This week’s expert interview is with Mariellen Ward who runs the blog Breathe Dream Go. Although India has previously been covered within the Expert Interview series, being such a large country I wanted to show another perspective on this vibrant, colourful country.
Mariellen is originally from Canada and has been visiting India for the last 10 years. She gives us an insight into this fascinating country and explains what it is like to travel solo in India.
Mariellen goes into more depth with her answers on some of her blog posts. You can find out more below.
What drew you to India?
Many things, it's a long story, but summarized here: My Story – Why I write about travel in India
India receives a lot of bad press for women travelling alone. Is it dangerous for women?
After several high profile incidents provoked a media frenzy around the safety of women travelling in India, I wrote several blog posts. This is one: A tale of two countries.
This is one of the most read blog posts on my site, and many women have written to thank me for these tips: My top tips for women travelling in India.
What do you think is India’s attraction to women travelling alone?
Spirituality and yoga is definitely one of the reasons, and I cover these topics on my blog, such as this post about staying at a yoga ashram.
You also cover spirituality on your website
India has always been the destination of choice for seekers. I wrote this blog post defending the idea of going to India on a personal quest: Top 5 differences – Eat Pray Love.
How easy is it to get around?
While I wouldn't characterize getting around India as easy, taking the train is an adventure and one of my favourite things to do. Trains can take a long time to get around so you may prefer to take direct flights.
Are there any hidden gems in the country that people should definitely visit?
You could say that India is the land of hidden gems! Here's just one example, Bundi in Rajasthan. And here's another: Kumaon in Uttarakhand.
What would you say to someone who is looking to go to India alone for the first time?
Read my blog — seriously! The purpose of my blog is to inspire women to travel, and to share the wonders of travel in the world's most transformative destination. Read the INDIA and TRAVEL TIPS sections.
What are your plans for the future?
I live in Delhi half the year, in the winter, and I feel it's an underrated city. I have published several blog posts about Delhi, such as this one: Hotels in Delhi – my top choices.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
India is NOT for everyone. But if it calls you, start making plans. Read The Dust of India.
Where can people go to find out more about you?
Love to share my favourite travel destination on my blog, Breathe Dream Go. Watch the interview for more of Mariellen's advice.
Find out how to travel solo in India with the Girl about the Globe destination guide.