#Pribattical Phase 1: INDIA

Tuesday, December 11

Okayyy I'm going to attempt to recap my #Pribattical travels in November over a few blog posts. What was #Pribattical, and where all did I go? Check out this post! 

This is more of a travel diary and not an exhaustive travel guide to India (I could literally do a separate post about every city we visited) but I am sharing some details about what we did, where we stayed, as well as restaurant/bar recommendations, mostly because those can be really hard to find in another country! I kinda wish I had been able to find more resources when planning for this trip (though, we managed just fine :), so hopefully this is helpful to someone.

Please, if you have any specific questions about travel to India or anything I didn't cover here, just let me know, I'm so happy to answer anything!

I'm going to try not to make this post SO LONG, but I will note that this was the biggest chunk of my trip.
Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations
MUMBAI (or, BOMBAY?) //
Looking back, still a high point (though not necessarily a highlight) of my entire month was walking into my hotel room in Mumbai, after the long trip to India. Which - by the way - was not nearly as bad as I remembered from my childhood! I had braced myself for the longest test of wills imaginable, but it was totally fine. Guess I'm growing up ;) still my room was such an RELIEF after flights & airports, and a dreamy oasis of sleep...so much so that I slept and slept and slept foreverrr (waiting for Carina & Amir to arrive) and then totally screwed myself for the next night. Like I'd never traveled to India before!

Mumbai was initially, a long layover, as the best point of entry into the country, as well as a jet-lag recovery stop. But as a massive city, it was also a fantastic way to jump headfirst back into India. Literally, stepping out of the airport I was hit with a wave of sights, sounds, smells, and HUMIDITY, that felt super nostalgic. Like I had a very stupid emotional moment that second night by myself when I walked outside and was like, oh my goodness I'm in India!!!

We stayed at the Taj Lands End, which was perfect, highly recommend, in the *~hip~* neighborhood of Bandra, also great for walking along the coast and into "Jogger's Park" and even exploring some nearby historic sights. A highlight of this part of the trip for me was going to Toto's, apparently a Mumbai institution, an auto body shop themed bar (vintage Beetle on a jack? check. bartenders in coveralls? check.) where they exclusively played American classic rock - such a trip when you're across the world.

More recommendations in Bombay if you need them: The Bombay Canteen (this feels like a hip "Bombay cafe" you would go to in another country), Pali Bhavan ("Indian Maggiano's), Smoke House Deli (ironically we only wanted idlis & dosas, etc. [Indian breakfast] but the hip stuff was all Western breakfast! This place was cute and yummy!) we actually loved the House of Nomad bar IN the Taj Lands End, and be sure to go to Toto's (the bar!)
Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations GOA //
I mentioned this already but I have had my heart set on Goa since a bait-and-switch stop there in 2004 (thanks, Dad!) I've always dreamed of going back for the ultimate Goa vacation, so I knew when I started planning this trip that Goa would be a big chunk of it!

Goa is India's equivalent to Hawaii or the Caribbean in the states. From the research I did beforehand, South Goa may be known for more beautiful beaches (I mean...they are all beautiful) but is a bit more slow-paced and old school, whereas North Goa is more hip, with better restaurants, and more catered to younger people. We stayed at the W at Vagator Beach, and loved every minute of it. It's probably the most beautiful hotel I've ever stayed at in my life; we took advantage of the hotel restaurants, and all the amenities (pools! tents! beach access!) and really loved the friendly staff that we got to know throughout the week.

While we had some larger aspirations of day excursions to South Goa or a spice farm, we ended up being so content with pool/beach/pool time, and adventuring locally, straight out the front door of the W. One of the best days in Goa was walking to nearby Chapora Beach, which we learned is a fisherman's beach, and then hiking around the cape back to Vagator Beach (this link might explain best what I'm talking about?) it was totally secluded and SO beautiful (second picture down in this post!) On our last day in Goa, we ventured to nearby Ashwem Beach for the day and rented a few chairs & umbrellas. We DID make it to the Vegas strip of Goa, Baga Beach, one night, but it wasn't really our vibe ("Guys, I'm a little Baga-ed out." - Amir after spending on hour in Baga, haha.)

