In the hustle and bustle of daily life, you can spend days with your family without connecting above the essential chatter. You find yourself talking but not conversing, listening but not understanding. Get away from the daily rigmarole and connect with your family at leisure. Here are five ways to have fun while spending some quality time with each other and bonding beyond your usual interests.
Rafting – You would think that getting wet in the rains would be refreshing enough, but you haven’t felt the thrill of the cool water splashing you as you ride the rapids and drenching you head to toe. Rafting, maybe combined with other adventure activities, is an excellent way to make the most of your holidays and collect a few bragging points when you return to work or school after that. For the younger generation, it offers the excitement they seek, and for the older ones, it jolts them out of the tedium of daily life.
Once you have your blood gushing with stimulation after the rafting trip navigating Grade 2 and 3 rapids, you wouldn’t want to end the day there. Try kayaking, zip lining, river crossing, jet-ski or ATV riding, and other electrifying adventure sports near the rafting route.
Two places near Mumbai and Pune offer this experience on the Kundalika and Vaitarna Rivers.
Trekking – Get closer to nature and catch up on some exercise towards a fit and healthy family. Apart from the sense of personal achievement, you will also appreciate the mesmerizing views. Many of these trekking routes will be dotted with historical monuments and geographical oddities, making it a good lesson in history and geography as well.
Get a breath of fresh air and explore the diverse wildlife and foliage; get a taste of the village life and local food; get soaking wet to enjoy the best of the season; and brush up on your history as you visit places of significance from times of old.
There are several trekking options in the Konkan coastal area that range from easy (Rajmachi) to difficult (Siddhagad) and from day-trips (Rohida Fort) to overnight treks (Ratangad). For those wanting to challenge themselves further, this is the season that Himalayan treks and safaris are also open.
Resort-based Activities – If you would rather just relax and take it easy, spend some quality time with your family while making sure no one gets bored, then a resort is the perfect option for you. You could opt to stay back for the night and continue the amusement next day or just enjoy a fun-filled day and go home. The bundle of activities can span from indoor and outdoor games, to thrilling rides, and water slides.
Zorbing, zip-lining, water slides, exhilarating rides, paintball shooting, and bungee jumping are just some of the adrenaline pumping activities on offer. If you want something calmer, try a treasure hunt, themed 4-D rides, or a sedate boating experience.
The stretch between Mumbai and Pune abound with such action-loaded places – Monteria Resorts, Imagica, Della Adventures, Silent Hill Resorts, and Shangrila Resorts to name a few. Pooja’s Farm at Kolad is also another exciting option.
Picnics & Nature Walks – City life doesn’t usually let you appreciate your natural environment and many young kids miss out on the joys of chasing a butterfly or learning about the local flora and fauna. Day picnics and organized nature walks introduce kids and adults alike to the natural treasures that surround us and make us aware of the wonders we might have overlooked.
Learn about butterflies and bats, marvel at a flamboyance of flamingos, learn about the biodiversity thriving within the city itself, or just walk around in the tranquillity and spend a day surrounded by natural splendour.
BNHS organises a number of educational trips at Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Sewri mudflats, or around Mumbai. Organised trips in Bhimashankar and Karnala Wildlife Sanctuaries take you on a guided tour of their easy nature trails. Tungarli Dam near Lonavala is also an idyllic picnic spot.
Organic Living – Go back to your roots and learn how it was to live the simple life. Learn about organic farming, working with farm animals, organic cooking, and other benefits of life without modern technology. It is the perfect way to teach young minds the value of non-material comforts and to widen their understanding of life as it was lived by their ancestors.
Take a tour of the small vegetable patch and understand how organic farming works; try your hand at cooking using Vedic ideals; learn about traditional building methods; have a go at traditional methods of fishing; meet the farm animals or attempt cow dung plastering; and many other interactive activities to enlighten you about the rural life.
Some of the places that offer this experience near Mumbai are Govardhan Eco Village, Saguna Baug, and Eco-Village on the Lavasa-Panshet Road.
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