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I love to research travel. Some people like to unwind by watching TV, but I love to surf the net for travel information. When planning a trip, I still like to buy a paper guidebook and Lonely Planets have been our go to choice for years. But I also rely heavily on reviews, forums and travel blogs for recommendations, pricing info, accommodation and things to do in a given destination. I really like Trip Advisor for reviews and the forums, Lonely Planet Thorntree forums and travel blog entries. For our India trip I keep a notebook of notes that I have gleamed from all this online surfing. I particularly appreciate travel blogs that not only provide beautiful images and inspiration for visiting a particular area, but also provide detailed info about where they stayed, prices, transportation options and other important tips. India receives lots of visitors, but many stick to the northern Golden Triangle region and not many involve families with young children. Finding travel blogs that focus on southern India and even finding the odd entry from a family, is harder to find.
Here are some of the travel blogs that I have found really useful in planning our trip to southern India with kids.
1. Curious Plan
This family is from Melbourne and has been really helpful over the WWW providing us with info about Melbourne. Lots of beautiful photos on their blog and specific recommendations, and since they have two young kids, very relevant to us.
2. With 2 Kids in Tow
A Canadian/Australian family that lived in Melbourne for years and took the time to answer some of my specific questions about Melbourne and travel in India. This blog is a few years old but is total inspiration because of the strict backpacker budget ($41 USD/day for all 4 of them!) they kept to even while traveling with two very young kids.
3. World Travel Family
This is a blog I have followed for a few years and there is lots of info about their trip to Kerala. I appreciate Alyson’s very honest writing style and there are lots of specific info in her blogs about accommodation and prices.
4. Bridges and Balloons
This blog is from a couple and their photos are gorgeous and their blog are full of lots of great info.
5. Hippie in Heels
This blog is a wealth of resources on travelling in India. She has great information about avoiding scams, how to dress in India, how to take buses/trains and so much more. Rachel is based on Goa, but has some information about Kerala.
Planning our Trip
We have booked a guesthouse/home stay for our first 3 nights in India with an airport pickup. But after that we have nothing booked and will be free to move around as we please. I will have my handy notebook of recommendations, some great tips from these travelblogs and I have a few rough itinerary ideas. For someone who likes planning, it can be difficult for me to have that uncertainty, but since we are traveling in low (monsoon) season, it makes sense to keep things open. We will see where we end up!