Long vacations are great but at times we come home feeling more exhausted than rested. But weekend getaways are rejuvenating experiences. You come back feeling refreshed because a rest is what your mind and body occasionally need. Some of the benefits of weekend getaways are:

  • Family bonding,
  • Rekindling romance,
  • Fresh air and greenery,
  • Relaxation of the mind,
  • Rest for the weary body, etc.

I live in Pune and the city has an abundance of weekend getaways that are within a distance of 50 to 200 kilometres. You can pick and choose the places depending on whether you have senior citizens and little children in your group. There is a choice for every age group. Most of us have gone to Lonavla-Khandala-Matheran and Mahableshwar-Panchgani. So let’s see what else is there around Pune…


This is a beautiful resort built in an ancient fort just 30 Kms from Pune city. It is surrounded by pristine forest land and has awesome landscape. We started from home at 6 am and reached in time for breakfast. This place is away from the maddening crowd and is great for families as well as couples.


Just 160Kms from Pune is a wonderful, unspoilt beach called Diveagar. The place is safe, clean and perfectly suited for family groups. Being a fishing village there is no 5-star accommodation and choice is limited. But you will still be very comfortable because of the hospitality of the people and the clean sea breezes that are an essence of Diveagar. Don’t miss out on the local cuisine…it’s superb!

Another attraction here is the Suvarna (Gold) Ganesha Temple which is more than 300 years old. The 24-inches tall Ganesha is carved out of a solid lump of 24 carat gold. So Diveagar is worth visiting at a weekend for its golden Ganesha as well as golden sands.


Sula is a connoisseur’s delight. It has amazing scenery, peaceful surroundings, attractive resorts (Beyond Sula), and their restaurant. You can go on a tour of the vineyards and also take part in the wine tasting session. This is a very popular with families as well as youth.


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Situated about 200Kms from Pune, Aurangabad is the home for the most beautiful pair of caves in the world – the Ajanta caves and the Ellora. Famous for their carvings and murals, tourists come from all parts of the world to see these wonders. There is a constant stream of visitors all year round. If you haven’t seen them you have really missed a crucial part of ancient Indian culture.

grishneshwar 1

Nearby is also the Shri Grishneshwar Temple. It is one among 12 Jyotirlingams and only the truly blessed will get a chance to visit the temple. There is a dress code to enter the temple so make sure you find out about that. I have performed abhishek there and it is an awesome experience. Aurangabad has many resorts from medium priced to 5-star so there is no shortage of accommodation. The locals are polite and helpful.

All the places mentioned above are a photographer’s delight.  A weekend getaway is the perfect break one needs from the hectic life of the city. The pure clean air, beautiful surroundings what you need to get rejuvenated. Enjoy little breaks and enjoy life.

Note: The images are for the purpose of illustration only and have no commercial intent.

Benefits Of Group Tours For Women

Tourisst group

Travel agencies across the globe are offering specialised group tours for women travellers. Byond Travel, Women On Wanderlust (WOW) Club, Gutsy Women Travel, etc are some of the few that cater to the women-only groups. There are many reasons for their increasing popularity:


Money saved

When you travel in a group, the accommodation is usually on twin-sharing basis which is a lot cheaper than single occupancy. Also, the agents can avail of heavy discounts on air fares because it is a group booking, and this advantage is passed on to the tourist. Also, most hotels offer discounted rates for agencies that give them regular business. You can therefore get better hotel accommodation at affordable rates.


travel agent

Relax! You don’t need to spend a lot of time on Google searching for the best cheapest air fares and rooms. The tour operators are constantly looking for competitive prices in travel and hotel accommodation. They organise the travel from your city to the holiday destination, airport pick-ups and drops, accommodation, local sightseeing, and ensure that you have fun. The guide knows which restaurants serve the best local cuisine at the cheapest rates. Also, you are not at a loss because you don’t know the language.

New buddies




Let’s say you are on a 10-day vacation with a group of women, going around Europe. During the course of that time you get to meet many other women. You will make new friends and share memorable experiences. The number of selfies you have clicked will show you how many new friends you have made.


safe travel

This is one of the biggest advantages of group tours for women. There is definitely safety in numbers. When you are a group of 50 or more women with a tour guide, there is no worry that you might miss a connecting. Also, they know which parts of a city are safe for tourist and which are not.

Experienced guide

tour guide


Tour operators will tell you a short history of the place; which you would have been compelled to research on your own as a solo traveller. The guide has already visited the cities and attractions many times with other groups and can give you a lot of inside information about the place. There are some places that have unusual operating hours but the guide will make sure that you don’t miss any sightseeing.


tourists shopping

Of course you want to shop for souvenirs! Besides the pictures you have clicked during your holiday, you also want to bring back a memento, a speciality of the place. When you are a solo traveller, you are at a disadvantage. The package tour guide knows all the bargain shops and best prices available. You can bring back small items like coasters, pen stands, key chains, satchels, scarves, stoles, etc that typical of that region.

When you travel alone, it doesn’t mean that you do not gain knowledge or experience. But with group tours for women you not only learn about the holiday destination, you also learn something about the women of different cities and ethnicity. You gain knowledge of their way of life. The trip becomes a learning process and you have a lot of fun too.