About me

I have been travelling since 2010. What started as a deeply personal journey, triggered by a personal tragedy (I am still not ready to talk about it!), has now translated into a blog and a career. I was going through a rough phase in life and was living without a purpose. Then suddenly travel happened to me, as if by divine intervention and I found the true calling of my life. I started as a solo traveler. It helped me feed my hunger for loneliness, brooding and some serious soul searching (How else, do you think, I lost much of my hair,eh!). It helped me rediscover many hidden facets to myself and my Incredible India.  From an introvert, travel has turned me into a forced extrovert. Thanks to travel, from a self destructive person, I have turned into a positive, happy individual.

I now want to dedicate my entire life to travel. Trust me it’s the best job in the world (though demands lot of hard work and supreme personal sacrifices – more on that later) More than 150 destinations, 8 years later, travel has turned me into a better person. I never thought one day I will end up winning photography awards and my travel pictures and my stories will be published in India’s leading travel magazines, newspapers and online portals. It still freaks me out when people tell me I am an inspiration to them. This was not my vision when I started to travel. That said, it’s now impossible to go back to a mundane life.  Travel is now my reason of existence.

In November, 2014. I was fired from my corporate job of 7 years, for traveling too much. In fact, I was the only one who was not ever promoted in my 7 years in corporate life. I worked towards not getting promoted deliberately year after year while my colleagues left no stones unturned to ensure their promotion. After small bouts of depression post my firing, I finally realized that it happened for good. As soon as I stopped pretending to look for another job, I booked Everest Base Camp Trek. The trek cleared many things in my head. It made me realize what I really want in life. The immense support from friends and family helped me sail through. My parents have a big role in helping me achieve my dreams.

However I don’t want to glamorize travel. This blog is a labor of love. I have spent many sleepless nights, suffered small big struggles everyday to create this blog. I created this blog in order to organize/record my memories, share my stories and empower/inspire my audience to lead a more fulfilling life travelwise. But I always discourage people to follow my example.  In fact I keep warning people not to quit their job for traveling. What worked for me might not work for others.

Though I enjoy all genres of travel but I am passionate about adventure, trekking, rural tourism, spiritual, wildlife, eco- tourism and specialize in budget travel (These days gravitating towards luxury). My writing style is experiential with deep respect for the destination I am traveling to. The recurrent theme in my writing is that of soul searching, seeing things in a positive but realistic way and conservation/protection of culture, environment, destinations, wildlife and local people et al. I share brief facts at the end of my blog. But be warned, this is not the place for wikipediash knowledge.

PUBLISHED WORK :

Print:

  • Worked as the main photographer for Outlook Traveler getaway’s maiden city guide on Mumbai called ‘Aamchi Mumbai’.
  • Cover Story on Rann Of Kutch in Railbandhu, India’s railway magazine.
  • Cover Story on Unseen Rajasthan in Railbandhu.
  • Cover Story on Sabarmati Ashram and Gandhi Trail in Railbandhu.
  • Cover Story on Heritage walk in Old Hyderabad in Go Getter magazine. Go Air’s in flight magazine.
  • Story on Naneghat trek in Railbandhu
  • Feature story in Terrascape travel magazine
  • Many of my articles, captions and film reviews published and won 1st prize in Filmfare
  • Lonely Planet : Traveling with parents
  • Pictures and writings published in journals such as :

Lonely Planet Magazine India,

Outlook Traveller magazine

Outlook Traveller getaway guidebooks

DNA newspaper

Times Of India

Mens Health

  • As part of ‘A day In the Life Of India’ contest, one of my pictures was published in Times of India,
  • Times Of India shortlisted and published my picture on world photography day.
  • Travel Pictures published in DNA newspaper

Online:

  • We Nomads
  • Travel Yaari
  • Culture Trip
  • Travel Khana (Upcoming)
  • One of my pictures was selected as Editor’s pick for a contest on Better Photography’s website.
  • Won a Photography contest conducted by National Geographic Traveler Magazine online.
  • PETA Campaigns: I was the official photographer for PETA India’s celebrity launches and events for more than a year. I covered campaign launches by Actress Amrita Rao, Lauren Gottlieb, Sunny Leone, Raveena Tandon and the stars of Fugly. Also shot for fund raising event by PETA’s founder Ingrid Newkirks on her annual India It was published across PETA’s website and social media platforms.

