From adventure of the planetary kind to a peaceful swim with turtles, we give you seven ways to spend those extra 24 hours.It comes only once in four years, so we suggest you do something out of the ordinary this time. We have rounded up ideas to suit every mood and budget and there is something for leapers as well. Take a look.
Swim with the turtles
How about making the best of our proximity to Sri Lanka, with a night at Owl and the Pussycat in Thalpe. Fans of the Edward Lear poem will love the island’s newest boutique hotel. A short drive from Galle, it has 16 rooms outfitted with handmade pieces by artists, both local and from as far off as Argentina. Learn to fish with stilt fishermen or make a date with the turtles that live off shore. From approx Rs 13,000. Flight tickets Rs 15,000 upwards (per person). Details: otphotel.com
Wheels in motion
Make the leap year memorable, and take off to an exotic location. Don’t just travel but test your endurance too with this seven-day
cycling trip from to Bali organised by Active Holidays. The group departs from Bengaluru on February 29. Go beyond Bali’s famed beaches to
untrodden back roads that connect local villages with scenic volcano and paddy plantations. The trip is all about venturing into the unknown. Rs 61,593 (per person). Details: 9886683181
Love in mid air
Girls, take a cue from the Amy Adams-starrer Leap Day, and propose to your Mr Right. Well, according to Irish tradition, a man can’t refuse a woman’s proposal of marriage on February 29. Tradition or not, it’s still a good idea for you take charge. You can make the moment memorable by popping the question mid-air. Heli Tours India offers private helicopter rides in Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad and Mumbai. Fights subject to availability. `85,000 for 30 min, Rs 1,25,000 for an hour.
This May, Earth and Mars are headed for their closest encounter in a decade, and this phenomenon is called opposition. From February 29 night to the wee hours of March 1 is the ideal window for stargazers to start following the celestial phenomenon, says Raghunandan Kumar of Planetary Society of India. Week after week, Mars will get closer and brighter. So head to your rooftops, with binoculars and telescopes in tow, and spot the non-twinkling object next to the moon – that’s Mars. And if you wish to observe the celestial phenomenon in the company of other star gazers, you can join Bangalore Astronomical Society’s Google group, and plan an outing. Details: bas.org.in
Steer an aircraft almost first-hand at Flight4Fantasy’s high precision flight simulation centre at The Forum Mall, Koramangala. They let you fly a plane — Boeing 737, Cessna 172 or 4D Fighter Jet — from any of their 20,000 airports, virtually. You can play pilot or passenger. Rs 1,100 (for 15 min per person). 11.30 am-9.30 pm. Details: flight4fantasy.com
A classic ride
This is one of the best surprises one can get on a birthday. Arrange for your leaper friend or family member to be driven to the party venue like royalty. Classic Chase offers you the option of hiring a two or four-seater vintage care with chauffeur — from a selection of 1940 Woody, 1947 Lincoln, 1960 Sunbeam Alpine, 1936 Mercedes and 1954 Studebaker. Book latest by Saturday to avoid any last-minute hassle. Rs 35,000 upwards. Call 9880900009, or log on to classicchase.in