Me After becoming a mother, I realized my love for traveling. During my limited trip with my parents, I’ve been curious since I was a kid. I was fascinated by historical buildings and museums. This curiosity further inspired me after marrying an avid traveler, Indian Army officer Ashish.I was introduced by doing some trips to backpacking and budget trips Siachen Base Camp Travel with him to Ladakh, Pondicherry, Canada and Southeast Asia.

Our trip has always been a common responsibility and I have noticed how much I depend on him in the planning part. I didn’t even know how to drive at that time. I started learning how to manage everything myself only when I went on a few solo trips.

When I got pregnant with my daughter Ariana in 2014, I started planning an overseas trip with her. My husband also thought it was a great idea, but we didn’t immediately disclose it to my family.

After Ariana was born, I started preparing myself Backpacking trip with her. When she was nine months old, I went on a test trip to Bangalore with her for the NH7 Weekender. After realizing that I could manage her independently, I chose Germany for her first solo parental trip cross-country.

In July 2016, I traveled to three cities in Germany with a rucksack, a baby carrier, a portable stroller, and an adorable one-year-old child. I stayed at the hostel and explored the city on foot and by public transport. We slept on a bunk bed in a private dormitory and ate in the hostel’s kitchen. Throughout this time, I was still breastfeeding my baby, but I also introduced local fruits, bread, sausages, and eggs. I saw her completely enjoying this experience. As for me, I was overwhelmed and exhausted, but I was incredibly happy and proud to pull off this backpack trip with my baby in a non-English speaking country.

I went back to India and kept in touch with my parents and husband to see that this was a life-changing experience. They were initially worried about our safety and the health of our babies, but looking at my photos and videos, we understood how much we needed as moms and babies.

“Backpacking mom”

After returning to India from my 2016 trip, I started recording my experiences on my blog and Instagram channel. I received a lot of positive feedback and questions from mothers all over India and asked for hints. Soon, the word spread only on social media, which is why I became known as “Backpacking Indian Mom”. I started blogging more seriously in 2018 and now I’m creating content about backpack trips with kids on Instagram channels and blogs.

To date, I have traveled to quite a few destinations with Ariana, including Germany, Cambodia, Spain, Meghalaya, Rajasthan, Goa, and some short trips. I also learned how to drive both two-wheeled and four-wheeled vehicles. Today I can take her with her confidence wherever we travel, without relying on anyone else.

Since I started backpacking, some mothers have wanted to travel with me. That was the impetus for planning a venture like # backpackwithmom. So, in May 2021, I met and cooperated with a tour operator named FreeFolk, an eco-tour operator based in the northeast. Freefolk and I have been working on this project for months and have created a customized itinerary for this pilot project to Meghalaya. Later, I announced this trip on my Instagram page, but it sold out within 20 days.

There was an overwhelming response from mothers all over the country who wanted to participate. We finally took six mothers and seven children and drove across Meghalaya.

I was very worried about this first venture. It was my first experience as a travel curator and I was responsible for taking my mother and children to remote areas in the northeast. Concerns such as emergency medical care, food availability, packing lists, and the nature of the trip (including camping, cliff jumping, kayaking, trekking) were dealt with by FreeFolk and me throughout the trip.

Fortunately, it all worked beautifully. It was a five-day, four-night trip across four destinations in Meghalaya: Shillong, Shnongpdeng, Mawlynnong, and Sora. The idea was to expose them to outdoor travel and make it comfortable for mothers to travel alone.

As all mothers traveled to the northeast for the first time, there were some concerns about language, food, packing essentials, culture and COVID protocol. We met as strangers on the first day and traveled together in one car for almost a week. When we traveled around the state and enjoyed a variety of outdoor experiences together, we were very well connected and soon became friends.

From camping with children on the border between India and Bangladesh, cooking river fish over direct fire and witnessing the border in our hearts, trekking to downhill waterfalls and locals We did everything up to eating the food together.

It was a refreshing experience for children who had been trapped indoors for months due to a pandemic, had distance education, then breathed fresh Meghalaya air and rampaged outdoors.

Exploring the cleanest villages in Asia and learning about the separation of waste into singing in the car together every day, this experience has just opened the door for so many mothers.

On the final day, the mother and the child were in tears. They wanted to go out into the world with their children. This trip seemed to fulfill that wish to them, and hopefully they started their own parental journey. Moms and children stay in touch with us and want to travel with us again. Further plans for a trip to #backpackwithmom are currently pending due to Omicron’s horror. We have received a lot of inquiries about our upcoming trips, but we are confident that we will resume soon and bring more mothers and children on our unique backpack trip.

Tips for travelers

Travel Tips for Solo Travel

Seeing a mother who follows my advice, traveling with her children, and reading a message after returning safely is one of my greatest victories.

But my favorite is to talk to mothers and young parents on my social media channels and help them plan their trips. (Maybe I’ve given countless hints to anyone who sent me a message or email.)

1. My advice for mothers and fathers who want to travel alone with their children is to believe in themselves first. Many will doubt the intention of parents to take their children alone, but once they are convinced of the purpose behind the trip, they need to do it and see what happens.

2. You can start with a small trip within the country or state. If your first trip is successful, you can start planning a more adventurous trip with your children.

3. Another piece of advice I would like to give you is to read a lot of travel blogs, accommodation reviews from travel websites, not only hotels but also different types of stays such as hostel and bed & breakfast stays. Is to explore.

4. Book your trip early, then book your accommodation and plan your activities at that destination.

5. Include child-friendly activities at these destinations and prepare buffer days in case of an emergency.

6. Another tip is to travel smartly and experience your destination by using public transport or walking around to meet locals. Only when you meet the locals can you understand the layers of the place.

7. Don’t worry too much about food on the go and introduce different flavors as you grow up.

8. My last advice is to pack as lightly as possible because if you are traveling as a single parent you will have to carry all your luggage yourself.

Travel changes your life, and if you introduce your child early on, they will really thank you when they grow up.
My goal from the #backpackwithmom venture is to create a community of Indian backpacking mothers who are not afraid to travel the world with their children.

Backpack travel for families is still a very early concept in India. Through these trips, I take them to travel like me, introduce backpacking as a viable travel style, and much by keeping their travel dreams alive after becoming a mother. I want to help my mother and children.

Nevertheless, I am ecstatic to see the love for backpack travel among Indian mothers in the last few years. Mothers are no longer afraid to take their children alone on less travelable roads.

“Thank you for making me realize that I can live my dreams beyond my motherhood” — Convince me that talking about the beauty of backpack travel was a good decision.

You can access her website Here And her Instagram page Here..

(Written by Deenaz Raisinghani, who also featured in The Indian Express, Times of India, Travel and Leisure, Condé Nast Traveler, Women’s Web, Tripoto and delivered two TEDx talks about her journey as a backpacking Indian mom. Edited by Lao)