Sherpa: (n) = a member of a Himalayan people living on the borders of Nepal and Tibet, renowned for their skill in mountaineering.
But what would a Sherpa do in the drab cities of say, Mumbai, Delhi or Bangalore. Why, show you around of course!
And it is with this thought that travelers Sukhmani and Dhruv started the group SeekSherpa. SeekSherpa provides a platform for locals to provide travel related services (micro-tours) and for travellers to book them when available! They also provide a framework that travellers can use to ask questions and get expert answers from Sherpas.
So basically, if you’re new to a city (Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, & Kolkata) – and you’re looking for an experience that immerses you in the local culture of a place – go ahead – open the SeekSherpa app (Android or iOS) and book per your budget and category! Or if you have a question for which you need an immediate answer – maybe what’s the best place to get local souveniers or how should one travel and you don’t want to go through 100s of review sites to know your answer – ask a question on the app and get an answer almost instantly!
“At any time when we went to a restaurant and the chef came to speak to us or the locals guided us on what to order, we always had a better time! Our moment of realisation came on a trek to Triund, where this little dog accompanied and showed us the way through till the top of the hill. Had we not had the dog, we’d have surely lost our way! (Look out for a picture of the dog and the Shepra hat – which is now their logo). This motivated us to create a platform where locals would get an opportunity to offer their skills and knowledge and travellers a chance to utilise these skills to have a better time!,” explained Dhruv.
As the site famously displays, the tours are less than 3 hours long and costs you less than $50. Why should you go with SeekSherpa (other than the adorable name, of course)? Because SeekSherpa focuses not on the usual to-do list but rather on creating specially curated experiences which are more local in flavour. In Delhi for example, they will cover Chandni Chowk and also have a unique cookout experience at a Chef’s kitchen for the more discerning traveller!
“We do a grading test on multiple parameters using today’s technology to assess the content, knowledge, price, and over 10 other factors in assessing how good a tour really is and how good is the Sherpato do it! But as a marketplace we leave the ultimate choice upto the user!”
Not bad, for a start up in the digital age.
With around 150 tours a month, SeekSherpa is getting more popular by the day. According to Dhruv, the tours around Old Delhi and in Bandra (Mumbai) are particularly popular. As a Bandra resident, I can swear by the abundance of lovely and/or interesting stuff to see on every lane.
“I think our best moment was when we started off and we had almost no Sherpas, for the first 2 months, for concept testing, Sukhmani and I conducted tour after tour in an around the India gate, Central Sec, Hauz Khas, & Shahpur Jat! Both coming from Theater backgrounds took up the role to please the audience thoroughly! Both our colleagues, Mrinal & Akshay, were first Sherpas (Mrinal had 15 Kolkata tours! And Akshay has one of Delhi’s most popular Old Delhi tours), and later partners at SeekSherpa!”
Everything sounds simple and good. How do you book. Simple here as well. Go to our favourite site: BookMyShow (okay my favourite! When is the next horror flick releasing anyway?) and click away. Choose between food or shopping, history or nightlife or even a music tour. I am tempted to try one quite soon. Maybe, I can even be Sherpa? I surely have the looks!
Check them here