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Dileesh

Dileesh is a botanical science graduate and is hugely passionate about nature. Born into a middle class Agrarian family, Dileesh grew up in a small village at the ancient harbour of the Kerala’s Malabar Coast, in the region of Fort Kochi. His post-graduate studies in tourism led him to the travel industry, which he has now been in for 21 years. Dileesh enjoys sharing his passion for his country with others and allowing travellers to fulfil their dreams. He strongly believes in interactive learning - Dileesh loves travelling through villages, getting to know their unique cuisines and lifestyles. He now lives in Chennai (Madras) with his wife and 13 year old son.

Specialist: India


Interview

Q: How did you fall into tour leading?

A: I started at a tour company computer desk, and now tour guide – I love the excitement of interacting and discovering!

Q: What do you like most about tour leading?

A: Decision making and having the freedom to express our values within our society.

Q: Where is your favourite part of the world?

A: It’s were I am born, but as a traveller I love to explore Central and South America.

Q: What was your biggest travel highlight?

A: I love trekking and have been on the top of Western Ghats, hiking through evergreen forests and grasslands (the highest mountain ranges in South-Western India).

Q: What’s the craziest request you’ve ever had from a client?

A: Asking for continentalfood in a traditional Indian cookery workshop.

Q: What’s the one thing you couldn’t travel without?

A: Salt, black pepper & my spice box (not spicy!), for delicious story-telling...

Q: Which famous person would you most like to travel with?

A: If he was still around in the 21st century, or I was living in his era, I would like to go with ‘Bodhidharma’, a South Indian Pallava Prince from Kanchipuram who founded Zen Buddhism and Shaolin Kung Fu.

Q: Have you ever made a cultural faux pas?

A: Asking for ‘Kallu’ or toddy (self-fermented organic drink extracted from the coconut flower bud) at a shop with coconut–leaves as thatched walls and a roof. I didn’t notice the bunch of ripe bananas and glass cupboard for fried snacks in front, which indicates ‘Chayakkada’ (in Malayalam) - a tea shop.


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