LISTS

  • Featured by leading newspaper Hindustan Times as one of the best Twitter handle for Travel related queries. The article on me can be read here 
  • Holidify mentions me as one of the top 100 travel bloggers of India under ‘adventure’ category. Check it out here.
  • Thrillophilia mentions me as one of the top bloggers from India. Check here.
  • We Travel Solo lists me as Top 20 solo traveler of India.
  • Hello Travel mentions me as one of the Top 5 Adventures from India. Check here.

AWARDS

  • Won 1st prize (Out of 36,000 entries) in Entertainment category in Mumbai Meri Jaan contest judged by ace celebrity photographer Atul Kasbekar. The prize winning pictures as well as many of my Mumbai pictures are displayed at a permanent Zillion gallery in Mumbai, which is India’s largest photo
  • Won 1st Prize in a Photography contest conducted by I-Next newspaper in Lucknow in 2008
  • Won 1st place in culture category in a photography contest conducted by DNA newspaper on world photography day. It was also published in the paper and exhibited in R City Mall, Ghatkoper, Mumbai.
  • Won consolation prize in professional category in CIDCO’s annual ‘Frame it fine’ photography. My picture was hence published in CIDCO’s 2014 calender.
  • Shortlisted for the audition of Fox Traveller Channel’s show ‘Life Mein Ek Baar’ (Hosted by actor Purab Kohli)
  • Was shortlisted twice as India’s top 50 contestants out of 20, 000 plus entries for the biggest travel blogging contest – ‘Grab Your Dream’.
  • Was shortlisted as India’s top 10 contestants for a travel contest conducted by Ceat

PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION:

  • Permanent exhibition of many of my photographs at India’s largest photo gallery, the Kanakia Zillion Gallery at BKC. I also won first prize in the same contest judged by ace photographer Atul Kasbekar.
  • Selected for a group photography exhibition conducted by the photography group ‘Mumbai weekend Shoot’. It was also listed in Bombay Times’ Friday listing: Whats Hot!
  • 2 of my pictures were exhibited in a group photography exhibition in Lucknow’s Lalit Kala Akademi.
  • Group Exhibition of my photographs by DNA newspaper on world photography day in R City Mall, Ghatkoper.

MY INTERVIEWS

(READ THE LINKS TO KNOW MORE ABOUT ME)

I have been interviewed by:

WORKSHOPS:

  • Participated in a workshop on Travel Photography /Documentary Photography / Photo The workshop was conducted by renowned photographer Mr.Fawzan Husain (He has worked with India Today and Mid Day)
  • Did a workshop in Travel Writing by eminent writer and editor of Femina magazine, Ms. Sathya Saran during the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival,. Mumbai, 2012. Also received appreciation from her on my writing.
  • Did a workshop in Travel Writing by eminent travel writer Mr.Dilip D’souza during the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival,. Mumbai, 2013
  • Won a photo contest on Hindustan Times NO TV day and was chosen for a street photography workshop with Hindustan Times’ National Photo Editor Mr.Gurinder Osan.

 Formal training in Photography :

  • Completed basic course in photography from National Institute of Photography(Mumbai) under the tutelage of commercial photographer Mr. Dharmesh Sachade.
  • Completed advanced course in photography from Udaan Institute of photography(Mumbai) under the tutelage of celebrity photojournalist Mr. Arko Dutta.

 

11 thoughts on “About me

  1. As an office colleague from a different department, I had known you as a happy go lucky fellow, mostly because of general office staff perception that you took leaves more too often. I would eventually realize, these were for the numerous adventure expeditions you looked forward to, A few of the your adventures I heard of was Watching turtles going back to sea, Goa, Rajasthan, Capturing Mumbai in the wee hours and many others and Everest Base Camp of all things!!!. Perhaps what changed my thoughts about you was an article authored by you. Simple, clear, correct dose of humour, honest travel opinion, refined language , all coming from a fellow who when with friends, spoke only vernacular and rather streetish and crass lingo at that!!! As I began following your work keenly, the commitment showed, all your trips began to make sense with the articles spewing your love and enthusiasm for travel. News of your retreat from regular office (word “Ouster” would have been appropriate, didn’t want to sound rude) perhaps didn’t surprise me much. But your choice after calling it quits to rather spend all your savings on more travel rather than for mere survival spoke volumes. As your articles and travel inputs gain further readers and you accumulated photography awards ( I lay my claim to one such award, where my suggestion to you to take part eventually got you on the winning list! ), the growth from a passionate travel enthusiast to serious professional with commendable work portfolio is something that I am proud to witness ( In your blog’s trademark, the view from my #SoulWindow is Proud! )

