Monsoon travel can be a magical experience if you’re looking to escape from the balmy humidity of city life during this season. And verdant greenery, freshly soaked in a shower of cold rain is a sight to behold. A cool misty breeze is the perfect companion for any vacation, but here are a few tips you need to know when making the best of this monsoon at a great destination.
Plan out how much rain you’re willing to take
There’s a difference between a slight drizzle which lets you trek and walk around comfortably, and a pouring rain that will have you bundled up in the safety of your cottage or car. If you can catch a cold easily in this weather, maybe you’re better off being dry!
Plan your dates according to weather conditions
As any seasoned traveler knows, torrential rain can cause not off not only roads slippery with eroding mud from hills, but also landslides. This is why many destinations have a defined ‘season’, and ‘after-season’ (when weather conditions make a destination less popular) keeping in mind rain or hail.
If you’re going to a hill station right before the season closes, consider driving slowly, with enough stops and breaks to check for fuel and safe driving conditions. The same goes for the beach – a sudden change in tide, led by the onslaught of rain, can put some beaches off-limits. And even the beaches on classic rafting destinations like Rishikesh can suddenly go from cheerful to gloomy when clouds replace soft sunshine.
Be cautious, but don’t be overly pessimistic
With all the aforementioned paragraphs on safety, don’t be put off from venturing out in the monsoon! Just use some common sense (and a bit of Google search) to ensure you’re safe. For example, while the drive up to your resort might need you to do a slow 40-60 kmph, you can zip a bit when you’re nearing your resort. You’re safest on main roads and highways.
There can be minor delays due to the rain, but you can easily manage that by leaving a little bit earlier. It just means more time on the road, with loved ones, music, conversation and regular stops for tea to keep you going.
A note about flying during the Monsoon
Turbulence is a common feature of flying during the monsoon season, and can trigger a bit of fear in inexperienced flyers. However, sophisticated weather analysis by aviation authorities ensures that they only take off in safe conditions. If there’s news of delays, buy a book and wait it out until the next flight!
Packing for Monsoon Travel
Along with the obvious umbrella, you’ll need a raincoat or a waterproof jacket if you plan to hike in drizzle and the occasional small downpour. Ensure that you pack clothes which are easy to dry.
For your safety, also pack a mosquito repellent, and silica gel packets and plastic packing for electronics to prevent them from getting wet. If you’re trekking a bit with supplies, pack your essentials in plastic sheets.