Goa recommendations: Like I said, we took advantage of dining at the W, and before you discredit me: Carina, who I trust with my life when it comes to foodie-food because she is a bougie peanut, said, when it comes to fine dining in India, the best restaurants are all at hotels (I'm NOT saying you can't find good food outside of a hotel, but just don't feel bad about eating a hotel restaurant. And do be careful with street food.) We had breakfast every day as well as a couple great dinners (Goan Fish Thali ftw!) at Kitchen Table at the W, and we absolutely loved our dinner at Spice Traders. Oh and tbh we ordered a lot of food poolside. Carina really wanted to visit La Plage beach club but it wasn't open for the season yet! Also, check out the Anjuna Market for loads of shopping, right on Anjuna Beach (we could have easily stayed there all day.) Finally Chapora Fort is a nice hike and an amazing place to watch the sunset/sunrise.
Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations
Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations
Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations Priya the Blog, Nashville travel blog, Nashville travel blogger, sabbatical, Pribattical, India, India travel recommendations, Mumbai travel, Bombay travel, Goa travel, Jaipur travel, what do to in Bombay, what to do in Goa, what to do in Jaipur, India travel guide, India trip ideas, travel to India, India restaurant recommendations
JAIPUR //
So by the time we got to Jaipur, we had really hit our India stride. I think Carina and Amir would agree that this was our favorite part of the trip - we LOVED Jaipur. I have to take a second and give a shout-out to my travel buds, my brother and sister, we had the BEST time together. It was seriously the perfect little crew - Carina kept us eating at good places (y'all should see her with her phone, she is so handy!) and Amir never said no to an adventure of any kind (except clubbing in Baga.)

Ok so - Jaipur, located in Rajasthan ("the sun state" because of the lovely weather year round, seriously, what a relief it was) is a city with so much gorgeous history. I'm not like, a historian, but for whatever reason, there was a long royal dynasty of Maharajas & Maharanis that were huge patrons of the arts - textiles, photography, architecture etc. Jaipur is especially known for block printing and blue pottery. And of course, the amazing pink architecture everywhere (Jaipur is known as the Pink City.)

For something like 1,000 Rupees (about $14) we bought two day passes that gave us access to so many sights: Amer Fort, Hawa Mahal (the cake looking one above), the City Palace (that included a small art museum), and a lot more that we didn't even get to. We even debated a day trip to nearby Jodhpur ("the blue city"), but ultimately decided against it, as there was so so much to see in Jaipur. Though I was kinda kicking myself about it after Priyanka & Nick got married in Jodhpur shortly after.

I kept joking that "Jaipur IS India" but really, I think it gives you the most sterotypical Disneyland India feel - for example, this is where we saw people riding on elephants, monkeys chattering around, a snake charmer !! And the beautiful palaces, forts, walls, etc. that we saw. It was incredible. After being surrounded by that city wall all week, we decided to spend our last day in Jaipur hiking it, which may have been our best day in India. It was a steep hike (though the weather was tolerable!) but SO worth it for the sweeping views in every direction. Such a cool way to explore the city.

Oh yeah - we stayed at the Fairmont Jaipur, and while it is a beautiful hotel and the ceremonial entrance/exit can't be beat, we didn't find it to have the best service. Oh, and it is a bit of a drive from most of the sights so something to consider.

Jaipur recommendations: Carina dragged us to the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing which was actually awesome. They also have a network of shops (also called Anokhi) where everything is made by local artisans that they employ, it's beautiful stuff (the pants I'm wearing above!) and you can feel really good about shopping there. We also LOVED Bar Palladio (blue place above) and The Palladio Cafe, gorgeous spaces and great food if you want a break from Indian food. We had the best last hurrah dinner at Bar Palladio and the cutest old waiter who insisted on taking a bunch of pictures for us!


From Jaipur, we traveled back to Mumbai, stayed overnight, and I started my journey to Helsinki the next morning (which ended up being a whole separate adventure -- more to come!)

Also! All these photos were taken by either myself, Amir, or Carina (mostly them, thanks guys!) We're not professional photographers and these are fresh off an iPhone with no filters.

Please just write me in the comments if you have any specific questions about anything!

Phase 2 of my #Pribattical coming soon. If you want to check out the itinerary of my trip, it's right here. And if you're just here for the outfits and not travel rambles/phone pics, more of that coming too.

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