Meet the Traveler: Rena Thiagarajan
Hometown: Chennai, India.
Occupation: Founder and Chief Adventurer, Project Bly.
Favorite destinations: Vietnam, Uzbekistan, and Mumbai, India.
Dying to visit: Ethiopia and Bhutan.
Bizarre travel rituals: I'm obsessive about making sure I have socks for the plane and often end up throwing multiple pairs of socks in my carry-on. I hate cold feet.
In-flight relaxation regime: A good book.
Always in carry-on: Socks. (See above.)
Concierge or DIY? DIY.
See it all or take it easy? I’m a big fan of slow travel — the kind that involves sitting at a sidewalk café and people-watching and wandering the streets without an agenda.
Drive or be driven? Drive.
Travel hero: Nellie Bly.
Weirdest thing seen on travels: An entire cow carcass in the trunk of an old Russian Lada in Uzbekistan.
I dream about my meal at Nancy’s Nyonya Laksa in Malacca (Melaka), Malaysia.
Favorite Hotel: I love a little luxury as much as the next person, and the Raas Hotel in the ancient walled city of Jodhpur, Rajasthan, is spectacular. Another one of my favorite hotels, however, is the simple and intimate El Consulado in La Paz, Bolivia. It's got a beautiful garden, comfortable rooms, and the warmest staff.
Best hotel amenity: Molton Brown moisturizer.
Favorite childhood travel memory: Exploring the ancient fort city of Jaisalmer in Rajasthan, India.
Everywhere I go, I check out the street markets.
When I arrive in a new place, I learn the lay of the land by getting lost for a bit.
I always bring home textiles — scarfs, cushion covers, or something bigger (like a bedspread if it fits in my luggage).
I travel for the thrill of discovering the streets of a city.
MORE ABOUT RENA
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