    Folklore of ‘Follow Your Passion’ of successful people are commonly heard and as I sit down always to give ‘elderly’ advise to my younger cousins in regards to career choices, among the list of stories, the one genuine and live example that I generally give is that of Abhinav Singh, perhaps more on the struggles one has to undergo to follow one’s passion and the commitment. I have seen at such close quarters the rejections/ criticisms you have faced, yet you relentlessly pursued travel/ adventure. I truly hope you too become part of folklore. With your passion, it ain’t impossible!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Abhinav if I read or see anything related to travel or blogs or writing… 1st think which strikes me is you and nobody else….
    There is always a feeling of proud for u…. Its so so so heart warming to see you grow and make a name for yourself in the travel industry as I am witness to your struggles and your perseverance.
    May you just excel and achieve all the goals you desire whether Everest or destination next door.
    Lemme tell you just one thing… “Very few get the opportunity to follow their dreams….”
    You are able to follow your dreams despite all the failures and struggles.
    It’s not easy to walk on a tightrope…. “aap ladkhadaate ho”…
    So there will be many hurdles, ladkhadaaoge, giroge… but the feel of following your dream and desire is just priceless…
    I wasn’t able to follow my dreams because of my circumstances and was scared too, that whether I will be able to or not, so that’s why feel really happy when I see you following your dreams….
    I know this write up has become very long…. but was meaning to write this for so long…. so just wrote…
    Cheers…. Luv U… Follow ur dreams….
    “You Have Made It Big-Make It Bigger”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Abhinav, as I know you from our office days you were always an avid and passionate traveler..even in job you used to take out whatever time you could to travel, click photos and share your stories of travel passionately with other colleagues. We were awed by your enthusiasm, zest and love for travelling and how much hard work and sacrifice of time (even ratings at times) you used took to make your dream and passion of travelling come true. It was a secret known to all in the office that one day you would fly from the corporate nest of job which was never meant for you, into the blue skies of travelling where you rightfully belonged.

    You took the risk and burnt your bridges willing to face hardships and challenges..no! you took them head-on to live your dream. You paid the price you had to pay to live your dream, maybe a bit more than one has to pay.. but in the end I am really glad that the risk paid off and today you are flying so wonderfully high in the blue skies travelling to all places in India and around the world, snapping pics and telling the world your stories of beautiful travels whilst sharing with all beautiful pictures clicked by you during your journeys.

    I sincerely hope and pray that you keep soaring higher and higher, living your dream, reach out to one and all and become the best travel blogger that there is!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Abhinav
    Reached on your blog accidentally through a Facebook post. Enjoyed it a lot. I am a fellow blogger and also a travel editor. After working as a travel and web editor at various media, I now publish my own monthly travel tabloid, only of its kind in Hindi in country- Awara Musafir (आवारा मुसाफिर). I would like to use one of your blog posts for my forthcoming issue. Please let me know, if you are interested and also your mail id, where I can contact you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “I was fired from my corporate job of 7 years, for traveling too much”. I was chuckling at this statement. As a long-term traveler and a full time travel blogger, we all know how difficult it is to balance a full-time job and travels, not to say you are working on growing your blog at the meanwhile. but lol let someone go because he travels too much? Really? It is their lose not to recognize your skills and your adventurous spirit, and your creativity. And you did really well by keep up your hard work and make your dream career happen. It is so inspiring to see you from just start traveling solo for battling hardships in your life to be a successful travel writer. Reminded me that what does not kill us just make us stronger.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. After reading this, it feels great to know you Sir.
    And, trust me on that, you have been an inspiration for me since the day we met at Delhi.
    I remember what you said me, ‘Kuch bhi karna life me, Blogger mat banna, qki bahut pareshani hai isme.’ I know it was out of your experience in this field, but i can’t help falling for it.
    I just thought that, no matter how hard it would be, what’s wrong in giving it a try. And, since then all my Photography, Blogging and Travelling has some inspiration from you.
    I have been following you on all platforms just to get more and more inspiration from you.
    Don’t know what the days ahead gonna bring in, but if i continue doing it you will be a guiding source for that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Suman. Haha. You still remember my words? Yes blogging is indeed a tough pursuit. It’s not easy and glamorous at all. I feel a sense of responsibility when I hear words like these. That’s why I don’t want to build a false aura around blogging and misguide aspiring bloggers. Yes do give it a shot and see what works for you and what does not. And most importantly do it along with a day job. It’s not easy to earn money out of blogging, at least in the beginning. All the best to you.

      Liked by 1 person

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