Travel Secrets

Know Before You Go!



The DUBLIN PARK(ING) DAY sounds like a cool green idea. Tell me more!

Once a year in the month of September, Dublin’s car parking spaces turn into public parks, games or art installations. Park(ing) Day is “intended to promote creativity, civic engagement, critical thinking, unscripted social interactions, generosity and play.”

Team TS happened to be there last September, and we couldn’t stop marvelling at some of the creative ideas on show at the parking lots.



(Image source:

Get all the details on this fun concept here.

How can I stay clean while trekking in a forest?

“Dude! You stink.” You don’t want to hear that when you’re trekking, right? Travel Secrets writer Aarohi Roy shows you how to have a spotless trek.

Trekking cleaniness

Amateur bag-packer that I am, it’s hard to adhere to or even know the rules of cleanliness in a forest. I researched, and there are quite a few of them. So next time I plan on camping out, I’m going to be well prepared.

For starters, have you ever heard of Isopropyl alcohol? This alcohol-based compound is a life saver that lets you clean without water. Carry a small bottle of this and a few cotton balls; you’re all set for a grime-free trek. If you’ve seen—‘Eat. Pray. Love’—the movie, there is a scene when Julia Robert’s Italian housekeeper pours a kettle of hot water in her bath and says that it’ll clean all parts that NEED to be cleaned. Well, the alcohol is similar.

When water is available, bathe as many times you can but don’t use soaps in rivers—Nature has issues with soaps. Also, if you come across multiple rivers and creeks in a day, don’t lose the chance to at least dip your feet in them. Yes, yes, just your feet. Did you know there are at least 20 common diseases caused by unkempt feet? Also, every time you soak and dry your feet, you can rotate your socks.

Did you know that cosmetics and perfumes attract wild animals? So does toothpaste. So brush your teeth far from your tents and stomp when you spit. The soil is the best cover up. And always, always be safe while drinking or eating fruits because the juice—if spilled—will attract mosquitoes. Mosquitoes will make you fall sick quicker than anything else in the forest.

If odour is a problem, switch to light-weight wool or silver-embedded clothing. Change your clothes while sleeping, and hang the day’s clothes—helps the odour. If you still stink, that’s what the isopropyl alcohol is for!

There have been times when I’ve wondered how in Jurassic Park and Lord of The Rings, people stay clean and healthy—seems it’s pretty easy, isn’t it?


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Q: I have just returned from a long trip abroad. My system needs some TLC. Please help!


chick spa


A: Noted spa therapist Megha Dinesh has lots of great ideas for you to revive and rejuvenate. Over to her!

A light concoction of ginger and basil in the morning is very calming for the digestive system. Add a little honey for extra comfort.



ginger basil




Q: Sounds so good! We’re already packing for our next trip. What’s your stay-well advice?

A: Keep drinking loads of fluid. Take good rest. Eat wisely. Stretch and move during long journeys. Where possible, expose yourself to safe sun.


 Q: Some prep tips for before we take off?

A: Drink loads of lemon water/tender coconut water a day prior to flying out. Avoid excess of sugar and caffeeine. Eat light but more of carbs and reduce proteins and fat intake. Chamomile tea is very relaxing. You can rub a blend of neroli, lavender and geranium on the palms or soles of feet. Besides a pleasant, refreshing aroma, it helps in combating jet lag and fatigue. Finally, wear and carry loose, comfortable natural fibre clothing.


Q: It’s a stressful world. How do you stay calm and happy? Share your secret(s): 

A: I have learnt that happiness lies within us, and I always make a conscious effort to remember this. During those ‘interesting’ days when I’m feeling down, I share my feelings with the close ones and remind them to do something special for me to pep me up (in case they forget.) And at times when I am unable to discuss or if can’t get in touch with a dear one, I do things which makes me feel content. From self healing to travel, dining, spaiing and such.



Q: What’s the most healing, soothing destination you have ever travelled to, and why is it your favourite:

A: My recent trip to Leh, Ladakh. Beauty at its best. From barren hilly mountains, to snow-covered peaks and lush greenery, from desert to gushing streams of crystal clear water. Reminds me so much of our life: there are tough times as well as plenty of opportunities and when we learn to enjoy, they all fit so well, making the entire journey beautiful.

Q: One world spa you would recommend:

A:  One and Only in Mauritius.

mauritius spa


Q: Your most breathtaking experience…

A:  Skydiving in New Zealand.

Q: To a nervous traveller, your advice would be:

A: Break your travels, don’t over exert. It’s not about number of places you need to visit but the time you spend and enjoy them fully. Eat well, try the local specialities/stuff but appreciate your body limits too and travel with a basic medical kit. Last but not the least, remember that “Travel is the only thing you buy which makes you rich…”

Q:  What healing oils/fragrances/lotions do you always pack when travelling:

 A: I love my Frankinsence essential oil and Givenchy fragrance…



 Q: People often check into spas post travel. What specific restorative therapies would you advise they pick: 

A: Though the choice depends upon an individual’s need and preference, spa therapy can be very restorative. From skin cleansing sessions including Sea Salt Scrub and a Re-hydrating Wrap, Deep cleansing Facial or a Lymphatic  Drainage Massage as well as a Deep Sculpting for stressed muscles; there’s simply so much to choose from!

salt sea scrub


Meet Megha: Spa Consultant and Healer Megha Dinesh has worked with the Oberoi, Taj Group and Park Hotels. Trained in Hypnosis, Past Life Regression and Reiki, she also practices Emotional Freedom Techniques and Craniosacral Therapy.

Maldives DSC00112




Q: “My feet are swollen from 8 hours of flying. My husband says my black pump shoes are to blame. Is he right?”

A: Yes he is, especially if you wore those shoes throughout your flight.

Learn from Lady Gaga’s mistake:  she reportedly wore a pair of scarily high and tight armadillo shoes on a flight, and soon felt her feet beginning to swell.  The cabin crew immediately made her slip into comfortable slippers, and she was saved from Deep Vein Thrombosis, a very common and life-threatening condition that develops when blood clots form in the veins of the legs.

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