Who Am I?

 Welcome to

Astonishing India

Hi, I am Shoma Abhyankar. It was only after I was holed up in a cubicle designing house plans the entire day, that I realized that indoors make me claustrophobic. When I am outdoors, I love letting the breeze play with my hair, the rippling waters of seas, rivers and streams tickle my feet….I love to sit surrounded by nature or roam in the ruins of temples, forts and palaces and let the forests and ruins all speak to me in whispers of the birds that sing…of the butterflies that dance…of the kings and queens…of the battles and coups…

All strapped up for a fun ride in air

There is so much to see and just one life time… so I left my job to bring up a beautiful daughter and move all over the country with my military man. That helped in satisfying my travel hungry self too. So there I was travelling Srinagar(Kashmir) in northern India to Shillong(Meghalaya) in eastern India to Andamans in south and Jodhpur(Rajasthan) in Western parts of country and many more destinations within the country.

Why Travel?

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”

I believe travel makes me more tolerant…more open to different cultures….more knowledgeable about the world and not to forget introduce me to various cuisines! I would love to inspire my daughter and others to explore the rich heritage, the diverse landscape and  variety of culture that our incredible country has to offer.

Travel to moon…

Travel I must to expand my horizon…to find new experiences and meet passionate travelers…to learn new stories…To grow as a human being!

My Travel Whims

Road travel fascinates me…mostly because that allows me my pace….to stop at will and marvel at something that piqued my interest….to decide which path to take….laid back. Unless there is an unavoidable urgency, I like to explore all along the way to the final destination…

Though I would love to be more spontaneous in my travels but I like my clean sheets to have a peaceful night before taking the next day full on….well, so I plan my travels and look for a clean room to rest in! I prefer not to be stranded or exposed to unfavorable conditions and people during my travels…Safety is a prerequisite!

I am looking for adventure no doubt…but hunting for food or surviving on bugs is not my idea of adventure….give me cooked food and I am good to go…I like my luxuries!

And the stories….

I have many memorable travel moments. And hence the stories…. Welcome to my travel stories at ASTONISHING INDIA.



17 thoughts on “Who Am I?

  1. Dear Madam,

    I’m glad to introduce myself to you. I’m Sathiskumar Shanmugam from Chennai, A PR Professional. We are planning to organize a travel bloggers meet in Chennai for one of our clients in hospitality sector.
    We would like to inform you further on this regard. Kindly send us your contact details for the same.

    sathiskumar shanmugam
    Mobile: 99403 81092


  2. Hi Shoma abhyankar – Hope you’re well.

    I was wondering if I can get your email address or contact details?

    We are in the stages of planning an exciting new contest for travel bloggers and photographers who’ve visited, or plan to visit Thailand, and we want to get as many talented people as we can on board.

    To let everyone know more about the full details and great prizes we need to make as contact with as many bloggers and photographers as we can, to keep them updated via our newsletter.

    I hope to hear from you soon


  3. Hi Shoma,
    I was just traversing the womenweb site and I got to read one of your blog regarding maintaining the long distance relationships. It was wonderful and from there I got here on your own blog space 🙂 I too have travelled ample of places- Leh, Nainital, Rishikesh, Haridwar, Sikkim, Darjiling,Puri, Bhiubaneshwar, Deoghar, Varanasi, Nashik, Pune, Mumbai- list goes on an on.
    But have not shared my experiences yet 😦 But yes, I Write reviews on trip advisor and now registered on womenweb . I am just hoping to write more and more and you have inspired me too much, though my name is Prerna (inspiration )
    Great going 🙂 Well done:) and keep blogging and inspiring ….Thumbs up




    1. Thank you Prerna for such huge compliment. I am glad you liked my blog and are inspired to start one too. I am myself still learning and have still long way to go.
      Best wishes for your blog. Hope to read it soon.


    1. Thank you Rashmi. Just read about Pondicherry at your blog…brought back memories. I have however yet to see the French yellow houses and maitri Mandir….visited when it was still under construction.


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