New experiences are what keep the mind awake and alive. And what better time than now to try something new. Bid the old you adieu, let us welcome the new you with new experiences and new adventures. Here’s a list of the top twelve that we’ve compiled just for you and hope you’ll indulge in at least a few of them. And yes, statutory warning: This list is good for your health and completely editable. So, feel free to add to it!
Lying on a bed of grass and staring at the vast expanse of stars seems like a perfectly idyllic option. For those born in the 60s and 70s, it can actually be a nostalgic experience too. Over the past couple of decades however, the high light pollution and smoke in the city is so overpowering that one misses watching this nature’s marvel unfold. This time, start the year with a trip to the interior regions where the city lights are negligible and you’ll witness a sight you’ll never forget. Millions and zillions of stars spread out as a canopy high up in the sky. Have fun spotting the constellations, take a telescope along if possible, or just lie on the ground and stare into the world beyond our little dot. Go there on a day with no moon for a breathtaking experience.
Suggested locales: Get to Lambasinghi which boasts of really low temperatures and minimal light pollution. Definitely one of the best locations in our neighbourhood to star-gaze from.
2.Bonfire with tents
What fun it is to experience the outdoors, and to do so in the company of family and friends is even better. So pitch a tent to retreat into and start a bonfire to sit and sing around. Don’t forget to take along some peppy music and cook some delicious food or marshmallows while the fire is going. It just makes the whole experience even more fructifying. A barbeque night along with the bonfire can also double up the fun factor.
Suggested locales: Araku or Paderu
If you’re still under the impression that you need to travel to the exotic locales of Andaman or visit foreign shores to experience scuba diving then wait. You don’t have to go rushing to travel portals just yet. Our very own Bay of Bengal shores at Vizag offer a wide range of ocean sports. So, if you haven’t indulged in any of these, now is the time to do so. Right from scuba diving to surfing, sea kayaking, parasailing and even sailing, our city has them all.
Suggested locales: The Mangamaripeta beach is a hub for water sports and you can get in touch with PADI certified divers to take you scuba diving. You’d go through a two-day course to finally experience the grand sights.
4.Visit an old part of the city
The best way to experience the character of a city is to visit its old sections. Still untarnished by the huge malls that come up at swanky places in town, the old part of any city often offers a rich window into its past. So if you haven’t walked through the narrow streets of one town yet, you must do so. Architectural marvels such as the town hall, St. Aloysius school and the markets tell fascinating stories. Brace up to the dust and traffic in those congested streets, and make this a to-do experience for this year.
Suggested locales: One-town area
What’s more chilling and thrilling than watching a horror film…er being a part of it. So check out your neighbourhood for any haunted stories and if you’re the brave kinds, then visit these places. It can be real scary fun and it’ll be something you’ll remember for a long time to come.
Suggested locales: European cemetery
6.Ride a lorry
While most of us have travelled by aeroplanes, trains, buses, cars and bikes, riding a lorry seems to figure on very few lists. Well that’s another experience of sheer joy. Sitting up front and having the opportunity to see the road from a higher point does have a thrill to it. The huge monstrous and rather uncomfortable looking lorries must be boarded atleast once. And yes, once you tick that ‘Highway’ kind of experience off your list, go ride a tractor.
Suggested locales: Highway
7.Sleep on a bed of hay
As a generation we’ve become too indoors, too safe and too hung up on our air conditioners, comfort of the four walls and our own sweet bed and pillow. But this is the year to change all that. So get on a road trip and visit the fields where they pile up hay. And once you’re there, then don’t ignore the urge of sleeping on it. Spread an old blanket and indulge. It feels soft and heavenly, and it’ll make you want to bring it back home.
Suggested locales: Farms
8.Go on a trek from Madhavdhara to Simhachalam
Remember the breathtaking viewpoint that Kailsagiri offers and makes you go Aww with wonder everytime? Well, our city has many such view points, and a trek through the hills is the best way to see our city’s wonderous sights. And yes, this is a great way to burn those calories too. This year, get together a group of friends and head for a trek through the hills. With many paths to choose from, plan your trip, pack the essentials and get started.
Suggested locales: Madhavdhara to Simhachalam
9.Spend the night in a tree house
The Tyda resorts have many attractions and their tree house style accommodations promise a different kind of experience. Book a stay at Tyda and feel one with nature as you hear the night life in the forest region moving about and calling out to each other.
Suggested locales: Tyda Resorts
10.Run the Navy marathon
With lifestyles that have become sedentary, it’s time we get active and what better way than to do it than through running a marathon. What’s more, because we’re Vizagites, we also get to participate in the fun Navy marathon that’s held every year. So this year instead of making resolutions on how to cut the carbs, start your fitness training, participate at the marathon and yes… don’t forget to post your selfies on social media.
Suggested locales: Beach Road
11.Visit a farm, and do some picking for the harvest season.
We’ve become a generation of convenience and our malls offer us everything ranging from diced vegetables, to fresh fruits and cereal. We’ve forgotten how it feels to actually be at the farm, and pluck those luscious mangoes from the trees. This year, get that experience on your list too. Visit a farm during the harvesting time and participate in the process. Along with being fruitifying, it also helps one realise the effort that goes into agriculture, and helps us respect it even more.
Suggested locales: Fruit or vegetable farms
12.Be a part of the beach-cleanup drive
How often have you complained that the beach isn’t as clean as it should be? Well this year stop ranting and start doing something about it. Become a part of the many beach clean up drives that take place and start taking initiatives towards cleaning it. And yes, if there aren’t any such initiatives taking place that you know of, get together with friends and start one of your own.
Suggested locales: Beach, duh!