As things start to open up around the world, we all try to find our way around the new normal. I’m beginning to see more travel photos on my social feeds which is a great cause for envy! Here in Singapore we are still cautious of getting around the city, so it is envious to see others travel and go on holidays.
It made me think of the places I want to travel too when it’s safe to do so. Now, I’m sure all of you must have a travel list a mile long by now. Let’s compare notes and see those dream places. Here are my top 5 travel destinations that I’m gearing up for:
This shouldn’t come as a surprise––I am going to jump on the first plane home to Kenya as soon as I am able! I have not seen my extended family for close to 2 years now, and my heart aches for the familiar faces and streets. I think I will be experiencing Kenya anew with this trip: there are so many things to go back to that I have taken for granted pre-Covid.
One of my favourite places to go to in Kenya is a little village called Lamu. It is a tiny pocket oasis rich for its Swahili heritage. I love the feeling I get strolling down Lamu’s tiny streets, navigating around placid donkeys––the town’s quiet dignity welcomes self-reflection and creative epiphanies.
Of course, no trip to Kenya would be complete without a visit to the Maasai Mara. It is my happy place where I can watch the sun set on the vast savannah. I urge everyone to have this humbling experience at least once in their life!
If Kenya is on your list…Majlis Hotel, Fordhani house and Manda Bay Lodge are wonderful places that will make you feel at home while you go about on your Kenyan adventure.
Yet another no biggie: India is after all, my second home. I’m looking forward to going home to the Maisha workshop, to my print family. I miss our chats and working together immensely. I will definitely be haunting all my favourite spots in Rajasthan which are Tapri, Bar Palladio and Gulab Ji Chai. Even now, as I work on new designs for Maisha, my mind takes me back amongst the noble architecture and lively streets. Already I can smell the glorious chai and street food!
If India is on your list…I highly recommend the Raas Hotel Group. I love them for their incredible hospitality, sustainability, and respect to heritage. They recently took over the Raj Mahal in Jaipur, which is an absolutely stunning building.
I love Bali every time I travel to it: its beaches, food and culture pulls me in. There’s something about the place as well––a deep, spiritual thrumming in its buildings and people that fuels me creatively. I frequent Bali as it is close to Singapore and Hong Kong, and feel refreshed by it every trip.
If Bali is on your list…diving in Lombok is one of my favourite things to do! I also love Canggu for its food, and Ubud for its yoga, mediation and furniture shopping.
I don’t think I can live anywhere but a city––I am definitely an urbanite! Everyday life in Singapore is fast-paced and exciting, but you can feel burned out with it. Aside from the savannah, I turn to beaches when I want to find a place of calm. And who hasn’t thought of stretching out on the sand in Maldives? I have not been, but heard so much about the beautiful island and can’t wait to visit.
I think it’s something we all take for granted living in a city: quiet areas, swimming with nature around you, taking deep breaths of ocean air. When I feel anxious during the pandemic, I often think myself back into a calm place, and the ocean always comes to mind.
Bhutan is special––I promised my 70-year-old dad I would take him there while he is active, at least once in his lifetime. My dad and I both love travel destinations that are transformational, and Bhutan with its deeply-rooted culture, natural landscape and people, feels like it will change us. Hopefully we will be able to undertake this emotional journey as father and daughter soon!
Above all, it is my wish that we can all be safe and well in these times. To be able to travel and see the world is a privilege––one that I am always grateful for. Until it is safe for all of us to do so, I’ll continue to work, dream and plan.
What are your top travel destinations? Do you have an itinerary planned? Let me know, I would love to hear of it. Blessings to all xx.