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Vidya Balan – “We went on our honeymoon without a camera”

I am very fond of travelling, In fact, after meeting Siddharth, I have begun exploring the world. The last place I visited was Bali where we stayed in a lovely villa with an attached pool. It was raining, so we did not go out much. We were on holiday after a rigorous schedule so we just spent time lazing, reading (I love reading outdoors; both Siddharth and I are very fond of reading), listening to music  on my iPod, eating, sleeping, spending time in the pool, walking by the beach … basically we chilled.

I am a vegetarian while Siddharth is a pure non- vegetarian. In Bali I had a lot of Phad Thai, which was excellent. I don’t eat a lot of bread in Mumbai too so when I travel I find it little difficult. But the Thai and Balinese food was excellent.

My other memorable holidays include a trip to New Zealand. I simply love the place — it’s serene and just the kind of place you would want to go for some private time. You feel humbled by the natural beauty. It’s like you are living in a postcard. It sounds like a cliche but it felt amazing to be amidst such natural beauty. Nature has a calming effect. At such places you do not feel the need to meditate or to go to spas. Nature itself is refreshing and healing.

I have been to some really secluded places in New Zealand. In Glenorchy, we could hardly see anyone when we were walking around. I went to another place in New Zealand where they had only just three hundred families living.

New York is a completely different experience. I love the energy of NY. It’s one of the best places to walk around in. I love going to Central Park every morning if I can. I really enjoy walking … In Paris, one day I walked for ten hours from one corner to another!

“Another travel destination I loved was Pangkor Laut in Malaysia which has villas in the middle of the sea. At night when there is a high tide, the water level rises and you feel that the villas are almost swimming. These places are so beautiful, they transport you to another plane. Though we invariably end up travelling by flights, if you ask me, I would love to travel by train or by road so that I can see the countryside.”

I don’t like hectic holidays because I invariably take a holiday after a really gruelling time at work. I am not the kind of a person who wakes up at five in the morning on a holiday. However, I love going to the local market as you get the sense of the culture and the people of the place.

I am not at all fond of shopping. My manager tells me that I know exactly what I need and therefore don’t take long to shop. I prefer to buy gifts for people. I hardly shop for clothes when I go abroad; I pick up artefacts and souvenirs; and cosmetics on rare occasions. I don’t let anyone pack for me. After years of travel, I have learnt to pack very smartly.

“I used to shoot pictures but not anymore. Siddharth and I must be the only couple who went on their honeymoon without a camera. He is not a picture person at all. Once in a while, I may indulge in a selfie, but I am not into pictures either.”

Anita Raheja, Heena Agarwal, Bollywood News Service

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