sights. To rekindle the curiosity you once had. To be not prepared but surprised. A few days of connecting with the places you go to and people you meet, as they are, not as they are imagined and planned to be. To do things slowly that you have little time for in life. To discover the joys of taking it as it comes, and doing nothing.
We have guesthouses at 12 locations right now – at Coorg, Chikmagalur, in Kerala, 3 campsites around Bangalore and 1 starting at Yercaud, a pretty Earth House at Palampur, a seriously wild place in Corbett, and a back of the beyond little property in Kumaon.
Each property is true to the character of the place we found it in. We’re careful about being respectful to the places we are in, and avoid doing too much that says “Your way of life is not up to the mark”, while we make the place comfortable for you, and run a home like service to ensure a relaxed time there.
We want you to laugh out loud, slurp your tea if you enjoy it that way, eat with your fingers, walk around in that old comfortable tee and shorts – it’s your vacation! We want you to let your hair down and be yourself.
And we believe travel is about the midway point where you come together and seek out and shake hands with this other/new/different thing. Both comfortable with who they are, and both without pretence. Yet both ready to accept, give, explore and accept with an open mind and ready senses.
Sameer Shisodia is the founder of Linger.in