Plan your trip

Aravind Murali

Lives in Chennai, India

  • Asia

  • Australasia

  • Sri Lanka

  • Malaysia

  • Indonesia

  • Thailand

  • Philippines

  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Very helpful in planning our trip - By Yi Hsin Lin - See this trip
I chose Aravind because he seemed to be the only Travel Ninja listed with diving expertise. I was planning a trip for a large and very indecisive group, as a result of which we had some rather complicated requirements. We didn't even know where in Asia we wanted to go and weren't keen to read through a half dozen guidebooks. So we turned to a Travel Ninja.

Aravind was very helpful and gave us some great advice, even as we kept changing our minds about what we wanted. At first I tried to do research in parallel, but found that every time he found the best places for us to stay so I stopped after a bit. We ended up going to the Philippines for this trip, but will be taking one of his other recommendations (Malaysia) next year for our annual family reunion. Thanks Aravind for your help in planning our trip!

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Had an awesome time :-) - By Anonymous - See this trip

Extended family reunion in Asia + Solo diving

I am trying to plan a joint solo/extended family trip in December-January. It's a bit complicated, but if it were simple I'd be able to do it myself. :)

The extended family group is myself (25), three cousins (19-23), and our moms (who are sisters, 49-53). There's also a possibility that another cousin (13) and her father (47) will want to come with us. I'm coming from Boston, but the rest are mostly in Taiwan (or will be there visiting anyway).

I'm thinking something like this: ~1 week just diving solo, ~1 week with everybody, ~1 week either solo but more probably with part of the family group depending on what the options are and whether they want to come. The weeks don't necessarily have to be in the order I described.

Andaman Islands in Nov-Dec

Planning on visiting Andaman and its islands around last week of Nov,2014 to first week of Dec for around 5-6 days. It would just be me and my mom travelling from Chennai. Would like to have a laid back vacation, though I am up for some sports as well. Both of us are vegetarians. Accommodation - does not have to be on a tight budget, anything that worth the money. My major concern is transportation and dining in the islands. Appreciate it if they are addressed in detail while planning.


Trip to thailand

Hi Aravind. This is Vivek from Chennai. I am planning for a honeymoon trip to Thailand. I would like to get advice on planning my travel.

My trip started yesterday

Hi Aravind,

My trip started yesterday, so need your help asap. I have a few defined travels with lots of open space in between. Here's what's fixed:

1) I'm currently in Singapore

2) I have a flight from Coimbatore, India to South Africa on 7 December (so need to make my way to Coimbatore sometime before then). 

3) I've signed up for a retreat 16-22 Nov at Isha ashram outside Coimbatore but am open to delaying this until next year.

What I love:

- beautiful, serene islands in summer

- diving and snorkeling, especially with whales, dolphins and turtles

- sailing and pretty much all water sports

- meditation, yoga, healthy delicious eating

- dancing and social, although am past the young backpacker crowd (I'm 37)

I will be traveling alone and hoping to have a memorable adventure with diving, snorkeling and sailing in SE Asia - I'm open to country(s) - Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, India, Vietnam, Malaysia, Phillipines? I'm a qualified PADI diver and a qualified bareboat skipper although don't feel comfortable enough taking a boat out on my own, but know how to sail. I'm on a budget - not backpacker level though. I have loads of Hilton points from work, so would love to use some for a few luxury nights. Also, as my action ha started I'd like to stay away from countries with difficult or time intensive visa processes - I'm traveling on a U.S. Passport. 

Thanks  is and looking forward to your creative suggestions.




Scuba Diving trip from Bangalore

Hi Aravind,

I'm thinking of going on a 1 week solo holiday myself and want to combine it with learning Scuba-diving. Both timing and budget are flexible - I can go anytime between June-Dec and am willing to pay more for a significantly better experience. I'm thinking Philippines might be a good bet since I want to see that country anyway, but I'm open to suggestions.

Also, I will need guidance on which dive school to opt for, what's a reasonable amount to pay, and what kind of course to go for. FYI, my swimming skills are basic - but I understand that that's not a deal-breaker for Scuba.